Sermon Summary: Trinity 4, June 28, 2015
“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; 38 give, and it will be given to you.
Stick It To Them – Not What Jesus Meant
I think this is one of the most famous scripture passages in our world today because it is a stick it to them passage. Everyone loves a good stick it to them passage. “You can’t judge me. You can’t condemn me. You have to forgive me and give to me.”
The irony is when you use this as a stick it to them passage, you become guilty of the very thing that Jesus condemn. You judge them in their judgment of you. You condemn them in their condemnation of you. You don’t forgive them in their slander and biting mouth against you. God’s word is not to be used as a club against someone.
Seeing Others Sins Easier
Our fight is not against flesh and blood. Satan pits us against each other and Jesus has us correcting ourselves first and then helping others second. Satan has us pitted against each other: the rich see the sins of the poor very clearly and the poor see the sins of the rich very clearly. The same is true for young and old, men and women, office man and factory man, working woman and stay at home mother, educated in schools and educated on streets, sick and healthy, fat and fit.
An Eye that Can’t See Because of It’s Own Sin
The Law is first and foremost to show you the giant, fat, dangerous club in your own eye. If you can’t see that first, then you are blind to see any spec or log or club or baseball bat or treetrunk in someone else’s eye. You think you can, but you can’t lead someone or see what is best for them or see God’s will unless the giant club is removed so you can see clearly.
Seeing the World Clearly
And when that happens, what do you see? You stop seeing the world according to the way that you want to see it. You stop seeing other people according to the way that you think they should be seen – that is to say, how they deserve to be seen. You start seeing sin as the things that are against God’s will and not the things against your will. You stop counting how much love and forgiveness and kindness your enemy, your spouse, your children, or anyone else deserves and how little you deserve but how much mercy you receive.
You stop seeing others sin as an opportunity for you to gain power by thinking and talking about how you are so much better and start seeing an opportunity to empathize with a fellow sinner – “Yeah man, I really struggle with this too.” “I know how hard it is to pray and read something from the Bible every day.” “I can be pretty prone to anger.” “I sometimes have strong lustful desires, too.” “I know how fun it seems to talk about other people. But I also know it hurts me, and it hurts others, and I want you to see the same.” “What can we do together to struggle against this stuff? Pray for me. I promise I’ll pray for you.”
Jesus’ Word Is Always Truth
The truth hurts, but it is always a pain that leads to healing. Lies feel good at first, but they always end in emptiness and pain. Genuine love calls evil by its name, but it does so in order to gain the brother, not to gain power over the brother, or to hope the brother just goes away. A false love of self always thinks it has to defend itself, protect itself, and criticize others so that honor is still intact. But Jesus loves you more and more purely than you love you. Let Him defend and protect you and trust in him. That is how you truly love yourself because you commend yourself to the one who can actually care for you.
The Merciful Father
Two weeks ago we heard the Jesus invites those to a glorious feast those who cannot pay him back. Welcome to the feast. You can’t pay him back but you can use the riches he gives to you on others. He doesn’t run out of resources. Last week we heard that the father welcomes back those who have wandered away with open arms. You were dead and now are alive. The Father doesn’t rub your sins and deadness in your face, but proclaims life found today in Him and His Word. The Father doesn’t keep nagging you because you were lost, but proclaims to you that you are home, safe and sound in the Him and His house.
We Are His Children and Then are Called to be Merciful
God doesn’t demand that we show mercy in order to be His children. He calls us his children and says that he is a merciful father and then invites us into the life of God of showing mercy to others.
Your Sin is No Match for His Mercy
Your sin is no match for his mercy. You have not come close to plumbing the depths of his mercy for you. Our log filled eyes can keep on crying-Lord have mercy. Your sin is no match for his mercy. The love of God is not like your love. Mercy is who He is – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The logs in your own eyes and the specs in the eyes of your neighbor, Jesus takes it all to the wood of his cross. He is judged so that you are acquitted. Jesus is condemned so that you are justified. He didn’t stick it to others, he chose to get stuck with nails and thorn himself. All so that you are holy, pleasing and acceptable to God- not a speck in your eye- not a stain in your heart. He sends you home free, to your workplace, to your church, to the world full of stress and weariness, all free.
A Merciful Cup Pouring Over Received Today
Good measure(from Him alone is good), pressed down (with all the wrath of God against all the sin of the world satisfied),shaken together (His very body with the bread by His word), running over (The cup of His blood runs over with merciful forgiveness for you) He puts into your lap (By way of putting into your mouth the heavenly, forgiving food to be received in faith)! Therefore, Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.