Pearls before Swine. As we continue our series of devotions called the Words of Christ we are currently in the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus implores us to not give what is holy to the dogs. What does He mean?
“Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before
swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in
Matthew 7:6, NKJV
This is, perhaps, one of the most interesting verses in the Bible. Jesus looked at His disciples and said, "Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine." What did He mean by this?
Jesus is telling the disciples that what they have in God is holy! Think of it. A holy God, reaches down to this earth and touches a heart and says, "Live!" In response, that heart turns to Him in repentance and cries out for salvation. That new creation in Christ is holy! I think we have lost the significance of what that really means.
What does it mean to be holy? One online dictionary defines it this way:
1. Dedicated or consecrated to God or a religious purpose; sacred.
2. (of a person) Devoted to the service of God.
As believers in Christ we are often so caught up in the things of this world--its concerns and its temptations--that we have lost the sense of being holy before God. God did not save us so that we could continue to immerse ourselves in the things of this world. God saved us so that from that moment on, we would be devoted to the service of God.
How, then, do we cast our pearls before swine? One commentary explains it in this way:
The meaning is pretty simple to figure out; "Do not persist in offering what is sacred or of value to those who have no appreciation for it, because your gift will not only become contaminated and be despised, your generous efforts could also be rebuffed and perhaps even openly attacked." The commentary then continues later:
Your life, time, energy, opportunities and abilities are God's pearls. They're His! You and I are merely His stewards overseeing His possessions (1 Corinthians 6:19,20; 4:1,2; 1 Peter 4:8-11). We must show discernment as to what use we make of God's possessions. It does change our perspective, when we consider that we are overseeing God's possessions, and therefore must show discernment as to what use we make of them. Everything we are--all of our talents and abilities--are gifts from God. How are we using our gifts and talents for Him?
I do not think we error in also considering that when we take these abilities God has given to us and apply them to the things of this world, seeking to become great in the eyes of the world, we are also casting these pearls God has given to us before swine.
Peter, quite simply said:
15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. (1 Peter 1:15-16, KJV)
As a child of God, may God use you today to honor and glorify His name, His Word, and His kingdom. Go, and be holy for the Lord!