If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out.Mark 9:42-43 NIV
This passage is about stumbling. Jesus warns us about being the cause of others’ stumbling and about things in my own life that cause me to stumble. While we should be careful about physically stumbling, that is not what Jesus is talking about here. The stumbling here is spiritual. A stumbling that causes someone to fall in their walk with God.
First, Jesus warns about being the cause of stumbling for one of the little ones. Little ones could be children, new believers, or anyone who is a child of God. I am held accountable if I lead people astray by what I teach or if I lead someone else into sin by my actions. While not all of us are teachers, we all do have an impact on others around us. Make sure that the impact you have is positive. That you are not the cause of someone else’s stumbling.
Jesus also warns about things in my life that might cause me to stumble. He mentions eyes, hands, and feet, cutting them off if they cause our stumbling. Jesus’ words here are probably metaphorical. Rather than mutilating our bodies, he is telling us to eliminate from our lives anything that would potentially cause us to fall into sin. That could include people you associate with, places you go to, or the music you listen to. As God’s people, we are called to be holy, set apart for his use. Don’t let the appeal of this world keep you from that.
The views expressed here are solely mine and do not necessarily reflect those of any other person, group, or organization. While I believe they reflect the teachings of the Bible, I am a fallible human and subject to misunderstanding. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions about this post in the comments section below. I am always interested in your feedback.
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