Summary: Working through the Gospel of Luke using consecutive expository preaching.
“2x4 In My Eye”
A sermon for 6/6/21
Pastor John Bright - Harmony & Swansonville UMC
Luke 6 “41 And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the plank in your own eye? 42 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the plank that is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck that is in your brother’s eye.”
Before I tell you this – please remember that just because they call your contacts on Facebook you “friends”, that does not mean they are real friends. I always say that they could have called them “goats” and we would tell everyone how many goats we have on Facebook😊 So, over the last six or seven years, I have lost many “friends” on Facebook because I don’t hide my Christian beliefs. These days I can post a Christian article and get a few likes or post a funny meme and get lots of likes – but it’s not like it used to be. I used to get critical comments and, quite often, this – “Didn’t Jesus say do not judge?” It’s meant to be a conversation stopper when someone accused you of being judgmental. Of course, at that point most Christians back down and cower in the corner… NOT ME! What did I tell that person? “It’s not me judging your actions, it’s God’s Holy Word. So, you don’t have a problem with me, the one proclaiming God’s Word. You have a problem with God.” I have less of those kinds of “friends” today and many more Christians who stand on the Truth of God’s Word.
Jesus begins this section of Luke 6 (The Sermon on the Plain) with three short commendations - v. 37 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” This is often referred to as the most misunderstood verse in today’s culture. It gets thrown around often in the ongoing battles raging in our denomination.
We ended the previous section with Jesus telling us how to treat those who mistreat us – “35 But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. 36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.” It looks like Jesus is shifting to how we treat each other – uh oh!
The Law of Sowing and Reaping v.37-38
37 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38 Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”
The terms that Jesus are using here sound like the court system – judge & condemn. There, you have a jury, and attorneys, and a judge to administer justice. How quick are you to pass judgement – becoming judge and jury? How do we do this so easily? We usually assume we know WHY someone did what they did or said what they said. There is only one way for you to know my WHY – talk to me.
In the past, there have been times that taking a stance for the Truth of God’s Word has upset parents in the congregation I served. Once or twice, I was even accused of being a “hater.” I always ask those parents to sit down with me. Then I request we talk – they tell me what they believe on the issue and why, then I tell them why I believe the Bible. You know what I told them – the Bible is God’s best for us and we are free to go God’s way or our own way. Whenever I have that kind of discussion it is not meant to change the mind of the other person and make them believe what I believe. Its purpose is to understand each other – a really foreign concept in the world today.
Verse 38 begins with “Give; and it will be given to you…” This is another way of saying a very, very basic principle found in God’s Word – the Law of Sowing and Reaping. Since everybody knows how much I despise The Prosperity Gospel, I won’t go into the ridiculous details of sending a TV preacher a “seed gift” so you can get a new car. SMH! But, this is a true law in the physical realm and every farmer or gardener knows it. I like my little container garden and I am never shocked when I plant lettuce seeds and up comes the lettuce.