Judging Properly: Changing Our Heart, Not Merely Our Clothes, Part Two

Why do we feel the need to add to the requirements of Jesus?


The answer to the question is simple.  There is something in us that wants a more definite way.  If there are no rules, how do we play the game.  If there are no rules, how to we know when we have achieved success.


We do not like living in such uncertainty.  So we create the rules that finish our faith.  Rules that are easy to understand, but do not inherently bring about the changes in our heart and our soul.


Jesus spoke about this.  In Matthew 23:26 Jesus told the Pharisees that they must first “clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside will be clean.” 

What does He mean by this?  Surely Jesus understands that the clothes make a man.  Surely He understands that the most important part of a man is what our neighbors see.


The fact of the matter is this.  Jesus understood that out of the mouth comes the abundance of the heart.  Christianity is not about changing the outside.  Other religions only have that to offer.  They can change a man’s outside.  Some can help you find momentary peace through meditation or dumbing down our problems.  Only Christianity can change the heart and soul of a man.  Only through Christianity has God reached out to man to bring man back to Him.


If Jesus was only concerned with changing a man’s heart and soul, why do we spend so much time worrying about the outside?  The reason is simple.  It is easier for us to judge others by the outside.  It takes a lot of time and discernment to get to know someone well enough to judge their heart.  To judge the heart we have to look at the fruit that is growing on the tree or lying on the ground at the base of the tree.


How much damaged debris can be found at our feet?  How many damaged lives have we left behind?  Those are some of the fruit in our lives. 

We must resist the urge to judge improperly.  Our false judgments actual put us at odds with the Jesus we see in the Bible.  He was accused of being a drunkard.  He was not.  He was accused of supporting corruption because he befriended tax collectors.  He did not.


He was a friend of the sinner, but was not one.  He understood the importance of the heart, the inside of the cup.  He understood the deception of judging others by the outside of the cup.


In Jesus world the clothes do not make a man.  A man makes the clothes.  After all, you can put a thousand dollar suit on a pig.  You still have pork cops underneath.


Let us change our hearts; and not merely change our clothes.


1 Response to “Judging Properly: Changing Our Heart, Not Merely Our Clothes, Part Two”

  1. 1 Mike Harmon 30 January 2008 at 3:52 am

    I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Mike Harmon

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