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The Sermon

on the Mount

Matthew 7:1-6


(Mat 7:1-6 NKJV) "Judge not, that you be not judged. {2} "For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. {3} "And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? {4} "Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me remove the speck from your eye'; and look, a plank is in your own eye? "Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye. {6} "Do not give what is holy to the dogs: nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.



  • We have been studying through the great teaching of Jesus known as the Sermon on the Mount.
    • We have carefully examined the first four themes of His sermon.
      • 1.)The Real Christian
      • 2.)Real Righteousness
      • 3.) Real Religion
      • 4.) Real Riches

This morning we come to the final major theme of the Sermon on the Mount –REAL JUDGMENT.

  • I am not sure if you have time to respond but I do have a bible question. Now I am not a new Christian, I gave my heart to Jesus 25 years ago, but this is something that I have been pondering. Jesus said "judge not" and I know the bible does NOT contradict itself, but he makes statements that we are to judge, for example, you will know a tree by its fruit, or you will know they are my disciples by their love. So we can judge a Christian by their love and their fruit, what kind of judgment is Jesus talking about?
    • As we study this general theme we will look at it in TWO major divisions.
      • 1.) Should We Judge?
      • 2.) Principles of Judgment


  • KEY QUESTION: Have you ever had some one say to you something like -
    • “Who are you to judge me?”
    • “The Bible says NOT to judge”?
  • THOSE WHO CLAIM that the Christian is NEVER to judge have NOT read the words “Judge not” in their entire context.
  • BY THE WAY - THIS one of the backslider’s favorite verses.

They have a collection of backslider verses to protect themselves…. like

      • “let him that is without sin cast the first stone,”
    • When you talk to him about what’s going in his life, you can understand why they run to passages like these.
  • KEY OBSERVATION: As we look at these words in their context we can see that Jesus did NOT forbid us to judge others.
    • And for good reason.
    • Careful discernment is essential in the Christian life.

KEY INSIGHT: Christian love is not blind!

    • (Phil 1:9-10 NKJV) And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in knowledge and all discernment, {10} that you may approve (after testing)the things that are excellent, that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ,
    • The person who believes everything that he hears, and accepts everyone who claims to be spiritual will end up CONFUSED and RIPPED OFF.
  • CRUCIAL INSIGHT: : We need to know the difference between

THE QUESTION that we need to ask is - What is the difference between the two?

  • QUOTE: Donald Grey Barnhouse
    • “Does such criticism arise because there is profound grief over sin? Is the critic moved by the fact that God is outraged and that great wrong is done? Too often the critic has no sensitivity for sin at all. Nor is it because of a great love for the neighbor that the critic makes his accusations. Love COVERS a multitude of sins. Love does not expose sin.”

KEY EXAMPLE: Paul, in writing to the Galatians, gives us the EXAMPLE of healthy “criticism”:

    • (Gal 6:1-2 NKJV) Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. {2} Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
  • KEY INSIGHT: In the Greek - Restorewas a medical term for “setting a broken bone.”
    • In medicine there can be no diagnosis - no prescribed treatment - no rehabilitation without an examination!
    • Thus the very ACT of restoration PRESUMES that a FAULT has been observed.

The very ACT of restoration PRESUMES that brothers and sisters looked at an individual and could discern spiritual “broken bones” if you would.

  • KEY POINT: The teaching in the Sermon on the Mount does NOT condemn us for ACKNOWLEDGING the FACT of sin.
    • It tells us that we MUST be able to JUDGE it WITHOUT CONDEMNING the person.
    • Once we SEE a brother in sin
      • We are to GET THE SPECK OUT
      • We are to SET THE BONE…. So to speak
      • With the love of God, not with condemning hearts!

THAT REQUIRES MINISTERING to the fallen person.

    • It REQUIRES SERVING them by
      • HELPING them in the process of RECOGNIZING the spec….. GETTING the spec out
      • THAT can be a very frustrating labor of love.
      • ILLUSTRATION: When Nathan was little he would sometimes get a splinter in his foot (often not much more than a spec of a splinter).
        • He’s crying and I know that it needs to come out to prevent infection.
        • But the task of removing that spec of a splinter could be a very frustrating thing to do because he would scream and pull his foot away.

The issue for me was quite simple – Do I LOVE him enough to get it out?

    • RESTORATION is not usually a QUICK process
      • It can be a very frustrating and a very lengthy work of love.
      • HELPING them as they limp through the process of recovering from their sin. (Phys Therapy/Rehab)
  • SO FOR THE CHRISTIAN The REAL question is NOT “can we judge, but rather
    • WHAT can I judge?
    • WHEN do I judge?
    • HOW do I judge?

"Judge not, that you be not judged. {2} "For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged;

  • The FIRST PRINCIPLE of judgment is that we realize that we ourselves will be judged by God.
    • The Pharisees “played God” as they condemned other people (always only judging by the external)
    • But they never considered that they themselves would one day give an account to God!
  • KEY POINT: Christians - YOU are going to be stand before God
    • Not to be judged in regards to salvation…. Jesus settled that account on the cross.

But you will give an account for your works -

    • In light of that you should realize that YOU have enough of your own problems to deal with in preparing for that moment.
    • And when you realize that - you will be be so busy seeking the Lord as to your own walk that you won’t have time to be looking for the sins and faults of others.
  • {2} and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you
  • The SECOND PRINCIPLE of judgment is that we must realize that not only will God judge us at the end, but people are also judging us right now.

There is a parallel passage in Luke 6:37-38 that sheds more light on this.

    • "Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. {38} "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom…..
  • We receive from people exactly what we give.
    • The kind of judgment, and the measure of judgment that we meet out comes right back to us.
    • We reap what we have sown.

The THIRD PRINCIPLE of judgment is that in order to RIGHTLY JUDGE others we must be able to CLEARLY SEE their problems.

    • You see, our own sins DISTORT the way that we look at the world around us.
    • (Mat 7:4-5 NLT) How can you think of saying, 'Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,' when you can't see past the log in your own eye? {5} Hypocrite! First get rid of the log from your own eye; then perhaps you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye.
  • KEY OBSERVATION: Jesus asks a KEY QUESTION of each of us.

(Mat 7:3 NKJV) "And WHY do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but DO NOT CONSIDER the plank in your own eye?

  • KEY INSIGHT: It is AMAZING how much worse our own sins look on someone else!
    • 1.) MY sins never look that bad when I’m doing them.
    • 2.) I have discovered that very often it is our own failings that we see and despise most about others.
    • EXAMPLE: Do you remember when the prophet Nathan (who was a FRIEND of David) came to King David and told him the story of a rich man in his kingdom?

This man had everything that anyone could possibly desire: servants, maids, great flocks and herds.

    • Living next door to him was a very poor man who only had one little lamb. This man loved his little lamb and treated it like a pet: he let it eat with him at his dinner table, and it lived with him in his house.
  • This wealthy man had visitors come and so he ordered his servants to go next door and forcibly take the little lamb from his neighbor and had it slaughtered. It was then barbecued and served to his guests.

When King David heard this he became very angry and judged this wealthy man's actions as sinful and said to Nathan,

    • "As the LORD liveth, the man that hath done this thing shall surely die…. " (2Sam. 12:56)
  • At this Nathan said, "Thou art the man". (2Sam. 12:7)
    • WOW!!
    • Now all of a sudden the situation is a little different.
    • Here is David
      • King over all of Israel, with many wives
      • Next door to him lives Uriah, one of his soldiers.

David took Uriah's wife and then had him murdered.

    • KEY POINT: By turning the scenario around just a little, we find that those things that we are so ready to judge others of, we're actually doing ourselves.
  • CRUCIAL QUESTION: WHY is it - HOW is it - that we can find the most miniscule of faults in others, while we are virtually incapable of seeing even the glaring faults and failures in our own lives, failures the size of cross beams?
  • KEY INSIGHT: The answer lies all of the way back in the very FIRST of the Beatitudes.
    • (Mat 5:3 NKJV) "Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

When you are convinced that YOU are spiritually bankrupt you are in no position to be critical of others.

      • REMEMBER
        • Blessed are the Poor in Spirit >>>
        • Blessed are the Me-Ek!
  • CRUCIAL - The HYPER-CRITICAL person is filled with PRIDE.
  • PERSONAL APPLICATION: A consistent pattern of criticizing others is a sign of spiritual pride!
    • One becomes hyper-critical of others because they view themselves as spiritually superior to those they are judging.


  • WHEN can we RIGHTLY judge another and help remove the speck from their eye?
  • 1.)It is ONLY when we’ve examined ourselves and can see clearly.
  • 2.)We will only examine ourselves WHEN
    • We remember that WE are GOING TO BE judged
    • We remember that we ARE being judged
    • When we are POOR IN SPIRIT.
  • We need to be aware of God’s love and the fact that we have been loved by Him.
    • When did the Lord love us?

When we were deserving of judgment.

      • When we were condemned before Him.
  • QUOTE: H.A. Ironside
    • “When our hearts are occupied with His wondrous love, we remember that He loved us when we were unlovely, and some of us are not very lovely now; we remember that He loved us when we were unlovable, and some of us are not very loveable yet. If He could do that when we were rebellious, and if that same love is now shed abroad in our hearts, we ought to be able to love those who are sinful and unkind and selfish.”

HAVE YOU NOTICED THAT we are more often than not QUICK to judge people for things LESS than sinful, unkind behavior!

    • EXAMPLE: We are quick to judge A LOOK!
    • EXAMPLE: We are quick to judge because someone didn’t want to have lunch with us.
    • Is THAT a sin?
  • KEY OBSERVATION:We are often quick to judge without any regard to the FRUIT in a persons life.
    • EXAMPLE: Solomon - (Prov 24:30-33) I went by the field of the lazy man…. {31} And there it was, all overgrown with thorns; Its surface was covered with nettles; Its stone wall was broken down. {32} When I saw it, I considered it well; I looked on it and received instruction

Solomon didn’t just see a wasted field. He saw that it was the FRUIT of a lazy life.

    • The same would be true if the field was well tended and fruitful.
    • He knew the connection between the FRUIT and the diligence of the owner.
  • KEY POINT: There can be flaws and failures in an otherwise FRUITFUL Christian Life.
    • It amazes me how quick we can be to JUDGE and condemn a life that is by and large bearing the fruit of a healthy relationship with Christ.
    • Luke 6:42 For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.

Not only do we need to be aware of the fact of God’s love, and of the fact that He loved us, We need this love in us.

  • KEY INSIGHT: Jesus REBUKED His disciples for lacking this kind of love.
    • (Luke 9:51-56 NKJV) Now it came to pass, when the time had come for Him to be received up, that He steadfastly set His face to go to Jerusalem, {52} and sent messengers before His face. And as they went, they entered a village of the Samaritans, to prepare for Him. {53} But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem. {54} And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, "Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?"

{55} But He turned and rebuked them, and said, "You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. {56} "For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men's lives but to save them.”

  • KEY POINT: To have this kind of love means that we need the kind of close, personal fellowship with Jesus that will make it possible.
    • (John 15:5 NKJV) "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.

Pearls Before Swine

  • (Mat 7:6 NKJV) "Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.
  • KEY INSIGHT: This passage has created difficulty in the minds of a lot of people.
    • To some, it seems that Jesus is contradicting Himself.
    • Isn’t this making a pretty heavy judgment (considering someone a dog, a swine)?

JESUS SAID THAT I have to make some kind of judgment,

    • Because I've been instructed not to waste the precious truths of God on “dogs” or “swine.”
  • KEY ISSUE: With whom can I share the pearls of God's wisdom with?
  • KEY INSIGHT: What I believe Jesus is saying, is that we are not to condemn but we are to discriminate.
    • Condemnation is reserved for God alone, He is the judge.
    • It's not mine to say that a person is condemned or damned.

KEY OBSERVATION: There are some people who cannot receive the TRUTH of God’s Word… the Good News!

    • What are we to do with such people?
    • Are they to be abandoned as hopeless?
    • Is the Truth to be withdrawn from them?
  • KEY INSIGHT: What Christian words cannot do, a Christian life can often do.
    • Listen to these words of William Barclay!

QUOTE:William Barclay –

    • “It is often impossible to talk to some people about Christ. Their moral blindness, their intellectual pride, and cynical mockery may make them impervious to words about Jesus. But it is always possible to SHOW men Christ; and the weakness of the church lies not in the lack of Christian arguments, but in lack of Christian lives.”
  • QUOTE: “Just BE a Christian, Richard.”
  • AGAIN! A Christian is POOR IN SPIRIT, BROKEN over sin, and MEEK.

He’s too HUMBLED by his own sin

He’s too BUSY trying to keep himself right before God

He’s so AWARE of the MERCY and GRACE he has received

That he CAN’T BE hyper-critical or condemning of anyone else.


BUT though he is not hyper critical

    • He should be DISCERNING…… Able to observe with clarity a fault in another….. And from a HUMBLE and LOVING heart bring that fault to their attention
      • Proverbs 27: 5 Open rebuke is better than secret love. 6Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.
      • Leviticus 19:17 Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.
    • And then be a part of the process of God putting that life back together again.