The resurrection is no secret.

–From my pastor’s sermon.

He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. (Matthew 28:6b, NLT)

Published in: on April 21, 2012 at 7:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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If I don’t judge anyone, will that mean that God won’t judge me?

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.

“And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye. (Matthew 7:1-5, NLT)

As for me, it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point. My conscience is clear, but that doesn’t prove I’m right. It is the Lord himself who will examine me and decide.

So don’t make judgments about anyone ahead of time—before the Lord returns. For he will bring our darkest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. Then God will give to each one whatever praise is due. (1 Corinthians 4:3-5, NLT)

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. (Romans 2:1, NIV)

I’m pretty good with coming up with formulas about God.

This would look like one of those capital times for an “If-Then” formula about God:

If I don’t judge, then God will not judge me.

All I need to do is peace out, right?  I’ve seen pictures of teenagers from my mom’s high school era.  I’ve already got the long hair.  I’ll wear flowered bell bottoms and dangle a necklace from my forehead and I’ll be good.  Right?

Not so much.  The actual hippie movement couldn’t be categorized as nonjudgmental, because most were opposed to the war.  That is a judgment statement.

A republican and a democrat of course can’t be called nonjudgmental, but neither can the person who doesn’t vote.  He or she is making the judgment that it’s better not to vote at all.

God doesn’t say He will judge us by our judgments.  He says He will judge us by our standards.  In other words, to the degree we judge others, we’re getting judged.

We all probably know some really judgmental people.

Most of us probably know those really judgmental people are actually us.

I can’t resist being judgmental.  It’s like resisting air.  When I get all blue in the face, I’ve just got to make a judgment.  I can’t resist.

When I watch the news, I judge.  I have a filter in my brain that always wants to place people’s choices in the “bad” or “good”.  Even if my judgments are that thingsaren’tbad, I am still judging.  I can’t get away from it on my own.

To judge is to know there is right and wrong.  It doesn’t mean we know what to put where, but all judges know there is a right and wrong that everything must be funneled into.

No matter who we are, we are going to judge.  That means that, no matter who we are, we are going to be judged.

So we are not off the hook for Judgment Day.

But what did Jesus mean when He said,

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.  For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.”

There is a way to stop judgment from happening to me.  But it isn’t by pretending I don’t judge.  I’ve got to stop impersonating the judge and hand my fake authority over to the real Judge.

The truth is, I don’t know what I’m talking about when I judge.  I don’t get the weight of our own sin and I don’t get the objective view of what sin looks like from righteous ground.  I live in sin, not just with sin.  When I try to judge the sin I live with, I forget I have sin in me that blocks me from seeing without bias.

I’m like a judge trying to judge the dishonest dealings of a business.  The only problem is, my night job is working at that very business, and I’m a mile-high in all the corruption.  If I condemn the business, I’m condemned, too.  And if I don’t condemn the business . . well, who would really believe I was fair in that judgment?

All of us judge, and we like it.  It feels pretty good to wear a wig and a robe and hold a gavel.  I think we all know in our hearts, though, that one day we’re going to have to step down.

We can wait for Jesus to return and take the gavel from our hands . . . and we’ll have to crawl to the hot seat without one defense and without any Fifth Amendment to hide behind . . or we can find Jesus now and hand over our gavel and say, “Jesus, You are the Judge.  Forgive me for impersonating.”

Since God is the real Judge, I know something right away: I am going to have to be right with Him.

If I was guilty of the worst crime in history and a day away from certain conviction, and I suddenly found out that the Judge had a Son who had the power to pay for my crime so I could stand before Him totally innocent, what do you think I would do?

I would run–not walk–to the Judge’s Son and throw myself down before Him.

It’s what every Christian has ever done.  Christianity is falling at the feet of the Judge’s Son.

Salvation is Jesus saving me from judgment by taking all condemnation on Himself.

No more judging for me.  I give up my aloof-and-gravely-mistaken seating on the Judge’s throne.  And I go down to the defendant’s seat where I belong.  Jesus is not my lawyer, but my Treasurer.  He reaches not into His pockets, but into His body, and He pays for my crimes with His blood.

So I have learned this rule: When I want to do good, evil is there with me. In my mind, I am happy with God’s law. But I see another law working in my body, which makes war against the law that my mind accepts. That other law working in my body is the law of sin, and it makes me its prisoner. What a miserable man I am! Who will save me from this body that brings me death?I thank God for saving me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So in my mind I am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful self I am a slave to the law of sin.

So now, those who are in Christ Jesus are not judged guilty. Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit that brings life made you free from the law that brings sin and death. The law was without power, because the law was made weak by our sinful selves. But God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son to earth with the same human life that others use for sin. By sending his Son to be an offering for sin, God used a human life to destroy sin. (Romans 7:21-8:3, NCV)


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