Judge Not

Q. When I talk to people about sin, I tell them that God loves the sinner but hates the sin. Their response is to say who am I to judge? Am I judging by pointing out certain sins in the Bible? If I am, is that wrong? What did Jesus mean when He said “Judge not, lest ye be judged”?

A. Pointing out that the Bible says certain behavior is sin is not the same as judging. A judge sentences people who have been convicted. When Jesus said, “Judge not lest you be judged” (Matt. 7:1) He was warning us against pronouncing judgment against someone. Doing so would be like saying, “Because you have sinned, you are going to Hell.”

I believe we are justified in saying something like, “The Bible defines certain behavior as sin, but it also says that Jesus gave His life so we can be forgiven of our sins. All we have to do is believe in Him and ask Him to forgive us.” That’s not pronouncing judgment on anyone.

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