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Summary: A second message based on Matthew 7:1-5, but from a different perspective...

How to be a Bad Judge

Matthew 7:1-5

July 31, 2005

Introduction

I’m not sure what’s going on, but I can’t seem to get past this issue of judging.

At the base, I think it’s that I’m tired of people taking misperceptions about what judging is really all about and running around with error determining their views about judging and what it involves.

For the last two weeks I’ve focused on what might be called "apologetic" arguments - defending the Biblical definition of judging and why it’s not only appropriate, but really essential when it comes to evaluating people’s behavior, attitudes, opinions, beliefs, or whatever.

This week I want to continue our look at judging, and I’m going to take a different approach. I want to talk about how to be bad judges.

Huh? Wouldn’t you rather tell us how to avoid being bad judges, PB? Yup. But we explored that two weeks ago, and we’re going to touch on it more next week as we get ready to move on to the next section of Matthew 7.

But sometimes we’re better able to see the point when we look at something from the opposite angle. I think you’ll catch on as we go through the message.

But right now I’d like you to stand with me, if you’re able, and read aloud this passage from Matthew 7:1-5.

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

3 "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? 4 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? 5 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."

Next week we’re going to move on to verse 6 of this chapter, where Jesus says this -

"Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces."

My original plan was to discuss that verse today, but I’m still wresting with it, making sure I’m understanding it correctly so we can look at just how it applies in our current times.

But today, I want us to look at 5 techniques we can use to become bad judges. If you’ve ever wanted to be a Pharisaical, hypocritical judge of people, then this is your lucky day!!

I think that as we go through each of these, you will find two things:

First, you’ll see how wonderfully easy each of these are to put into practice.

Second, you’ll find that you already might be practicing some or all of them. And if your goal is to be this kind of person, then you’re well on your way! Congratulations!

Let’s dive right in, shall we? Let’s begin by looking at the first technique you can use to become a bad judge, and that is to...

1. Develop the attitude that you’re better than others.

Especially when it comes to your spirituality. There’s nothing like being a person who thinks they have everything figured out and settled, and is no longer in need of any more spiritual growth or personal character development.

Superiority is a big thing in the world today. We hear about being the "top dog," or the "alpha male" in a pack. Women strive for this many times as well, although many times it takes place in the context of relationships outside the workplace.

But really, who doesn’t want to be on top? Who doesn’t want to be seen as the "crème of the crop," especially when it comes to "being spiritual," or being a "good Christian?"

Well, friends, you need to develop a sense of spiritual superiority. I say "develop" this attitude, because it doesn’t just happen overnight. It takes years to get really good at this.

And if you do it right, you’ll eventually get to the point where you don’t even recognize you’ve reached this point. Cool, huh?

If you haven’t begun using this important technique, then start today! You can leave this very service feeling spiritually smug and ignoring everything we’ve done here today in singing, praising God’s name, praying, and reading God’s Word.

One great way to do that is to leave every service with this thought in mind: "I hope so and so was listening today, because they really needed to hear that!"

Being spiritually superior means not having to actually listen to the pastor drone on and on about actually doing what the Bible says. Pretending to listen is just fine...

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