Society today extols the virtues of non-judgmentalism. This stems from their celebration of tolerance as the virtue to rule all other virtues (or perhaps vice versa). Regardless, if anyone dares utter a statement approaching the idea of universal moral truth, that person will be denigrated, insulted, and sent to a reeducation camp as soon as humanly possible. In an odd turn of irony, proponents of this philosophy often cite Jesus’ words, “Judge not, that you be not judged” (Matt. 7:1), as the universal authority for their position. In another twist, the fact that, in context, Jesus was condemning using yourself as the standard seems to escape these people who also appear unaware of His command to judge righteous judgment (Jn. 7:24). Nevertheless, the world continues to promote this logically untenable position because it operates as a justification for the works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21).
Sadly, many Christians have fallen prey to this constant barrage of pseudo-philosophy and therefore tend to judge (yes, irony strikes again) congregations, preachers, and other Christians on the basis of their lack of tolerance and regular judgment of sin. Now, it is certainly true that some could use a greater dose of compassion toward the lost and patience with the weak. Standing for truth should never be used as a reason to avoid loving lost and struggling souls. However, neither should the desire to exude love lead anyone serving Christ to compromise the reality of truth and the standard established in scripture through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:19-21).
It further pains me to see that all of this has caused us to lose sight of Jesus’ original emphasis in the Sermon on the Mount and the requirements of a growing and abiding faith in God. What we fail to accept is that these arguments over worldview and theology often have a root in personal behavior. Yes, the wrong worldview leads to the wrong types of behavior, but sinful behavior also begets false worldviews in an attempt to justify sin. When David found himself under verbal assault, an accusation of which he knew he was innocent, he said something that deserves consideration and meditation: “The Lord shall judge the peoples; Judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness, And according to my integrity within me” (Psa. 7:8). David accepted that the LORD was his judge, but this did not mean simply that the LORD judged his sincerity but the righteousness of his behavior as well. David was willing to submit to the LORD’s standards and therefore was eager to call on the LORD to judge him.
The world tries to act as if everyone is above being judged. The Christian lives not only knowing that he will be judged but also thankful that God on high will be that judge. The world complains to anyone acknowledging an objective standard, “Don’t judge me!” The child of God prays humbly to the Father in heaven and says, “Please judge me.” The thought alone of asking for divine judgment is sobering, and yet it is possible because of the righteousness possible through God’s revealed Son and God’s revealed Word (Rom. 1:16-17). Pointing people to the universal standard of divine truth is essential for a Christian, but before going into battle in the world with the sword of the Spirit, the Christian first says, “Judge me.”