“And why beholdest thou the mote [speck] that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam [log] 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?”
A SPEC AND A LOG published week of JULY 11, 2021
The illustrations Jesus used in His teaching ministry were very picturesque and no doubt relatable to the people of his day. Even as we read them today, they are easy to understand and apply. In fact, I am sometimes struck by how funny some of His illustrations and conversations were. Consider for example the passage in Matthew 7. The word picture He painted is both simple and humorous to understand. Jesus describes the foolishness of pointing out a speck of sawdust in someone else’s eye, while there is a plank in your own eye.
By “beam,” Jesus described what we would call a 2 x 4 board. Can you imagine? How silly someone would look with a giant board sticking out of his eye, all the while fussing and complaining about the tiny speck of dust in another’s eye! Although this scenario is humorous, it does paint an unmistakable picture.
Going deeper into this teaching of Jesus, carefully notice that Jesus never said it was wrong to notice the speck of sawdust in another person’s eye. Rather, the problem is ignoring the plank in your own eye. The question Jesus asks in verse 4 is interesting. How can you help your brother get the speck out of his eye if there is a plank in your eye? It seems that the expectation here is not only to point out sin in someone else’s life, but also to help them get rid of it.
Unfortunately, often times when we point out sin in another person, we have no intention or desire to help them remove it. Perhaps that is the biggest plank of all.
“Heavenly Father, please keep me ever aware of the plank in my own eye before I judge anyone else. I do not want to become arrogant and full of pride in my own life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”