As Christians, we all have so much in common. We want to be forgiven for our sins and more like Jesus. So, how can we look over our shoulders and judge others when our own lives are filled with so much garbage? No one is perfect! Yet, social media gives various platforms that enable us to pretend like our lives are so perfect. But, I refuse to judge others. We need to understand that when we judge others it does not define who they are, it defines who you are. Most likely, you have unrealistic beliefs or opinions about your life in general, the people around you and about your own experiences that you choose to pass that negative energy onto someone else. Sometimes we need to be reminded that you cannot cover up your imperfections by using your tongue to judge others.
Let’s be honest, Jesus knew that we would struggle in this area. So, he gave a stern warning in His Word: “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye (Matthew 7:1-5)."
This verse does not mean that we should never make judgments. Obviously, we make judgments every day. We judge between right and wrong, dangerous choices from safe ones. Jesus is cautioning us to not judge others in a hypocritical way. He is telling us to take the log out of our own eye so that we can help the other person. We shouldn’t be habitually critical of someone when our own sin needs to be corrected as well.
Also, keep in mind that it is a sin to speak evil things about another person to others, and even if you keep your thoughts to yourself: “Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law. But your job is to obey the law, not to judge whether it applies to you. God alone, who gave the law, is the Judge. He alone has the power to save or to destroy. So, what right do you have to judge your neighbor? (James 4:11-12).”
Love does not tear down others; it builds them in Christ. If you speak against others and criticize them to make yourself look good, you are loving yourself, not others. You are not obeying God’s law; you are setting yourself above it. Of course, we must love others with our deeds, not in words only. But here James is focusing on how we speak to one another and about others who are not present. Our words need to demonstrate God’s love.
What steps can your overly Judgmental self -do to combat this sin?