One of the most descriptive statements that Jesus makes in His sermon on the mount and during His ministry is, “…do not throw your pearls before swine…” (Matthew 7:6). This passage paints a detailed picture in our minds. Maybe we imagine several large pigs in a pin that is almost overflowing with dark mud. Perhaps we can see in our minds a long strand of beautiful, large, and expensive pearls being thrown down on top of that mud. Maybe we can also imagine the inevitable result: the wallowing and rooting of those pigs, which buries, damages, and even destroys those precious pearls.
There is far more to this verse than pigs, pearls, and mud. Jesus uses this analogy to teach serval important spiritual lessons:
- As Christians, we hold onto something precious (the pearls). Because of Jesus’ sacrifice and by the grace of God, we have the gospel. We have the hope of salvation. We have the eternal forgiveness of our sins.
- As Christians, we will encounter those (the swine) who do not appreciate or value the gospel or our spiritual salvation (the pearls).
- As Christians, we might choose to or be tempted to hand over what is most valuable to those who only want to destroy it.
In the context of the passage, Jesus teaches that Christians must not fall into the behavior of those who hate and wish to destroy the gospel. Instead, we need to protect what is most important. Our pearls are far too precious to be thrown before swine.