BIBLE STUDY: Is “Judge Not” Biblical?
I hear it a lot, “Don’t judge me!” or “don’t judge me for the splinter in my eye!” or “judge not least ye be judged!”
But is it Biblical? The answer is no.
Let’s look at the biggest one people point to in the Bible to try and justify to others that they shouldn’t judge:
Judge not, that ye be not judged.Matthew 7:1
I mean, that looks pretty damning but the trick here is people only quote verse 1. Have a look at verse 2:
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.Matthew 7:2
If I run around casting judgement on people because of their skin color, their gender, their nationality, their political affiliation, and such, I’m in big trouble with God. You see, it says for the measure you use will be used to judge you. In the case that I run around judging people on non-Biblical measures, means God is going to judge me on the same non-Biblical measures. That’s a bad thing for me, because I am a sinner and for me to gain any salvation whatsoever I must be judged on the Bible. But if I use the Bible to judge someone, that means the Bible is used to Judge me – and I’m 100% okay with that.
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.Romans 10:9
The Bible says I’m saved, that my judgement is in the Blood of Jesus Christ. Thus I will judge people based on the measure of the Bible in and doing so point out their sin and make it clear that they need Jesus Christ.
But some Christians and pastors out there will tell you that this was not the real meaning that you should just follow your heart and keep quiet when you see sin. It simply doesn’t add up – it never does. Imagine for a moment you saw someone you didn’t even know walking down the street and as they walk past you see their coat tail on fire and the fire spreading up their back. What would you do? Would you shout, “Hey buddy! Your coat is on fire! You’re going to get burned!”
Or, perhaps, would you attempt to put out that fire yourself? Some would. Throughout the ministry of Jesus Christ the constant theme impressed upon us is the emphatic point that this life is very temporary and the next life is very eternal. Thus He took great strides to teach us to think about the enteral and not the carnal. In essence, Jesus taught us to keep our eyes on the prize – an eternity in Heaven with Him.
The point is, if you love someone enough to warn someone that their temporary body is in danger because it is on fire, why wouldn’t you warn them about their eternal soul being on fire? That is why I submit that it is an act of selfishness to not warn someone that they are living in sin and that their soul is in danger. If you’re afraid the person will get angry with you, you are allowing your own selfishness and pride to get into the way of the Great Commission:
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.Matthew 28:18-20
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.Mark 16:15-16
Therefor, it is not only a sin of pride to not judge someone on the Bible, it is absolute disobedience to Jesus Christ to neglect His Great Commission. But more importantly, to not judge someone on the Bible is judgement in of itself – acceptance. The worst judgement you can give is that sin is okay by merely saying nothing at all when you see someone living in sin. It is an act of hate to watch someone’s immortal soul in danger and to simply say nothing at all.
“Yeah, but Mike; you just said you were a sinner, how does being saved make you different from the guy with the burning coat tail?”
The difference is that I don’t like to sin. Ever since I was saved, sinning causes quite a bit of anguish in my heart and I’ll sometimes even lose sleep over it. I’m not happy with my own sin, even the sin that I do on a regular basis sometimes like cussing (which has gotten a LOT better over the past few years). And therein lies the difference. Many Bible-Believing Christians say this is the Holy Spirit “gettin’ ahold of you” and I believe it. The truth is, I’m improving on a daily basis because I’m unhappy with my sinful nature. A sheep that falls occasionally in the mud is far different from a pig that loves to wallow in it.