Jesus want us to dump our baggage so we can travel light. Here He addresses the burden we place on ourselves when we occupy our mind comparing ourselves to other people. If Jesus could only teach us one thing it would have to be that God is perfect. And His Presence is perfect. Now we can certainly reason that, by definition, nothing can be added to or taken away from perfect while having it remain in perfect condition. Although nothing in this world is actually perfect, imagine if you will, a perfectly clean floor the moment a speck of dust falls on it. Perfection is no more. Following that reasoning to the next logical step we realize sin is and must be “banned substances” in Heaven.
When we want to get on an airplane, there are substances banned from carry-on. Sharp objects, contents under pressure, even drinking water can’t pass through the gate to our plane. Which particular banned substance we attempt to carry with us doesn’t matter, because each one results in the exact same verdict by the FAA: “No admittance”. We must voluntarily separate ourselves from such substances and board for our desired destination or hold onto them and remain where we are. We can argue and compare our article with those carried by people around us who are also denied access, but, what difference does it make? None!
Jesus address any temptation we may ever have to compare ourselves with the world in verse 2; “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners…?” And, again in verse 4; “…do you think they were more guilty…? Jesus nips that faulty thinking in the bud in verse 3 “I tell you no!” And, because hard-heads like us need reiteration, he repeats this declaration in verse 5; “I tell you no!” Jesus wants us to stop being weighed down with thoughts of who deserves punishment and who doesn’t because our sin, no matter how tiny we want to believe it is, means that we’re all headed for the exact same verdict; “No admittance” into the perfect eternal Presence of God.
The good news is also reiterated twice in the span of the same 5 verses “Unless, you repent”.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. [John 3:16]