It seems that many times the scripture “Do not judge and you will not be judged,” (Luke 6:37) has come up in my reading and listening recently. Each time I hear or read it, I increasingly get the idea that we Christians should not judge others. Strange, huh? I mean, Jesus said “Don’t judge others.” Maybe we shouldn’t judge others. Hmm. I have been getting increasingly puzzled how often my fellow Christians have this habit of reading the Bible and then explaining how what it plainly says is not what it really means and that what it really means is the exact opposite of what it plainly says. For example, “Do not judge” means “by all means, we must judge others.” “Do not judge” means we must “exercise righteous judgement.” I’m sorry, but I don’t get this. I think that to a non-Christian righteous judgement probably feels a lot like plain old judgement. And judgement, righteous or otherwise, does little to attract them to the beautiful and amazing love of God expressed in the person and work of Jesus. We’re really getting this thing wrong. Greg Boyd writes in Myth of a Christian Nation, “Ask any random sampling of pagans in America what first comes to mind when you say the words evangelical or born again Christian, and chances are close to zero that anything like ‘outrageous, sacrificial love’ will be the first thing out of their mouths.” We all have a good idea what would top that list and that should trouble us all. We’re getting this wrong. Jesus said that they will know we are Christians by our love. Unfortunately, what we are getting known for is our hypocrisy and judgmentalism. We need to be know for our love. We need to be more like Jesus. A good place to start would be to give up judging others altogether. Personally, a total moratorium on judging others, righteous or otherwise, is in effect in my life as I seek to love and serve Jesus.

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