Sermon:  A New Pair of Glasses

Summary:  Jesus warns against spiritual blindness that can lead to disaster.  The
way to avoid this blindness is through looking honestly at what we are following,
looking honestly at ourselves, honestly looking at what our decisions will
produce, and acting on what we see.

Know:  We need to be honest in evaluating ourselves, and do so on a regular
basis in order to pinpoint the blind spots in our lives that prevent us from making
the needed changes to bring our lives more in line with God’s will.

Feel:  Openness to self-examination without feeling threatened or defensive,
welcoming the positive changes that will come from an open, honest

Do:  Identify the people and things that can potentially blind you and lead you
away from God, and the attitudes that tempt you to ignore those potential
problem areas in your life.

Text:  Luke 6:39-49

Scripture Reading:  James 1:23-25

Meditation Scripture:  Lam. 3:39-41

1.  Just got new glasses for everyone
	a.  Remember when contacts more expensive than glasses
	b.  Now it seems the other way around
	c.  Comment from one of the boys - Wow!  Everything has edges
2.  We invest lots of money in glasses.  Why?  So we can see!
	a.  Why do we need to see?
	b.  So we can learn, not run into things, avoid disasters
	c.  Jesus speaks of avoiding disasters through seeing in our text
3.  (Luke 6:39-49)
	a.  Key images in first part of this section is the eye - seeing
	b.  We need to see well in order to avoid disaster
	c.  We need to see “honestly” in order to have success and security
	d.  We need to put on “his glasses” and take a good look around
4.  We are given three things we need to take an honest look at

I.  Take an honest look at who or what we are following (v.39-40)
	A.  Jesus analogy - Blind leading the blind
		1.  Its absurd and ridiculous
		2.  Who would follow a blind person?
	B.  Yet it happens all the time
		1.  At the end of John 9, Jesus points out blindness of Pharisees
			a.  Did they have followers?
			b.  Yes, they had many.  A major Jewish movement
			c.  What happened to their followers?
		2.  (v.40) - They became like their teachers!  Blind too.
			a.  Drawn into hair splitting arguments
			b.  Missed justice and mercy, the heart of the law
			c.  Result - Not see man healed, but breaking of sabbath
		3.  Would you follow a blind person?  Of course not!
	C.  ILL:  I’ve known many people who said the same thing
		1.  Jamie
			a.  Celebrities, the in crowd, skimpy clothes
			b.  She began to dress like, think like, talk like them
			c.  Hung on the opinions of popular people
				- Obviously they were ignorant, but she missed that
				- They believed in a self-centered morality
				- Sharon became loose, worldly party girl
		2.  Shawn said the same thing too
			a.  Shawn was a good kid
			b.  Now Shawn is a member of a street gang
			c.  He has mugged, robbed, and shot at countless people
			d.  Arrested several times
		3.  Jerry said the same thing
			a.  Jerry went off to the State University
			b.  Took some philosophy, science, and phychology classes
			c.  He was impressed by his instructors who were Atheists
			d.  Jerry is now an Atheist himself
		4.  Brian
			a.  Got a good job after college
			b.  A mentor on the job took her under her wing
			c.  Business was booming, until she got arrested
			d.  What for?  Illegal dishonest business practices
	D.  Could go on and on
		1.  All on their way to destruction
		2.  Never happen to me!  I wouldn’t follow a blind person!
		3.  Many people who pass themselves off as smart are ignorant
		4.  Who in the world would follow a blind person?
			a.  This leads us to our next point

II.  Take an honest look at ourselves (v.41-42)
	A.  Jesus has sprung a trap on us here
		1.  We are thinking of all those “bad” people leading others
		2.  v.40 - Those who follow them become like them
		3.  Who would follow a blind person?  Another blind person!
	B.  That is a warning to all of us
		1.  Jesus’s analogy
			a.  A beam in your eye
			b.  This would be larger than a 2 by 4 - like an “I” beam
			c.   Image of 3 stooges hitting each other with a beam
		2.  That was the problem with the Pharisees
			a.  They were quick to point out error wherever they saw it
			b.  They wer “speck” watchdogs, marking out error
			c.  Only place they didn’t look was themselves
		3.  Result - Blindness
	C.  ILL:  I knew a speck inspector
		1.  Loved to argue, thrived on controversy
			a.  Tried to make a doctrinal issue out of everything
			b.  Not unusual for him to walk out of meeting or worship
			c.  Didn’t seem to care about people, only about being right
		2.  Couldn’t reason with him
			a.  Response was always, “I serve God”
			b.  Never said sorry, or, I was wrong
			c.  Full of pride
		3.  In spending all his time chasing specks, he became blind
		4.  Left the church in a split, and the split itself later split
			- Prov 26:12 - Do you see a man wise in his own eyes?
			    there is more hope for a fool than for him
	D.  There is a danger is using him an a negative example
		1.  Looking at his faults, I can become blind to my own
		2.  We always need to start with applying the word to ourselves
			a.  When we spend all our time criticizing others, 
			b.  We may be blinding ourselves to the beam in our own eye
			c.  When that happens, will be unable to build up others, 
		      	       only hurt them with that huge eye beam

III.  Take an honest look at what you produce (v.43-45)
	A.  The tempting thing to do is apply this to everyone else
		1.  You shall know people by their fruit
		2.  In Matthew, Jesus uses this analogy for false teachers
		3.  Here is is using it to apply to ourselves
	B.  What point does Jesus make?  As is the tree, so is the fruit
		1.  Apple tree not produce thorns, thorns not produce apples
			a.  It is the nature of an apple tree to produce apples
			b.  It is the nature of a thorn bush to produce thorns
			c.  If see thorns, you know it is from a thorn bush
			d.  If see apples, you know it is an apple tree
		2.  What you produce on outside says what you are on the inside
		3.  Jesus is telling us we need to examine our inner nature
	C.  We need to examine ourselves
		1.  What fruit do I produce?
			a.  Heb 13:15 - Sacrifice of praise, fruit of our lips - worship
			b.  Col 1:5-6 - Fruit of the Gospel - Evangelism
			c.  Col 1:10 - Bearing fruit in every good work
			d.  Gal 5:22 - Fruit of the Spirit - Christian character
		2.  Jesus emphasizes speech
			a.  Words are very powerful
			b.  They need to be sound words (1 Tim 6:3-5)
				- Here we have a list of unsound speech
				- Opposite of this is sound speech
			c.  Questions to ask about your speech
				- Is it true?
				- Does it build up, nourish, cause growth
				- Or does it tear down, impoverish, starve
	D.  What if we examine ourselves and find bad fruit?
		1.  If we have bad fruit, that means we may have a log in the eye
			a.  Log in the eye means we are blind
			b.  Blind means disaster - falling in the proverbial pit
		2.  How can we avoid that?

1.  Need inner transformation
	a.  Mt 12:33 - Make the tree good, and its fruit good
	b.  How do you do that?
	c.  Transformation ultimately God’s work Tit 3:5
	d.  Remember the sword of the Spirit is the word of God Eph 6:17
2.  (v.46-49) - For transformation, you need to do two things
	a.  Hear his words
	b.  Act on them
		- Transformation is work of God, and a process we cooperate with
		- You become what you repeatedly do
		- We call this self-discipline, a fruit of the Spirit
	c.  (Invitation)
3.  Scripture Reading this morning tells us we need to act on what we see
	a.  Look at who you are following
	b.  Look at yourself
	c.  Look at what you produce
4.  You have hopefully been looking in the mirror
	a.  With a new pair of glasses, hopefully you are looking and seeing
	b.  It is time to act on what you see now
	c.  If you don’t, be swept away by distaster like Jamie, Shawn, Jerry, Brian
	d.  If you do, you will have a solid foundation, secure, that will stand even 
	     in the judgement

Questions for Small Group Discussion