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Why did Jesus call people fools and yet condemn others for doing the same thing? MATTHEW 23:17

MATTHEW 23:17— did Jesus call people fools and condemn others doing the same thing?

: Jesus said, “whoever says [to his brother], `You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire” (Matt. 5:22). He Himself said to the scribes and Pharisees, “Fools and blind!” (Matt. 23:17) The Apostle Paul, following suit, said, “O foolish Galatians” (Gal. 3:1; cf. 1 Cor. 15:36).

SOLUTION: There are good reasons there is a strong difference between the two uses of the term “fool.” First, this is another example of the principle the same word can be used different meanings in different contexts (see Introduction). instance, the word “dog” can be used of a canine animal or a detested person.

, in Matthew 5, it is used in the context of someone who is “angry” his brother, indicating a hatred. Neither Jesus nor Paul harbored hatred toward those to whom they applied the term. Thus, their use of the term “fool” does not violate Jesus’ prohibition against calling others a fool.

Third, technically , Jesus commanded a “brother” (Matt. 5:22) not be called a “fool,” not an unbeliever. In the scriptural description of a fool is who “has said in his heart, `There is no God’ ” (Ps. 14:1). In view of this, can see the seriousness of calling a brother a fool; it is tantamount to calling an unbeliever. Hence, when He who “knew what in man” (cf. John 2:25) called unbelievers “fools,” it a most appropriate description of what they were.

[1]

 

[1]Geisler, N. L., & Howe, T. A. (1992). When critics ask : A popular handbook Bible difficulties (357). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor .

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