Source: Karlo Broussard from Catholic Answers on YouTube
Are Christians Failing Jesus’ Command to Judge Not?
Christians are often accused of contradicting Jesus’ command in Matthew 7:1 to “judge not” when they judge some behavior to be wrong. But is this what Jesus meant when he gave the instruction? In this Ready Reasons video, Karlo shows why this interpretation is flawed and explains exactly what Jesus meant when he said, “Judge not, that you be not judged.”
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About Karlo Broussard:
Karlo Broussard, a native of Crowley, Louisiana, left a promising musical career to devote himself full-time to the work of Catholic apologetics. For more than a decade he has traveled the country teaching apologetics, biblical studies, theology, and philosophy. Karlo has published articles on a variety of subjects in Catholic Answers Magazine, is a regular guest on Catholic Answers Live, and is an active blogger at catholic.com.
Karlo holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in theology from Catholic Distance University and the Augustine Institute, and is currently working on his masters in philosophy with Holy Apostles College and Seminary. He also worked for several years in an apprenticeship with nationally known author and theologian Fr. Robert J. Spitzer at the Magis Center of Reason and Faith.
Karlo is one of the most dynamic and gifted Catholic speakers on the circuit today, communicating with precision of thought, a genuine love for God, and an enthusiasm that inspires.
When Christians make a judgment that some behavior is immoral, we’re often hit with the “judge not” card from Matthew 7:1. How can we judge someone, it’s argued, when Jesus himself said “Do not judge”?
Are we Christians failing our Blessed Lord? The answer’s no, and here’s the reason why.
We know that Jesus can’t be forbidding us to judge a behavior as immoral, because a few verses latter in verse five he gives us precise instruction on how to do it. He says, “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.”
It’s not that we shouldn’t judge our brother’s behavior as immoral. Jesus just wants us to make sure that when we do judge a behavior to be wrong, and encourage our brother to avoid it, we are first a credible witness living an upright life. Moreover, he wants us to have a forgiving and merciful attitude toward others as God has toward us.
Now, there’s one important thing that we have to remember when we judge a behavior to be immoral: we can’t pronounce judgment on the state of a person’s soul and declare him guilty. Paul makes this clear in 1 Corinthians 4:4-6. There he acknowledges that although he’s not aware of any sin that he’s guilty of, he’s not thereby acquitted. He then instructs the Corinthians, “Therefore, do not pronounce judgment before…the Lord comes.”
Like Paul, we must recognize that it’s not our place to pronounce judgment on the state of a person’s soul, since only God is privy to such things.
So, to my Christian friends I say, “There’s no need to fear contradicting our Lord when you judge a behavior to be wrong. Just make sure that when you do it, you keep in mind that God alone knows that person’s culpability.”
If you want to learn more about this topic and others like it, visit our website at catholic.com. Also, visit catholicanswersspeakers.com to learn how you can bring me out to speak at your event.
For Catholic Answers, I’m Karlo Broussard. Thanks for watching.
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