Summary: We need to stop judging other when they do not look and act like us.
“Looking past the outside”
We as a church and Christians have bee taught wrong. We were taught that we must separate ourselves from the outside world. We were taught that we should not have friends that are not Christians. Some of us were told that if they do not go to our church then we can not hang with them. Let’s look at how Jesus handled this.
Luke 4:18-19 (New Living Translation)
18 “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, 19 and that the time of the LORD’s favor has come. [a]”
a. Luke 4:19 Or and to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord. Is 61:1-2 (Greek version); 58:6.
Jesus was ministering love to all people not just the ones who looked right or smelled right or said the right things. God sent His son Jesus to save the world not to judge us.
John 3:16-18 (New Living Translation)
16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. 18 “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.
If someone is not walking with Christ, the judgment is already on them. They do not need us to judge them. All we will do is run them off from the place that will give them the one and only help that can change them.
John 12:46-48 (New Living Translation)
46 I have come as a light to shine in this dark world, so that all who put their trust in me will no longer remain in the dark. 47 I will not judge those who hear me but don’t obey me, for I have come to save the world and not to judge it. 48 But all who reject me and my message will be judged on the Day of Judgment by the truth I have spoken.
God does not need our help.
The outward appearance and action is a result of something wrong on the inside. It is our job as Christians to not judge someone that is not at the same spiritual level as we are.
1 Peter 4:8 (New Living Translation)
8 Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.
Love will overlook sin. We have to learn to hate the sin and love the person. When we show love to someone we allow God to be able to move in their lives. When God gets into their soul we will start to see real lasting change on the outside. The outside stuff will start dropping off from self convictions.
God sums up the New Testament in two statements.
Matthew 22:34-40 (New Living Translation)
The Most Important Commandment
34 But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees with his reply, they met together to question him again. 35 One of them, an expert in religious law, tried to trap him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the Law of Moses?”
37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”
a. Matthew 22:37/ Deut 6:5.
b. Matthew 22:39/ Lev 19:18.
God tells the leaders of the church that of all of the commandments love your God and love your neighbor. If we can get these two down then the rest will be taken care of. We will not want to steel, will not want to kill, and will not covet our neighbors stuff.
We have to change the church culture. It starts with us.
Luke 6:31-33 (New Living Translation)
31 Do to others as you would like them to do to you. 32 “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! 33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much!
We are not any better than the people we are judging. Even when we know that the person is a Christian. The bible says that there are three things that will last forever. Faith, Hope, and Love and the greatest of these is love.