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Matthew 7:1-6

Talks for Growing Christians

Believers are not to Judge Motives or be Fault-finders

Matthew 7:1-6

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Lesson Number 15

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Believers should not judge the motives or conscience of others.
  2. Believers should not concentrate on the faults of other believers.
  3. Believers should not cast their pearls before swine.

Practical Application

  1. Use your sense of humor to serve the Lord.

Questions

  1. Micah 6:8 says, “He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you, but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?” How is this similar to the Sermon on the Mount?
  2. Who were the original recipients of the Sermon on the Mount?
  3. Why are believers not to judge another person’s motives or conscience?
  4. What is hyperbole?
  5. Who do the dogs and swine in Matthew 7:6 represent?

Answers

  1. Like Micah 6:8, the Sermon on the Mount does not tell how to be saved. Instead, both of these passages show the way of righteous living.
  2. The Jews who were preparing for the kingdom of heaven.
  3. We cannot know another person’s motives, so it would be wrong of us to judge them. We should not be judgmental in the area of conscience, because among faithful Christians there are differences of opinion on matters that are not in of themselves right or wrong.
  4. Hyperbole is a figure of speech with purposeful exaggeration to get the point across.
  5. Dogs and swine were unclean under the Mosaic Law. They represent wicked unbelievers, who are not open to the things of God and would even like to undermine the Christian faith.

Discuss/Consider

  1. “Tolerance” could be a theme word of our society today. Accordingly, the verse “Judge not, that you be not judged” has been commonly quoted, and greatly misunderstood. Discuss why it does not mean we should never judge or be discerning. Christians are sometimes responsible to judge the behavior of others, as we see elsewhere in the New Testament. Jesus’ teaching here means that believers should not judge the motives or conscience of others. How has the move toward “tolerance” affected the Church?
  2. Imagine a cartoon of a man with a telephone pole sticking out of his eye, telling someone else they have a piece of sawdust in their eye! As ridiculous as this sounds, it is easy for believers to see the little faults of other believers, while we overlook our own faults. Discuss how this hypocritical attitude will affect a body of believers. Remember, this does not mean we should never challenge another believer about their behavior. Just make sure your testimony is right so you can truly help others.

Challenge

  1. Christians are often stereotyped as being sour and overly-serious. Use your sense of humor as you serve the Lord, to help dispel this wrong impression.

Key Verses

  • “First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” Matthew 7:5
  • “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine.” Matthew 7:6

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