3 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?
4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?
The “speck” (Gk. karphos) means, “chip, a small piece of straw, chaff, wood, etc.” (Gingrich) The “log” (Gk. dokos) means, “beam of wood.” A beam of wood is a very big piece of wood. Jesus uses a carpentry illustration. He uses hyperbole, an exaggerated figure of speech. He pictures a small thing, a speck, and a big thing, a log. A speck is a symbol of a small fault of a brother. A log is a symbol of a big failing of a critical person. Jesus asks why you do you want to remove a brother’s small fault, but you do not notice your own big failure.
The problem is that you see the small sin of your brother. But you do not see your own big sin. It is a problem of perspective. It is a question of your unloving attitude toward others. It is a reflection of your failure to see your own bigger sin.
Aren’t we like that sometimes? We see the failures of others. We want to correct the faults of others. But we do not see our own bigger failures. We do not do anything to solve our own bigger failures. For example, we condemn gossip in church. But do we see our tendency to start the gossip?
Jesus’ question should put us in a reflection mode. Let us pause and think about it.