When I presented with different moral issues and make a comment about it, people are too quick to tell me: “Oh you should not be saying that. We should not judge other people.”
I am dismayed with this type of statement. I believe this is a statement made by people who are afraid to hear people telling them what is right from wrong.
This society has surely made fun of the universal truths that once govern this world. They run to the principle everyone’s-opinion-is-as-good-as-other’s.
But is this really the case? Does the Bible really tell us to never judge other people? Let us see what the scripture says about this vital topic.
Let’s start with Matthew 7:1
“Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Matthew 7:1).
This is the most common verse that is often quoted by people who are afraid that someone will tell them what they are doing is wrong. While in the surface, Matthew 7 might be telling us that it is wrong to judge, reading the whole context will give us a broader perspective on what this verse really mean. The problem with people is that they read Matthew 7:1 and stop there. They immediately close the book never willing to see the whole picture.
“For with what judgment ye judge…” there it is! So that there is a reason Jesus said His first statement. He continues: “… and what measure you mete, it shall be measured to you again.” Jesus makes it even clearer from the verses 2-5 that He wants us to “remove first the mote on our eyes” before “removing the mote on our brother’s eye”. In other words, before you judge other people, you must first be credible to make that judgment. You must first judge yourself. Afterwards, you can judge other people since you are in a better position to do that.
Proofs that we are to judge
Now that we dispel the wrong notion of people of what Matthew 7:1 said, I will enumerate some proofs that God expects us to judge a righteous judgment.
- One whole book of the Bible is named as “Judges”.
- The term “judge” together with its other forms is mentioned over 550 times in the Bible, King James Version. Judgment is obviously a big topic that is addressed in the Holy Scripture.
- Psalms 37:30 tells us: “The mouth of the righteous speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment.” The righteous people of God are expected to make judgment. If the righteous sees something is wrong, he does not refuse or refrain from judging. He will talk about the wisdom of God’s judgment.
- Amos 5:15 says: “Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.” Hating evil and loving good should be coupled with righteous judgment. It means that we are to judge whether a matter is good and evil to be able to truly love one another.
These are just some of the proofs that we must perform righteous judgment. There are others actually but I have no time to mention all of them. With these proofs, I hope it is clear to all of us that we are expected by God that we need to judge righteously.
You must remember though, when judging, you should judge according to God’s word. Do not judge according to your own standard. If the Bible is very clear about a particular subject, then you can make a righteous judgment confidently. Subjects such as killing, adultery, stealing, homosexuality, lying, using God’s name in vain, creating statues to worship, and many others should be judged. But if the Bible is silent to a particular subject, then we are not to push on other people’s throat what we think about the subject.
I need to make a particular statement very clear: WE ARE TO JUDGE PEOPLE’S ACTION AND NOT THE PEOPLE THEMSELVES. WE ARE TO JUDGE BUT NEVER CONDEMN. WE ARE NOT IN THE POSITION OF GOD TO CONDEMN PEOPLE. IT IS GOD’S PREROGATIVE AND NEVER OURS.
You must also remember that there are two types of judgment; the righteous judgment and the evil judgment. Jesus said, judge not according to appearance. This means that you should not quick in jumping into conclusion. For example, you saw your pastor and a member. Then you judge according to what you see that they are having an affair. But the truth is, the member is asking for advice from your pastor. Therefore, judging should be based on God’s word and not on what you feel or think.
Though it is important to discern and judge between good and evil, WE MUST NEVER FORGET TO FIRST EXAMINE OURSELVES. This is the most important type of judgment. To identify our sins and faults and do whatever it takes to correct them.
If you willfully sin after knowing that what you are doing is wrong, then God will judge you according to your works.