Judge not, that you be not judged. Many people take that to mean that you aren't to judge at all. That is wrong thinking. In the Constitution, the King also said this: “For a good tree does not bear bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. For every tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they gather grapes from a bramble bush. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks."
In essence, what the King is saying is that we are like trees. What we embrace and "take in" will reveal who or what we are. Back in the first verse of the seventh chapter of Matthew, the Lord was referring to judging the intent of a man or woman's heart. Take for example, seeing a young child stealing an apple from a merchant's cart. The question is, are they a natural thief or is the child hungry for food, trying to survive? Either way, it is stealing, but only the creator God knows their heart. That is why He states these words: “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven." Note what the Lord Jesus stated: "Condemn not, you shall not be condemned" Our responsibility is to forgive. We are to forgive and not fight for what we think is our rights. Remember our King's words: “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves."
Now allow me to share this with you. Many times, here in the United States, we suffer tests and trials that have nothing to do with Christ. Here is the problem: We try to balance our rights in the world and its constitution, while trying to live by Kingdom standards. It won't work! Attending a religious institution won't blend with the Kingdom government message either. Religion always adds their customs, traditions and laws to the Kingdom message. The ambassador Paul had this same problem among the believers in Jerusalem. And certain men came down from Judea and taught the brethren, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.” Therefore, when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and dispute with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas and certain others of them should go up to Jerusalem, to the apostles and elders, about this question.
So, being sent on their way by the church, they passed through Phoenicia and Samaria, describing the conversion of the Gentiles; and they caused great joy to all the brethren. And when they had come to Jerusalem, they were received by the church and the apostles and the elders; and they reported all things that God had done with them. But some of the sect of the Pharisees who believed rose up, saying, “It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.”
In other countries, there are many who are persecuted. They wear the badge of Christianity. They believe in the Lord God's Constitution. In our country, the US, many wear the badge Christian as well, but it is very difficult to distinguish them from the world. The world wouldn't persecute "their own". Far too many Christians look, act, speak and even smell like the world, with not a bit of the Kingdom in them. Ambassador Paul put it this way, while speaking to those in Rome. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness. There are many who misrepresent the Lord God's standards and yet wear the badge of Christian. Keep in mind that name was given by the people in Antioch. And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. The Lord Jesus had nothing to do with that title. A mature citizen of the Kingdom will reflect Kingdom culture.
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. When others come in contact with you, that is the impact you should have! Maybe not immediately, but the process will begin. That name Christian doesn't fit who we are.
Remember, if people can name you, they will define you. You aren't a Christian. You are a Kingdom citizen--a citizen of the Kingdom of God--under the King's protection. That is how the world should see and judge you!
Matthew 7:1 Luke 6:43-45 Matthew 10:16 Acts 15:1-5
Romans 6:18-19 Acts 11:26 Matthew 5:13-16
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