From the Fulness of One’s Heart


We’ve seen how Luke uses certain sayings of the Lord which in Matthew would have been applicable to the hypocritical Pharisees as warnings to his own disciples. In yesterday’s readings, the saying about blind guides leading the blind — which in Matthew is made in reference to the Pharisees — is used in Luke as a warning to those who presume to correct the faults of their brothers.


Good people draw what is good from the store of goodness in their hearts; bad people draw what is bad from the store of badness. For the words of the mouth flow out of what fills the heart. (Luke 6:45, RSV)


The verse is a commentary on verse 43-44 about trees and the fruits they bear. While in Matthew, the saying about trees and fruits are used as a criterion for seeing through the disguise that false prophets wear, here in Luke, it is a warning to disciples who presume to correct the failings of others. Here, the statement in verse 45 has a specific meaning: if one speaks badly about a brother, it may be because of the evil that overflows from one’s heart.


It is easy to find faults in another. Perhaps it may even be one’s faults that prevents one from seeing what is good in another. It is easy to suspect another or criticize and be unappreciative. Jesus is warning his disciples here. Unless they truly love, they cannot presume to correct another. Otherwise, they will just be bad trees proferring bad fruit, like the blind leading the blind.


Lord, help me see the evil in my heart, that I may not readily blame others or criticize them. Fill my heart with your goodness, that I may give to others what I receive from you.


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