“Stop judging, and you will never be judged. Stop condemning, and you will never be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:37 (GW)
How many among us think we are righteous? If we feel that way, then we must ask ourselves if we have ever judged anyone. How can we be righteous if we are not living in harmony with others?
I noticed that many members leave the church when their pastor resigns and a new pastor comes in. They haven’t even met this poor lad and he is condemned because he is new, even though he may have had many years of experience. I wonder if we go to church for the pastor or to worship our Heavenly Father? The new pastor is judged before he even shows up!
How many among us would like to destroy prostitution homes? Where is love when our purpose is to destroy? What about these prostitutes? Do we even know how they ended up in this lifestyle? What about those who were abused by their fathers? What about those who were abandoned by their parents? Don’t they have real needs as well? Most of these ladies of the night have never experienced genuine love. Do they deserve to be condemned?
How would we react if someone introduces us to his third wife? Would we condemn him or would we open our arms wide? I have a colleague who just married her third husband. What we don’t know is that her two former husbands both passed away.
Would we like to know the view of Jesus about this? Here it is: “The woman replied, ‘I don’t have a husband.’ Jesus told her, ‘You’re right when you say that you don’t have a husband. You’ve had five husbands, and the man you have now isn’t your husband. You’ve told the truth’ . . . Many Samaritans in that city believed in Jesus because of the woman who said, ‘He told me everything I’ve ever done.'” John 4:17-18, 39 (GW) Remember that Samaritans were considered underlings. They were not Israelites in the eyes of the Pharisees, and they were considered sinners; yet did you notice that Jesus never condemned her? Instead He gave her hope, and as a result, she believed in Jesus and motivated many Samaritans to accept Him as well.
Condemning people leads nowhere. It closes the doors to forgiveness and leaves people wanting. Instead, Jesus led the Samaritan woman to the flowing waters of the Holy Spirit. She didn’t even know that she was thirsting for our Heavenly Father, but Jesus led her to the One who would fill her with genuine love.
We read the news, and before we have all the facts, we condemn. We judge our kids, we judge our spouse (which can easily end up in a loveless marriage). Is this how the righteous honor our Heavenly Father?
What about those who have hurt us? Do we have the right to condemn them as well? Haven’t we hurt people before? The problem with us is that we focus way too much on ourselves, and this leads to a blurry image of reality. For example, a colleague has been fired. Our first thoughts are: “I am glad it was not me! This person probably made a big mistake!” But did he? Do we have any proof?
Judging ended when Jesus came into our neighborhood. Let’s read this Bible verse, over and over again: “God sent his Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but to save the world.” John 3:17 (GW) If Jesus, the only pure man in history, did not come to condemn, why should we ignore him by condemning others? Are our sins not as bad as those of other people? “We have all strayed like sheep. Each one of us has turned to go his own way, and the LORD has laid all our sins on him.” Isaiah 53:6 (GW) Exactly. Jesus took all our sins and left it on the cross. He paid with His life for our sins. All of us. No one is exempted. We are forgiven for good! “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.” Romans 8:1-2 (NASB) We are free from our guilt! Hallelujah! Thank you Jesus!
If Jesus did not come to condemn, why should we condemn?
If Jesus loved everyone genuinely, why should we hate? Haven’t we ourselves made a lot of blunders? Yet our Father still loves us: “This is good and pleases God our Savior. He wants all people to be saved and to learn the truth.” 1 Timothy 2:3-4 (GW) We either condemn like the Pharisees or we love genuinely like our Savior. What’s your choice?
Rob Chaffart To contact us click here