INTRO: Among the best known sections of the Lords sermon on the mount must be this section about judging others. The words judge not ... are heard often in response to any sort of judgment and signal ones belief that no one has a right to call His words or behavior into question. That, however, is not what these words mean. And of course, we have one of the Lords illustrations using exaggeration to emphasize His point. So, our lesson title: Two Pieces Of Wood ... the splinter and the plank!
I. WHAT ABOUT JUDGING?
A. Can we make no judgments involving others?
1. Im afraid thats what some get from 7:1
2. but this is far from the case
3. at 7:15 is a situation involving a judgment
4. 1 Cor 5:1 this would require making a judgment
5. Gal 6:1 this would require making a judgment
6. Jas 5:19,20 this would require making a judgment
B. Note Jno 7:24... Judge righteous Judgment
1. righteous judgment is the key here
2. one critical aspect of such judgment would require comparison with an infallible standard - Jno 17:17
3. another critical aspect is love - Eph 4:15
4. certainly, humility is critical - Gal 6:1
5. when judgments must be made, and there are times they must, righteous judgment is required
6. note 2 Cor 10:12 this is not righteous judgment!
II. THE JUDGING OF WHICH JESUS SPEAKS?
A. It is harsh, unkind, unfair, censorious criticism
1. it is calling into question motives of another
2. it is deciding about another without facts
3. it is believing self to be above mistakes ... thus, it is often looking down on another
4. it is negative, destructive faultfinding
5. it disparages another to make self look better
6. it exaggerates faults in others and minimizes faults in self
B. An illustration: Lk 18:9-14
1. this Pharisee is exactly what Jesus meant!
2. he was full of himself
3. he commended his religiousness
4. and he assessed the publican as beneath him without knowing the man ... who, by the way, was at worship, too!
5. note 18:9 - ... trusted in themselves that they are righteous, and despised others
6. Rom 14:10 - why ... set at nought thy brother?
III. THE SPLINTER AND THE PLANK ...
A. The problem?
1.possibly the man with the splinter does need help
2. but the man who presumes to be the helper is clearly one of the holier than thou sorts at v.1
3. he does not bother to see his own faults - does not want to see them
4. how can he see to remove the splinter when he has a plank (pole) in his? he is a hypocrite (7:5)
B. This goes back to Gal 6:1!!
1. there is no spirit of meekness present here
2. there is no genuine interest in the other present here
3. there is no spiritual honesty present here
4. this hypocrite thinks himself to be something ... when really he is nothing - Gal 6:3 with 2 Cor 10:18
CLOSE: To help another remove a splinter or speck from his eye is commendable. But far too often critics do not have that noble desire. Here are five verses calling us to careful introspection.
Cecil A. Hutson
08 December 2002
You Must Hear the Gospel
You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
You Must Believe
You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)
You Must Repent
You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)
You Must Confess
You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)
You Must Be Baptized
Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!
You Must Be Faithful Unto Death
Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)