It’s the first day of the week and if your like me, you are thinking of all the things that you have to do. The laundry needs to be washed in preparation for the week ahead. The menu needs to be planned. The bathrooms need a refreshing, but guess what?! Our minds need a refreshing too. As we look at all that has been set before us this week, the blog posts that we are going to write, the people that we are going to pray for, and so much more, let’s stop to seek out wisdom.
Today we are going to seek out wisdom by reading Matthew 7. In it Jesus gives us a ton of wisdom on how we should handle ourselves and others.
“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? 5 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.
Keep Asking, Seeking, Knocking
7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If you then, being 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! 12 Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.
The Narrow Way
13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
You Will Know Them by Their Fruits
15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
I Never Knew You
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
Build on the Rock
24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.
26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”
28 And so it was, when Jesus had ended these sayings, that the people were astonished at His teaching, 29 for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.
As you read through that chapter, did you find yourself pulling out any of the nuggets that were there. I know that I did.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #1
In verses 1-5, the Lord tells us that we need to be careful how we look at and judge others. He reminds us that the standard that we hold others to will also be the standard that we are held to. He tells us that before we try to help someone else remove the issue from her life, that plagues her, we should first make sure that our issue has been dealt with.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #2
In verse 6, Jesus makes a very brief, but concise statement. He tells us not to give away what is valuable to those that will not cherish it. In this scripture, it is obvious that the individuals He is cautioning us about are those that we are able to distinguish from those that will cherish the gifts. He does not say that some people will not cherish what you will give them. No! He calls these individuals dogs and pigs. He is telling us the exact type of people that we are not to give treasures to.
If we look at this in relation to what He just told us in verses 1-5, after we remove the plank from our own eye, we would be able to see clearly, the individuals that we are dealing with. We will know if this person is a sister in Christ, or if she is a dog or pig. (Hey! I’m just saying what Jesus said.)
If we look at this the correct way, we will see that Jesus is telling us to be on guard. Not only because we don’t want to be judged, but because when we are judged, we want it to be that we have lived according to God’s will and standard. He also is telling us that when we are living according to God’s standard and removing from ourselves those things that have the potential to blind us, we can help our sisters in Christ and avoid wasting that which is valuable on those that won’t cherish it.
I don’t know about you, but I really appreciate that wisdom.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #3
In verses 7-12, Jesus reminds us of the faithfulness of God. He tells us that we should go to God with our concerns. We should seek after Him and bring Him our requests because He is faithful to answer them. Not only does He tell us to go to God, but He tells us to go to Him in various ways. He says that we should seek, ask, and knock on the door because God will open the door, answer our questions, and be there for us.
So many times in life, we wonder if we should go to God with those things that are on our hearts. The truth is that we should never wonder this. He is our God and our heavenly Father. Jesus reminds us that when we go to God, He will give us what we are asking for. Our God is so faithful that He will be there when we call out to Him. He is so loving and kind that as we are knocking on His door, He makes sure to answer us. This is the confidence that we are to have in Him, knowing that He is faithful and trustworthy.
Yet, Jesus also reminds us to do unto others what we would have them to do unto us because God is faithful. We are to be faithful and trustworthy as well.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #4
Pay attention how you walk and to the path that you are on. This is what Jesus is saying to us in verses 13 and 14. If I can be 100% honest, I know that He was talking to those that came before us, but I believe that this message applies so much more to us today. He says that narrow is the gate and difficult is the way that leads to life. We have to remember that our lives will not always be easy. The path that we walk on will not be wide enough for us to wobble as we walk. We have to choose to walk upright before the Lord, placing one foot consciously in front of the other.
The choices that we will have to make on this path are hard. We won’t be able to say and do things to fit in with others, thinking that we can remain on this path. Choosing to do what’s right in the midst of the difficult choices is what keeps us on the straight and narrow. Knowing and understanding that the pathway that leads to destruction is an easy path. On that path, individuals can walk together side by side, wobbling, and carelessly placing their feet on the ground.
We must commit to walk in a way that keeps us on this path life; a walk worthy of the calling of God. The question here is this. Do you want to live? If so, you must pay attention to how you walk and to the path that you walk on.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #5
In verses 18-20, Jesus tells us to judge the tree by the fruit that it bears. I know what you are thinking. “Wait! Didn’t He just tell us not to judge?” No, not really. What He told us was not to hold other people to a standard that we are not willing to live by. He told us to make sure that before we hold people to that standard that we have already doing and living according to the standard.
In these scriptures, He is reminding us that people are not always for us. They can come in the form of a friend or a sister in Christ, but the truth is that they have some very evil, wicked, and carnal ways about them. They can seek to use and abuse us, but Jesus is cautioning us to take a look at the fruits that they bear, so that we will know and see who they really are.
In His example, He tells us that good trees don’t bear bad fruit. He also says that bad trees don’t bear good fruit. This is a demonstration of how we each produce fruit from our actions and deeds. When people see our fruit, they are able to tell the type of person that we are. Not only can others see it, but it also becomes a clear indicator to ourselves of where we stand.
Trees that don’t bear good fruit are cut down and thrown into the fire. You and I don’t want to be one of these trees, but we also don’t want to eat the fruit of a tree that is not bearing good fruit. You don’t want to be listening to someone who’s life does not exhibit that she is living a life according to God’s will. If she is telling you about marriage, she should have a healthy marriage. If she is telling you about her relationship with God, she should have a healthy relationship with God. If she is helping you with your planning, finances, blogging, or anything else, you should be able to see that she is also fruitful in these things. If you can’t, don’t follow her until you are able to see her fruit and judge it. This is wisdom. It is the wisdom of God that comes from Jesus.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #6
In verses 21-23, Jesus tells us something that can be very daunting. He says that there will be people who call Him Lord that will not make it into the kingdom of heaven. He makes it very clear that those people who do the will of God, will make it into the kingdom of heaven. The people in this example are calling Jesus Lord, but He tells them that He never knew them.
If we look at it, He is telling us that people who know Him, do the will of God. Miracles and prophesies alone are not a sign of someone knowing God, but the relationship the brings about the will of the Lord is. This is something that we each need to take a look at on an individual level. We need to ask ourselves if we are seeking after God. Do we spend time with Him? Are we asking Him to show us the things that He wants us to do? Do we listen to Him? Are we obedient to His word?
See, it’s not just about what we proclaim with our words, but what we proclaim with our lives and our actions. Are we bringing about the will of God in this earth. If not, then it is important to see that Jesus calls those that are seeking to fulfill their own will, workers of lawlessness.
Lawlessness is a state of disorder due to a disregard of the law.
People who practice lawlessness, have a disregard for the law of God. They do not care about what the Bible says. They look at the law of God and count it null and void because of their own desires and the directions of foolish men & women. Let’s make sure that we are not living this way.
Read the Bible and hold yourself to the standard of the word. Live according to the word of God and seek to know and understand what the Lord’s holy and perfect will is. Once you understand what God desires and do it.
Golden Nugget of Wisdom #7
If you want to be wise, listen to the words of Jesus and live according to what He says. In the final verses of Matthew 7, Jesus tells just that life will throw a powerful punch at us, but if we live our lives based upon the wisdom that He has given us, we will be able to remain standing. Not only will be able to remain standing, but God will see us as wise women. He won’t count us among the fools of the earth because we have adhered to His words.
I think it’s important to recognize that the words of God are not to just be heard, but to be acted upon. Over and over again in the Bible, the Lord says that there are people who hear and do not hear. They see and do not see. He says that we should have ears to hear. I believe that this is saying that we should hear, pay attention, and do the word of God. Participate in the listening by being active. Think about what the Lord is saying to you. Make sure that you are looking at your life and applying His word to it. Stop and measure yourself according to His standard. DO what He says.
I personally know that living according to the word of God is not an easy thing, but it is worth it. There is great confidence in God and in knowing that He will do what He says that He will do. I want to live a life that is honorable to the Lord. I know and understand that in order to do so, I have to look at what He has told me to do and then I have to do it. This is a continual process.
Be Wise this Week
So as you go about your week, be reminded of the words of the Lord. Make sure that you are living according to His standard and upholding His word. Seek to do what He has called you to do and be prayerful about your actions. If you can’t see the error of your ways, pray and ask God to show them to you, so that you can remove the plank out of your eye. Helping your sister in Christ is good, but Jesus said that you must make sure to seek to do what is right first.
I hope that you have a blessed week and that you find strength and encouragement in these words. I will be praying for you and asking God to be with you as you seek to live according to His word.