January 13, 2022 – Thursday
Matthew 6:22-23 NIV
22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light.
23 But if your eyes are unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!
The words above continue to be from Jesus and His Sermon on the Mount. Two words above need our special attention. They are healthy and unhealthy. Many translations have heathy or clear or good or sound, but healthy is the most common and is synonymous with the others given here. Unhealthy is different as some of the words used as synonyms are evil, spiritually blind, bad, wicked, unclear, diseased, and clouded; most common are evil, bad, and unhealthy.
What are we to make of this? It turns out the Jewish people of Jesus’ time sometimes spoke of a good (healthy) eye as a generous one and a bad or evil (unhealthy) eye as a stingy one. Thus, Jesus is here using language meant to shock those who knew both generous and stingy people. For just as light cannot be darkness, a generous person cannot be stingy and conversely a stingy person cannot be generous. Thinking on this, a stingy person has a darkness that emanates or radiates from within. If you have ever been around such a person, you can probably recall the darkness when discussing finances. Their eyes come alive when they see a way to fill their pockets or increase their bank account. Such eyes reveal the internal corruption or darkness of the whole person.
What about the healthy or generous eye? We can look upon the healthy generous eye as one that has moral health.
Such eyes could receive the light from Jesus’ preaching as the possessor of such eyes are not greedy or stingy, but have a focus on directed towards heavenly treasure. As a result, the whole body will be full of light
I like how the ESV Reformation Study Bible summarizes this, The good eye looks to God as its “master” and fills the person with the “light” of God’s will. The bad eye looks to “treasures on earth” and admits only the “darkness” of greed and self-interest. The person’s whole life is determined by the kind of “light” the “eye” lets in. No one such want the darkness instead of the light for it will eventually permit no light and only seek its own ends. It is a covering darkness permitting no light.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Help me to aways choose light over darkness, generosity over greed. And where I find darkness help me to remove any cover and let Your light, Your will in. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton