After two weeks on the topic of gospel love from Luke 6:27-36, this past Sunday we zeroed in on Luke 6:37-42 where Jesus teaches on forgiveness, generosity, and the spiritual care that is needed to address one another’s sin.
Jesus begins this section with the principle: forgiven sinners forgive others.
- Jesus commands us in verse 37 not to judge or condemn another. In one sense, not judging is impossible, because drawing a conclusion about anyone on any matter is to judge. Jesus says in John 7:24, “Do not judge by appearances but judge with right judgment.” What’s the relationship between this instruction and the command not to judge in the passage before us?
- How does the parable in verses 39-42 illustrate the process for judging with a righteous judgment? Discuss this openly with your HFG.
- Ask yourself: “Am I a forgiving person?” Is there anyone you’ve wronged that you need to ask for forgiveness? Have you withheld forgiveness from someone? If so, please ask your HFG to pray for you and keep you accountable as you make steps toward reconciliation. Remember, forgiven sinners forgive others.
Jesus moves next to remind us of a second principle: generous givers generously receive.
- In verse 38, Jesus employs the metaphor of measuring grain. When grain is poured into a container, it must be “pressed down” and “shaken together” to ensure that the full volume of grain is received. Jesus is telling us that the more we are “pressed down” and “shaken together,” the more volume we can then receive from the Lord.
- How can the above instruction be twisted into self-centeredness rather than an opportunity to practice generosity?
- One pastor said, “God gifts to us are not primarily intended to change our standard of living but to change our standard of giving.” How does this instruction need to be practiced in your life presently?
Finally, Jesus teaches us a third principle: repentant leaders lead others to repentance.
- The parable in verses 39-42 addresses the problem of blind guides, who try to remove specks (little problems/sins) from others eyes without first removing the logs (big problems/sins) out of their own eyes.
- Have you fallen into this trap of hypocrisy (v.42) in the past? Have you been a victim of this sort of hypocrisy before? At HFG, talk through these experiences in an honorable way to illustrate this problem.
- Ask your spouse and/or HFG if they notice you judging other’s sins without addressing the big sins in your own life. Pray for openness to their words. Then, ask someone you trust to walk with you as you seek God for the grace of repentance.