Ask God to show you where you are being judgmental, and repent of that.
“Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults— unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging.” Matthew 7:1–2 (msg)
It’s unfortunate in our culture that many people outside of the church say they would rather stay outside of it. Why? Because they perceive Christians as judgmental or critical.
Jesus’ words in Matthew are often translated “judge not, lest you be judged.” It’s easy for me to skim over this command, checking it off my list without really examining my attitude—I’m not judgmental. I am merely standing up for what is right, calling sin what it is. I’m loving the sinner but hating the sin.
Really? As I reflected on this verse, I had to ask myself: What do I think of people who vote differently than I do? Who live a different lifestyle? And how do I treat my family? Do I point out their flaws? Criticize? I love this translation because it spells out the specifics of what judgment is: being unkind and critical. And it also tells us that judgment is like a boomerang—it will come back to us. I realized that sometimes, this pretty accurately describes how I treat those closest to me. I can be critical of other’s faults—and then I can pretend I’m doing it to help them grow into a better person. Ouch. That hits a bit closer to home. I’ve been judged by other Christians, and it hurts. But rather than moaning that other Christians are judgmental, I need to ask God to show me where I am being judgmental, and repent of that.
FAITH STEP: Today, choose not to criticize anyone—even if they make a mistake. Notice how they respond to you. Is there a connection?
Written by Keri Wyatt Kent