How can we not
Cast our Pearls before Swine?

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Question: Jesus stated we are not to cast our pearls before swine. What does this mean?

Answer: The Bible verse you are referring to is Matthew 7:6. This verse records Jesus stating we are not to offer holy things to dogs, nor are we to cast our pearls before swine, or else they might walk over them then afterwards come and attack us!

The word pearls in Matthew 7 is symbolic of, or a metaphor for, godly wisdom and the salvation brought by his kingdom. God's wisdom, which all believers should strive to possess, is likened to something of a very great price in another reference in Matthew (see Matthew 13:45 - 46). All this is discussing God's kingdom and the wisdom one must acquire in order to enter it (see also Job 28:12 - 20).

Wisdom is found using God's Holy Spirit, which is only given to those who obey him (Acts 5:32). But how can understanding and knowledge lead us to our own pearls of great price (Matthew 13:45 - 46)? How can they bring us to the pure truth of God? It is only through recognizing and obeying his laws and his ways (Psalm 119:104).

God's precepts are written in the Holy Scriptures. If one has God's Spirit, one can study God's Word (His Precepts) for Holy knowledge, and upon this foundation of the Holy Spirit and Holy knowledge, God will then grant Holy understanding.

If we take our pearl (of wisdom) and cast it (throw it all around without knowing where it might fall) before dogs (which is a metaphor for those who have an impure or self-righteous heart) or swine (a metaphor for someone who is considered unclean), Jesus warns us that they will likely tear us to pieces (meaning they would twist and distort what is said then come after us).

God tells us in the book of Proverbs that there are times when we should be silent and times when we should respond directly to others (especially about God's truth). Jesus sometimes answered the questions and accusations thrown his way by the religious leaders of his day (e.g. Matthew 12:1 - 8) and sometimes refused to respond to their inquiries (e.g. Matthew 21:23 - 27).

We must discern the reason for any questions according to the person who is doing the asking and answer within that context (Proverbs 26:4 - 5). We should not cast our pearls of Godly wisdom before 'swine', meaning someone who is a militant, ready to fight, unbeliever lest they turn on us and insult us or do us harm.

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