Have you ever talked to someone about his or her actions and lifestyle choices and they tell you "Judge not, that ye be not judged." (Matthew 7:1)? This would imply that we are unable to say someone else's actions or lifestyle choices are wrong. They miss the irony of the fact that they have just judged you and stand condemned in their own eyes.


Christ is not condemning all judgment. If He is, how can we comply with Matthew 7:6 when Christ said, "Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you." Are we not required to determine who will be defined as dogs and swine? Later in that same chapter Jesus tells us in verses 16-20 that we will be able to judge people by their fruit. Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22," 21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 22 Abstain from all appearance of evil." How can we hold fast to that which is good and abstain from the very appearance of evil if we are not to judge and identify good and evil?


Yes, we are to judge and identify good and evil as defined in God's Word. Yes, when we see a brother overtaken in a fault we are to restore such a one (Galatians 6:1). However, we are to do it in a spirit of meekness, and consideration, lest we also be tempted.


The right kind of judging is that which is not done in a superior way. It is judging doctrinal and moral matters allowing the Word to shine forth and our self hidden. We know we are being successful if one rejects what we say by responding to us with "I don't care what Paul says," or "I don't care what the Bible says." We must judge by the Word and do it in such a way that those we are talking to know "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake." (2 Corinthians 4:5)


By Charles Royal, Decatur AL