Summary: Following Christ’s message is essential, but we have to be cautious not to become what he was preaching against.
The Heart of the Matter
Following Christ’s message is essential, but we have to be cautious not to become what he was preaching against.
• Since the opening words of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus turned the world of His audience upside down with His radically different teaching on the subject of righteousness.
• Jesus will now turn to the heart of the matter.
• Your heart and where your heart is invested play a vital role in how or if you will live out your faith.
• Will you have a Pharisee faith, looks good on the outside, but is a trainwreck on the inside, or will you live out a faith that is pleasing to God.
• And as a side note, if you chose the latter, life will be good, fulfilling and complete!
• Jesus now turns the message to warnings associated with this “new” understanding of righteousness.
• Jesus is trying to warn his hearers that, if they’re not careful, they could become exactly what he has been warning against.
• For instance, using a very explicit illustration, Jesus warns against becoming a new breed of Pharisees that spots the sin in others but is blind to one’s own faults.
• In the lengthy section of text we will cover together today, Jesus is going to share three areas our hearts need to be centered upon so that we can live a life that is truly pleasing to God.
• I have said this before. Until one changes their heart, what they do on the outside means nothing.
• The religious leaders were in the mode of living life.
• When you give your life to Jesus, it is vital that you allow God to work on your heart.
• Today we will examine three areas that our hearts need to be centered so that we can live a life that is fruitful and pleasing to God!
• We will not cover all 23 verses in detail; we will focus a little more on the big picture these gems lay put for us.
• Jerry spoke about some of the verses that people know who do not know anything about the Bible, and today we will see one in the opening verse of chapter 7!
Matthew 7:1-6 (CSB)
1“Do not judge, so that you won’t be judged.
2For you will be judged by the same standard with which you judge others, and you will be measured by the same measure you use.
3Why do you look at the splinter in your brother’s eye but don’t notice the beam of wood in your own eye?
4Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the splinter out of your eye,’ and look, there’s a beam of wood in your own eye?
5Hypocrite! First take the beam of wood out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to take the splinter out of your brother’s eye.
6Don’t give what is holy to dogs or toss your pearls before pigs, or they will trample them under their feet, turn, and tear you to pieces.
1. I. A heart for others.
• Verse 1 is a verse most everyone can quote, even if they have never read a Bible in thief life.
• One of the traps we do not want to succumb to is the judgment trap.
• We fall into the judgment trap when we forget how much God loves others and how much God loves us.
• When we do not have a heart for others, we tend to get nasty with those we have no heart for.
• We tend to be less charitable to those we do not love, and more judgmental toward those we do not love. (YOUR CHILDREN AS AN EXAMPLE)
• Jesus spent the first part of the Sermon on the Mount teaching on the subject of kingdom attitudes, which ties into what pleases God.
• The religious leaders were a poor example to the people; they looked great on the outside, but a mess on the inside.
• These first six verses speak to the subject of judging others.
• This verse could read, DO NOT GET IN THE HABIT OF JUDGING OTHERS.
• Most people use this verse out of context, making the verse say that you dare not make a JUDGEMENT concerning another person.
• We will see this is a false premise from the context of these first six verses.
• What verse one speaks to is the subject of HYPOCRITICALLY judging other people.
• Verses 2-6 point makes this point clear.
• The word JUDGE means TO FORM A CRITICAL OPINION OF SOMETHING (EITHER POSITIVE OR NEGATIVE) BY EXAMINATION OR SCRUTINY.