Matthew 7:1-2 “Do not Judge or you too will be judged.  For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the same measure you use, it will be measured to you.” 

A few years ago, I stood next to a friend who was in trouble.  He made a number of bad decisions and after serving some time in a local jail had a hearing about his release.  I was called in as a character reference as his behavior was outside the norm that I had known for years.  I remember the seriousness of standing before a judge who made the decision to let my friend go free or not.  Her words and decision determined my friend’s future. 

In Matthew 7, Jesus continues to teach the sermon on the mount and he speaks to an issue that many of us struggle with.  Judging.  We currently live in a highly tolerant culture with no absolute moral code.  So how does one maintain a Biblical sense of right and wrong without judging?  When Jesus says, “do not Judge” he means “Do not condemn.”  When someone is found guilty in court they are removed from society.  When we condemn people in our hearts, we do the same.  Jesus reminds us that when we judge others it will backfire, because we too will be judged.  Our judgement is inaccurate because we see it from our personal perspective.  Finally, we cannot love and judge at the same time. 

How about you?  2020 has been a year when it is easy to cast judgment. Have you judged anyone this year?  How can you grow in discernment without condemnation? 

Take a few moments to read and reflect on Matthew 7:1-5.  When you notice someone else’s sin, first examine your own heart.  Then speak as a fellow struggler and judge not.