Ponder A Little (Blog)
|Posted on March 21, 2018 at 10:00 AM|
Judgemental words from Christians are commonly seen as a problem both inside and outside of the church. Studies show that many people will not come to church and many leave the church primarily due to personal experiences with Christians who pass judgement.
So, what’s going on? Why is this such a huge problem? Why are so many people (even Christians) hurt and wounded in conversations with so-called Christians?
There are three fundamentals we need to first recognize as we try to understand this problem:
1. Our society is built on judgements and laws to keep it functioning in a moral manner. So obviously not all judgement is bad. In fact, some is necessary.
2. We live in a society of media-infused judgement that many people thrive on via tabloids, reality television and talk shows. So, we are all brain-washed to believe it is OK to pass judgement. Plus, we are desensitized to the recognition of judgement.
3. None of us are perfect so at times we will all act and speak with ungodly judgement. In fact, calling people judgemental is a judgement in itself.
Do these facts make harsh, judgemental words acceptable?... Of course not!
But if you read your Bible well, you might be shocked to learn that Jesus both condemned and practiced judgement. Jesus condemned self-righteous, hypocritical judgement but endorsed a holy judgement that clearly defined right and wrong in God’s eyes. As, Christians we too are expected to discern (or judge) good versus evil and make spiritual evaluations of the words and behaviours of others. But this judgement is not to point fingers but rather primarily to guard ourselves from sinning. Jesus teaches us to always judge ourselves first before judging others.
Here’s the important part… Many of the interactions Jesus had with immoral, selfish and sinful people were bathed in an enormous amount of love – not judgement. Jesus came to save the lost, not judge them. We are to follow His example. You see, Jesus knows how easily condemning words can bruise our soul. People are leaving churches or refusing to come to church because of wounded and bruised souls. Without a doubt, this grieves our heavenly Father.
Practically speaking, as godly Christians we need a more gentle and humble approach in our conversations with others. We need to listen more before we speak. We need to ask questions to obtain clearer understanding. We need to respect different opinions. And when we do speak, love and compassion need to be boldly evident.
Currently church is not seen as a desired destination for many, simply because of too much judgement and not enough love. We need to change our image to the beauty of Jesus! Easier said than done for sure. So, let’s pray for the Holy Spirit to help us!