The Message

Judge Not

Judge not- There is only one Judge in Spirit and Truth

“Don’t judge according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” (John 7:24). We must judge righteously. We cannot judge because of our nature, which uses more feelings than the truth is presented to us. When we judge without using our minds and hearts and without wisdom, we expect to be judged by others the same way we judge. It shows that Jesus wants us to judge; the Law of Moses also says, “In righteousness, you shall judge your neighbor.” Leviticus 19:16).

James 4:12- “There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who can save and to destroy.’ ‘But who are you to judge your neighbor?” James made it known in the passage that God is the only judge and Lawgiver. The only true God that can both save and destroy. The Old Testament law cannot judge sinners under the gift of grace. Sin is no longer in control; under the new covenant of grace, the law is no longer required. God’s grace gave us that freedom. It does not mean that we are free to sin. We are still liable under grace. The wages of sin is death.

Jesus warns that one who condemns others will themselves be condemned. The Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is spoken by Jesus recorded in (Luke 6:31 and Matthew 7:12). “For with whatever judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with whatever measure you measure, it will be measured to you.” (Matthew 7:2). Bringing someone down with their ignorance of the Law of God will backfire on them. The practice of self-righteousness sometimes causes this action. The pride and desire to be in control drive this attitude, leading them to be rejected by God.

When we see other mistakes, and you don’t see your own; when we see the wrongdoing of others, and you neglect to check your own, when you condemn your neighbors of sinning, and you tell yourself you are not like them, refusing to admit that we are sinners is deceiving our own body and denying the faith and the truth is not in us—living more of the flesh than with the spirit of the heart. Jesus warned them not to be like the scribes and Pharisees who gave tithing, attended worship services regularly, gave to the poor, and prayed standing; all they did was for people to see that they wanted to sit in the most important seat in the synagogue, they want to be greeted with respect and address them as a rabbi.

After all these exposures, Jesus told the crowd and his disciples to be careful to do what they said to do, for they did not do what they said. They appear or present themselves to people as a righteous worker of God, but inside, they are full of hypocrisy and wickedness. Jesus condemned this kind of hypocrisy and laid the seven woes on the Teachers of the Law and the Pharisees. Recommended read Matthew 23:13-29.    

Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. Matthew 23:12. Hypocrisy is not just an attitude but also a sin, something we should not take for granted. According to St. Gregory the Great in His Moralia, hypocrisy is a grave sin against the Holy Spirit, and a hypocrite commits a mortal sin.”

Judging others while doing the same thing you accuse them of is unacceptable. You see a speck in another’s eye while having a plank in your own. Jesus Christ talked about it, and doing it shows that the spirit is not in you.

Proverbs 18:5— “To be partial to the faces of the wicked is not good, nor to deprive the innocent of justice.”

There is no excuse for passing judgment on someone on whatever points you judge when you do the same things. God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. By passing judgment on them and doing the same things, you condemn yourself and cannot escape God’s judgment. God’s kindness cannot be an escape from His wrath, but your repentance does.

If we have God’s wisdom, we can use the nature of the human soul to our advantage. We could fight our sins until we receive the crown of victory that we can share to bless others, and we can see and understand the inner nature of people and things to change the situation of always being deceived and tempted in life. The more insight we receive from people in that situation, the more we can overcome these obstacles with their guidance, direction, and instructions.

On Judgement Day, the righteous and the wicked will be judged according to their work. How will it be done? We can look back in history. Great devastations: Noah’s flood- God used water, God used fire and brimstone, the earthquake that swallowed up Korah and his followers, the plagues in Egypt, and the starvation.

Psalm 33:18-19—”Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His mercy, to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.”

When we pray, we go into our room, shut the door, and pray to our Father secretly. In addition, our Father, who sees in secret, will reward us. We can pray cheerfully or sadly; it does not matter how we reveal the joy or tears of our hearts. Anyway, God knows what our hearts desire. God looks into our hearts, and as long as we humbly present ourselves honestly and without hypocrisy, God will listen.

This is how Jesus taught His disciples how to pray: Matthew 6:9-13- Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom comes; you will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”

 “And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and Jerusalem, there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls.” (Joel 2:32).

God bless everyone.

Bishop Joseph

Bishop Joseph Vitug, Ph.D. - Bishop Emeritus

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