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"When Good Things Become Deadly" Of Pearls and Pigs...

Friday, June 14, 2013

An except from the book "The Divine Conspiracy" by Dallas Willard. I love this book! WOO HOO! Dearest Christians, I am serving steak and potatoes for breakfast…

"Our practice of "condemnation engineering" as it might be called, usually goes hand in hand with another device mistakenly used to manage the lives of those we truly care about. That is the practice of PUSHING the things of God upon them whether they want or are ready for them or not. Or it may just be good things generally we are pushing, for example, education or proper diet."

"Do not, "he said, "give dogs sacred things to eat, nor try to get pigs to dine on pearls. For they will simply walk all over them and turn and take a bite out of you.” Matthew 7:6

The long standard use of this verse is directly opposed to the spirit of Jesus and his teachings. That use suggests that we may have certain wonderful treasures, of truth and of service perhaps, that we could give to others. Perhaps the “treasure” is the very gospel itself. But there are some who are not worthy of those treasures. We have to watch for such people. Normally they are thought of as people who will not accept our “treasure” or would not use it rightly. They are the “pigs” and the “dogs” in question. And we are not to waste our good things on these worthless or evil people. So goes the standard reading of verse 6.

But it is hard to imagine anything more opposed to the spirit of Jesus than this. Indeed, the very coming of Christ, the pearl of God, into the world, would be a case of pearls before pigs thus understood.

So let us be clear once and for all that Jesus is not suggesting that certain classes of people are to be viewed as pigs or dogs. Nor is he saying that we should not give good things and do good deeds to people who might reject or misuse them. In fact, his teaching is precisely the opposite. We are to be like the Father in the heavens, “who is kind to the unthankful and the evil” (Luke 6:35).

The problem with pearls for pigs is not that the pigs are not worthy. It is not worthiness that is in question here at all, but helpfulness. Pigs cannot digest pearls, cannot nourish themselves upon them. Likewise for a dog with a Bible or a crucifix. The dog cannot eat it. The reason these animals will finally “turn and rend you”, when you one day step up to them with another load of Bibles or pearls, is that YOU at least are edible. Anyone who has ever had serious responsibilities of caring for animals will understand immediately what Jesus is saying.

And what a picture this is of our efforts to correct and control others by pouring our good things, often truly precious things, upon them- things that they nevertheless simply cannot ingest and use to nourish themselves. Often we do not even listen to them. We “know” without listening. Jesus saw it going on around him all the time, as we do today. And the outcome is usually exactly the same as the pig and the dog. Our good intentions make little difference. The needy person will finally become angry and attack us. The point is NOT the waste of the “pearl” but that the person given the pearl is not helped.

Pic Ref: http://lindasbiblestudy.wordpr
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Pray always to do and share appropriately.
    1773 days ago
  • MRSP90X
    Yes, interesting blog! emoticon
    1774 days ago
    Interesting blog. We often have this discussion in our Sunday School class-the most critical piece of sharing your faith is knowing when and how to engage with another person-meeting them where they are at so to speak.
    1774 days ago
    As a Christian, I want to always make sure that I am giving my listeners something they can chew on. People, regardless if they have made Christ their Savior or not, can not EAT pearls... FREEDOM is found in Christ. Are you dearest Christian enjoying EVERYTHING Jesus Christ laid his life down for us to enjoy? If not, I implore you to keep on keeping on! WOO HOO!
    1774 days ago
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