“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” – Mat 7:1-2
I am sure most of us have heard these verses, or a variation of them, used in debate, either in person, TV, or social media. Truth is, when things are not looking too good for your side of a topic, chances are you have blurted this out too, even if you don’t read the Bible or profess Christianity. I must admit, I am always amazed at how non-Christians are always telling Christians what the Bible means about a certain topic, how a Christian should act and what Jesus really stood for. I am also equally astounded by professing Christians who will openly, and often forcibly, voice their opinions on subjects that they have no business engaging in, or even worse, that supports sin. As Christians, we should love people. This means we have compassion for all humanity and be as good to them as we possibly can. At the same time, we are not to support sin and certainly not to be partakers of it. Often times when this is done, offenders and/or non-believers come from everywhere to educate us on the ways of Christ. Not understanding that it’s not the people we are against….. It’s the sin.
One thing that we, as Christians, need to realize is that the world is against us. The Bible is very clear on this point. It teaches that “Men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil” (John 3:19p). We need to understand that Biblical definitions are not always the same definition in the world today. This does not mean that everybody that’s not a Christian goes to satanic churches, are mass murderers, etc… It simply means that Jesus is the light of the world and people refuse to come to Him on His terms. Some of the finest people I know, according to the world’s view of goodness, are non-Christians. They do not hurt anyone, always considerate of others, donate to charity and contribute to their community. These are marvelous qualities. They don’t get you to heaven, but by the world’s standards, they are wonderful people. It is a hard thing to realize that if these nice, wonderful, amazing people die without being born again, they will share the same lake of fire as the unrepentant rapist, child molester, etc… Though I hear a lot of people say that they want others to be honest with them or they want people to always tell them the truth, I find that in most cases, that is a lie. I find that what most people want is for their version of the truth to be accepted and they want people to agree with them. After all, the Bible teaches that Jesus is the truth. He never told a lie. He loved people and was always honest with everyone and when it was all said and done, the Pharisees chose to free and dwell with the murderer Barabbas and sent Christ to die on the cross. So it should not be a surprise when we do as we are supposed to do, which is to love people and tell them the truth, that we are met with excuses and partial scripture taken out of context. Secularism does not and will not understand that telling the truth is love. The world thinks that love is tolerance, acceptance and turning a blind eye, but in reality, that is anything but love and brings us to the popular phrase, “Don’t judge me”!
I always chuckle a little when someone uses the words “Don’t judge me” while in a discussion because, in most cases, it is a defensive reaction. When someone plays the “Don’t judge me” card, it is usually because they are losing the argument. So in desperation, they begin to attack the person instead of the topic. They have just turned a debate about a particular issue into an attack of a person’s character. This usually happens when their soul has been convicted and they understand that they are wrong. It becomes much easier to justify our own sins by attacking a person instead of admitting guilt, because, after all, we are all flawed. According to scripture, we have no authority to judge a person’s soul, that is reserved for Christ and Him alone. “I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom” – 1 Tim 4:1.
In dealing with the subject of judgment, we often remember the first two verses (Mat 7:1-2) but we tend to forget the next three (Mat 7:3-5). This teaches us that before we concern ourselves about the sins of others, we should be more concerned with our own sin and getting it removed. This is something that we need to fully understand. The Bible teaches that “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” – Rom 3:23. None of us could remove the beam from our eye. We may have tried, we may have even thought it was out and we were cleansed by our own hand, but the truth is that the only way we could be cleansed and able to see clearly is because we called upon the name of Jesus Christ. He is the one that removes, forgives and forgets our sins. If I was able to cleanse myself of sin, I would not need a savior.
It should be perfectly clear that we have neither the ability nor the right to judge someone’s soul, but what about a person’s actions? There is a huge difference between passing judgment and giving an opinion. When dealing with opinions, we base them on provided information that we choose to accept. Conservative and liberal news media will often tell the same story in their own way, often emphasizing different points causing the story to look one way or another. We choose to trust one of these news media’s over another. It is our choice. We can’t blame the news. I find that often we choose the news source based on our own ideas and preferences rather than truth. We will search for the station that reports everything the way we like it and accept what they feed us. The same is true with sin. People will often search to find a church or a teacher that agrees with their lifestyle rather than changing their lifestyle to agree with scripture. We need to understand that The Bible has clearly defined what sin is, how we are to deal with it, what it causes, and most importantly, how we defeat it. I have found that everyone has an opinion on these issues. Opinions can and do vary, but the truth will always remain the same. If it was a sin in the days of Paul, David, and Noah, then it is a sin today. We should not try to justify our actions by the actions of others. I realize that a very popular method in an attempt to justify oneself is to knock someone else down.
Newsflash: I am not the standard, You are not the standard, and the “holier than thou neighbor” who just got caught having an affair is not the standard. Jesus fulfilled the whole law of God and He is the standard, of which none of us can measure up to.
Four things to remember concerning the topic of judging others:
John 3:17 – For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved. As Christians, I do not believe we need to be pointing out non-Christian people’s sins. The truth is those that have not been born again are already condemned. “Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His” – Rom8:9p
- The Bible does teach us that we are to confront professing Christian’s about their sin. There are two ways to do this, pending the situation. Neither of which, as far as I can tell, is to argue about something on a Facebook post.
a. If a brother trespasses against you personally, then you will find the appropriate method in dealing with it the Book of Matthew, 18:15-18.
b. If a Brother is openly sinning, you are not to turn a blind eye. The Bible teaches: “Them that sin rebuke before all, that others may fear” – 1 Tim 5:20. Again, this is for Christians in the same church. This does not give a public argument on Facebook any credenc
- 1 Tim 5:23 –Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partakers of other men’s sins: keep thyself pure.
Just because it may be the popular thing or deemed okay by society, it does not mean that we should do, support, or allow something. We must remember that the world opposes Christianity. What seems correct in today’s society is at odds against the Word of God. The Bible teaches that “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” – Prov 14:12. Just because it makes sense to the natural mind or with the majority of people, doesn’t mean it’s right. In fact, there is a good chance it isn’t. If someone or a group of people fight for a sinful cause, we not only have the right but we are to stand in unity against these things. Understand that we will be called names and put down, but then again, look at what Christ was put through on our behalf. “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” – Mat 10:28
- 2 Tim 4:2-4 – Preach the Word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers. Having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
Most people think we should be silent and not voice our faith or that we are too “pushy”. The fact is, Christ instructed us to tell the world. We have something to do. If we do nothing, we are in error. Our job is not just to point out the sin, but to proclaim the Word. Jesus is the Word. He is the way, the truth and the life. We are to correct and reprimand false teachings of salvation and invite people to go to glory by telling them the truth. Repeatedly telling someone of their sin is like telling someone you “told them so” in the midst of crises. They don’t need a lecture about how wrong they are. They need to know how to be saved from their sin. The Gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ. The good news is that they can be saved, only through and by Jesus Christ. “for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved – Acts 4:13p”