Gouge Your Eye Out – Crazy Things Jesus Said – Mt.18:9

Gouge Your Eye Out - Matthew 18:9 - Crazy Things Jesus Said

It wouldn’t seem like the start to a great day when Jesus tells you to ‘Gouge Your Eye Out’.

Gouge Your Eye Out… Really?

I’m not making this up.  Your dear sweet baby Jesus actually said, “gouge your eye out.”  Perhaps your Sunday school mind is thinking that I must be some kind of wacko trying to start a new eye gouging cult.  Just hang in there with me for a few minutes, and I think you’ll still be able to snuggle with Jesus during your next devotion time.

The real truth is though that Jesus did say it.  He even said it more than once.  In three separate passages and in two different gospels, Jesus says the same thing.  Matthew 18:9Matthew 5:29-30 – and Mark 9:47

How it Really Applies To Us

I personally love the notion that Jesus liked to shake things up.  He wasn’t always the warm and fuzzy Jesus that is portrayed in the paintings.  He was even offensive at times, but he never offended for the sake of being offensive.  Jesus was passionate about life and love, so he passionately fought against those things that tried to destroy them.

In Mt. 18:9, Jesus didn’t say to gouge your eye out because he had suddenly developed a morbid bent.  He was just trying to verbally smack us into reality.  It seems that too often believers tolerate the things in their lives that continually jack them up and knock them off course.

And if your eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell. – Matthew 18:9

The reality is that Jesus understood that some of these vices have the potential to keep you out of heaven.  Well, more accurately, what He really said is that they’d get you thrown into the fire of hell, but that’s not so popular these days…

We immediately think of the obvious sins that some other people might be guilty of, but Jesus didn’t say if ‘sleeping with your married neighbor causes you to stumble‘, He said if ‘your eye causes you to stumble’.  If you’re sleeping with your neighbor’s wife or husband, you probably already understand that the pearly gates aren’t exactly calling out to you.

Jesus was talking about those things that lead us into sin.  He was talking about the daily habits or routines that consistently cause us to walk headlong into the snares of the enemy.

For Instance…

If gluttony is a sin that you know kicks your chunky bottom every time you smell a snickers, then don’t go into the Krispy Kreme to get your coffee.

If pornography is a sin that you know is going to drag you down, then unsubscribe from some of those facebook friends that are always uploading pictures of their barely covered breasts.

If you have the tendency to be a racist jerk, then maybe you get rid of some of the junk you listen to that enforces those ideas.

I know I’m being brash, but when you’re looking at eternity, sometimes we need a good old-fashioned kick in the ‘A Double S’ to bring us back to center.  Jesus said that our prayer should be, “lead us not into temptation.”  He understood that we haven’t got it all together yet, and there are some situations that have the potential to wreck our lives.

Our responsibility is to not walk straight up to those temptations and invite them home for dinner.  If your eye offends you, then go on and gouge it out.  It’s better to walk into heaven partially blind than to high dive into hell with our eyes wide open.


Crazy Things Jesus Said by Jeremy Binns

This is the first post in a series of posts titled, “Crazy Things Jesus Said.” If you’ve enjoyed this post, you may want to check out the rest as they come available.

I really do enjoy talking with the people who read my posts and discussing the ideas presented, so leave a comment.

Crazy Things Jesus Said Series

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About the Author

Jeremy BinnsWhen I'm not trying to save the world from the coming zombie invasion, I love my wife, hug my daughters, write, photograph, listen, observe, explore, and worship.View all posts by Jeremy Binns →

  • Cyndi

    That is a crazy thing Jesus said but I’m glad I’m crazy enough to believe it!!
    I’m also thankful I still have two eyes!!
    ” Temptation I bind you in the name if Jesus.” ”Especially chocolate!!”

  • Andy Crowley Sr.

    Ok. So I just finished my four week lesson for my fourth and fifth grade youth group called Extreme. So I called it “Extreme things Jesus said”. These three articles helped me so much! The kids remembered all this stuff and they loved it! Oh, their faces when I told them Jesus said these things. And then what they meant. It was awesome! Thank you, brother.

"He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

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