Jesus says: Don't be Stupid... Pigs can't eat Pearls

"Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces." ~ (Matthew 7:6; NASB)
There is something about our humanity that just loves to give people a piece of our mind.  We love to be dispensers of our infinite wisdom.  And those of us with the gift of gab, we just can't wait to share our opinion on any range of topics.

In concluding His teaching on judging others, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus warns us about the dangers of trying to force feed our little nuggets of wisdom to dogs and swine. Neither dogs nor swine are interested in what you have, so don't try to give it to them anyway.  Though what you have is extremely valuable, it is of no value to them, because it is something they simply cannot eat.  If they tried to, they just might just choke to death, or worse, they might just turn on you.

And treating this passage as a prophecy, we often try to comfort ourselves in such times when we feel the dogs and the pigs have turned on us.  We feel this way when somebody from another theological or political camp rejects the rightness of our position on whatever it is we have to say, and mud slinging ensues.  And afterwards, we dust ourselves off and vow to never share certain truths with certain people ever again.  We tell ourselves that we'll just share our wisdom with those who have ears to hear, and are interested in what we have to say.

However, if you are using this passage in this way (as most people do), you are reading it wrong.

We tend to understand this teaching as an isolated saying of Jesus, and divorce it from its entire context.  In the actual Biblical context within the Sermon on the Mount, this verse follows a string of passages in which Jesus exposes and condemns self-righteous behavior, and our general blindness to it.  This passage is no exception, as it caps off his teaching on the topic of judging others, which immediately preceded this verse.

In this Scripture, Jesus is offering no consolation prize to those who get their butts kicked after a heated argument, even though you were right in your position, and what you were preaching on. Jesus isn't encouraging you to be more discerning, and warning about the dangers of sharing precious truths with a bad crowd, and encouraging you to find people of more worth to share what you have to say with next time.

If such was the case, Jesus wouldn't have ever found a worthy audience to preach to.

Rather, Jesus is warning you and I about the dangers of looking at others in a smug, self-assured, know-it-all attitude to begin with, and then opening our mouths to let others know what we think anyway.  If you deem yourself so wise and think what you have is so valuable, then why the heck are you even trying to feed your pearls to people whom you deem to be dogs and pigs to begin with?

Instead of being so wise, Jesus says your behavior reveals that you are being a complete idiot, and what's worse, is that you don't even know it because you already think you are ever-so enlightened.  You should never look at somebody else and judge them as a dog or a pig (or "lib-tard," to use a modern idiom).  But if you do, then it's no wonder when an unplanned episode of Jerry Springer suddenly breaks out.

When sharing what you think with  others, if you treat them as dogs and pigs, don't be shocked when they act like dogs and pigs towards you in return.  The real danger isn't to be found in what you have to share, or the people you are sharing with, but how you look at others and treat them in the process.

At the end of the day, we tend to be the real the pigs.  

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