A Bible Devotion

Wednesday, November 15, 2023


Are Christians supposed to judge one another?

There are verses that seem to point both ways. First, let's look at some that tell us not to judge.

MATTHEW 7:1 ESV 1 "Judge not, that you be not judged.

LUKE 6:37 ESV 37 "Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;

JOHN 5:22 ESV 22 The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son,

1 CORINTHIANS 4:5 ESV 5 Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God.

1 CORINTHIANS 4:3 ESV 3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself.

Now let's look at some verses that seem to point the other direction: that we should judge.

JOHN 7:24 ESV 24 Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment."

First Corinthians 5:12 to 6:7 talks about how the church should judge matters pertaining to this life concerning those in the church.

1 CORINTHIANS 5:12 ESV 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge?

1 CORINTHIANS 6:3 ESV 3 Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life!

So, how do we interpret these Scriptures that seem to give different messages about whether we should be judging now?

Sometimes the word we have translated as judgment in the New Testament simply means to make a decision. As human beings we cannot escape that responsibility. We have to make decisions.

But other times the word means pronouncing judgment and condemnation on someone. That is a different matter than simply deciding whether to fellowship or even partner with someone.

We are to make decisions, or judgments, concerning matters pertaining to this life. But we are not to pronounce judgment on people concerning the next life.

SAY THIS: My job is not to condemn, so I will make the proper judgment decisions and leave all others with the Lord.


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