Surely God is my salvation;

I will trust and not be afraid.

The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense;

he has become my salvation.” (Isaiah 12:2).  

DAILY DEVOTION, February 14, 2022

Judge not, that you be not judged (Matthew 7:1; see 1-21 for context)).

More than once, I have had this verse tossed at me whenever I comment on bad behavior or false doctrine. “We are not to judge.” Please read the entire passage. Of course, we are to make judgments, but we need to consider several principles. First, we are not to judge others unfairly. What goes around comes around. You don’t want others to judge you unfairly, so don’t be quick to judge others unfairly. Second, we need to judge ourselves first. Jesus spoke of a splinter in the eye of another and a log in our eye. Don’t come down harshly regarding another’s little sin while ignoring your enormous sins.

Later in the passage, Jesus speaks of false prophets. Of course, we must judge who speaks the truth and who doesn’t. This means we must be knowledgeable regarding the Scriptures. If someone says, “There are many paths to God,” we have to judge that those words are false. Jesus is the only path to God. However, we make judgments to help others, not to knock them over! Paul admonishes us to correct others with gentleness (1 Peter 3:15). Yes, make judgments, but with kindness. And make sure you see the log in your own eye before being harsh with others.

Father, help me to make judgments in a fair and gentle spirit. If I feel compelled to point out the sin of another, I want to act in a spirit that will help him, not hurt him. And please help me keep an eye on my sins when I look at the sins of others. Amen.

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