MUSINGS – February 24, 2019

Matthew 12:33-37
Make a tree good, and then its fruit will be good. Or make a tree rotten, and then its fruit will be rotten. A person can recognize a tree by its fruit. You poisonous snakes! How can you evil people say anything good? Your mouth says what comes from inside you. Good people do the good things that are in them. But evil people do the evil things that are in them. “I can guarantee that on judgment day people will have to give an account of every careless word they say. By your words you will be declared innocent, or by your words you will be declared guilty.”

Jesus is here still speaking to the Pharisees who had claimed that he was casting out demons by the power of Beelzebul. He now tells them that you can tell what kind of tree it is by the fruit it produces.

Jesus, the tree of life, produces only good fruit. His fruit was that blind people see again, lame people are walking, those with skin diseases are made clean, deaf people hear again, dead people are brought back to life, and poor people hear the Good News. (Luke 7:22)

Jesus then accuses the Pharisees of producing rotten fruit and being poisones snakes that cause only harm to the people. “You burden people with loads that are hard to carry. But you won’t lift a finger to carry any of these loads.” (Luke 11:46)

I warn you, before you start judging other people’s fruit, check your own produce. Are you helpful or harmful? Do you liftup or put down? Do you lighten the load or increase the burden? Are you a servant to others or a slaver? Only once you have honestly checked your own fruit for rot, can you begin to judge the fruit of others.

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All content (except quotations) ©2019 Thomas E. Williams

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