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Are You a Judge?
1 DO NOT judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves.
2For just as you judge and criticize and condemn others, you will be judged and criticized and condemned, and in accordance with the measure you [use to] deal out to others, it will be dealt out again to you.
3Why do you [a]stare from without at the [b]very small particle that is in your brother's eye but do not become aware of and consider the beam [c]of timber that is in your own eye?
4Or how can you say to your brother, Let me get the tiny particle out of your eye, when there is the beam [d]of timber in your own eye?
5You hypocrite, first get the beam of timber out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the tiny particle out of your brother's eye.
Grab a coffee and your Bible and let us see what the word of God says on judging other believers. We are going to use the verses above as our starting point, as they were said by our Saviour whilst here on earth and are so cutting and relevant.
This is my achilles heel , so to speak. My main fault is dealing with people. So I speak to myself first and foremost.
I write to 2 prisoners in the USA, and before the Lord had me write this message, he got me to go to the website of the Department Of Corrections, to see what they had been convicted of. After I had done this, he asked me ' do you have a judgemental spirit'?
We are going to using the Five L's, and the first one is:
When we hear of or see a fellow believer doing something that is wrong. How quick are we to condemn them or do we ask the Lord? What do you want me to do in this situation Lord?.
If you see your pastor, going into somewhere you think is wrong. (say a casino) What would you do? Would you be on the phone to all your friends saying 'you won't believe what I just saw', or would would you share with your pastor quietly, and listen to his/her explanation.
How much trouble and pain could be avoided if we did this. How many people have left church and are now back in the world, because some well meaning believer criticised them and told them that their actions were wrong.
We are told to speak the truth.. but in Love
Ephesians 4:15 (King James Version)
15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
In James 4, we are told this:
12 There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?
So who are you to Judge?. Are you God?
In the passage in Matthew, the person with the speck in his/her eye is being closely examined by the one with the giant beam in his/her eye. Do you go around, looking for faults in others? That my friend is not a gifting of the Holy Spirit.. it is taking on the role of the Holy Spirit and stealing His role and this hurts Him and quenches His power.
It is like going to the optician, he/she gets up really close and shines a strong light in your eye, if you are judging others, then this is what you are doing. It is time to stop doing it...amen.
We are told in Philippians 2
12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
Work out our own Salvation, not everyone Else's.
1 Peter 4:15 (King James Version)
15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters.
Are you a busy bee involving yourself in other people's matters?
Not to judge others, means we let God be God. The Holy Spirit comes to convict men of sin, that is one of his roles, it is not and never will be mine/yours. He does not want our help. John 16:8
The word of God is the tool that the Holy Spirit uses to convict. Hebrews 4:12. It says the Word of God divides joint from marrow, nothing can be hid from it. The word of God used by the Spirit of God, will always correct. One of the great verses in scripture is 2 Timothy 3:16, where rebuke and correction are two facets of it's ministry. The Spirit of God, will use the word of God to convict and bring sin to the surface.
So how are we to act towards believers who are wrong and acting wrongly? Well we are to live before them in a true way.
We ourselves are to look unto Jesus, we are to keep our focus on God Hebrews 12:1-3. We are to draw close to our Lord.
We are not to have an exalted opinion of ourselves, just because we do not fall into that sin, look at what Paul said.
1 Corinthians 10:12 (King James Version)
12Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
One of the things a believer needs so much when he/she falls into sin, is to be loved. We have to be loving and welcoming to them as Jesus would. He was and is the good Shepherd, and would search for the one sheep that was lost.
In James 5:19-20, we have two of the greatest verses on this subject and they are:
19 Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;
20 Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.
Sometimes rebuke is needed, but this is to be carried out, in love and with real wisdom. It must be done by mature believers, who are able to instruct and correct the behaviour of the believer concerned. It must be carried out under the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Let us not judge a brother or sister, but gently and like Jesus would, offer them the hand of fellowship.
I realise that this is a subject some believers disagree on, and I have sought to share what God has laid on my heart.
Remember, we can only do what it outlined in James 5:19-20, when our own hearts are right with the Lord.
Let us always examine ourselves in the light of scripture.
For further reading
Romans Chapter 14
1 Corinthians chapter 13
James 5: 9
1 Timothy 5:19
God bless you
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