“Do not judge and you will not be judged.” Luke 6:37
In today’s society of over-tolerance and lack of personal responsibility, this command of Jesus seems to fit right in. It rings of the old 1970’s “I’m O.K., You’re O.K.” philosophy. Does it allow us to be wrapped up in our own little world doing what we want because we are not to judge and others are not to judge us? Nothing could be farther from the Truth.
Jesus did not say we should not discern right from wrong. He did not say we should not speak out against the hypocrisy of those who water down the faith and still proclaim to be Christians. He did not say we should silently turn away and allow atrocities such as abortion, child abuse, elderly neglect and sex offending to exist in our communities. He did not say we should ignore the fact that someone had lied or cheated or stolen, no matter what their power or stature in society.
So what did He say? Jesus says later in the same Chapter to take the plank of wood out of our own eye first before we deal with the speck in our brother’s eye. Jesus tells us to come to Him, confess our sin and receive forgiveness. Once we do that, our perspective changes. We are humbled, contrite and less likely to look down our nose at people. We see that none of us is worthy for salvation. We see that sin is sin, it just has many forms. We see that without God, we are in the same boat.
Judgment is final, unwavering. We are not called to do that. Only God can judge, but we can act as His servant to lead a person to the Cross. Earlier in the same chapter, Jesus commands us to : Love our Enemies ( see them as fellow sinners in need of a Savior); Turn the Other Cheek ( Do not let our emotions get in the way); Pray for those who mistreat us (Give them to God); and Be merciful (see them through God’s eyes). Then we can be His Hands and Feet, His mouth to deal with the society in which we are called to be witnesses of the Truth.
Heavenly Father, receive my confession that I too often do not see my own faults, but magnify those of others. Remove any preconceived haughtiness from my thoughts and let me see them as you see them- sinners like me who need You in their lives. Show me how I can minister to someone today to seek You. Teach me to turn my thoughts and emotions over to You and to pray for those who hurt and have been hurt. I lift this up through Your Son by whose blood we can be cleansed. Amen.