Advancing the Conversation of Jesus
Jesus is teaching about how to make some common sense judgment calls in the most effective way possible. Step #1 is to JUDGE WITH THE PROPER SPIRIT. Remember that in the way you make a judgment call about someone or something, you will be judged in the same way and by the same standard as you judge. So be careful how you judge others. Step #2-JUDGE WITH THE PROPER STARTING POINT. Start with yourself first.
Jesus continues his teachings on how to judge with: “Do not give what is holy to dogs and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.” (Matthew 7:6) This may seem to be out of place in Jesus’ teachings on how to judge another, but I don’t think so. This is Step #3-JUDGE WITH PROPER SCREENING.
This is a warning by Jesus that your very good, sound, common sense judgment calls must be matched to the context where it is shared. This is SECRET #35: The follower of Jesus judges with a certain filtering. When you judge with conclusion judgment, don’t just randomly make your judgment calls wherever you might be. For instance, don’t walk into a bar and start making pronouncements against drunkenness and alcoholism. This will be throwing your pearls before swine. They not only will not appreciate your words, but they will not be able to hear them at all. Your conclusions will not be appreciated and they may have valid grounds to criticize you. Just today I saw a pastor on the news preaching to the families in line to see Santa that Santa is a lie and Jesus is the truth. Guess what? No one heard this man’s message. He was casting pearls, not presenting Jesus attractively.
When you make a proper judgment, you judge with a proper spirit, start with yourself first and be careful who you share your judgments with. Your fine judgment calls might not be received well. This can be easily applied to your interaction with those outside the faith. Don’t just preach to someone what you have determined or found to be true. If the people you are talking with are not interested in, leaning in a bit or open to what you are saying, your audience may tear you to pieces. And, who could blame them?
The Good News of Jesus is that He loves and accepts you just as you are. That, in itself, can be offensive, if you are more interested in earning your acceptance with God. Also, 50% or more of the people of the world are turned off by Christianity and its religious system. Unless you are able to disconnect Jesus from the religious system of Christianity, your audience may be already turned off with your thoughts and conclusions.
So be careful what you say to whatever audience you encounter. SECRET #35: The follower of Jesus judges with a certain filtering.