The Plank

I am amazed that I can see at all.

The plank in my eye is so large.

Yet somehow I can easily point out another’s critical spirit, while being utterly unaware that in pointing it out, I am committing the same error. It must be galling.

Sometimes I go further and add motives to their actions. She is critical because she wants to show she is superior to me. He doesn’t cut his lawn as often as I do because he is lazy.

Judging others in this manner is at the heart of cynicism.

Jesus speaks plainly about this for our good, and for the good of others

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

“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, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” (Matthew 7:1-5) NIV

Other translations compare the mote;very small particle;speck in your brother’s eye to the beam, log, plank in your own eye.

It is so easy to see the faults of others so that we can pick them apart, even though we have to make a great deal of effort to see out of our own eyes which are so clouded by our own glaring faults.

The plank in our own eye is painful. It is poison to our own souls.

We need to repent and turn away from the sin of cynicism.

Lord help me to remove the plank from my own eyes in order to see clearly the good in others. Help me to replace cynicism with love, forbearance, patience, forgiveness.


7 thoughts on “The Plank

  1. Interesting to see the reference to the plank in the New Testament. I first saw this as rabbinic commentary, possibly from the Talmud. Either way, it expresses a profound psychological truth, the lack of self-awareness as the natural default way to live. I wonder why that is? it seems to take philosophy, religion, the arts or therapy to raise self-awareness.

  2. Sadly, I’m occasionally guilty of beating the other person senseless with the plank in my eye while I’m feeling my way around their face, trying to find their eye so I can “help” them remove it. 😉 Oh, Lord, help!


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