“The lamp of the body is the eye; if therefore your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full or darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” (Mt. 6:22).
In order to see clearly, one must avoid eye damage. The bad eye is the exact opposite of the clear eye. While the good eye focuses on God and His will, the bad eye focuses on human wisdom and desires. Solomon says, “Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and turn away from evil” (Prov. 3:7 see also 12:15; 26:12; 30:12).
The context of Matthew six reveals that the bad eye is one which focuses on earthly rather than heavenly treasure. Again, Solomon speaks on the matter, saying, “When you set your eyes on it [riches], it is gone. For wealth certainly makes itself wings like an eagle that flies toward the heavens” (Prov. 23:5). Paul told Timothy to warn the rich “not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy” (1 Tim. 6:17).
The bad eye focuses on the sensual rather than the spiritual. Many lack the single-mindedness Jesus speaks about because they are preoccupied with gratifying the needs of the body. John spoke of the “lust of the flesh” as being “of the world” and, when practiced, evidence of failed love toward the Father (1 Jn. 2:15-17). “Lust of the flesh” includes any physical desire that pulls our focus away from God.
The person with a bad eye is the one whose affections have been misplaced. This is spiritual blindness. If asked, the person would argue against it. However, such a one is blind nevertheless. Scripture mentions those who have eyes but cannot see (Mt. 13:13). John argues that such a person “does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes (1 Jn. 2:11).
Do you have good spiritual vision? Such vision begins with affections properly placed on God and His righteousness (Mt. 6:33). Without clear spiritual vision we will not enjoy the promise of everlasting life.