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Scripture: Matthew 18:7-10
“Woe to the world because of its stumbling blocks! For it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come; but woe to that man through whom the stumbling block comes! “If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it from you; it is better for you to enter life crippled or lame, than to have two hands or two feet and be cast into the eternal fire. “If your eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out and throw it from you. It is better for you to enter life with one eye, than to have two eyes and be cast into the fiery hell. “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven continually see the face of My Father who is in heaven.
Insights: The third truth regarding humanity is we are at times a stumbling block to those around us. I have written on this idea before, but I believe if is appropriate to address it again. I don’t think people wake up in the morning and say to themselves, “I hope I can trip someone up today and knock the faith right out of them.” Unfortunately, because sin does reside in our fallen nature, we do cause people to stumble and we don’t even mean to at times. Beloved, let me point out the seriousness of sin and the stumbling block it can be toward others. Jesus tells us in today’s verses to deal with our sin as drastically as possible. He is obviously using hyperbole, but the seriousness of sin is being presented. As a way of example, let me use drinking alcohol. Is drinking alcohol a sin? The answer is no. Is drinking too much alcohol a sin? The answer is yes. In our culture, however, most lost people think it is inappropriate for Christians to drink. So, when they see one who confesses to be a follower of Jesus in the local bar having a drink, they say to themselves “Why should I change my life, Jesus has not helped him/her from still getting drunk and living a life of sin?” In that moment, we have become a stumbling block. Let me encourage you to evaluate your decisions through the lens of the gospel and do all you can to not become a stumbling block to someone else.
1. Have you ever been a stumbling block to someone?
2. Has someone ever been a stumbling block to you?
Prayer: Father, I have never liked when someone’s actions have caused me to stumble in my faith. I like it even less when I discover I have made someone else stumble in their faith. Lord, help me to live life fully dependent on You and to recognize the truth regarding the state of humanity. With this understanding equip me to see them as You see them and may I not become a stumbling block to them. Amen.
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