I am a Bill Cosby fan. I have enjoyed everything thing he has done, from comical skits, through television shows. You can imagine my joy, having seen him perform in person a couple of years ago. He presents a level-headed, common sense approach to life situations. I am learning that the longer you live, the more experiences you endure, the more your endure the more you see life as it is.
Some of us have been meeting for awhile, talking about life as we have experienced it. We recently spent some time talking about attitudes. I’m sure you know them, like, when you leave a party and then talk about the host, or those that made a fool of themselves, or those that were throwing around names of important people, or how stupidly they have decorated their house, etc., etc., etc. That lead us to how we form opinions about people. Surely we weren’t born with opinionating attitudes, it must be a learned/conditioned attribute/attitude. But, again the longer you live, the more life you have seen, the more diversity you have had, and the more opinionated we tend to be.
This stings of a huge theological question. We realized that our opinions, were actually judgments. That unnerved us, since we continually hear “judge not”.
Yet, aren’t we suppose to “judge” those outside our little circle of faith, show them their errors, get’em straight and bring’em into our circle?
We found, through our discussions, that we are more compassionate for those inside the group, rather than outside it. We tend to be less judgmental (the judge not syndrome) to each other within our circle, but very judgmental to everyone else. Is it any wonder then, that people outside our circle of faith, believe we are hypocrites?
Our awakening came as we looked at I Cor 5:12-13. Paul asks, “why are you judging outsiders? God judges outsiders, you are to judge (only) those inside the church..” In Mat 7:1ff we learn “if you judge, do it with a pure heart, but expect to be judged back”.
Yep, we have had the “rules” backwards and misapplied for years. No wonder outsiders think church goers are hypocrites.
During these discussions we found Andy Stanley’s, “Judgment” DVD extremely informative.
I’m just glad I don’t act like that guy over there!!!!…….