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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Who has any right to judge another?

"For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."--Romans 3:23

These words lay it on the line, the plain truth, unadorned, unvarnished, and stark. Every human being has sinned. No one is immune. Thus,  no one has a right to sit in judgment of another. The place to start with our judgments is the SELF. If we focus on self-examination and getting ourselves where we need to be, then we won't have time to go meddling in another person's life.

This issue is not the same as making value judgments or making a determination as to the trustworthiness of another or to deciding who we wish to spend our time with. Those things are a part of life, and we all do them everyday in order to survive. Imagine if we could not make an informed judgment about a stranger standing at the door with a gun pointed at us. Would we invite such a person in? Or would we duck or head for cover, and quickly close the door?

The issue when it comes to unreasonable judgments of others is spiritual in nature. We know who we are, and we know that before God we stand as sinners, along with everyone else. No one deserves the grace of God. The very definition of grace is 'unmerited favor.' We do not merit the love and favor of God. It is a free gift to sinners who don't have a leg to stand on.

So, the next time you are tempted to issue harsh judgments on another because they are rough around the edges, or because they use language we dislike, or because of various and sundry other things we find to be 'unacceptable,' just remember to go look in the mirror immediately. What you will find staring back at you is a sinner, just like the ones you are tempted to judge.

Song: 'Jesus Have Mercy on Me' by the great George Younce, along with the Cathedral Quartet. This is my favorite George Younce song of all time. And the great Glen Payne, lead singer and manager of the Cathedrals, introduces this song. A masterpiece. I encourage you, I BEG you, go listen to this.

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