Saturday, November 13, 2010

Removing the Mote and the Beam

In the post below I quote the Lord Jesus saying in Matthew 7:3-5:

And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

Pondering this saying of the Lord Jesus in connection with this week’s challenge with my own eye, I realized the depth of the problem that the Lord is addressing in this matter.  As many times as I have heard and read and studied this text, somehow the main point seems to have evaded my awareness.  I usually consider the main point of the text to be that the beam in my own eye is to be counted as far larger and important than the mote in my brother’s eye and that I must remove my problem before even thinking of my brother’s problem, which is far less significant to me personally than my own problem.  And this really is the point that the Lord Jesus makes.

However, there is another point that is perhaps even more important.  What could be more important than what is already stated?

The bigger and more important point is the one that I learned again as I tried to remove the wood from my own eye and to evaluate the injury to my own eye.  The fact is that I am not up to the task.  I am not capable of rightly dealing with the beam in my own eye, let alone the mote in my brother’s eye.

This really is the main point of what the Lord Jesus is teaching in this text.  If we are turned from our hypocrisy of trying to remove the mote from our brothers’ eyes so that we attempt to remove the beam from our own eye, then we see how truly helpless sin makes us.  Then we are turned from relying upon our own reason and strength so that we turn to the true physician for our help.  Then we naturally are turned from all of our own corrupt and feeble efforts to the one who is able to heal us completely.  Then we listen before we preach so that what we preach is correct and true and of genuine benefit both to ourselves as well as our brothers and perhaps even to the world.  Then we are converted to be true theologians all and together we are built up into the knowledge of God and His salvation and the Holy Communion to which He calls us.

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