Be Careful How You Judge

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In several of the Methodist pages in the wonderful world of social media, Judge not is often a hot topic. In an effort to give us all something to think about, David Reynolds has allowed me to reprint his sermon notes here. The notes appear unedited by me but David did ask that I be clear that he felt the Spirit leading him to preach on this difficult topic. He said:

Everywhere my wife Liz Bluff Reynolds and I seem to turn these days, we keep hearing people, both believers and nonbelievers, through up in the faces of Christians, “You are not supposed to judge.”  I feel this passage from the Sermon on the Mount, as well as others on this topic but this one in particular, are so often taken out of context, misunderstood, and applied in a manner in which the Holy Spirit never intended they be applied.

So, without further adieu, the sermon notes. Enjoy and thank you David!


BE CAREFUL HOW YOU JUDGE: GUIDELINES FOR JUDGING YOURSELF AND OTHERS

–MATTHEW 7:1-5

–A Sermon by The Rev. R. David Reynolds, preached at Macedonia and Dahlgren United Methodist Churches on 14 June 2015

–JOHN 7:24 (CALL TO WORSHIP): “‘Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.”

INTRODUCTION: LOST, NONBELIEVERS LIKE TO THROW UP JESUS’ WORDS FROM MATTHEW 7:1 IN CHRISTIANS’ FACES: “‘Do not judge, or you too will be judged.”

A. MOST MISUNDERSTOOD OF ALL WORDS

OF JESUS

B. NOT A COMMANDMENT SET IN STONE

C. GUIDELINES FOR US TO FOLLOW IN

  1. FIRST JUDGING OURSELVES

  2. THEN OTHERS

D. JAMES L. MELTON:

  1. PASTOR OF BIBLE BAPTIST CHURCH

a. SHARON, TENNESSEE

b. 122.22 MIL. SOUTH OF MARION

c. TRIP OF 2 HOURS, 15 MIN.

d. ONLY 8.2 MILES FROM UNIVERSITY

OF TENNESSEE, MARTIN

e. LESS THAN 50 MILES FROM MURRAY

STATE UNIVERSITY IN KENTUCKY

f. POPULATION @944 IN Weakley co.

  1. STORY: “AS I STOOD IN A VOTING LINE

ONE DAY I OVERHEARD A WOMAN

JUSTIFYING HER FOOLISH CHOICE FOR

PRESIDENT BY SAYING, ‘WELL, WE

AREN’T SUPPOSED TO JUDGE. IMAGINE

THAT! CHOOSING NOT TO JUDGE A

POLITICAL CANDIDATE ON ELECTION

DAY! NO WONDER OUR NATION IS IN

SUCH A MESS.” (http://www.biblebelievers.com/jmelton/Judging.html)

I. START TO FINISH: JUDGMENT ROOTED AND

GROUNDED IN JESUS

A. JUDGE OF ALL THE EARTH

B. THEOPHANY:

  1. PRE BETHLEHEM VISIT TO SOMEONE IN

OLD TESTAMENT

  1. ABRAHAM IN GENESIS 18:25,

“FOR BE IT FROM YOU TO DO

SUCH A THING TO KILL THE

RIGHTEOUS WITH THE WICKED

ALIKE. FAR BE IT FROM YOU! WILL

NOT THE JUDGE OF ALL THE EARTH

DO RIGHT?”

a. RHETORICAL QUESTION

b. ANSWER OBVIOUS, “OF

COURSE HE WILL”

  1. JOHN 5:22-27

a. JESUS: HEALED MAN LAME

FOR 38 YEARS

b. ON THE SABBATH

c. JEWISH LEADERS ‘BEGAN TO

PERSECUTE HIM; QUESTION HIS

AUTHORITY”

  1. NT AFFIRMATION OF JESUS AS

JUDGE OF ALL THE EARTH

a. FATHER JUDGES NO ONE

b. FATHER HAS ENTRUSTED ALL

JUDGEMENT TO THE SON

c. FATHER HAS GIVEN THE SON

AUTHORITY TO JUDGE BECAUSE

HE IS THE “SON OF MAN”

d. OUR JUDGE IS IN ALL WAYS

JUST LIKE US, YET WITHOUT

SIN: ONLY ONE WORTHY

TO BE THE JUDGE OF ALL THE

EARTH

II. MEANING OF JESUS’ WORDS, “DO NOT

JUDGE, OR YOU TOO WILL BE JUDGED.”

A. NOT AN ABSOLUTE COMMANDMENT

TO FOLLOW

B. GUIDELINES FOR OUR JUDGING

YOURSELVES AND OTHERS:

C. CONTEXT: TO UNDERSTAND VERSE 1

MUST GO TO VERSE 5:

  1. “FIRST TAKE THE PLANK OUT

OF YOUR OWN EYE.”

  1. “THEN YOU WILL SEE CLEARLY TO

REMOVE THE SPECK FROM

EYE OF BIC/SIC.”

  1. SELF-EXAMINATION, THE PLACE

TO BEGIN

  1. PHARISEES

a. POINT OUT SINS OF OTHERS

b. BLIND TO THERE OWN MAJOR

SINS

  1. TYPICAL OF YOU AND ME AS WALL

  2. TOM T. HALL SONG RECORDED BY

JEANNIE C. RILEY IN 1968, “HARPER

VALLEY PTA”

a. BILLBOARD’S #1, COUNTRY SONG

b. FOLLOWING WEEK, #1, POP SONG:

I wanna tell you all a story ’bout a Harper Valley widowed wife,

Who had a teenage daughter who attended Harper Valley Junior High,

Well her daughter came home one afternoon and didn’t even stop to play,

And she said.”Mom I got a note here from the Harper Valley PTA.”

Well the note said, “Mrs. Johnson, you’re wearing your dresses way too high.

It’s reported you’ve been drinkin’ and runnin’ round with men and goin’ wild.

And we don’t believe you oughta be a bringin’ up your little girl this way.”

And it was signed by the secretary, “Harper Valley PTA.”

Well it happened that the PTA was gonna meet that very afternoon.

And they were sure surprised when Mrs. Johnson wore her mini-skirt into the room.

And as she walked up to the black board, I still recall the words she had to say.

She said I’d like to address this meeting of the Harper Valley PTA.

Well, there’s Bobby Taylor sittin’ there, and seven tims he’s asked me for a date.

And Mrs. Taylor seems to use a lotta ice, whenever he’s away.

And Mr. Baker can you tell us why your secretary had to leave this town?

And shouldn’t widow Jones be told to keep her window shades a pulled completely down.

Well Mr. Harper couldn’t be here cause he stayed too long at Kelly’s Bar again.

And if you smell Shirley Thompson’s breath you’ll find she’s had a little nip of gin.

And then you have the nerve to tell me, you think that as a mother I’m not fit.

Well this is just a little Peyton Place, and you’re all Harper Valley hypocrites.

No, I wouldn’t put you on because, it really did happen just this way.

The day my momma socked it to, the Harper Valley PTA.

The day my momma socked it to, the Harper Valley PTA. (https://play.google.com/music/preview/Tgrobtot7qcyknycbe7wqmtuqm4?lyrics=1&utm_source=google&utm_medium=search&utm_campaign=lyrics&pcampaignid=kp-lyrics)

  1. TWO POINTS: “DON’T BE. . . .

a. HYPOCRITICAL

b. SELF-RIGHTEOUS IN JUDGING

OTHERS

  1. HYPOCRITE:

a. ONE WHO PRETENDS TO BE WHAT

HE/SHE IS NOT

b. GREEK WORD: AN ACTOR IN A PLAY

c. SCRIBES/PHARISEES

  1. JESUS GIVES US PROPER ORDER IN

PASSING JUDGMENTS:

a. FIRST: REMOVE PLANK FROM MY

OWN EYE

b. THEN: WARN BROTHER/SISTER

SPECK IN THEIR EYE

III. TWO TYPES OF JUDGMENT

A. JUDGMENT OF CONDEMNATION

  1. ONLY JUDGE OF ALL THE EARTH CAN

MAKE

  1. ONLY HE

a. KNOWS SPIRITUAL CONDITION OF

EVERYONE’S HEART

b. ABLE TO SEPARATE SHEEP

FROM GOATS

c. ABLE TO DISTINGUISH

RIGHTEOUS FROM WICKED

d. REASON IN I SAMUEL 16:7,

“PEOPLE LOOK AT THE OUTWARD

APPEARANCE, BUT THE LORD

LOOKS UPON THE HEART.”

e. ABLE TO DO THE RIGHT THING

B. JUDGMENT O DISCERNMENT

(CHRISTIANS) QUALIFIED/CALLED TO DO:

  1. KNOWLEDGE, UNDERSTANDING

  2. DISTINGUISH DIFFERENCE BETWEEN:

a. RIGHT/WRONG

b. RIGHTEOUSNESS/SIN

c. GALATIANS 6:1, “Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.”

C. SIN CLEARLY DEFINED IN SCRIPTURES:

  1. I COR. 6:9-10

  2. GALATIANS 5:19-20

  3. REV. 22:15

  4. SIN ENTAILS: SEXUAL IMMORALITY,

IDOLATRY, ADULTERY, PRACTICE OF

HOMOSEXUALITY, THEFT, GREEDNESS,

DRUNKENESS, SLANDER, SWINDLING,

IMPURITY, DEBAUCHERY, WITCH-

CRAT, HATRED, DISCORD, JEALOUSY,

FITS OF RAGE, SELFISH AMBITION,

DISSENSIONS, FACTIONS, ENVY,

ORGIES AND THE LIKE, MURDER,

LYING: COMBINED TOTAL OF 23

B. OUR CALLING IN MAKING DISCIPLES:

  1. WARN THOSE WHO COMMIT SUCH SINS

  2. CALL THEM TO REPENTANCE AND FAITH

IN JESUS CHRIST AS THEIR SAVIOUR

AND LORD

  1. IN THE SPIRIT OF EZKIEL 33:8-9, “When I say to the wicked, “You wicked person, you will surely die,” and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 9 But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.”

  2. IN HE SPIRIT OF EPHESIANS 4:15,

“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.”

C. JESUS CALLS US TO BE JUDGES

  1. JUDGE OURSELVES, OUR SINS,

REPENT FIRST

  1. THEN SEE CLEARLY TO SPEAK THE

TRUTH IN LOVE TO BROTHERS/

SISTERS

D. PROBLEM: TEND TO BECOME JUDGMEN-

TAL

  1. LACK COMPASSION

  2. FORGET, “THERE BUT FOR THE GRACE

OF GOD GO I

  1. LACK FAIRNESS

  2. COME ACROSS AS:

a. HOLIER THAN THOU

b. SELF-RIGHTEOUS

c. HYPOCRITICAL

d. PHARISACIAL

E. LIKE SELF-RIGHTEOUS PHARISEE IN LUKE

18 WE COME ACROSS WITH ATTITUDE:

  1. GOD, I THANK YOU THAT I AM NOT

LIKE OTHER PEOPLE

a. ROBBERS

b. EVILDOERS

c. ADULTERS

  1. OR EVEN LIKE THIS TAX COLLECTOR

(“. . .WHO IS GOING TO HELL”)

  1. I:

a. FAST TWICE EVERY WEEK

b. I GIVE A TENTH OF ALL I GET

  1. IN OUR JUDGING WE TOO OFTEN

BECOME:

a. “JUST A LITTLE PETYON PLACE”

b. “AND WE’RE ALL HARPER VALLEY

HYPOCRITES”

c. TO SUCH OF THESE JESUS SAYS,

“JUDGE NOT, AND YOU WILL NOT

BE JUDGED”

CONCLUSION: REMEMBER

A. JUDGMENT BEGINS AND ENDS WITH JESUS

  1. ONLY HE CAN:

a. CONDEMN

b. SEPARATE THE SHEEP FROM THE GOATS

c. SEPARATE THE RIGHTEOUS FROM THE

WICKED

  1. ONLY HE: “KNOWS EACH HUMAN HEART”

  2. JUDGMENT OF CONDEMATION:

a. HIS CALL AND HIS ALONE

b. NOT OURS TO MAKE

B. WE ARE CALLED TO A JUDGMENT OF DISCERN-

MENT

C. LET US ALWAYS BE READY TO:

  1. SPEAK THE TRUTH IN LOVE

  2. SPEAK TO THE LOST TO:

a. WARN THEM OF THE CONSEQUENCES OF

SIN

b. TURN FROM THEIR WICKED WAYS

c. TURN IN REPENTANCE AND FAITH

TO JESUS AS THEIR LORD AND SAVIOUR

D. IN SO DOING WE WILL BE JUDGING:

  1. NOT BY APPEARANCES

  2. BUT CORRECTLY

E. WE WILL BE INVITING THE LOST TO ENTER

THE KINGDOM OF GOD

F. AMEN!!!!!!!

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