Matthew 7:1-29 - Outline of Matthew (MENU page)
Outline of the Sermon on the Mount:
A. True Blessedness, Mat 5:1-16
B. True Righteousness, 5:17-48
C. True Religion, Mat 6:1-18
D. True Riches, 6:19-34
E. Testing the True, Mat 7:1-29
 
   E. Testing the True
7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged:
and with what measure ye mete
{ie., measure}, it shall be measured to you again.
7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote
{GK=karphos, twig, splinter} that is in thy brother's eye,
but considerest not the beam
{GK=dokos, support beam, structural timber} that is in thine own eye?
7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye;
and, behold, a beam [is] in thine own eye?
7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye;
and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
judge not...- cp. Rom 14:4,10-13
Does this mean that we are to ignore the difference between right and wrong,
or between truth and error? No!
While we are unable to judge the heart motives, which only God can see (cp. 1Cor 4:3-5),
believers are responsible to preserve truthful teaching and righteous conduct within the Church (cp. 1Cor 5:1-7,12; Jude 1:3,4).
first cast the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly...-
Before we can exercise judgment of truth and conduct, we must judge ourselves.
cp. Rom 2:1,2; 1Cor 10:12; Gal 6:1
Yet, it is necessary, for those who see clearly (with a single eye, looking to the Lord, and seeing as God sees, Mat 6:22,23) to be discerning...
7:6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine,
lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend
{ie., tear into pieces} you.
dogs... swine...- These terms are used figuratively of men who are incapable of receiving the Truth.
Obviously, identifying someone as such requires a judgment call.
cp. Mat 15:26; Prov 9:8; 23:9; 26:11; Heb 10:29; 2Pet 2:22
But this ability to discern does not come from within us.
The wisdom to "Test the True" comes only from God.
7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you;
seek, and ye shall find;
knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
7:8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth;
and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
7:9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
7:10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
7:11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children,
how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?
In Luk 11:2-13, this instruction is linked directly to the Lord's model prayer, and
the ultimate 'good thing,' which the Father gives to those who ask, is the Holy Spirit.
The indwelling Holy Spirit enables the believer to comprehend truth.
ask... - ie., make request- How? For What? Rom 8:26
cp. Mat 21:22; Joh 15:7; Jam 1:5,6 (eg., the wisdom needed for right judgment, v.5,6); 1Joh 3:22; 5:14,15
seek... - ie., search with desire- For what? What will the seeker find?
Psa 10:4; 27:8; Isa 55:6,7; Jer 29:13; Mat 6:33
knock... - Why? Because an urgent need will not be met, until the Lord opens a closed door. Luk 11:5-8
How does one knock at a closed door, in prayer?
  • with knowledge that the request is valid (according to God's will, 1Joh 5:14).
  • with confidence that the Father will grant what is good and perfect (v.11).
  • with assurance of access through Christ. Heb 10:19-22
  • with patience, awaiting His perfect time. Psa 27:13,14; Heb 10:35-37; Jam 5:7,8
  • with thanksgiving {GK=eucharistia, mindful of His good favor toward you), Php 4:6; Col 4:2
how much more shall your Father... give good things...- cp. Psa 84:11; Rom 8:32; Jam 1:17
7:12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you,
do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
This verse is often referred to as the 'Golden Rule.' Such conduct is...
- - based on God's Word (OT teaching) concerning right conduct (eg., Lev 19:33-36).
- - modeled after God's actions toward us (v.11; Eph 4:32).
However, in our relationships to others, we must continually discern between truth and error.
Serious consequences are determined by one's choice between:
- - God's way versus the world's way (v.13,14);
- - True versus false teachers (v.15-23);
- - Solid versus sinking foundations (v.24-27).
7:13 Enter ye in at the strait {GK=stenos, narrow} gate:
for wide [is] the gate, and broad [is] the way, that leadeth to destruction,
and many there be which go in thereat:
7:14 Because strait
{narrow} [is] the gate,
and narrow
{GK=thlibo, troubled, difficult} [is] the way, which leadeth unto life,
and few there be that find it.
Two incompatible ways- cp. Psa 1; Prov 4:10-19
The broad way is all inclusive. By nature, all men tend to move away from God.
At first, the wideness of this way seems to offer freedom and fullness of life (where every man does that which seems right in his own eyes, without regard for the restrictions imposed by the Creator).
But as this way progresses, every man finds himself being funneled to one inescapable destination: death, eternal separation from God, the giver of life.
cp. Psa 14:2,3; Prov 16:25; Eze 18:27-32; Rom 3:9-19; Eph 2:2,3; Rev 20:11-15
The narrow way is exclusive. There is only one gate (door) of access to this way. Joh 10:9; 14:6
At first, the way seems difficult, due to each believer's internal struggle between his fleshly nature and the indwelling Holy Spirit, and due to external opposition from the world. (cp. Mat 16:24,25; Joh 15:18-20)
But as the way progresses, the believer finds himself entering an ever widening realm of previously unimagined blessings.
cp. Isa 55:7; Psa 31:1-8; 118:5; Psa 23; Joh 10:9,10; 1Cor 2:9 (cp. also the ever widening and deepening river of Life, flowing from the Lord, Eze 47:1-12)
few... find it - cp. Mat 22:14; Luk 13:23,24; Rom 9:27-32; 11:5,6
7:15 Beware of false prophets,
which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits.
Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
7:17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit;
but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
7:18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit,
neither [can] a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
7:19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
{3:10}
7:20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
beware...- False prophets will deceive the unwary.
false prophets- GK=pseudoprophetes- They claim to speak for God,
but God has not sent them, and they do not speak His Words. Rather than sounding a warning, their teaching gives false comfort and encouragement to those on the path to destruction. Jer 23:16-22; Joh 10:8; 2Pet 2:1; 1Joh 4:1
...in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves...-
Beware, because the danger is hidden, within deceitful hearts, where you cannot see. From outward appearances, they seem to be leaders among believers. But their true nature and destructive motives bear the characteristics of "your adversary the devil" (1Pet 5:8).
Therefore, you must judge what is within them, by that which flows out of them.
fruit- the output of their lives, for good or bad, demonstrates their inner character.
cp. Mat 12:33-35; 15:19; 2Pet 2:10-22; Jam 3:12 (also see Deut 13:1-5)
But, beware: Not all fruit, that looks good, is good.
7:21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven;
but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
{cp. Isa 29:13; Jam 1:22-25; Joh 6:28,29}
7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord,
have we not prophesied in thy name?
and in thy name have cast out devils
{GK=daimonia, demons}?
and in thy name done many wonderful works?
7:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you:
depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Lord, Lord... in thy Name... -
False prophets are self-deceived, erroneously thinking that they know and serve God.
we have done... - They claim entrance into heaven based on their works.
From their perspective...
  • their teaching advanced Christ's cause (as the cults claim).
    But their teaching is in conflict with the Word of God. They proclaim (prophesy) 'another gospel' (Gal 1:6,7; Col 2:8).
  • their 'spiritual authority' set men free from oppression.
    But Satan's emissaries deceive men with counterfeit benefits (2Cor 11:13-15; eg., miraculous healing, exorcisms, signs and wonders; cp. Acts 19:13-16; 2The 2:8-10).
  • their many wonderful {GK=dunamis, mighty, powerful} works produced humanitarian blessing.
    'Wonderful works' may impress other men. But the best, that man can do, is not acceptable before God, who looks not "on the outward appearance... but on the heart." (1Sam 16:7)
I never knew you...- It is neither outward profession, nor religious works,
but a vital inward relationship to the Lord, the crucified but living Savior, that allows entrance into heaven. v.21; Joh 6:28,29; 10:14,27-30; 2Tim 2:19
...depart from me, ye that work {labor in} iniquity {GK=anomia, lawlessness}.-
ie., you who work contrary to the 'established order' (of God, as written in His Word). cp. Mat 25:41; Rev 20:15
'Wonderful works,' which rest on anything other than God's Word, cannot stand.
7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them,
I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came,
and the winds blew, and beat upon that house;
and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not,
shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came,
and the winds blew, and beat upon that house;
and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
In the process of teaching us to "test the true," Jesus leads us to discern between
two incompatible foundations:
a wise man- (v.24-25; cp. Luk 6:47,48)
  1. hears and obeys God's Word, cp. Job 28:28; Psa 111:10; 119:99,130;
  2. builds his life on the Rock, cp. Mat 16:16,18; 1Cor 3:10,11; 1Pet 2:6-8
  3. will, therefore, endure the tests of time, cp. Psa 125:1,2; 1Pet 1:3-7
a foolish man- (v.26-27; cp. Luk 6:49)
  1. hears, but disregards God's Word, cp. Jer 8:9; Jam 1:22
  2. builds his life, vainly trusting that his fleshly goodness and strength will enable him to endure the trials of life, and to stand before God in the day of accounting. cp. Eze 13:10-16; 1Cor 3:13
  3. will, therefore, fall. cp. Psa 1:4-6; Heb 10:26-31
7:28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings,
the people were astonished at his doctrine:
7:29 For he taught them as [one] having authority, and not as the scribes.
astonished- GK=ekplesso, struck as by a blow. cp. Mat 13:54
We might say, they were 'blown away' by His teaching.
he taught as... having authority...-

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