Judging Others

JESUS SPEAKING 

     “Judge not, that you be not judged.  For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.  And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye.” (Matthew 7: 1-3.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

    Of all the sins we can possibly commit, hypocrisy is one of the most offensive. Jesus embraced repenting murderers, thieves, and prostitutes; yet He openly loathed unrepentant religious hypocrites.  Hypocrisy occurs when someone judges or evaluates another person based upon standards they themselves are incapable of achieving.  Practicing hypocrisy is extremely dangerous because God judges His followers according to the same principles they use to judge others.  If we outwardly condemn thievery, yet secretly steal, we are condemning ourselves.  Jesus warned His disciples that such unrighteous judgments would serve only to separate them from God.  As a result, before we judge anyone, we must make certain that we have been victorious over the sins that have caused others to fall.

     Surprisingly, the first attempted extermination of the Jewish people did not occur within the boundaries of 20th century Nazi Germany.  Adolf Hitler wasn’t the first man to attempt such a hideous undertaking.  In fact, approximately 2400 years earlier a man named Haman made an effort to execute every Jew living within the Persian Empire.  He hated the Hebrews and believed they were troublemakers who deserved to die.  Haman was a high ranking official in the court of Artaxerxes the 2nd, King of Persia.  Somehow he convinced the King to eradicate the Jews; which would have included Haman’s mortal Hebrew enemy, Mordecai (another high ranking official who showed disdain for Haman.)  Mordecai had graciously adopted his orphan cousin Esther, who grew into one of the most beautiful women in all of Persia; the king became enamored with Esther and married her, not knowing that she was a Jew.  As the day of the extermination approached, Haman joyfully erected a scaffold fifty feet high near his home, from which he planned to hang Mordecai.  However, just before the mass murder was about to be carried out, Esther came forward and revealed to the king that she was in fact a Jew.  She begged him to cancel the genocidal plot.  The king compassionately agreed; creating a decree that permitted the Jews to legally defend themselves; thereby ending the sinister conspiracy. The king was also made aware of Haman’s treachery.  In a cruel twist of fate, the king ordered Haman to be hung from the very same gallows he himself had constructed to murder Mordecai.  The judgment he had so eagerly reserved for another person had been visited upon him and his entire household. 

     Like Haman, many today build scaffolds from which to hang others.  Yet such people are often hypocrites who incur the wrath of God; they condemn themselves by the very judgments they use to condemn others.  This is why we must examine ourselves daily and ask God to search our hearts and minds. If we find that the sins of others produces anger and resentment, then we must ask the question, “Am I guilty of any similar sins?”  If the answer is yes, then we need to change. We must abandon hypocrisy and embrace a right relationship with God.

     “Lord Heavenly Father, we recognize that we are unworthy servants; and that we are sinners who do not deserve Your forgiveness; yet we thank You that we have received it.  Search our hearts; if You find hypocrisy, please reveal it to us; and correct us if we have been judging others unjustly.  Take away our sinful resentments, that we may more effectively reach those who are lost. Fill our hearts with gratitude, sincerity, and humility.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name, Amen.”  God bless all of you!


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