Matt 7:1-5 Judging CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
This passage has primarily to do with one man judging others. This is excellent practical as well as spiritual advice and ought to be heeded with as much attention as the verses on salvation. Now, here’s what you need to know about judgment.
Judgment begets judgment – v.1
The Lord said if you don’t want to be judged yourself then don’t judge another. You can be absolutely certain that if you judge a brother or sister in Christ, judgment is coming back at you. The person you judge will “respond” to your accusations by pointing out your fault or else other Christians will join in to stir the pot. That’s just as sure as sunshine after rain.
I knew a fellow that was the church watch dog. He kept his eye on everything and just as soon as he spotted a problem with a brother or sister in the church he blurted it out to the pastor and members of the flock. He was usually right, you know. But then one day, he became the target. He got into a little trouble and when the news got out, there wasn’t one sympathetic soul in the church. Today, he is a bitter, wasted, miserable Christian without a church. Why? He got judged the same way he had judged others.
So, are we to just not judge? No, you are to judge. But you have to do it God’s way. You’ve probably heard a heretic quote this verse to seek protection from a Bible believer. They say, “Judge not, lest ye be judged!” like God’s going to get you for pointing out their heresy.
Judgment must be based on a standard – v.2
Whatever standard you use to judge another is the same standard that’s going to be used to judge you (v.2). In the Old Testament, when a witness stood against a fellow, if the witness was found out to be a false witness, he got the same punishment that he was seeking against the other fellow (Deut 19:16-21). That was to keep them from judging unjustly. Like Jesus said, “For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged.”
The Bible clearly shows us that there are times that we need to judge people and things. In order to do that, though, we must have something greater than our opinion by which to judge. We must judge according to God’s standard, the King James Bible (1 Cor 2:15).
1. Jn 7:24 – We are to judge based not upon the way a thing looks but upon whether it’s right (Lk 12:57).
2. 1 Cor 6:1-5 – We are to judge things that pertain to this life according to the Bible without going to court with our brethren.
3. Rom 14:10-12 – We are to refrain from judging a brother on matters that are reserved for the judgment seat of Christ. We must all give account of ourselves. Jas 4:11-12
4. 1 Cor 5:3 – We are to judge sin in the life of another that affects the congregation based solely upon what the Bible says. Remember that the same verses apply to us.
5. Rom 16:17-18 – We are to judge those that teach and preach contrary to the doctrine of the Lord:
a. Avoid them Rom 16:17-18
b. Mark them Phil 3:17-19
c. Beware of them Matt 7:15
d. Rebuke them Tit 1:10-13
Judgment begins with us – v.3-5
In this passage, the Lord spoke three verses telling us that we need to be more concerned with judging our own selves than with judging others. He asked, “Why are you so concerned about the mote in your brother’s eye (mote = a small particle, as floating dust; a speck), when you have a beam sticking out of yours?” (v.3). How can you even see to get the fleck of dust out of his eye with that beam sticking out of your eye? (v.4). Why don’t you go to work on your own problem first? Then maybe you will be able to see well enough to offer some real help to someone else (v.5).
Thus, Paul told us to judge ourselves in 1 Cor 11:31. And even at that, we can only judge ourselves to a point. It’s hard for us sometimes to know our own heart’s motives, to see the beam that’s in our eye (1 Cor 4:3-5).