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  • Why not judge?

    Seems like in this day and age of "political correctness" people think they are not supposed to judge anybody or anything. I think we have to make judgements otherwise we can get into big trouble, fall in with the wrong people, and easily end up on the wide path. Isn't wisdom all about making judgements?

    So, where the Word says, "judge not lest ye be judged" just means to me that we are not deterred from making judgements but that our judgements had better be just since we may be judged likewise. Am I correct?

    What say you, wise Christians?

  • #2
    Originally posted by crystalbrite View Post
    Seems like in this day and age of "political correctness" people think they are not supposed to judge anybody or anything. I think we have to make judgements otherwise we can get into big trouble, fall in with the wrong people, and easily end up on the wide path. Isn't wisdom all about making judgements?

    So, where the Word says, "judge not lest ye be judged" just means to me that we are not deterred from making judgements but that our judgements had better be just since we may be judged likewise. Am I correct?

    What say you, wise Christians?
    For myself, and myself only....
    I find that when I judge others, I trap myself.
    Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
    Proverbs 3:5

    My soul yearns for you in the night; in the morning my spirit longs for you. When your judgements come upon the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.
    Isaiah 26:9

    Comment


    • #3
      Easy answer;

      Judge at your peril (and ends with a single verse).


      Matthew 7:1 (King James Version)

      Matthew 7

      1Judge not, that ye be not judged.






      Better answer;


      Goes much deeper. Sad part is most do not want to go beyond the simple answer.


      Here is a good start. (link contains a Bible Gateway search on the words "judge not")
      Last edited by Pilgrimtozion; Jan 17th 2009, 09:58 PM. Reason: Added description of link
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      ~ * You get 10 'reps' to bless others with each day... don't log off until you have used them up......
      ....Live your life the same way.... ~ *

      Please pray for the 'Persecuted Church'.


      Bible Forums Vision: "To be a community of believers who are actively engaged in pursuing the truth of God as revealed in His Son Jesus Christ by way of studying the Scriptures diligently in order to discover this truth."


      Comment


      • #4
        Hi,

        Paul explaines this in very detail in Romans 2.

        Comment


        • #5
          Dear crystalbrite,
          Welcome to Bibleforums!
          It's great to have you here!!!
          And thanks for your excellent question!
          Originally posted by crystalbrite, exerpted View Post
          Why not judge?
          "political correctness" [often means] people think they are not supposed to judge anybody or anything. I think we have to make judgements otherwise we can get into big trouble.... Isn't wisdom all about making judgements?

          So, where the Word says, "judge not lest ye be judged" just means to me that ... our judgements had better be just since we may be judged likewise.

          Am I correct? What say you ...?
          The question is excellent, but the matter is, I think, complex.

          There are several main issues intertwined here, as I see it.

          In this post I will just try to lay out the two basic points which have to be kept together in our minds when we consider these matters.

          The strictness and rightness of God's moral law

          First, Scripture makes very clear that the world is framed upon true, eternal, and vital moral standards, justly authored and upheld by God.

          That is, the profoundly sane teaching of the Scriptures is that there are true, knowable, and objectively correct standards of right and wrong -- built into the very nature of the universe, of profound importance, and reflecting the unchangeable goodness and uprightness of God, which is expressed in His laws and commands. Any attempt to get away from the authority of the moral law is a profound confusion, and profoundly destructive to human beings.

          The attempt to cast doubt on the basics of moral truth is at least as absurd and dangerous as it would be for someone (perhaps protesting "arbitrary restrictions" or "narrowmindedness") to go around removing signs which (accurately) warn people using various household products "danger -- poison" or people walking on mountain paths "beware of cliff"!

          Things that are wrong (and in particular things which Christian and Biblical faith tells us are wrong) are almost always directly destructive to human beings and their welfare -- even apart from God's command. To lie is to corrupt one's heart; to disrespect one's parents is to erode one's very identity; to steal is to destroy all ones own and society's relationships as well as to defraud innocent people; to engage in sexual activity outside of marriage is to poison the very basis of the fundamental human relationships (those of family) which are most sustaining and necessary to our hearts, and often, also, to plunge ourselves and our society into myriad conflicts, confusions, and addictions.

          The wrongness of violating true moral standards, though, involves wrong and destruction in other ways. God is the source of existence, of love, of goodness and beauty, and of truth, and is the generous author of our own life and being. For us to disobey God, and His commands, then, is for us to rebel against the One who alone has given us our existence, and against Him who is the source of life. This is both arrogant, ungrateful and wrong, and also to cut ourselves off from the one who also is the sole source of goodness and life.

          I say these things to emphasize the point that you rightly make and clearly articulate: "we have to make judgements otherwise we can get into big trouble.... Isn't wisdom all about making judgements."


          Our own sinfulness, and that we all stand in desperate need of God's mercy

          Second, however, I don't think that the injunction "Judge not lest you be judged" is, as you seem to suggest, simply a matter of insisting that "our judgements had better be just" (though of course that's true too). Rather, I think that in this saying the Lord Jesus is instead setting out an important additional set of points. This set of points partly revolves around the difference between (A) discerning -- and obeying God's clear moral teaching about -- the difference between right and wrong and (B) putting ourselves in the position to judge another human being as a person.

          When Jesus tells us "judge not, lest you be judged" He is telling us that while we are supposed to know, and uphold, right as against what is wrong, we are not in a position to set ourselves up as those entitled to condemn others.

          The context of Jesus's saying (Matt. 7:1) "judge not, lest you be judged" makes clear both this second point and the first point, about the strictness of the moral law!

          Moral Strictness. The saying is located in the Sermon on the Mount. The early parts of that Sermon -- such as Matthew 5:17-48 -- emphasize that Jesus is not relaxing the moral law, but rather teaching and expositing its extreme strictness. He says "Don't think that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets: instead I come to fulfill them. ... Anyone who breaks the least of these commandments or teaches others to do so [is off base] but whoever practices and teaches them will be called great .... Unless your righteousness exceeds that of the ... teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven." Jesus then gives a series of teachings in which He tightens up the demands of the law. "Do not murder" really implies (gulp!) that we may not hate or be angry with those who have hurt us. (5:21-22) "Do not commit adultery" really entails (gulp!) that we must not have lustful thoughts, either. (5:27-30) "Do not swear falsely" means (gulp!) that all our speech and deeds must be truthful. And love of neighbor must extend even to love of our enemies! These tough truths are not arbitrary decrees, though: they are what is required for us to be like our heavenly Father -- for us to be living the life of goodness and integrity and love which is God's; it is for us to have the goodness and joy of participating in His love and life that He graciously has made us.

          Not judging. But in the immediate context of Jesus's statement "Do not judge, lest you be judged", He emphasizes that we are not in a position to judge others -- because we ourselves are sinners. "Why do you look at the speck which is in your brother's eye and pay not attention to the 2-by-4 in your own eye! How can you say to your brother 'Let me take the speck out of your eye' when all the time there is this huge piece of lumber in your own eye! You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye!"

          This is not teaching which is confined to the sermon on the Mount, though! Jesus makes the same point powerfully elsewhere. Thus in the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax-Collector (Luke 18:9-14) He says ("to some who were confident of their own righteousness, and looked down on everyone else") that the person justified in God's sight is not a very upright and righteous man who says to God "I am not like other men -- robbers, adulterers," and so on, but more the man who -- despite many sins -- recognizes his sinfulness and is ashamed of his wrong-doing and says to God "be merciful to me a sinner!" -- "for", Jesus says, "everyone who exalts himself will be brought low, but everyone who humbles himself will be raised up!"

          Again, as Psalm helpfully points out, in answering your question, Paul makes a very similar point in Romans 2.
          You are inexcusable, O reader whoever you are who judges: for in the things where you judge another, you condemn yourself -- for you (who judges others) do the same things! But ... the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things. Do you think -- you who judge others which do such things -- that you shall escape the judgment of God? Or do you despise the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God is there to lead you to repentance?
          Paul here emphasizes exactly the same combo of extreme moral strictness and need to refrain from judging others that Jesus does in the Sermon on the Mount!!

          So "not judging others" is more than just being sure that our judgments is accurate. It's also a matter of recognizing God's goodness and mercy, and that we ourselves are dreadful sinners, who stand in desperate need of God's ongoing mercy and forgiveness. We don't stand before God as near-flawless good kids who are in a position to look down on others. Rather, we stand as serious sinners ourselves, who must look with gentleness and understanding -- and not with superiority -- on others who have seriously messed up, for we ourselves are seriously messed up.

          These things are brought together, again, in John 8 -- Jesus's response to the woman taken in adultery -- and in John's emphasis on moral uprightness, yet on our need to recognize how much we are sinners needing God's pardon in I John 1:5-2:2.

          About your excellent question

          There are some other important aspects to your question, also -- about "political correctness" for example. However, alas, I don't have time to think together about these just now. Again, the things we just said need further reflection -- especially about how not-judging, humility, and forgiveness are very much related to Jesus' point about the strictness of the law, and the ways in which this strictness flows from the perfect integrity and goodness of God's character and being.

          This post just tried to lay out the Biblical basics involved in the idea of God's true and eternal moral law and the imperative not to be judgmental toward others.


          Hope that helps!

          In friendship,
          Scruffy Kid
          Last edited by Scruffy Kid; Jan 18th 2009, 09:33 PM. Reason: Minor clarifications.

          Comment


          • #6
            Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

            Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

            But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know [them], because they are spiritually discerned.

            But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

            For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

            --------------------------------------------------------------------
            When making 'judements' are they done in the Spirit? or are they done in the flesh...?

            the above Scripture teaches us that the spiritual man,, judgeth all things yet he himself is judged of no man.......

            that piece of Scripture 'judge not lest be judged'...has been taken and twisted so badly that its made to be 'condemnaiton' to anybody that makes a 'judgement'.. this done to make people more passive about sin and the Need for Salvation ..... we don't want to 'offend' anybody by judging them for what they do and the spiritual darkness they are in... but Paul sure made it clear that many who do such things... 'will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.' If he spoke today in many so called churches and worship places.. he would probably be 'stoned'..

            Read what Jesus told the people after the religous elite were angry cause He made a 'man whole' on the Sabbath....


            If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day?


            Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.


            This is what the religous elite did.. judging in hypocrisy... condeming others for things done yet they were doing the same things.. and then calling themselves the sons of Abraham.. the 'chosen of God'..

            Jesus made it very clear that judging others out of 'hypocrisy' will get you no where... for when you do this.. then you will be judged the same..

            i.e. a person preaching out against 'stealing' but in secret is stealing money from the job he works at... and many other circumstances...

            God meets you where you are at a place of humility and brokenness.. this is where His Power is demonstrated and that even goes with 'making spiritual Judgements'.... He wants your heart and He wants to Place His desires and intents in it... Mercy, Good faith, Compassion, desire for Truth and Rightouesness.... etc.. so that you can become an extension of Him.. Christ in you.. which is the Hope of Glory.. and you cannot do this out of your own power.. but you press forward thru the Power of the Holy Ghost..
            Many appear Righteous and Just because they say 'yes' to Jesus Christ , yet they don't do His Will.
            ------------------------------------------------
            Verily I say unto thee, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the Kingdom of Heaven before you do.
            ------------------------------------------------
            The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying. YEA, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with LOVINGKINDESS have I DRAWN THEE.
            Jeremiah 31:3

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by crystalbrite View Post
              Seems like in this day and age of "political correctness" people think they are not supposed to judge anybody or anything. I think we have to make judgements otherwise we can get into big trouble, fall in with the wrong people, and easily end up on the wide path. Isn't wisdom all about making judgements?

              So, where the Word says, "judge not lest ye be judged" just means to me that we are not deterred from making judgements but that our judgements had better be just since we may be judged likewise. Am I correct?

              What say you, wise Christians?
              Depends on who you are judging and how...the bible is pretty clear on this...we are to NOT judge unbelievers:

              1 Corinthians 5

              9 When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. 10 But I wasn't talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or who are greedy or are swindlers or idol worshipers. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that. 11 What I meant was that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a Christian yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or a drunkard, or a swindler. Don't even eat with such people.

              12 It isn't my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your job to judge those inside the church who are sinning in these ways. 13 God will judge those on the outside; but as the Scriptures say, "You must remove the evil person from among you."

              We can judge other Christians...done within the guidelines of scriptures...make sure you have no long in your own eye though...but judgment of nonbelievers is left up to God.

              God bless
              "People do not drift toward holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; We drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; We drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated?" - D A Carson

              Comment


              • #8
                Thank you for taking the time to address my question, Scruffy Kid. It is so clear and dots connected, I'm going to pass it on to my friends and family for reflection.

                Here is my difficulty. If a person is consistently and unrepentantly engaged in bad behavior, does not the behavior denote the character of the person? And, are we not to condemn bad behavior, or by doing so, does that mean we are condemning the person as well?

                I have no urgent reason for asking, these are just questions I've had in my mind for a while, so if you are pressed for time, I can wait for a response.
                Thanks. :-)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by theBelovedDisciple View Post
                  Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

                  Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

                  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know [them], because they are spiritually discerned.

                  But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

                  For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

                  --------------------------------------------------------------------
                  When making 'judements' are they done in the Spirit? or are they done in the flesh...?

                  the above Scripture teaches us that the spiritual man,, judgeth all things yet he himself is judged of no man.......

                  that piece of Scripture 'judge not lest be judged'...has been taken and twisted so badly that its made to be 'condemnaiton' to anybody that makes a 'judgement'.. this done to make people more passive about sin and the Need for Salvation ..... we don't want to 'offend' anybody by judging them for what they do and the spiritual darkness they are in... but Paul sure made it clear that many who do such things... 'will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.' If he spoke today in many so called churches and worship places.. he would probably be 'stoned'..

                  Read what Jesus told the people after the religous elite were angry cause He made a 'man whole' on the Sabbath....


                  If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day?


                  Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.


                  This is what the religous elite did.. judging in hypocrisy... condeming others for things done yet they were doing the same things.. and then calling themselves the sons of Abraham.. the 'chosen of God'..

                  Jesus made it very clear that judging others out of 'hypocrisy' will get you no where... for when you do this.. then you will be judged the same..

                  i.e. a person preaching out against 'stealing' but in secret is stealing money from the job he works at... and many other circumstances...

                  God meets you where you are at a place of humility and brokenness.. this is where His Power is demonstrated and that even goes with 'making spiritual Judgements'.... He wants your heart and He wants to Place His desires and intents in it... Mercy, Good faith, Compassion, desire for Truth and Rightouesness.... etc.. so that you can become an extension of Him.. Christ in you.. which is the Hope of Glory.. and you cannot do this out of your own power.. but you press forward thru the Power of the Holy Ghost..
                  Now see, what you wrote is the same as my understanding about making judgements. However, Scruffy Kid makes excellent points, but his take is a little different, I think. Thank you for your response. I always try to love the man and hate the sin, but I think sometimes people don't realize that they are separate and end up judging the person as if he IS the sin. But, then on the otherhand, if the person persists in sin, does he not become the sin and thus open to be judged as sin?
                  I'm not in the middle of judging anyone, I'm just asking questions to get it straight in my mind where the boundaries are. I appreciate everyone's responses.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I think you can judge. I think you must judge rightly.
                    Look at Matthew 2
                    "for with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you."

                    and Matthew 5
                    "Hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine eye, and then thou wilt see clearly to cast out the mote out of the eye of thy brother."

                    I think there is a big difference between being an eternal judge for all mankind on a Heavenly throne and advising people to use right judgement.

                    Jesus is saying that it is OK to cast out the plank in our brother's eye, but not until we take care of the one in our own.
                    We are to show the light of Christ by the example of our lives. I do point out bad behavior but I also try to model a walk with Christ. I use my testimony to illustrate how regeneration and transformation work.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I wonder what you think the importance is of 1 Corinthians 5:11-13:

                      But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler--not even to eat with such a one.
                      For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within {the church?}
                      But those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES.


                      Paul tells us here to judge those within the church - not those outside the church.
                      Who have I in heaven but You oh God? Besides You, I desire nothing here on earth. My heart and my flesh may fail me, but God will be the strength of my heart and my portion forever...as for me, the nearness of God is my good - Psalm 73:25-26, 28a

                      Check out my new blog at pilgrimtozion.blogspot.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Pilgrimtozion View Post
                        I wonder what you think the importance is of 1 Corinthians 5:11-13:

                        But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler--not even to eat with such a one.
                        For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Do you not judge those who are within {the church?}
                        But those who are outside, God judges. REMOVE THE WICKED MAN FROM AMONG YOURSELVES.

                        Paul tells us here to judge those within the church - not those outside the church.
                        I understand the purpose of that scripture. The brethren should know better, but unbelievers do not necessarily know that they are sinning. I like what tt1106 said about illustrating transformation by example. I think that is a good way to handle unbelievers.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I also think that we should be careful to avoid the semantic trap of confusing the judging of other 'people' with the judging of a work, action, thought, movement or doctrine.

                          I have not seen it in this thread, but it does come up where someone will say something like we are not to judge... lets say... homosexualITY, Masonic affiliation, Calvinism, seeker sensitive movements, Amway, the Roman Catholic Church, or smooth peanut butter.

                          Yes, we are to judge these things / sins / thoughts / movements / pyramid schemes
                          / snack foods / by their fruit.
                          * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * ** * * * ** * *** * * * * ***** * * * * ** * * * * ** ** * *
                          ~ * You get 10 'reps' to bless others with each day... don't log off until you have used them up......
                          ....Live your life the same way.... ~ *

                          Please pray for the 'Persecuted Church'.


                          Bible Forums Vision: "To be a community of believers who are actively engaged in pursuing the truth of God as revealed in His Son Jesus Christ by way of studying the Scriptures diligently in order to discover this truth."


                          Comment


                          • #14
                            John the Baptist.. He didn't mince any words... He told all.. judged all, those in Isreal at that time..... repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand....... but he was making 'spiritual judgements'.. telling people to turn from their wicked ways.. from Herod to the pagans... make your paths straight.. get ready for the coming Kingdom of God...

                            He told them to 'repent' because they were 'lost'....they were 'unbelievers'..... both Jews and Gentiles... and he even told the religous elite of his day... and boy did that anger them... wow.. why? They were already the 'sons of Abraham.. the 'chosen' of God... obviously God the Father and Jesus thought differently..
                            -------------------------------------------------------------------

                            But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
                            Many appear Righteous and Just because they say 'yes' to Jesus Christ , yet they don't do His Will.
                            ------------------------------------------------
                            Verily I say unto thee, the tax collectors and the prostitutes go into the Kingdom of Heaven before you do.
                            ------------------------------------------------
                            The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying. YEA, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with LOVINGKINDESS have I DRAWN THEE.
                            Jeremiah 31:3

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by theBelovedDisciple View Post
                              John the Baptist.. He didn't mince any words... He told all.. judged all, those in Isreal at that time..... repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand....... but he was making 'spiritual judgements'.. telling people to turn from their wicked ways.. from Herod to the pagans... make your paths straight.. get ready for the coming Kingdom of God...

                              He told them to 'repent' because they were 'lost'....they were 'unbelievers'..... both Jews and Gentiles... and he even told the religous elite of his day... and boy did that anger them... wow.. why? They were already the 'sons of Abraham.. the 'chosen' of God... obviously God the Father and Jesus thought differently..
                              -------------------------------------------------------------------

                              But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
                              Wow. Good stuff to chew on!

                              Comment

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