Key Word:- MERCY
Title:- The Snuffers of The Sanctuary
Matthew 7:2-5 For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me remove the speck from your eye'; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.
It is Matthew Henry commenting on Matthew 7:5 which says, “Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye,” that makes this wonderful and intriguing observation that ‘the snuffers of the sanctuary are made from pure gold.’
Lest we be confused, old Henry is talking about the wick trimmers and their dishes. In other words, the snuffing tools used for the golden lamp stand of the temple that bore seven heads of light. In all likelihood, these probably had to be trimmed every half hour to ensure that they were perpetually lit. This was an office for the priest, who would enter the outer chamber of the first part of the tabernacle to do so (Hebrews 9:6). We should note here that this was an action of service and having a low servant’s heart instead of a high and mighty judging heart is of key importance in these things we are looking at, because Matthew Henry here is actually making the point, that as priests, we all need to “be of pure gold” when we are reproving one another, so as to make the light shine ever brighter still.
Yes indeed, there is need for reproof, correction and especially assistance, even the throwing of a rope to a drowning brother, or the laying hold of a sister just about to walk into the flames and isn’t this friends just the greatest service we can perform for one another! However, before we do this, to maintain our servant heart, we need to make sure that we have confessed our own sin, reproved our own self and removed the offending article from our own eye. In this way we snuffers, we removers of the burnt wick in others, that if left, would cause the lamp to go out in our brethren’s eyes, well in this way, we need to be like pure gold. Let’s trim our own wicks then eh, all seven of them, every half hour before we even think of going to another person's eyes. I don’t know about you, but I find that keeping myself in order is often a full time job anyway!
The snuffers of the sanctuary never went into the inner court, the Holy of Holies. Maybe we could say that in the same way we must never go into the inner court of our brethren. In other words, we should never judge the motives of the heart. We are servants not judges. Remember that. God takes this thing very seriously, for not taking care of our own wicks meets with reproof from God, for you see, judging another man’s heart meets with the law of reciprocation. This is terrible, for none of us judge well, as none of us fully knows the inner machinations, drives and desires, fears and fretfulness that might lie at the centre of another person's soul. Their Holy of Holies is not ours for the entering. It is for the High Priest and for Him alone to enter there. Don’t judge the motives of another persons heart, for you will surely get it wrong.
For our own safety and for the health of the church, let service and mercy be our watchwords, sure we MUST trim the lamps, but let’s leave the heart judging to God.
Listen:- Therefore the LORD has recompensed me according to my righteousness, According to my cleanness in His eyes. “With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful; With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless; With the pure You will show Yourself pure; And with the devious You will show Yourself shrewd. You will save the humble people; But Your eyes are on the haughty, that You may bring them down. 2 Samuel 22:25-28
Pray: - Lord. Who am I to judge another person's heart? For, you are the knower and revealer of hearts. Help me to be a brave servant of mercy and loving kindness, full of grace and having my own heart trimmed brightly burning before Your well-pleased face. Then and only then Lord, give me the courage to trim the burnt wicks of other people's lives. Amen.