Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned.Luke 6:37
The command, do not judge could be one of the most misunderstood verses. How are we to make decisions without discernment or judgment? Sometimes we may become self-righteous and make judgments with a condemning heart. Is this the way the Lord wants us to judge our brothers and sisters in Christ?
The scripture says do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Christians hold each other accountable with a heart of love with encouragement to keep our brothers and sisters on the narrow road to life. Judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. (James 2:13) We are to make judgments with a heart of mercy coming from a heart of love.
Scripture tells us how to handle the process of judgment when a fellow Christian is entangled in a sin. If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. (Matthew 18: 15) We pick an opportune time to talk to this person, we are gentle with our words, and we approach the person with a caring loving encouraging heart. If the person thinks they are not sinning, it’s often best not to confront the person directly stating their action is sinful, but try and lead the person with non-threatening open questions, to understand that it is sin. If the person knows they are sinning then we can ask the person directly what is keeping them from stopping, such as learned behavior or maybe it’s an addiction. In all cases we judge with wisdom and mercy.
Do we hold accountable, sinful people who do not know Christ? We do not hold these people accountable but we point them toward Christ. We minister to lost souls with love and patience as we show them Christ and tell them about Christ. Once they accept Christ the Holy Spirit will convict them and they now realize their behavior is sinful.
Remember the more mercy we give the more mercy we receive and the way we judge others is the way God will judge us. Basically this implies that the way we treat people is the way God will treat us. So make all your judgments with a heart of unconditional love with an attitude of helping people, and care about the complete person not just their spiritual needs.
Today when you make judgments do so with wisdom and love. This can be difficult in some cases, when we see people doing things that make us angry. Don’t let your anger get out of control, because it can make things worse. Instead respond to your judgment with wisdom and mercy.
Prayer: Lord, fill my heart with your love and mercy so I can respond to all my judgments as Christ would respond, with wisdom and love. Help me to have self-control through the Spirit in every situation so I can reveal your strength, confidence, love, and mercy. Thank you for being with me and the Spirit who molds me and guides me to be Christ-like. In Jesus name, Amen