The Rev’d Derek Arnold
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DAILY REFLECTION 10 September 2021
Today’s reflection is by our Team Rector, Rev’d Derek Arnold and can be heard on the Website http://tcmc.church
READING Luke 6.39-42
He also told them this parable: “Can the blind lead the blind? Will they not both fall into a pit? The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.
We all know the saying, those in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones and in the reading from Luke’s gospel, Christ instructs his disciples to pay more attention to their own faults than the faults of others.
Unfortunately, what Jesus is saying is all too common in society today. Many of us, without knowing all the facts, often make the wrong judgments about people. Jesus was constantly pointing his finger at the established church for being too judgemental, and many people do the same to the church today.
I’ve had too many conversations with people who have been hurt by the church because of what they believe to be an unfair judgment of who they are, what they have done and where they come from. And this is the tragedy that Jesus speaks about in reading.
But is it appropriate to make a comment or be judgemental about someone? I believe that the Christian’s “default” stance toward others is to be one of forgiveness and mercy, and not judge. Jesus clearly said forgive and offer the same mercy that God offers us, and not to pass judgement on people when they fail. It is not our role in life to judge people for their opinions and often matters of conscience.
Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts. At that time each will receive his praise from God (1 Corinthians 4.5). There is no way any of us can know exactly what someone intentions are.
Even Jesus did not come to condemn the world, and the Bible is clear about our role as Christians, and that is to love, accept, and forgive. We must remember that God’s way of dealing with disobedience is with patience, kindness, and tolerance, with the hope that one day all will come to repentance before it is too late. And as his representatives in this world, we are called to do the same.
But when someone falls short of what is required to live lives worthy of being called children of God; then surely it is our loving responsibility to say something, but only with encouragement and love as our motives, and not punishment. That is God’s way and therefore it should surely be our way as well.
whose only Son has opened for us
a new and living way into your presence:
give us pure hearts and steadfast wills
to worship you in spirit and in truth;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.