Does God tell us to judge others? “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. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?” Matt 7:1-4. Is God telling us we have plenty of our own sins to work on? And, maybe, we will never have enough information to correctly judge others.
God asks us to leave the judging to Him because He wants us to focus on living the fruit of the Spirit, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Gal 5:22-23, and we cannot do this while judging others. Those who choose to spend eternity with God will all live the fruit of the Spirit. Any other behavior leads us away from God. We can say we love God and want to spend eternity with Him, but does our life reflect it? When we live any other way, we become a stumbling block for those who would otherwise choose to love God, “Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's way.” Rom 14:13.
Rather than judging others, God calls us to give others the same kind of mercy He gives us, “But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Matt 9:13. If we falsely believe we are not sinners, we will not seek Him nor reflect His mercy. How should we treat others? “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” Matt 7:12. Is Jesus not telling us we would fulfill all of the law if we did this one thing?
Jesus asks us to lay down our stones, “So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” Jn 8:7, because He knows we are all sinners, and none are righteous, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.” Eccl 7:20 and “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” Rom 3:10. So, He uses this lesson to teach us we should have mercy on others because He knows we all need it, and others are watching in hopes of seeing Jesus at work in us. He wants us to focus on correcting our own ways, "Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Turn not to the right hand nor to the left: remove thy foot from evil." Prov 4:26-27.
We confuse judging and justice, which are two very different things. Merriam-Webster defines “judging” as: “to form an opinion, through careful weighing of evidence and testing of premises” and “justice" as: “the maintenance or administration of what is just especially by the impartial adjustment of conflicting claims or the assignment of merited rewards or punishments.” Unfortunately, many judge others without carefully weighing or considering the evidence, but that is another subject. Confusing these concepts leads some to think there will be no justice without our individual judgment. However, if we leave the judging to God, everything will work out for the best; in the end, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Rom 8:28. We just need to have faith that God will do what He says He will.
"Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God." 1 Cor. 4:5.
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