What Jesus Said: Be a Speckectomist

“You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” (Matthew 7:5)

It would be so much easier just stop with the verse before this one. I’d be way more comfortable with a philosophy of life that said, “Don’t ever worry about what anyone else is doing wrong; live and let live. That’s between them and God, not me.” It’s what our culture often means by “tolerance,” and it sounds so right and clean, doesn’t it?

whatjesus_350But Jesus kept going: Once you’ve rejected hypocrisy and have removed that log from your eye, then jump in there and help your brother remove the speck from his own eye. Yes, don’t become a judgmental hypocrite. But, also yes, do confront each other about sin with the willingness to help each other overcome it.

Jesus’ half-brother James was talking about a lot more than “specks” when he wrote this at the very end of his famous letter: “My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins.” (James 5:19-20)

God isn’t looking for volunteer judges, but he does call us as his children to get into each other’s business, to keep pointing each other back to the path of Jesus.

Think: Which is harder for you – not to judge or to lovingly help a Christian friend to deal with sin? Why?

Pray: Ask God to help you to be willing to be available to help your Christian friends deal with sin – with wisdom, grace, and kindness.

Do: Notice how these ideas fit with Hebrews 10:24-25.