"Pearls Before Swine"

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Last Updated on May 24, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 143

Context: Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, declares the rewards in Heaven for those faithful to God. Explaining that He has come to fulfill the old law rather than to destroy it, He teaches the virtuous life through the new law, which He compares with the old. He admonishes the people to give alms privately, to pray privately, and to dismiss the material things of the world as unimportant. He also warns them of the danger of judging their fellow men and exhorts them to examine themselves before being critical. Citing two animals considered vile to the Jews, he possibly cautions the people against spreading the word of the Kingdom of God indiscriminately:

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Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

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