Some people who watch life from the sidelines
rather than actively participate in it... have no
concept of victory or defeat. Some people
passively observe, but never participate in life; yet,
they can be extremely judgmental, relentlessly
critical, and condescending of other people's failures
and/or shortcomings who strive for higher ideals.
Some bystanders are quick to point out how another
who has dared greatly stumbles and falls short, and
how the person actively walking in their calling...
could have done better. Spectators are always ready
to make a detailed list of other people's flaws and
We must always resist the temptation to believe
that we must or should measure up and be perfect.
Not in this life.
Nothing in the Scriptures teaches us to expect
such behavior from ourselves or others.
Nobody gets through life without making
mistakes or doing something they're
embarrassed about. We all look great in
some areas but fall short in others. None
of us are perfect... we all have flaws.
Some will criticize and judge in order to
project things about themselves that they
don't like on others.
The harsh, hyper-critical, demeaning,
and sometimes relentless judgmental
observers in life who gain nothing by
criticizing the flaws of others can indeed
challenge and improve us if we keep our
emotions in check, decide what applies,
learn from it, and let the rest go.
We can't control others, but we can benefit
from putting in more effort to improve
ourselves and letting harsh criticism roll
off our backs like water off a duck's back.
When it comes to criticism and judgment,
let us keep an open mind. May we realize
that every situation can be an opportunity
to learn and grow.
Jesus is calling us to not condemn people, to not pass
final judgment and declare one unredeemable and
guilty. It is incredibly important that we understand
the context in which Jesus was speaking.
Jesus' command not to judge others may be
the most widely quoted of His remarks, despite
the fact that it is almost always quoted out of
"Do not judge, or you will also
Jesus said (Matthew 7:1).
Many people use this quotation to silence their
critics, completely misunderstanding Jesus'
meaning to just be...
"You don't have the right to
tell me I'm wrong."
In setting apart, Jesus' command to
"Do not judge"
appears to preclude all negative assessments.
However, the passage is so much more than
shutting down negative assessments.
The Bible’s command that we not judge others does not
mean we cannot show discernment.
Jesus is giving us permission to tell right from wrong.
When Jesus said not to judge others, He did not mean that
no one can identify sin for what it is, based on God’s
definition of sin.
The Bible’s command that we not judge others does not
mean Jesus was saying, “Anything goes.”
Jesus gives a direct command to “Stop judging by mere
appearances, but instead judge correctly.”
God gives us discernment to help us make sense
of things. In some cases, discernment is a spiritual
gift (1 Corinthians 12:10) that some people possess.
It is also a skill that can be honed (Hebrews 5:14).
Some people will use incorrect theological language
to support their approach to saintliness and go off
the rails, dragging unsuspecting people along with
If someone is speaking, claiming to be hearing from
God, and by all accounts many people find their
message helpful, but intermingled in their teachings
are tainted doctrinal errors, completely confusing,
and a complete misrepresentation of the truth, that
person is speaking in vain.
When things don't seem clear, the bible is always
a good place to start for discernment. It serves as
the foundation for sound theology, shielding
us from error and unorthodox opinions grounded
and/or articulated in helpful terms.
One of the more subtle gifts is discernment.
Those who have it rarely speak up unless they
feel safe doing so. Use the discernment God has
given them with courage. They may believe that
they are the only one who sees things the way you
The pleasant aroma of clarity, however, can
eliminate the clouds of confusion by sharing your
The Bible's command not to judge others
does not disqualify us from exercising
discernment. "Do not give dogs what is sacred;
do not throw your pearls to pigs," Jesus says
immediately after saying,
"Do not judge."
"Watch out for false prophets... By their fruit
you will recognize them," He says later in the
same sermon (verses 15-16). How can we tell
who the "dogs," "pigs," and "false prophets" are
unless we have the ability to make a judgment
call on doctrines and actions?
Jesus is essentially giving us permission to
distinguish between right and wrong.
None of us enjoys harsh criticism, opinions,
or hasty conclusions about ourselves that have
not been thoroughly considered.
It's human nature to enjoy being right, but the
truth is... we all need to be corrected from time
Although we are naturally drawn to people who
share our values, those who are open and honest
with us, even if they disagree with us, can truly
help us grow.
Those who genuinely care about us and want
what is best for us will have the courage to point
out our mistakes, unpleasant behavior, weaknesses,
When we receive criticism, our goal should be
to learn from it rather than to let our emotions
close our minds. When we strive for excellence,
the little things matter. The key is to be proactive,
Most people's automatic response and unconscious
bias is to judge and criticize others. It explains
why we do not perceive ourselves as being
negative or harshly critical of others, despite the
fact that we are. Our egos help protect us from
our own sensitivities.
Let us be mindful of our own words, attitudes,
and behaviors. Consider this idea seriously if
we truly believe that judging and criticizing
others is something we do not want to be
Rather than criticizing others because they are
different from us, we may be criticizing them
because they are often, in many ways, very
similar to us.
Pride and arrogance zealously brings attention to
another person’s shortcomings, while remaining
forgetful to its own.
“When we judge or criticize another person, it says
nothing about that person; it merely says something about
our own need to be critical.” – Unknown
There are times when we should not listen to
criticism, such as when it is based on falsehood
or delivered in a way that is intended to destroy
our sense of self-worth.
We encourage people to deliver critiques
in a way that is constructive and helpful.
Passing judgment on someone
based solely on appearances is sinful.
Let us make sure we know every
situation fully before making a
Easily seen are the faults of others, but in far too many
instances it is difficult to see our own. Scripture cautions
us not to be harsh and judgmental of the faults of others,
even where they are evident, because neither are we
perfect and free from error.
There are two types of people in the world:
destroyers and builders.
While offering nothing better, destroyers criticize,
vilify, slander, belittle, and discredit the works and
lives of others.
Builders contribute to... and improve the quality
of life for others.
Every person is a combination of wonderful virtues and
plenty of flaws.
Superficial, unrighteous judgment
Men may escape human justice, but they will
never be able to escape God's divine justice.
We cannot flee from God's
all seeing eye
nor can we experience
that God is unaware of.
There is nothing beyond God's comprehension.
God is everywhere, and God knows everything.
Every detail about each
of us is completely known...
and is on full display
Before God, our thoughts, words,
secret sins, and deeds are all open
books. There is nothing
about us that God is unaware of.
God knows so much about us that there is
nothing we can do or imagine that God isn't
already aware of.
God knows everything and sees everything in
our past, present, and future.
There is no place in the universe where we
could be without God's presence.
Our just and righteous Judge is God.
God does not favor anyone.
It doesn't matter who we are or where we
came from... God sees beneath the surface,
and God's Judgment is always perfectly just!
Every case is presented naked and open to God. God requires no witnesses or a jury because He has personally witnessed every crime and secret sin ever committed.
God is aware of all facts. God never falsifies a person's case!
We can be certain that God's judgment is always based on absolute truth.
The ground is level at the foot of the cross.
God will judge everyone fairly for sinning against the light that they were given.
God's judgment is applicable to everyone, regardless of age, circumstance, or station in life. The rule does not have any exceptions.