Matthew 7:1 Do not judge, or you too will be judged.
Verb - Present Imperative Active - 2nd Person Plural
Strong's 2919: Properly, to distinguish, i.e. Decide; by implication, to try, condemn, punish.
The judgement that is told not to be done is unrighteous judgment. However, there are cases where judgment is righteous.
I was just talking with my sister who was saying that we should never judge others. However, I believe that there are situations where judgement can be used. Take for example in a court of law, where a judge has to make a prison sentence for a person who committed a crime like murder. We know that murder is a sin. How long should that person go in jail? After all, we canít let violent people just go out on the streets to continue committing crimes without any sort of judgment put on them.
If there is a criminal that keeps committing crimes then we have to do something about it. We canít just let them run off. Thatís my argument. However, no prisoner will be in jail forever. No matter how many years their sentence is, eventually they are let out. Because eventually they believe in Jesus Christ and are thus permanently saved.
Meanwhile, I was talking to my mother about it and she agrees with my point. Even though she believes in Eternal Conscious Torment, we both agree that there are situations where judgement is necessary. If someoneís running towards you screaming that theyíre going to murder you and theyíre holding a knife, then you must judge that they are going to try committing the sin of murder on you and murdering you.
Thus, the purpose of judgement is not to punish for the sake of torture, but to punish to protect others and for correctional purposes. So I believe that judgement is a tool. There are, of course, people who judge in evil ways, which harms others. Yet, there are also people who judge what is good, which is good.
An example of unrighteous judgement would be solely looking at a personís mere outward appearance, or the height of oneís stature, as described in this verse.
1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said to Samuel, ďDo not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.Ē
Meanwhile, an example of righteous judgement would be exposing sin.
When I rebuke others, I do it knowing that, even though other people have sins, I also have sins. Like, I have a whole ďRebukeĒ section on my website where I expose the false doctrine of eternal conscious torment doctrine. That also serves the purpose of warning people, judgment on ideas, to protect people from harm.
Yet, I do not want people to suffer because of sins too, that is why I rebuke people. The sin of murder causes physical pain because getting stabbed hurts. Stealing another personís wife through unlawful sexual intercourse causes mental pain, the sin of adultery. The guilt the sinners experience after this is mentally painful. In their head, they may have regrets, feelings of sadness. Imagine if that negative experience could have been prevented altogether. Thatís the purpose of judgement.
What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin,
It is why it is essential for every parent to discipline their child. Iím not talking about physical abuse here, like the evil of corporeal punishment. What I mean is training a child in righteousness.
Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
Training a child with love is righteous judgement, righteous parenting. Yet, causing a child to become provoked by anger by being cruel is unrighteous judgement, unrighteous parenting.
Ephesians 6:4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
Colossians 3:21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.
Therefore, in some cases, judgment is love. Because discipline means correction, correction implying that we have found something wrong to make right, and finding something wrong is a definition of judgement.
Proverbs 13:24 Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.
but he who loves him
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Participle - masculine singular construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's 157: To have affection
John 13:34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.
Verb - Present Subjunctive Active - 2nd Person Plural
Strong's 25: To love, wish well to, take pleasure in, long for; denotes the love of reason, esteem. Perhaps from agan; to love.
Love means discipline, and the Lord has commanded us to love one another, therefore he has commanded us to discipline one another. Judgement, in certain cases, can be necessary in identifying what exactly is the problem in a situation in order for righteous discipline to be applied to it.
Righteous judgment is like a doctor doing a diagnosis on a patient. They do it to treat the patient. However, unrighteous judgement is like a medical worker doing a false diagnosis on a patient. Why cause someone unnecessary harm? Taking discipline can be hard to bear. Iíve certainly been discipline when I went from Eternal Conscious Torment to Annihilationism to the truth of Universal Reconciliation. At the moment, it was very difficult, realizing that like, my writings many years ago about Annihlationism were wrong. I had to take the discipline, the judgment of truth and correct my way of thinking. But in the end it was worth it.
Even though everyone is a sinner, doesnít mean we should commit as many sins as we want. Just because we are saved by faith alone in Christ, doesnít mean we should sin as much as we can. The reason we must avoid sin is because itís physically and mentally harmful, as described above. The wages of every single sin is death.