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Who Are You to Judge?

November 23, 2014 Speaker: Jeff Bedwell Series: You Asked for It

Passage: Matthew 7:1–7:6

The term “to judge” in Greek is krino, which means to separate, distinguish, discriminate.

It was used of an ancient courtroom where a judge would separate the facts and discern or decide the truth.

Some types of judging are Condemned, but other types of judging are Commanded. (See Matthew 7:6, 15-20)

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1)

“but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” (1 Thessalonians 5:21–22)

“Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.” (John 7:24)

“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.”
(Matthew 18:15–17)

“It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing.” (1 Corinthians 5:1–3)

Principles for Appropriate Judgment

1. Start with Yourself (7:1-5)

Jesus condemns a Hypocritical judgment that judges others with a standard we refuse to apply to ourselves

Sin tends to Distort our perceptions (2 Samuel 12:1-15)

“Nathan said to David, “You are the man!” (2 Samuel 12:7)

Too often we think our sin is Superficial, so we deal with it Superficially

2. Come with a spirit of Humility and Gentleness, not superiority

“But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”” (James 4:6)

“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.” (Galatians 6:1)

Being Judgmental is thinking that we are better than other people because of their moral failures

The goal is Restoration, not Condemnation

3. Focus on Facts not Presumptions

“If one gives an answer before he hears, it is his folly and shame.” (Proverbs 18:13)

“The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.” (Proverbs 18:17)

“Do not admit a charge against an elder except on the evidence of two or three witnesses.” (1 Timothy 5:19)

4. Evaluate Words and Actions, not Motives

“But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7)

“Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God.” (1 Corinthians 4:5)

The motives we should be evaluating are Our Motives

5. Scriptural Issues, not Personal Preferences

“Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” (Acts 17:11)

“As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions.” (Romans 14:1)

“In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.” Rupertus Meldenius

6. Leave the Eternal Judgments with God

“Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God.” (1 Corinthians 4:5)

“Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” (Romans 14:10–13)