Summary: Pull the splinter out of your own eye first
“And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the log in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, “Let me remove the speck from your eye”; and look, a log is in your own eye? 5 Hypocrite! First remove the log from your own eye, then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
2nd Sam. 12:5-7, 9
5 And David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, “As the Lord liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die: 6 And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.” 7 And Nathan said to David, “Thou art the man! Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and delivered thee out of the hand of Saul . . . .9 Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the Lord to do evil in His sight? Thou has killed Uriah Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon.”
When it comes to our desire to make things better, we all have a tendency to start by looking at other people instead of looking at ourselves. When we view society as a whole or if we start on a smaller scale; if we get it into our heads that things need to change for the better, we usually start from the position that “other people need to change”. We want other people to change to our standards of “righteousness”, we want them to change to what we think they ought to be, we want them to talk like we think they should talk, or act like we think they should act, or dress like we think they should dress, or believe what we think they should believe. We are fast at desiring, even demanding change in other people, but we are pitifully slow on recognizing the need for change in our own lives. We are quick to see the weaknesses, the deficiencies and the sin in some one else’s life, but we are blind to the train wrecks clogging up the tracks in our own lives. There is a big difference in how we think and How God thinks, we always want to change other people, God thinks and works in the opposite direction, He always wants to change me! When God moves to revive me, when He moves to bring me back to Him, He always starts working on my heart to the exclusion of my brother’s heart. God’s issues are with me personally; my brother or my sister belong to the Lord and it is His prerogative to will deal with them in His own way.
Question: Why is it our nature to try to remove splinter from our brothers eye and ignore the log that is in our own eye? My greatest challenge is always keeping myself under control, keeping my feet off the “Broad way” that leads to destruction and on the narrow way that leads to eternal life. As we move deeper into these times of spiritual awakening that God is working among us we should begin to realize that this is not the time for us to “point the finger” at any one else; it is a time God has set aside for the Holy Ghost to confront “me”, this is not the time for us to ignore our own sins and concentrate on some body else’s shortcomings. In His Message on the Mount, Jesus Himself pointed out the need for us to pay attention to our own spiritual condition before we take it upon ourselves to “point the finger” at someone else. This is a hard truth for us to admit, it is a hard lesson for us to learn; it is even harder for us to put to work in our own lives; it is hard because it requires us to come to some sobering truths about who we really are inside. If I start “sweeping around my own front door”, if I start turning over my own trash pile, if I start sorting through my own garbage, the mess, the broken branches and dead leaves inside of my own soul will bring me face to face with some not-so-pleasant facts about who I am and how much I need to be cleaned up.
A. Be careful how we “judge” other people.
All Scripture is inspired by God and the Apostle Paul tells us that all Scripture is given to us as an “example”, to guide us into what is right and away from what is wrong. When it comes to finger-pointing or “judging” other people King David stands out as a classic example and we can learn much from his personal “finger pointing”experiences. David learned the hard way about the dangers of “pointing the finger”. Most of us are familiar with King David: God took him from a shepherd’s life and made him King over Israel. In all things, in every way, David was blessed by the Lord; their relationship was so strong and God loved David so much that God Himself said of David, “He is a man after my own heart.” As a sign of His love for David God promised him that one of his descendants would always sit on the throne of Israel, and He made one of the greatest covenants in the Bible with David; that the Messiah, the “Hope of Israel” and the “Glory of the Gentiles”, the Savior of the world, would come from his loins. Yet, with all God gave to David, with all the blessings and the promises He poured out on David, like most of us today, David lost it, he lost it because he took his eyes off the Lord and he started looking at some one he should not have been looking at. Like all of us, David should have remembered the warning God gave Cain when he told him, “sin lieth at the door and will seek to rule over you but you must rule over it”. Like a crouching beast sin is always lurking at the door of all our hearts, and when David started looking at another man’s wife the sin of lust leaped from behind that door and right into his heart; David fell head-long into a black hole of evil. The Apostle James writes to the church,