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To Judge or not to Judge

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A conflict of Verses

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?
Note: we are to judge those inside the church.
ok now notice
Romans 14:13 ESV
13 Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.
Now it says: Who are you to judge?
So what now, are we to judge like Corinthians tells us or not to judge like romans tells us?

Facts or Feelings

To know when to judge or not to judge we first need to step back an d look at a problem with human perception, or maybe we should cll it deception.
Lets try and discuss the difference between a fact and a feeling. or rather a fact and an opinion.
2 balls - one is a fact and one is an opinion - practically identical - a struggle to tell them apart.
Give 2 balls that are same - nothing alike.
This point highlights a very big human problem - we ALL confuse actual FACTS with our OPINION.
I find it very difficult to separate an opinion from a fact. BUT SEPARATE THEM WE MUST.
why?
Because the two verse i showed you earlier, judging and not judging are all about facts vs opinions.

Context

Lets us start by looking at what is going on in 1 Corinthians IN CONTEXT:
1 Corinthians 5:1–13 ESV
1 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that is not tolerated even among pagans, for a man has his father’s wife. 2 And you are arrogant! Ought you not rather to mourn? Let him who has done this be removed from among you. 3 For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. 4 When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, 5 you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord. 6 Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7 Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”
Let us look at the behaviours of the church and what they are guilty of.
“Incest, sexual immorality, greed, idoloray, reviler, drunkard, swindler”.
I want you to notice, God has given clear commands that clearly show that such behaviour is sinful and evil.
Galatians 5:19–21 ESV
19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
So when we are talking about the sinfulness of these things we are not talking about our feelings, these are clear cut facts.
Is sexual immorality wrong?
It idolatry wrong?
Is drunkedness wrong?
Is greed wrong?
These are not my opinions, these are not your opinions, God made clear statements that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
1 Corinthians 6:9–10 ESV
9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
So when the bible is crystal clear on a sin, and we see that sin in the life of a brother or sister we have a biblical mandate to excerise judgment on that person, because they are living in disobedience to God’s law.
But what Romans 14?
Well let us read it in context:
Romans 14:1–12 ESV
1 As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. 2 One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. 3 Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. 4 Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand. 5 One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. 6 The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7 For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. 8 For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s. 9 For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living. 10 Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; 11 for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” 12 So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.
Notice the first verse: What is the bible talking about?
Opinions!!!
What is an opinion? An opinion is a believe that we hold as a result of our own conscience, NOT as a result of the clear Word of God.
If God says something, then its not an opinion - its a fact. But in area’s where God is silent, all we can develop is our own opinions.
And it is in the area of options that God warns us NOT to judge one another.
And this can cause big problems because as we have seen many people cannot tell the difference between fact and an opinion.

Pesky Opinions

Let us begin by looking various things that the bible mentions in the passage:
It is wrong to not eat meat? OPINION
One day is holier than another? OPINION
We can go on:
Is it wrong to eat pork?
Is it wrong to cut your sideburns?
It is wrong to have a tattoo? NT is Silent
Some standards and practices in our local churches are traditional but not necessarily scriptural. Some of us can remember when dedicated Christians opposed Christian radio “because Satan was the prince of the power of the air!”
It even gets more crazy and the fights over opinions get downright sinful.
Must a man wear a tie to church?
Can a lady wear slacks or must it be a dress?
Some people even critise other christians over which bible version they read.
The person who passes judgment on others over opinions has literally set themselves up at Lord and are playing God.
And it is in light of opinions that God goes on to say:
Romans 14:13 ESV
13 Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.
Sop are our opinions worthless?
Absolutely not!
But notice what the bible says:
Romans 14:5 ESV
5 One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind.
We must each be fully convinced, or convicted in our OWN mind.
We must not try to convince others of our own opinion, we must not convince others in THIER mind, but let us we convinced in our own mind.
If you dont think its good to eat meat, thats fine, if yo think, like i do that eating meat is great then thats fine too.I am fully convinced in my mind that God wants me to eat and enjoy meat, and so long as my opinion is not contradicting clear scripture than its not my job to convince you im right and its no your job to show me im wrong.
Ill close with Jesus words to peter regarding John:
John 21:20–22 ESV
20 Peter turned and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them, the one who also had leaned back against him during the supper and had said, “Lord, who is it that is going to betray you?” 21 When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about this man?” 22 Jesus said to him, “If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow me!”
Jesus had restored Peter to his place as an apostle, and once again He told him, “Follow Me.”
Peter began to follow Christ, but then he heard someone walking behind him. It was the Apostle John.
Then Peter asked Jesus, “Lord, what shall this man do?”
Notice the Lord’s reply:
“What is that to thee? Follow thou Me!”
In other words, “Peter, you make sure you have made Me Lord of your life. Let Me worry about John.”
Whenever I hear believers condemning other Christians because of something they disagree with, something that is not essential or forbidden in the Word, I feel like saying, “What is that to thee? Follow Christ! Let Him be the Lord!”
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