Do Not Judge–Part I
The meanings of the word “judge” I’m looking at today are 1) to form an idea, opinion, or estimate about any matter, and 2) to criticize or censure. I believe that we criticize or censure people based upon the ideas and opinions we’ve formed about them.
A friend of mine is going through a separation from her husband. She’s a Christian and she knows God hates divorce. But what is she to do? Stay in a marriage where her husband doesn’t value her? I was praying for her a couple weeks ago, and God showed me she had tried very hard to keep her marriage together. This is the same friend I talked about last week when I said she was extraordinary. Because I think she is.
Another friend, whom I knew was heading for great trouble when she married her husband about eight or so years ago. I knew they were wrong for each other, even though they’d been together for many years, I knew things would go badly for her. She’s recently had a revelation about her husband that took blinders off her eyes. Some friends are visiting her this week. I hope and pray they can minister to her.
The Bible says that God hates divorce. Divorce separates what two have joined together to become one. When two people marry, not only are their bodies joined together in sexual union, but their souls (mind, will, and emotions), and their spirits are joined together. That’s why it’s so painful when divorce or separation occurs.
Another friend stubbornly held on to a marriage because she hated divorce as well. She’d already been through it once. When her husband was seriously injured in a construction accident, and never fully recovered, she was determined to stay with him. But he rejected her, eventually cutting her off from helping him in any way, shape, or form. Finally, she divorced him. She is now remarried to a man who I think loves her for who she is. I’m glad for her.
The point I’m making here is that I’m in support of my friends. Jesus said “Judge not, lest you be judged. For in whatever measure you judged, you shall be judged.” The Psalms state that mercy triumphs over judgment. Jesus also said “Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy.”
In the case of the first friend, whom God revealed some things about her to me, she cannot go into details about why she had to leave her husband. Many of her acquaintances and friends are judging her. Many more, I hope, are praying for her, because she needs the strength of God to get through this. So I will not judge her. I support her.
We need not condemn, but show mercy. I need all the mercy I can get at times. I’m so thankful that divorce was not in my immediate family. My parents and grandparents were not divorced. My first grandfather died before I was born. I never knew him. My dad died after forty years of marriage to Mom. His parents died a couple years later within a year of each other. Poppop was 101-1/2 years old when he died.
I waited to marry until I was well past thirty. I didn’t feel ready for marriage in my twenties, and the “right man” had not come along. But he and I chose well, and we’ve been married twenty-seven years. He is precious to me.
What about you? Does God reveal to you things about others you care for? Do you have trouble not judging people when they get divorced? Have you supported your friends and relatives during times of trial even when you don’t understand? Leave a comment and let me know.