Judge Not

Text: Matt. 7:1-5


I.    Some people believe it is wrong to have judges of any sort.

A.  I was visiting a man in prison one time.  He was in jail for robbing a store of some kind, shooting the owner of the establishment several times at a point blank range.  The owner was very glad the robber was a very bad shot, for he wasn't killed.  The man was going before the judge, who would sentence him for his awful crime.  This "jailbird" opened his Bible to this passage and declared that the judge was going against Scripture by judging him, because the Bible says "Do not judge".  He certainly had the wrong idea of what this passage means, didn't he?  This passage doesn't mean it is wrong for our country, or any other country, to have judges who rule in legal matters with authority.  God Himself established the authority of judges over Israel who would rule in legal matters with authority.  God Himself establishes the authority of kings and judges, so this passage certainly doesn't teach that God can't judge, nor that God can judge evil men through men that He gives that authority to.

B.   This is very obviously wrong, for if there were no judges, there would be no justice.  One thing that is often forgotten about God, He is not only a God full of love and compassion, He is also a God full of wrath, hate, and justice.

C.   Christ gave his people the right to judge (in certain instances)

1.   I Cor. 5:12 - Christ built His local church, and commanded that church to judge its own members.  They are ordained of God to do so.

2.   I Cor. 6:2 - Saints shall judge the world.

3.   I Cor. 6:3 - Saints shall judge angels.

D.  Christ will judge the world.

1.   II Tim. 4:1 - Christ shall judge the quick and the dead.

2.      Heb. 10:30 - Vengeance belongs to God, He shall judge.

3.      Heb. 13:4 - God will judge whoremongers and adulterers.

4.      Luke 19:22 - Jesus judged out of the mouth of the unfaithful servant.

5.   See also John 12:47,48 - The Word of God (in the last days) shall judge the rejectors of that Word.


II.   The correct way for us to judge.

A.  Matt.  7:1-5 - This passage from Christs' sermon on the mount expresses that we have no business judging anybody.  Verse 2 gives a warning that God will judge us according to the way we judge others.  Verse 3 tells us that there is a difference in the way we "behold" the mote (a very small thing) in somebody's eye, but do not even "consider" the beam (a very large, obvious thing) in our own eye.  Verse 4 illustrates the ridiculous idea of a person trying to retrieve a very small item from his neighbors eye when the can't even see the "telephone pole" sticking out of his own eye!  Verse 5 tells us there is nothing wrong with trying to help our brother remove some small, insignificant item of sin from their lives, but it is always good for us to consider ourselves before we try to straighten somebody else out!

B.   Romans 14:4, 13 - These are the two verses that speak expressly about not judging others.  The entire 14th and 15th chapters really need to be read and understood so that a true understanding of what it means to judge others can be grasped.  It is not our place to set a standard of right or wrong for anybody.  We are all creatures of sin.  The Bible has already set the true standard, and everybody must look to the Bible, not to anybody (except Christ, of course).

C.   I Cor. 4:1-5 - Paul wasn't concerned with the judgment of the Corinthian church, either for him or against him.  He was very concerned with the judgment of God.

D.  James 4:11 - If we judge others we become the law.  That's the same as us becoming the standard of righteousness instead of letting God be that standard.  This is a very serious accusation.

E.   James 5:9 - When we judge, remember - God stands at the door.  He's listening and recording what we are doing, and will return that same measure of judgment to us.


III. The result of judging God's way.

A.  Luke 6:37,38 (through verse 49) - When we don't judge others, don't condemn others, and forgive others, God will not judge us, He won't condemn us, and He will forgive us.