Judge Nothing

Have you ever found yourself wanting to deal out judgement on someone when you hear the evil that they’ve done? If someone breaks the law do you find yourself pointing your finger at them, hoping for the judge to throw the book at them? When you hear of someone’s hidden life of sin, do you want to see them shamed to repentance? If someone has wronged you, do you want to see their wrong come back to them seven-fold? It is easy to want to see justice when a wrong is committed. But we have to be careful. We can cry out for justice, but it is God’s job to judge because the bible teaches us that we are to judgenothing. First Corinthians 4:5 says:

"Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God."

I like what he says, “He will bring to light what is hidden in the darkness and will expose the motives of the heart.” We are not, and will never be qualified to judge someone else with a Godly judgement. First, because we are sinners ourselves. As Jesus says to the crowd about to stone the woman caught in the act of adultery. “He who is without sin, cast the first stone.” But also, because we don’t know the motives of the heart. Only God knows that. Some people do good things for the wrong reason, and some people do bad things for the right reason. I’m not saying that the ends justify the means, but it isn’t our call either way because God looks at our heart above all else. So I encourage you, to stay safe by judging nothing. Let God take care of all that. We need to focus on ourselves.

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Paul tells us to “judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart.” We need to remember our role in God’s plan. It isn’t to judge or to deal out justice. I know… It’s hard. I’ve found myself there too. I watch a lot of “true crime” shows and I love to see how God provides ways for the authorities to catch the bad guys. But I’m not the judge and I’m not the jury. It isn’t for me to deal out punishment or to judge someone for their actions. That is up to God. It is awesome that he uses people here on this earth to stop injustice and to sentence those who have broken the law. But unless you operate within those roles, I encourage you to leave it up to God.

While It Is Day

Would you consider yourself a “procrastinator”? Do you find yourself doing things at the last minute like cramming for a test, putting off household chores until the very last moment, or waiting too long to tell someone something that is time sensitive? If we procrastinate with some things, it may not matter much in the grand scheme of life. But there are some things that we should really do now… while we have time to do them. Jesus says in John chapter 9 verse 4:

"As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work."

In this verse, Jesus was talking about himself, that there was coming a day when he will no longer be in the world, but I think there is a greater implication to this verse for us as well. That we should do the work of the Lord while it is day because night is coming when no one can work. Today we are blessed to be able to share Christ freely - at least in America. But it is becoming less and less popular to do so. So, I encourage you to work while it is day. Spread Jesus’ love and his message of salvation, obey the scriptures, do whatever God is calling you to do - because night is coming, when no one can work.

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Jesus said, “As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.” I pray that you take this warning to heart. Don’t wait until the last minute to do what God is calling you to do. Wherever he is leading you, be about it today. And if you don’t know Jesus as Lord and Savior, don’t wait to come to him. Do it today. If you wait too long, you just might miss your chance. Remember, night is coming when no one can work. So I encourage you to do the work of the Lord now, when you can.

Fear of Exposure

Do you ever wonder why so much evil is done in the dark? Not just the metaphorical darkness, but often literal darkness as well. If you’re walking down the bad part of town at two in the morning, there is a much better chance for evil to fall upon you as opposed to if it were two in the afternoon. Much like the literal meaning, the bible teaches us that everyone who does evil hates the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. The metaphor for light and darkness is very clear in the bible, giving us a strong comparison between good and evil. In John chapter 3, verses 19 through 21, Jesus says:

"This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God."

Whether we are believers in Christ or not, we all need to examine our actions. Is there anything we are doing in the darkness for fear that our deeds will be exposed? Jesus tells us that whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God. God knows all of our deeds anyway. We can hide some things from men, but trying to hide anything from God is a futile exercise. So, I encourage you to examine your life to see if there is anything that remains in the dark. Because if we live by the truth we should have no fear that our deeds are seen in the light.

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“Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed.” We as believers should not have any fear of being exposed. We need to come into the light as Jesus calls us to, so that it may be seen plainly that what we have done has been done in the sight of God. I encourage you to examine your life. Is there anything you are doing in the dark for fear of exposure? Bring it to God, lay it before his feet. We do not want to be lovers of darkness, but lovers of the light and that light is Jesus the Christ.

Common To Man

The bible gives us several warnings as to how to behave and what we should avoid. Paul uses Israel’s history as a warning to the believers of his day, and these warnings are still true for us today. In first Corinthians 10 verses 12 through 13 it says:

"So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall! No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it."

So, a warning and an encouragement. Have you ever been there? Tempted in a clear area of weakness at a point where you know you are headed for a fall? But somehow, God provides a way out - a way to be victorious. At that point, it is up to us whether to choose his deliverance or to succumb to the temptation. Paul warns us that no man is beyond falling. It doesn’t matter how great your track record is when it comes to sin, any of us can fall. But he also encourages us that God is faithful, and in those moments when we are sure to fail, God will provide a way out because he will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear. So remember, no matter how strong or weak you think you are, anyone can fall or succeed because we are still flesh, yet at the same time, God is will provide a way out.

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Concerning sin: Do not think that you are so strong in the faith that you are beyond falling but also know that God has your back when you are in over your head. That is a great encouragement to every believer. It should help us to be humble when we think we have it all figured out, but also to lean on Jesus when temptation seems to have us cornered. I hope you and I never forget this truth from the scriptures.

Blameless

In the New Testament, Paul does a lot of follow up with many of the churches he ministered to. He also prays for them and thinks about them a lot. In some respects, I know how he feels. If you watch the television show, “Christian Music Videos” or have ever watched the show, I think about you and pray for you often. In First Corinthians chapter 1, Paul expresses his thoughts toward the church. I encourage you to read it. But specifically, in verse 8 he says: 

"He will also keep you firm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ."

The “he” that Paul is referring to is Jesus Christ. That Jesus will keep them firm to the end so that they will be blameless on the day of the Lord. That is my prayer for you also. For every Christian, our main concern should be remaining blameless before the Lord, and to continue to abide in him. Blameless doesn’t mean sinless. But I believe it does mean, in as much as it is possible with us, to be sinless - or to not enter into sin willingly. Paul says that with the help of Jesus, that is possible. We all want to be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ, and I continue to pray that you’re able to accomplish that as well.

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I pray that Jesus will keep you firm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. It isn’t easy to be blameless. But I believe that one weapon we can use, is to think on heavenly things. The more we consider our eternal future, the more we should desire to be right and blameless before our God. In life, there are so many things out of our control. But Paul encourages us, that with the help of Jesus, being blameless before God is something that is within our control.