HOW ARE YOUR EYES?
1. The ability to see is one of man's greatest endowments.
A. Only those deprived of sight, after knowing its blessing, can fully appreciate it.
B. Think how it must be to be born blind!
C. Fanny Crosby, though blind, wrote over 8,000 poems and hymns. A special one of mine is: "Safe In The Arms Of Jesus."
2. Because we value our eyes so highly, we have periodic eye examinations.
A. And we are sometimes surprised whenever we are told that we are farsighted or nearsighted and that we need corrective glasses or lenses.
3. The eyes are the faculties of discrimination, perception, and discernment. How thankful we ought to be for them.
A. Scientists estimate that 87% of impressions around us come by SEEING.
4. There are repeated references to the eyes in the scriptures.
A. Many of these are given spiritual applications, which make them even more important.
5. So, in our study at this time, we want to engage in a spiritual eye check-up. How are your eyes?
I. SOME WERE SPIRITUALLY BLIND.
A. Spiritual blindness was ascribed:
1. To the watchmen who failed to give warning. Isa. 56:10.
2. To the deceitful false teachers such as the Pharisees. Matt. 15:14.
3. To those who wilfully reject the truth. 2 Cor. 4:3,4.
B. Each year in America and Canada, over 30,000 people go blind. 92% of these are adults. I wonder how many go spiritually blind each year?
C. Spiritually, one can see, and perceive or discern not. Isa. 6:9.
1. Because of prejudice.
a. The Jewish leaders saw Christ, but did not perceive or discern Him, His mission, or the nature of His kingdom. Jno. 1:11.
b. Today, whenever Jesus is preached, people say: "You people believe in water salvation", "You people are too narrow", "You think you are the only ones that are going to be saved." etc.
2. Because of tradition.
a. People say: "That's what my parents believed and it's good enough for me." "Give Me That Old Time Religion".
b. Many blindly follow the customs and traditions of their ancestors.
1) The daughter and mother always cut the end off the ham before cooking it because grandmother did. But it so happened that the grandmother's cooking pan was too small causing her to have to cut off the end of the ham.
II. THE BIBLE SPEAKS OF EYES "OUT OF FOCUS".
A. An "out of focus" eye can cause serious problems in both physical and spiritual sense.
1. It causes us to confuse immediate advantage with eternal values. 2 Cor. 4:16-18.
2. It confuses human attainment with divine atonement. Lk. 12:13-21.
3. It confuses matters of faith with matters of opinion. Matt. 7:21-23.
a. People say: "Look at the good it does", thereby replacing Bible authority. We must walk by faith and not by sight. 2 Cor. 5:;7. Faith comes by hearing the Word of God. Rom. 10:17.
B. Properly focused eyes set affections on things above. Col. 3:1-4.
1. Such will look for that "city four-square". 2 Cor. 5:1.
2. Such can see "afar off" because they add the "graces" of God to their lives. 2 Pet. 1:1-11.
a. These "graces" form a ladder and the higher one climbs on this ladder, the farther he is able to see.
III. JESUS SPOKE OF SOME WHO HAVE AN "EVIL EYE".
A. The Greek lexicons define "evil" as "in a bad condition".
1. A lady criticized the neighbor's dirty wash, but learned that the dirt was on her own window pane. Mt. 7:1-5.
B. The evil eye is full of darkness. Matt. 6:23.
1. The application is to serving two masters, v. 24, rather than a singleness of service, v. 22.
C. The diseased eye must be "plucked out". Matt. 18:9.
1. This is not a physical operation: a physical operation to remove one's eye would not remove evil from one's life.
IV. THE SCRIPTURES SPEAK OF THE DOWNCAST EYE.
A. The one who knows sorrow, and who doesn't?, but refuses to look up for help.
1. In fact, some are even ready to blame God for their sorrows or bad fortune.
B. Peter walked on the water until he looked down, then he began to sink. Matt. 14:25-30.
1. The Psalmist tells us to "look up". Psa. 121: 1-8.
V. THE SCRIPTURES ALSO SPEAK OF LUSTFUL EYES.
A. This is especially true in our day and time; such is capitalized upon by advertizers.
1. Everything from automobiles to chain saws must be advertized with an overtone of sex and immodesty.
2. Men love to have it so, and women do all they can to promote it.
3. This is a good time and place to ask the question, "How should a Christian act and dress in view of lustful eyes?"
a. One should dress modestly or orderly, and act with purity of mind and thought if possible. 1 Tim. 2:8-10; 4:12.
b. Women used to dress like old Mother Hubbard, now they dress more like her cupboard!
c. Blaze Starr, queen of the strippers, says: "Relaxed attitudes on nudity, sex movies, and pornography are killing burlesque. If they get much filthier, I'm out of business."
B. Peter said some "have eyes full of adultery", 2 Pet. 2:13,14.
1. Such cannot see anything but illicit sex when they look.
a. Jesus condemns looking with lust in the eyes. Matt. 5:27-29.
2. John warns that "lust of the eyes" is one of the three avenues of sin, 1 Jno. 2:15-17.
a. With Eve, it was the forbidden fruit. Gen. 3:6.
b. With David, it was Bathsheba. 2 Sam. 11:2,3.
c. With Simon the sorcerer, it was the power of the Holy Spirit. Acts 8:18,19.
3. What might be the lust of your eyes?
VI. THERE ARE ALSO DELIBERATELY CLOSED EYES.
A . Jesus wept because Jerusalem deliberately refused His words. Lk. 19:41,42; Matt. 23:37-39.
B. Sadly, the same is true of our own time.
1. Some are closed because of laziness; they refuse to exert enough effort to search the scriptures for themselves. Hos. 4:6; Acts 17:11; 2 Tim. 2:15.
2. Some are deliberately closed because they are afraid that they will learn the truth.
3. Then there are others that are closed because of indifference; they just plain don't care.
C. Even Christians sometimes deliberately close their eyes.
1. They do this physically as they take their nap during services. To such, I say: WAKE UP!
2. They close their eyes to the suffering and needs of others.
a. In doing so, they seem to say: "What needs?" "I don't see any needs." "Who is suffering?" "Well, he brought it all on himself, good enough for him."
3. Do people in this community know about this congregation because the members here follow the example of Jesus who "went about doing good?" Acts 10:38.
4. Have our eyes been deliberately closed to the fatherless and the widows? Jas. 1:27.
5. Have they been closed to the unsaved of the community and world-wide? Matt. 28:18-20.
a. We need to "lift up our eyes and look upon the fields that they are white unto harvest." Jno. 4:35.
b. We that are Christians have a "love letter" to deliver. Let us not delay the mail.
1. The church at Laodicea was, among other things, blind. Rev. 3:;17.
A. The Lord told her the cure, to annoint her eyes with the Spirit given "eye salve".
2. Are you in darkness today? If so, the word of God will open your eyes. Eph. 1:15-23.
3. Admit your blindness; obey the word; then you can truthfully sing: "I Once Was Blind But Now I See."
4. In obeying the Lord, you can become the "apple of His eye." Psa. 17:8.
by Jim Sasser
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