The Inner Judge. Are You On The Throne?
Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. Matthew 7: 1-2
Seems pretty simple doesn't it. I mean, read it again...slowly. Especially the part that says, "for with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged." Ouch. That's serious business. But don't we all battle with some form of judgmentalism from time to time.
I find that a judgmental spirit often likes to run around with a "comparing yourselves among yourselves" spirit. First we tend to excuse our own sin, character defects, and problem areas by comparing ourselves to others and saying, "Hey, I'm not that bad...I don't do what that person does." Once we effectively excuse ourselves to the point of inner content and smugness, then the judge sits down on our inner throne. We think to ourselves, "Geez, didn't I hear that Harry cheated on his wife a while ago? I wonder if they are going to counseling. I'd never do that. I mean, I've done some things in my day, but I'd never do that." Did you see that? The two of them just sat down and had a conversation about poor Harry. Isn't he struggling enough? He's most likely going through some severe mental torment right now. He's filled with guilt and remorse over the pain he's caused. Possibly, he's going through a divorce. It's pretty easy to just sit on that smug seat and think thoughts like that without even realizing it.
How does God feel when we do that? Well, obviously, as we read in the opening scripture, it's doesn't make God smile in approval when we behave in this way. A perfect example of this type of action can be seen on the famous networking dynamo, Facebook, if you spend any time there at all. Recently, there was an article posted from a local newspaper. It was the horrific and tragic story of a young lady who was jailed for ending the life of another young woman with the intent of stealing her unborn child. Something like that is really incomprehensible and I don't think most of us have the mental capabilities to even process what kind of dark place this woman must have been living in to be able to be driven to committing such an act. But, of course, there were plenty of comments under the article. It was almost scary. It went right back to Biblical days when all of the town was wanting to stone a woman caught in the act of adultery until Jesus stepped in and said, "You who is without sin cast the first stone."
God Hates the Sin but Loves the Sinner
Under the Facebook post of the newspaper article, numerous individuals spoke out saying the woman should be dragged through the street, rot in hell, and so many things. Now, I'm not saying that what this person did was right in any way, or even excusable. But there is such a fine line that we need to walk when it comes to judging others. Whether the person committed an unspeakable crime or a sin we consider minor, God hates the sin, but God still loves the sinner.
God still has room in his kingdom for this young lady and he still has room for you and me. Thank God that we can't even understand the depths of his mercy and forgiveness. If His love was not so deep, most of us would have been lost forever long ago.
Judging others usually starts out small, in little things. A little sarcasm, a little attitude towards those we feel we are better than. Left unchecked, it can turn to anger and hatred in no time. We are to love our enemies, love those who do us wrong. Love is the only thing that conquers hate and evil. The Word tells us to overcome evil with good.
How's your inner judge today? Is he about to be dethroned?