OceanSide church of Christ

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Judging According to Jesus

Wayne Rodgers


Text: Matt 7:1-6 

Thesis: to understand the we must judge properly


1.     Many saying today: “Judge not, that ye be not judged…”

A.     Many in response whenever someone points out the sins or faults of others.

B.     The impression left by many is that we should never make judgments against another person.

2.     Is this what Jesus intended?  Is this true?

A.     Are we to never question the actions or words or moral decisions of others?

B.     If there is something wrong, are we to never point it out?

3.     Often this statement is misused and Jesus’ intended teaching misconstrued.

A.     There are times we must make judgments.

B.     There are times when it is appropriate to point out faults in others.


       I.          Prohibition on “all” Judgments? - Many forbid “all” judgments…

A.     Such as adverse or unfavorable criticism

1.   Like pointing out a fault in someone else

2.   Even if it is truly “constructive criticism”

B.     Such as the exercise of “church discipline”

1.   Exercising discipline of any sort does require making certain judgments on others as to their moral or spiritual condition.

2.   Since such judgment is involved, some feel verses 1-2 prohibit any sort of discipline

C.     Such as exposing those who teach error

1.   Admittedly, it requires making a judgment in order to consider whether someone is teaching error

2.   Therefore, some people, in light of verses 1-2, believe we cannot speak out against those who teach error


Is that what Jesus means?   Must we remain silent when we see people overtaken in a fault, bringing reproach upon the name of Christ, or blatantly teaching error?  Rather, Jesus taught about making proper judgments.


     II.          Proper Judgments - Jesus did not rule out “all” forms of judgments

A.     Immediate Context

1.   Reveals that in some cases “proper” judgment must be made

2.   Matt. 7:6 implies judgment is to be made as to who are “dogs” and who are “hogs.”

a.     Otherwise, how can we know when not to give that which is holy to “dogs?”

b.     Or how can we know when not to case our pearls before “swine?”

3.   Matt. 7:15-20 implies that we must make judgments in determining who is a false teacher

a.     “ravening wolves” known “by their fruits”

B.     Remote Context

1.   Which speaks of times when judgment must be made.

2.   Elsewhere, Jesus taught people to “judge with righteous judgment” (John 7:24).

3.   Christians have a responsibility to “judge those who are inside” the local congregation (1 Cor. 5:9-13).

4.   We are taught be the apostle of love (1 John 4:1) to “test (try) the spirits.”


There is no contradiction here, for as we continue with our text, we notice that…


    III.          Improper Judgments - Jesus defined what “kind” of judging he is condemning.

A.     Judging when one is blind to his or her own faults…

1.   Notice verses 3-5.

2.   Jesus is saying that “it is wrong for anyone to concentrate his attention on the speck in his brother’s eye, and while thus occupied, to ignore the beam in his own eye” (Hendriksen).

3.   Just Paul taught the necessity of proper introspection when helping others – Gal 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.

B.     Judging without mercy and love

1.   The Lord is here condemning the spirit of censoriousness, judging harshly, self-righteously, without mercy, without love, as also the parallel passage clearly indicates (Hendriksen).

2.   Luke 6:36-37 

3.   James warned against making judgments without mercy - James 2:13  

a.     If we make judgments without showing mercy, then no mercy will be shown when we are judged!

b.     Just as Jesus said in verse 2…Mat 7:2 


The implication is not that we should never judge, but when we do judge, remember that we shall be judged by the same standards we use!  Let mercy and love temper our judgments.   Finally…


   IV.          Jesus implies there are times when we “MUST” make judgments!

A.     It is “after” we have corrected our own faults…

1.   First, we must remove the “beam” from our own eye – Mt. 7:5

2.   When we have done so, we are able to see, discern (judge), and be of help to others who are overtaken in their faults.

3.   Indeed, “the law of Christ” requires us to do so! – Gal 6:1-2 

B.     Again, we must judge between those “worthy” and those who are “hogs & dogs”

1.   Note carefully verse 6

a.     Some are not worthy of that which is “holy.”

b.     Some are like “dogs” and “swine”

c.      Determining who…requires “judgment” upon our part!

2.   With those who are receptive, we are to be long-suffering in trying to help them come out of their error

a.     2Ti 2:24-26

3.   But for those who are not, we are not to waste what is good and holy on them!

a.      The instructions of Jesus to His disciples – Matt 10:12-15  

b.     The example of Paul and Barnabas at Antioch of Pisidia – Acts 13:42-46 


1.     The kind of judging forbidden by Jesus is that which we would call: “self-righteous, hypocritical judging which is false and calls down God’s judgment on itself.”

2.     This is the kind of judging that was also condemned by James when he wrote:

James 4:11-12 

3.     May God help us refrain from such judging…

A.     To be more apt to remove the “beams” from our own eyes

B.     To then be more useful in helping others with their problems

4.     But to say we should never judge, is to abuse what Jesus teaches, not only in this passage but elsewhere as well!

5.     Speaking of judging, are we preparing ourselves for the day in which we will be judged by the Lord.

A.     John 12:48

B.     2 cor. 5:10