Commands of Christ

Judge Not

Where is this command found?

“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”

Matthew 7:1–3

Applying This Command

God has instilled in every human being a need for righteous judgment. However, instead of looking to the Judge of all the earth to plead our case, we many times take matters into our own hands acting as the judge. One of the problems with this approach is that we tend to be very subjective in our personal sense of justice. We may want harsh judgment towards the person who offended us and yet, when we are wrong, we desire mercy shown to us.

So how should we properly address a wrong we see in someone else’s life? Jesus gives us the answer in the command Judge Not found in Matthew 7:1–5. First, like removing the “beam” in our own eye, we are to allow the Lord to deal with our own shortcomings. Then, we can see clearly to help others with the “mote” in their eye who may be struggling in similar ways.

Once we have allowed God to work repentance and humility in our own lives, we then have the tools needed to lovingly share the truth with others. If we fail to take these important steps, not only do we run the risk of offending the person who we are trying to help, but we will also fall under the same judgment with which we have judged.

Bible Verses for Meditation

In addition to meditation on Matthew 7:1–3, meditating on the verses below will provide you with further insight and understanding of Christ’s command: Judge Not.

James 4:11–12

“Speak not evil one of another, brethren. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, speaketh evil of the law, and judgeth the law: but if thou judge the law, thou art not a doer of the law, but a judge. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?”

Galatians 6:1

“Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.”

Romans 2:1

“Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.”

Romans 12:3

“For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.”

Related Episodes

From the Podcast

Dive deeper into the command Judge Not with these episodes from the Commands of Christ podcast!

Study Question

Q: David’s wisest and most trusted advisor was Ahithophel. Seeking his counsel was like inquiring “at the oracles of God.” Why, then, did Ahithophel join Absalom’s revolt against David and give counsel to kill David?

A: Ahithophel was a wise and trusted counselor of David. He was so wise that it was said of him, “the counsel of Ahithophel, which he counselled in those days, was as if a man had inquired at the oracle of God” (II Samuel 16:23). With such wisdom, it would seem obvious that Ahithophel would remain loyal to David when David’s son Absalom rose up and rebelled against David.

However, Ahithophel turned against David and not only joined Absalom, but also gave Absalom counsel on how to kill David. When Absalom decided not to follow the counsel of Ahithophel, Ahithophel went home, put his house in order, and hanged himself. (See II Samuel 17:1–4, 14, 23.)

What Ahithophel intended to do to David, he did to himself. But why? A possible answer is found in the genealogies of Ahithophel. Ahithophel was a Gilonite (see II Samuel 15:12). Eliam was the son of Ahithophel (see II Samuel 23:34). Eliam was the father of Bathsheba (see II Samuel 11:3). Ahithophel could have been the grandfather of Bathsheba, and just as Absalom had purposed to kill Amnon for immorality with his sister, so Ahithophel may have become bitter and purposed to kill David for defiling his granddaughter.

Ahithophel and Absalom were of like spirit and died for their judgments against David. Both had concluded that David was not fit to rule the nation and sought to remove him from this position. Their destruction illustrates the damage that comes to those who judge others. (See II Samuel 15:12, 17:13, and 18:15.)

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