“Do not judge, so that you won’t be judged. 2 For with the judgment you use, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.3 Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye but don’t notice the log in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and look, there’s a log in your eye? 5 Hypocrite! First take the log out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.“
It stings! – yes, conviction! After reading this passage, it is easy to do several things in response: (a) turn the page and ignore this very important principle or (b) apply this principle to those around you without self-reflecting. How did you respond initially?
Jesus Himself exposed a very personal, real, and intimate problem with humanity – judgement. During biblical times, the Pharisees demonstrated a false righteousness and judgement without self-examination. One who exploits the weaknesses of others by judging their character, actions, and words without a full self-examination is purely a hypocrite! Do not fall into this evil trap. These individuals demonstrate impatience, insensitivity, opposition, and strife when engaging with others. We have no right to “play God” and judge others. I implore you to redirect that energy inwardly and ask God to shed light on yourself. There you find true healing, understanding, empathy, patience, acceptance, and tenderness for others.
One very important fact in this passage revolves around sight. You must be able to see clearly before trying to assist others. How are you able to help your fallen brothers and sisters when you are blinded by your own sin? It was clear that the Pharisees judged others to make themselves look good. This occurs today in our workplaces, homes, and even churches. Self-examination prepares one to assist others as you humble yourself before the Lord. Assistance equals humility.
This principle does not forbid us from examining the lives of others as we must certainly exercise discernment. However, many of us would agree that we often fail to exercise self-examination and humility when practicing this principle. Our flesh battles against the truths and laws of the Lord. We find ourselves breaking this principle by judging others daily without once considering their circumstances (i.e., empathy). We break this principle by elevating ourselves above those whom we deem lower than ourselves on a worldly scale. We break this principle by judging those so no one else will question our own sin that is hiding deep within the walls of darkened heart. We break this principle by judging others so our “friends” see us as funny, popular, and entertaining. Jesus makes it very clear that “for with the judgment you use, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
Challenge: Refrain from being the judger/accuser in your home, workplace, church, etc. Ask the Holy Spirit to reform your heart and soul to be loving and kind to others showing great empathy.