Hue–man-i-ty Part 2
Pastor Creg Darby
Sunday April 15, 2018
Main Idea – It is easy to fall into the habit of judging others. Judging others is a roadblock that will prevent you from fulfilling the Great Commission. We are not here to judge, but rather to love – just as Jesus loved.
The Great Commission
- Immediately before He ascended back to Heaven, Jesus gave final instructions to His followers. These instructions are known at The Great Commission. The Gospel writers (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) each recorded portions of that conversation.
- The Great Commission instructs believers to bring the good news about salvation through Jesus into all groups of people.
The roadblock of judging
- It is likely we have each experienced the bad feeling of having been incorrectly judged by someone.
- Before we form an opinion of someone else, we should make sure we have all the information necessary to support that opinion.
- If we incorrectly judge someone, that judgment will likely prevent us from effectively fulfilling the Great Commission.
- Matthew 7: 1-5 (NLT) – “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.
- Chuck Swindoll once told the story of how he incorrectly judged an attendee at one of his conferences, and his regret for having done so. (See “Sleepy Man” at bible.org)
- The Bible tells us that if we judge others, that same type of judgment will be used back toward ourselves. Luke 6:37-38 (NKJV) – “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”
Jesus came to love, not judge
- As Christians, it is our job to love others, not judge them. John 13:34-35 (NIV) – “A new command I give you; Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
- Jesus, Himself, provided an example of how we are to love – rather than judge - others in the story about the woman caught in adultery (see John 8: 1-11.)
- Jesus ignored the accusations of others and focused on the type of person the woman would become. He had forgiven her and was recognizing her for whom she would be.
Qualifications of a judge
- One definition of a judge is: “a person qualified to pass a critical judgment.”
- We must ask ourselves, “how qualified am I to pass judgment on someone else?”
- The Bible strongly suggests we are not qualified to judge each other.
- Isaiah 64:6 (NLT) – We are all infected and impure with sin. When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags. Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall, and our sins sweep us away like the wind.
- 1 John 4:20 (NLT) – If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see?
- Romans 3:23 (NIV) – for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
Qualification to love
- As Christians, we are all qualified to love. The power of the cross is inclusive, not exclusive. Everyone who accepts Jesus as Savior qualifies.
- If we follow Jesus, we will do the things Jesus did.
- Billy Graham said, “It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict, God’s job to judge and my job to love.”
- Theodore Roosevelt said, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
- Mother Teresa said, “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”
- God created each of us. Therefore, we are to love others just as God loves them. If we judge someone else and create negative thoughts about them in our mind, we are judging what God created.
- Judging begins when we let bitterness into our hearts. We have to protect our hearts from bitterness.
Wrestling with God
- Sometimes, it requires a touch from God for us to be able to love.
- Genesis 32: 24-32 – tells the story of how Jacob wrestled with God. In this story, the angel touched Jacob so that he would walk in a new way from that time forward.
- Likewise, it may be necessary for each of us to have our own wrestling match with God in order to overcome a judgmental mindset. In that wrestling match, God will eventually touch us so that we will be able to walk in love, rather than by judgment. Ephesians 4:17 – This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind
- It is necessary to kill whatever judgmental mindset we have so that it doesn’t impact future generations. The Old Testament tells the story about Gideon, and how he had to kill the enemies his sons felt unqualified to deal with. Judges 8: 20-21 (NKJV) – And he said to Jether his firstborn, “Rise, kill them!” But the youth would not draw his sword; for he was afraid, because he was still a youth. So Zebah and Zalmunna said, “Rise yourself, and kill us; for as a man is, so is his strength.” So Gideon arose and killed Zebah and Zalmunna, and took the crescent ornaments that were on their camels’ necks.
- We must take the responsibility of killing our spiritual enemies – such as judgmentalism - so that future generations are not burdened by them. Numbers 13 tells the story of the 12 spies from the tribes of Israel, who were not willing to face and fight the giants before them, even though God had promised victory. Because Israel did not kill the giants when God gave them the opportunity, the nation was burdened by these giants for generations to follow.
Accept The Great Commission – operate in love
- Romans 8:1 – There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
- Each believer should thankfully accept the responsibility to act on The Great Commission.
- It is a wonderful opportunity to spend private time with God, and then to accurately reflect Jesus as we interact with the world around us.
- Jesus is looking forward to rewarding us for fulfilling the Great Commission thru love. 2 Corinthians 5: 10-11 (NKJV) – For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.
Reflective Questions for Hue – man – i – ty – Part 2
- Think about a time you were judged by others. Whether the outcome was good or bad, it is likely you did not enjoy the experience. Why do you suppose we do not naturally enjoy being judged by others?
- Can you share a story about a time where someone, or something, demonstrated unconditional love to you? Why was that experience something that made you happy?
- If God is love, and Jesus operated in that love, why is it important that we operate in love – rather than with judgment - when we interact with others?
- Is it necessary for some of us, like Jacob, to have a wrestling match with God in order to be changed into someone who demonstrates love rather than judgment? Why is God’s touch necessary for this to happen?