Every once in a while the topic of judging comes up. Well, here I am again presenting it to us for the purpose of examining our own hearts to see where we stand on the matter.
I was on Facebook recently and my former pastor posted the following and it’s so well said that I thought I’d share it with you.
“I’m seeing a lot of folks (including a number of Christians) post stuff against judging others and at first glance it always seems the nice way—even the Jesus way–to go. But I confess to being a bit confused by it all. What do people mean by judging? Do they mean that I cannot ever say that something someone is doing is wrong? If so, then I guess a murderer can never be accused, a rapist can never be faulted, a thief can never be prosecuted, a gossip can never be corrected, a liar can never be rebuked, the guy who intentionally stomps on your toe just to give you pain cannot be the object of your offense.
“When it comes to these things too many Christians are talking sloppily these days. We’d better tidy this up a good deal or we’re going to give away the moral Law of God AND the gospel on the platter of well-intentioned but misguided niceness.
“If by judging we mean that we should not think ourselves—apart from what God’s grace has done in our lives—as better than others, then I agree we shouldn’t judge.
If by judging we mean that we should not think others so bad that we could never be as bad as them, then I agree: that is both sinful (and for that matter naïve) judging.
If by judging one means that it is wrong to consider ourselves inherently better, and more noble and worthy than others, then I agree: that kind of self-righteous smugness is despicable.
If by judging we mean that we should not be harsh or hateful, then I agree again.
If by judging we mean that we should not consider anyone so sinful as to be outside the reach of the mercy and love of God then again I agree.
And if by judging we think that in this life we have right or recourse to damn anyone or consign them to hell, then yes, we are forbidden to judge.
“But friends, if we are thinking that it’s judging to call sin “sin” then we are profoundly mistaken. If we are suggesting that warning people of the error of their ways, the sinfulness of their sin, and the certainty of God’s judgment if they do not repent of and forsake that sin is some kind of sinful judgment on others, then we have forsaken our gospel calling…
“There is hope because there is Jesus. There can be a rescue for there is a Redeemer. Jesus died in the place of every sinner who will ever believe in him.
“Sinful self-righteous hateful judgment is wrong. Humble, tearful, tender, calling of people to see their sin, repent of it, and turn to Christ may well be the purest form of love this side of heaven. ”
Stephanie Paul serves as part of the Addiction Recovery Team at America’s Keswick as Director of Women of Character. She has been married for over 30 years to Sesky Paul who is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy. They have two grown children.
Her single focus in ministry at Keswick is to image Christ in grace and truth to wounded and hurting women, encouraging them to make Jesus the truest Lover of their soul and the One in whom all hope lies.
1 Tim Shorey via FaceBook post