Judge Not? Eh?

It is easy enough for unbe­liev­ers to toss Jesus’ works back on us–“Judge not, lest ye be judged,” they often say.

And, in all hon­esty, that’s fine. If I’m to judge the world around me accord­ing to the val­ues and lessons I find in God’s word, I should hope that I am judged accord­ing to the same stan­dard, though I real­ize I am oft found wanting.

That being said, Jesus’ words con­tin­ued past verse 1 of Matthew 7, and in con­text the pas­sage decries hyp­o­crit­i­cal judg­ment. For exam­ple, do not judge a per­son unspir­i­tu­al based upon their appear­ance when you your­self are inward­ly a rav­en­ous wolf.

But in true form of not under­stand­ing bib­li­cal teach­ings, the world has once again hyp­o­crit­i­cal­ly judged. The U.S. 9th Cir­cuit Court of Appeals has ruled uncon­sti­tu­tion­al a t‑shirt bear­ing an anti-homo­sex­u­al­i­ty mes­sage warn by a stu­dent because it could affect the edu­ca­tion­al expe­ri­ence of homo­sex­u­al stu­dents. The court found it–get this–discriminatory.

I am in no way con­don­ing that shirt. There are much bet­ter ways to share the love of Christ with our fel­low man–homosexuals cer­tain­ly included.

How­ev­er, is it not hyp­o­crit­i­cal to find one per­son­’s expres­sion of reli­gious beliefs–which we have sup­posed free­dom of–discriminatory because some­one might by offend­ed when some­one also might be offend­ed by the homo­sex­u­al lifestyle?

Hey, I’m offend­ed by war, but have the courts oust­ed the pres­i­dent on charges of mur­der and hate and dis­crim­i­na­tion against “evil­do­ers”?

But I digress… In Amer­i­ca we either have free­dom of expres­sion, or we do not. And I say from expe­ri­ence that there is plen­ty of hate lit­er­a­ture direct­ed towards Chris­tians, prob­a­bly quite a bit more than what­ev­er “hate lit­er­a­ture” finds its way out of the church. And it must be said that anti-Chris­t­ian hate lit­er­a­ture is not gen­er­al­ized into being from all unbe­liev­ers. So please stop char­ac­ter­iz­ing the entire church as hate­ful when it is a minor­i­ty who fails to see the free­dom and peace of the love of God expressed in their lives.

It seems only a mat­ter of time before the wear­ing of shirts which pro­claim Jesus Christ to be the only way to Heav­en is deemed dis­crim­i­na­to­ry, and with it a great road­block will be set before the church as gen­er­al wit­ness­ing will be out­lawed soon thereafter.

At that point, maybe the church in Amer­i­ca will find out just what it’s like to be the per­se­cut­ed church, to par­take of the afflic­tions suf­fered by our faith­ful brethren abroad. And maybe then the church in Amer­i­ca will real­ize that it real­ly is blessed in per­se­cu­tion and did­n’t know what it was miss­ing while it sat in the lap of luxury–as it does now.

The church will then be refined as the tares leave the wheat, pre­fer­ring the world to putting up with the afflic­tions of Christ.

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Rick Beckman