The Gospels – The Gospel According to Matthew
The importance of self-examination before criticising others
Matthew 7:1-5 “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.”
It is easy to judge. The level of intolerance that we have for others and the strictness by which we measure and judge other people will be used as criteria for us by the Laws of God. If we are lenient towards our neighbours and if we easily forgive them their trespasses against us then the Laws of God will be lenient towards us and we will get all measure of help from these Laws.
When we notice the mote that is in the other person’s eye and rave and criticise this blemish in his personality, we often fail to see the same fault which is present to a far greater degree in ourselves. This is the beam that we fail to notice. It is convenient to criticise one insignificant fault or the other in our neighbours but we will notice that if we examine ourselves keenly enough, we possess these same faults to a far greater degree within ourselves.
We should first of all make the effort to be rid of the faults that we have before we can dare to point out the faults in other people. If we notice the faults that we have then it would be very difficult indeed to criticise others since the keen awareness of the fact that we carry similar faults within will prevent us from doing so. Leniency towards our neighbours will then come of its own accord.
Advice upon advice is what we will find in Christ’s words. Exaltations, adjurations to become better, to change our old ways of living and to let peace reign characterise His words. It is a pity that we have made something else out of this most important Mission.
Matthew 7:6 “Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under foot and turn to attack you.”
The Word of God may be offered only to those who are deserving of hearing about It. This has come out from the steps of the Throne of God and must not be offered to those who would play with It and perhaps scoff at It. It is pitiable that the Love of God has been misrepresented by well-meaning preachers who teach that God is all forgiving and lenient to the extreme. This is nothing but weakness which has never been nor will ever be an attribute of God.
The Word of God should only be offered to those who are deserving and it is very easy to differentiate between genuine seekers and those who are not so genuine. It is often better to allow someone to ask for It before offering It and even then one has to make sure that it is truly the genuine seeking for the Truth that prompts him to ask. Offering the Word of God to those who have not asked for It or to those who are perhaps hostile to It will do no good at all. On the contrary they may turn on you in anger and try to destroy you.
Matthew 7:7-12 “Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”
Jesus here did not refer to the relationship among human beings. He was referring to the relation between human beings and the Laws of God. If through the exercise of our intuitive perception, we pray in the right manner and we act in this Creation in a manner pleasing to God, then we receive all that we need for our earthly existence. If we seek the Creator in humble petition and if we ask God in humble petition, we will receive whatever is necessary for the continued development of our spirits. Jesus here was not one-sidedly referring to the granting of our earthly desires. He was speaking in an all embracing way. In a way that benefits the spirit even after we shall have left this earth.
He also emphasised the great Goodness of God in saying that if we who are deemed evil know how to give good things to our children, how much more so God. All we have to do really is concentrate mainly on spiritual works. If we do the spiritual, then the material will follow as a matter of course. We should ask the Almighty for help, for strength in fulfilling our promise as human beings. Strength in overcoming our faults, strength in the love that we offer our neighbours, then we would never need to offer any special petitions for material needs. We will simply be given all these things through the workings of the Divine Laws.
That is the kind of asking that Jesus was talking about. Asking for help in the development of our spiritual abilities. Then we will be happy. Nothing is more joyful than the ability to be able to put our talents to work in the upliftment of our environments. Then we would no longer have to ask for petty earthly things.
Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”
The adherence to the Laws of God requires that we do not give in to temptations and this can often be very difficult. Letting oneself go, which is tantamount to giving in to temptations is the broad way that leads to destruction. Mankind over millennia have ignored the path that leads to salvation and as a result this path has become very thorny and difficult indeed. It was not always so.
When mankind adhered to the Laws of God or at least when the majority did, the intuitive volitions surrounding the earth was of a light nature and it was very easy indeed for mankind to find their ways to the Light. As mankind turned to the darkness, good and light thought-forms became a rarity and these days it is much easier to be influenced by evil than it is by good, making it especially hard for those who desire good to find any encouragement and strength for their activities.
This is why those who wish to follow this road find it especially difficult. They are in the minority and would often be misunderstood by others and would often be deliberately hindered in their progress by those whose goals are different. These good people feel isolated and lonely. Surrounded as they are by evil thoughts forms and deeds and also by evil human beings who do not share the same goals, it would be more difficult indeed for this people to follow this path. They would have to be doubly careful and would have to always redouble their efforts to keep to the chosen path.
The road to Salvation would have been broad if mankind had always walked on it. It has become narrow and thorny because very few walk on it. The same physical laws apply. If a road is not used, in time it becomes overgrown by thorns and bushes and becomes narrower, but on the contrary if used all the time, it is smooth wide and easier to walk on.
What Jesus was describing was and is still is the condition of the abandoned road to salvation for mankind. It will remain narrow and difficult until more and more people walk on it, which in the final analysis will make it broader and easier to walk on again.
Matthew 7:15-20 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will know them by their fruits.”
By their spiritual fruits, ye shall know them. Those who belong to God shall act in ways which are desired by Him. It cannot be otherwise. Those who belong to the devil, even if they appear in the most resplendent earthly garments cannot but act in ways desired by their master.
Through their activities, which is their fruit, we will be able to recognise every single one of them. It is not by outward appearance but the nature of their being that they will be recognised. If the nature of an individual’s spirit is evil, then his thoughts, deeds and words will also be evil and at a point we will able to recognise these people even if they try to hide and pretend to be something else.
A warning here that the evil at the time of harvest will be done away with. Anyone who at the time of reckoning is found not to belong to God will henceforth not be allowed to continue to enjoy the blessings of this Creation which only God bestows. They will be cast off and be forced to go to their master whom they have insisted on serving even after the unbelievable mercies and forbearance shown to them by God.
It is a question of the continual opposition to the taking root of the Will of God on earth. These people through whatever influence or position that they hold on earth have always acted in ways which oppose the Will of God and also prevent those who would do this Will from doing so, usually through acts of force and violence. If they would only have this effect on themselves, it would not be so bad, but they are like poison which destroy all around them. This they will not be allowed to do in future.