“ONLY GOD CAN JUDGE ME”
“Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. “Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces. (Matthew 7:1-6 NASB)
“Only God Can Judge Me” is a common tattoo among many in the ‘thug life’ or the incarcerated. I take it to be a message telling everyone not to judge them because only God has the right, authority, information to cast judgment. However, I’m left with two main thoughts.
First is I question just how true the statement is. And secondly I wonder if the person knows the seriousness of God’s judgment. Perhaps like the rest of us, they want His mercy, not His wrath.
Any Christian who inspects fruit and sees lacking the fruit which defines a disciple may have reason to cast doubt internally and to rebuke, exhort, and encourage. Compassion and understanding is in order.
Consider these notes on Matthew 7:1-6
The Warning about Judging and Criticizing Others
The word “judge” means to criticize, condemn, judge, censor. It is fault-finding; it is picky. It is a habit of the censorious and carping (difficult to please) criticism.
It is not the moral judgments that have to be made sometimes (1 Corinthians 5:3-5, 12-13). It is not the careful discrimination that is sometimes necessary (Matthew 7:6)
I. Do not judge; do not criticize. (1)
When a person has come short or done wrong and fallen, he is often judged, condemned and censored. However, such judgment misses a critical point. It is time for compassion not Criticism. It is time for a helping hand to lift him up, not to push him away.
There is never a spirit of criticism in the humble and loving person. There is only a loving compassion for those who have come short. Galatians 6:1-3
Reasons why people tend to judge and criticize others:
Criticism tends to boast our own self image
Criticism is simply enjoyed
Criticism makes us feel that our own lives (morality and behavior) are better than the person who failed.
Criticism helps us justify the decisions we make and the things we do by pointing out the failures of others.
Criticism points out to our friends how strong we are. Our rigid beliefs and strong lives are highlighted by pointing out others failures.
Criticism is an outlet for hurt and revenge.
Reasons why we should never criticize:
Don’t know all the facts and circumstances.
All people fall short. Religious and non-religious.
Don’t know the person as well as you think you do.
II. The criticizer will be judged. (2)
The criticizer will be judged for the very same criticism
The criticizer will be judged with the law of equal weight
James 3:1-2 tells us the criticizer will receive the greater condemnation. See also (Matthew 7:2. James 2:13, 3:1, Luke 6:36-37)
III. The criticizer fails to examine himself. (3)
He looks for faults
When we judge and criticize others we have a serious problem: we have a beam in our eye. We are blind to the truth of our own nature. We too fail.
He looks for faults in others–not himself
IV. The criticizer is deceived about himself. (4)
He speaks but without any thought.
He has no thought of what he is doing. If he were thinking he would not criticize. His mouth is in motion without his mind in gear.
He is not fit to judge
The criticizer is as sinful as the next person, yet he is not considering his own sin. The critter is the weaker of the two. It is the weak who judge and criticize the most. The criticizer does not examine himself.
For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. (Galatians 6:3 NASB) (See also James 1:22, 26, Proverbs 12:15; 20:6; 30:12)
V. The criticizer is a hypocrite. (5)
He is full of strife and empty glory
He fails to consider himself and to exhibit the spirit of meekness
He is polluted with bitterness, wrath, and anger. He speaks evil towards others and with malice.
The only hope for the hypocrite is the same as any one who’s sins, “First cast out the beam out of thy own eye” and turn to God.
VI. The criticizer is under serving of the gospel. (6)
He tramples the gospel under foot
“Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.” (6)
Christ Jesus is saying we are not to be foolish and jeopardize ourselves. When we know a person will not receive us or our instruction of the gospel, we are not to approach them.
There are some criticizers and scoffing sinners to whom we must not go. They will hurt us and abuse the glorious message of the gospel.
He turns against and tears people part
There are some believers so wicked and profane that they can be compared to dogs and swine. They are said to be unworthy of the gospel. Who are they?
The notorious sinner
The scoffers and scornful
The enraged and revilers.
The openly wicked and profane.
The hardened judges and criticizers.
The haters and despisers.
Can they be saved? Yes.
Poem: Saints and Sinners
When some fellow yields to temptation
and breaks a conventional law,
We look for no good in his make up,
O Lord, how we look for the flaw!
No one asks, “Who did the tempting?”
Nor allows for the battles he’s fought.
His name becomes food for the jackals,
the saints who have never been caught.
I’m a sinner, O Lord, and I know it.
I”m weak and I blunder and fail.
I’m tossed on life”s stormy ocean
like a ship that is caught in a gale.
I’m willing to trust in thy mercy,
to keep the commandments thou hast taught.
But deliver me, O Lord, from the judgment
of the saints who have never been caught.
Until Next Time,