I follow a Christian blog called Girl Defined, and they recently uploaded a blog post about overcoming same-sex attraction (if you get a chance, you should go check it out; it’s amazing). Same-sex attraction (SSA) is a really controversial topic, even among Christians. In their post, they used scripture to support that SSA is a temptation of this world, and if you give in it is a sin.
Of course, as one might expect, their audience blew up the comment section. Sure, there were a lot of comments saying that SSA isn’t wrong and that it’s okay to act upon those feelings. I was expecting those kind of comments. What amazed me the most, however, was how many people accused the authors of judging those who experience SSA.
In the blog post, the authors said that SSA was like anything else: a temptation that many people struggle with. No where in the post did they strike down those who experience SSA. They just addressed that it was something that God could help anyone overcome. They didn’t say that if you experienced these temptations that you were a bad person or worse than everyone else.
Judging others isn’t the same thing as informing them.
You are able to inform someone about there sins, in a compassionate and loving way, without judging them. We all sin, but we also should hold our brothers and sisters accountable for our actions. Just because you let someone know in a Christ-like way that what they are doing is a sin doesn’t mean you are judging that person.
For example, if I am at the market with a group of friends and I see one of my friends slip something they didn’t pay for in there pocket, it would be totally acceptable for me to tell my friend kindly that stealing is wrong. Me telling them this doesn’t mean I think poorly or any differently of my friend, I just was informing them that what they were doing was wrong. If I made a huge scene, called them an awful person, etc., then that would be judging. Kindly informing someone about their wrongdoing is not.
Our society is so quick to judge.
I do it all the time. Most of the time when we judge, its almost unconsciously. Its second nature. I understand how people could mistake pointing out peoples wrongs as judging, because thats a form of action that we are used to. However, we should be careful, because sometimes our accusations can be wrong and hurtful.
What the bible has to say about: judging others and keeping our peers accountable
Matthew 7: 1-5
“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”
These verses clearly tell us that we are in no place to judge. It uses the speck and plank metaphor to show that we are all sinners, and until we are free of that sin, we should not judge our peers. God, who is sinless, is therefore the only one who can rightfully judge us.
“Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.”
Here, we are told to keep each other accountable by telling one another kindly when one is in the wrong. But, we are also reminded that even though we are spiritual, we will be tempted as well.
Tip and tidbits about prevention from judging others*
- Always consider the situation. What is going on? Why do you feel judgement towards the person? Remember that we are all human, therefore we all sin.
- Even if we don’t agree with someone, doesn’t mean we need to thrust judgment upon them. We are all, at some point or another, going to disagree with someone. That doesn’t mean that we need to think higher of ourselves, or even that they are in the wrong. You don’t have to agree, but we are called as Christians to love one another, even with our differences.
*These tips and tidbits are specific to me and my life. Although they may work for the reader, I am not a professional in this area. These are merely suggestions that may or may not work for anyone.