The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis
Book 1 -Admonitions Profitable for the Spiritual Life
Chapter 14 On Avoiding Rash judgment
“They seem to live in good peace of mind so long as things go well with them, and according to their desires, but if their desires be frustrated and broken, immediately they are shaken and displeased.” Ouch! Convicting, right? Seems like judging others is awfully similar to other sins like pride and selfishness. When we judge we are resting on our own reason and experience instead of Jesus power.
The only time it’s good to judge – is when you are judging yourself. Otherwise you efforts often produce no results or worse – you fall into sin. I wonder why it is hard to see the world through other people’s eyes?
“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?
Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God?
1. Is it ever right or productive to judge someone?
2. What is the root cause of judging?
3. How can judging cause you to fall into sin?
4. How does God feel about it when we judge someone else?