In the news today we are seeing the word Judge
this is the same word but different meaning. Judge here is a title given to a person who rules in a court.
and not to go down a political track this morning, but God uses this hearing to point out some spiritual ways that Jesus operates in. Maybe you are wondering how I can go from a court hearing about a Judge, to the scripture verses we are in today.
Wait, and listen, you will see.
Remember last week when we talked about God’s kingdom and we went all the way back to Genesis?
Remember how we saw the tree of knowledge of good and evil, the one tree God told them not to eat from, and the devil tempted them to eat it and promised they would be like God, knowing good and evil. And that is when mankind developed this standard that was set apart from God’s standard which ultimately caused us to be against God. This is all important to remember as we talk today as well.
The verses we are in today speak about a judgement.
“Judge not, that you be not judged.
it tells us not to judge. We need to know what this kind of judgement is because there are different types of judgement.
the term here is the judgement that is looking down and expressing a negative opinion about someone. positionally speaking, it is placing yourself above, as being better than the other person.
Sometimes people can be harsh, mean, even brutal towards others. this is what this verse is pointing at. we find out a bit more in the next verse.
For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.
looks like a boomerang effect. what goes out, comes back at you. but we must remember this one fact, that what comes out of us is due to what is already inside of us. So, what we think and believe is the root of what we do. this is important, and we find as we read on, that it plays out that way.
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?
a speck. a very small, almost unseen object. Jesus is using this word picture to point out something about the person that is judging another. that a person can put down another and not realize that they themselves have many issues within themselves that need attention, that need work.
Remember our judgement from the fall? it still comes out at times. we can look from our standard and not from Gods, which simply stated is sin. but more than that, going unchecked within ourselves can cause a pattern or habit of being judgmental. ever met someone that picks everyone else apart? it’s not pretty.
this whole Kavinaugh hearing is a picture to me of a person who is being picked apart. The senate is going back through his yearbook and through his life from over 30 years ago to find fault. wow!
For the Judge, this is not a fun process, but is there anything good about going back in our lives? Going back to see if there is any fault in our past? you might say, I don’t want my dirty laundry out where everyone can see it. Me either.
But let me ask you this.
Do you know where a lot of your behavior comes from? Have you ever heard yourself say something like your parents said? the old saying “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”
the people that we grew up with, who influenced us, have played a part in our lives, maybe more than we know. We watched them day in and day out. we learned from all that they did, not just the moments when they wanted to teach us something.
where did your judgement come from? your stereotypes, your prejudices. all from your past, from the people in your life. the old testament says it this way. the sins of the fathers affecting the next generations. So, what we do, is it important?
what about dealing with our sin? is it important? who here wants to model sin for another person to pick up? it is heartbreaking know that we have done that.
all is not lost though, there is hope. Jesus guides us to the right place. the place of looking at our lives and dealing with the stuff that needs to go.
what do I mean.
Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?
Here Jesus says, before you try and help someone else with their issues, take a look at your own. quite a picture here if we visualize it. a person walking up to another person, the log sticking out of their eye, and saying let me get that speck out!
So, Jesus shows us what we need to do.
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.
you mean I have a log in my eye? What is in us that we haven’t dealt with? Sometimes we have to go back, to the root of the issue.
Have you ever taken Jesus back to your early days? back through your life and had Jesus show you where you need more healing, more forgiveness?
If we see ourselves being judgmental towards others today, it most likely has to do with something in your past that is not healed.
Take Jesus back with you as you assess your life, as you look back through to see the "why's" of how you judge now. looking at things like....
Were your parents harsh?
Were they cold?
Were they racist?
what were their stereotypes?
What did they speak to your identity? What did it cause you to take on?
When we take Jesus back with us, He can do some incredible work in those places when we take responsibility for our own actions, not blaming or excusing, but owning what we did.
See, I am not a psychologist, but the truth I do know is how Jesus works in our hearts and lives.
When the blood of Christ covers sin, specific sin, it brings healing, it brings specific change to our lives. God speaks forgiveness to our sin which is restoring us.
This process takes time and a willingness for us to be real with God. To be real with ourselves. And for some, that may be very difficult. For some of us there is alot of pain, alot of hurts in our past. There may be places that we want to keep blaming another person, but we must keep in mind, the other person's sin is their responsibility.....God can deal with them. But what we have done for sin is where God wants to heal in our lives.
The other truth I know is that none are perfect. Each and every one of us has issues to deal with in our lives.
And when we bring it into the light, when we confess it to God so He can forgive it, and heal us, we are humbled. The more we are humbled, the more we look at others with grace.
So, our judgement on others changes as we experience healing in our lives.
If you have never taken Jesus back to some of the places in your heart that you know you need to, then I encourage you to today. Allow His healing power to work in your life. And as He does His work, see how it changes your attitude towards others. See just how your judgement on others changes. You will be amazed.
Coming to the place where you can admit your sin, your wrongdoing, without justifying or blaming, is bringing it into the light and taking full responsibility for it. That is when it can get healed.
So opposite from Adam and Eve when they hid, when they blamed, right?
this is the incredible truth as we do this work.....
When we take Jesus back with us into our past, we find that He was there the whole time. And our eyes open to the real truth that we tried to hide ourselves and our sin but it was only our deceiving ourselves, God always knew.
This truth causes us to live now in the truth, in the light.
tells us the battle that we picked up even from the beginning....
And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed.
God wants us to live fully in the light. completely transparent and open. to live this way is living fully in God.
But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”
Remember Adam and Eve, they were naked and unashamed before the fall, because they were living transparent before God. It was sin that brought hiding and shame and covering up with blame.
God gave another cover, His forgiveness for their sin. So they could once again live transparent before Him.
A call to all of us to live our lives completely open and seen by God, since He sees it all anyway.
and that is the truth to live in.