“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.”
Someone comes to me and asks, “Pastor Domelle, can I talk to you about something that is going on that disturbs me?” Most of the time, I realize that someone is about ready to complain about another person. They see someone else doing something that they don’t like, and they feel the pastor “has” to take care of the “egregious” situation. Most of the time when someone says this to me, I realize that the person coming to me has their own issues that are much greater than the situation they feel needs to be fixed.
The verses above are probably one of the most misquoted verses. These verses are often used in a condescending manner in an attempt to rebuke others who happen to use the Scriptures for their measurement of how God wants the believer to live. However, these verses do not teach that a person is not to judge. Let me share several observations about what these verses do teach.
First, judging is a part of life. Even in these verses, God shows that you are to judge. Every person makes judgments every day. To say that the Scriptures teach that we are not to judge is taking the Scriptures out of context because judging is an everyday action.
Second, your measure of judgment is how others will judge you. Though judging is an everyday action, you better be careful how you judge because others will judge you according to how you judge them. Your judgment of situations and people is the measuring stick for how others will eventually judge you. You would be very wise to be careful with your measurement of judgment.
Third, you are to be a judge. The person you are to judge is yourself. One thing I have learned in life is that I’m too busy correcting my wrongs from judging myself to have time to judge others. If you spend more time on judging yourself, you will probably find that you don’t have time to judge others. You have enough problems of your own to care for than to waste your time trying to judge everyone else’s areas.
Fourth, you can’t clearly judge when you’ve not judged yourself. The problem with judging others is that your problems keep you from seeing another’s problems clearly. You can’t judge the mote in another’s eye when you can’t see through the beam that is in your own eye. When you have a beam in your own eye, you will think others have a beam in their eye when they only have a mote. You cannot be a good judge of others until you have cared for your own problems; therefore, because you can never care for all your problems, you should not live your life judging another’s actions or motives.
Fifth, you are not to judge something that is not your area to judge. God said not to cast “your pearls before swine.” In other words, God is teaching that if something is not in your area, you need to keep your judgment to yourself.
Sixth, you are to pray before you judge. Verse 7 is a continuation of these verses about judging. My friend, only prayer will care for the needs of others. You would be wise to pray about something for a while before you think you need to give your opinion about another’s area. Prayer will solve all issues, and you cannot judge properly without prayer.