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Shouldn't Judge

Response idea:  "What do mean by judge?  Do you mean that my/Christians believing that beliefs contradictory to theirs aren't true is judging?  And would this be because I/Christians believe that what they believe is right and contradictory beliefs are wrong?   So when you say that I/Christians shouldn't judge, isn't it because you believe that our belief is wrong? And isn't this because you believe you are right? Isn't that a judgment of me/Christians?  So why is it wrong for me/Christians to judge the beliefs of others but it is OK for you to judge the beliefs of others, and in this case, your judging of my/Christian's beliefs?


The challenging statement "Christians shouldn't be intolerant" is a statement of intolerance, because this statement is a judgment of the person it is being said to by the person saying it.  Criticisms similar to “Christians shouldn’t be so intolerant” are “You/Christians shouldn’t judge” or “Christians are so judgmental”.  


When others claim “You shouldn’t judge”, they are doing so again because you as a Christian think you are right.  Think about those who believe differently than Christianity, and make the claim “You shouldn’t judge”. Don’t’ they think they are right?

When someone states, “You shouldn’t judge”, isn't that a judgment of the person they are stating it to?  “You shouldn’t judge” is in fact a judgment.  They are judging Christians for what they believe is the Christian's judgment of others’ beliefs.

“You shouldn’t judge” is another example of a self-contradictory statement and can be responded similarly to responding to the claim that Christians are intolerant.  A single sentence response to this criticism could be,

“If it is wrong to judge, then why are you judging me?”

If you have more time with the person making the claim, you could respond similar to the following dialog example which Greg Koukl has used when someone has made this statement to him:

Non-Christian: “You shouldn’t judge”

Christian: “Why not?”

Non-Christian: “Because you think you are right, and you think others are wrong”

Christian: “Do you think you are right?”

Non-Christian: “Yes”

(What are they going to say, that they are wrong? No. Otherwise they wouldn't believe the objection they are making.)

Christian: “Do you think I am wrong?”

(Again, what are they going to say? )

Christian: “Why when I think I’m right, I’m judgmental, but when you think you’re right, you’re just right?  What am I missing?”

   This again is a very similar response to being called “intolerant”.

This criticism against Christians about their judging typically comes from Matthew 7:1. Since those who criticize Christians typically misread this passage, they have turned it into a criticism against Christians. It is a popular one among those looking for ammunition against Christians so they can silence us:

Matt 7:1 “Do not judge so that you will not be judged.”

This verse is used by many in our “tolerant” culture to promote the belief that Christians don’t have the right to judge anything because Jesus said that we shouldn’t judge.  You may have noticed the irony in this especially since we've already looked into the idea of someone saying that we shouldn’t judge, showing that they are doing what they criticize Christians for.  The way they use this verse seems to almost be permission for them to judge Christians, while Christians are expected to remain silent.

So, is this a true and correct understanding of this verse and are we as Christians obligated to follow the verse the way it is presented by those using it in this way?  Often a single Bible verse can be used to justify something opposite what the Bible actually means. The following answers this challenge and shows the correct understanding of the verse.


Next Section:  Christians are Hypocrites

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