We learned this week that finger pointing shifts responsibility to another by essentially saying, “It’s not my fault! You’re the problem, not me!” Today we’ll discover the opposite of finger pointing starts with examining our own hearts. Examining our hearts assumes responsibility by seeing how we contribute to the problem...it sees and takes care of our sin first. It is interesting to note that in Matthew 7 “Jesus is not teaching against discernment or helping others overcome sin; instead, He is telling us not be so prideful and convinced of our own goodness that we criticize others from a position of self-righteousness. We should do some introspection first and correct our own shortcomings before we go after the ‘specks’ in others” (What Does the Bible Say About Hypocrisy additional resource). What’s important here is the order: first start with your own sin (removing the “plank”), and then you can best help others to overcome the “speck” of their sin (v.5).
Has a friend, spouse, co-worker, or boss ever called you out for your choices or actions, but they were guilty of the very thing they accused you of?
Why is it so easier to see the sin in others rather than in ourselves?
Have you ever heard someone take Matthew 7:1 out of context? What are verses 1-5 actually teaching in context?
Does Jesus really intend for us to take out specks of other’s eyes? See additional resource “Don’t Neglect the Work of Speck Removing” for more on this.