Why are we so judgemental?
Philip Young believes that there is an alternative to the judgemental and often cruel attitudes in our society.
Why are so many comments on social media vindictive and cruel? Many a person has experienced depression and suicidal thoughts because of the pure nastiness of comments posted online.
But perhaps this attitude is nothing new? Jesus often comments on those who issue harsh judgments. When the woman who is caught in adultery, pictured above, is brought before him by the Scribes and Pharisees, they say that in the law Moses commanded them to stone such a woman. Then Jesus, after a little while, replies ‘Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her’ (John Chapter 8)
Jesus warns us not to pass judgments on others, saying, ‘Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgement you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get.’ (Matthew Chapter 7).
Jesus dislikes the way people look down on others with judgement, and I believe we should also dislike the way that people use harsh words today. It not only damages those on the receiving end, but it creates a negative, harsh, and unkind world for everybody, and perhaps especially for the person who is critical. This is no way to bring in the Kingdom of God.
Instead of a vicious circle of negative criticism we should create a virtuous circle by blessing others. This is the way of Jesus. This is the way to bring about the Kingdom of God.
Jesus says, ‘Bless those who curse you’ (Luke 6.8) This way of blessing immediately breaks the vicious circle of hatred and negativity and replaces it with something good.
So, next time you are tempted to make a comment which is cruel or vindictive, then take a step back, and instead, think of ways you can be a blessing to your fellow human being.
For, ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God’ (Matthew 5.9)
The image above is courtesy of https://www.freebibleimages.org/
Philip is willing to speak up against the present war being waged by Russia and would welcome invitations from radio, television or any other interested group. He says, “As a pacifist I am not willing to bear arms, but I am willing to stand up for my beliefs and to face any consequences for doing so. It is the least I can do for the suffering people of Ukraine, and for the Russian people who are not hearing the truth. Speaking truth to power is a traditional Quaker response to falsehood and lies.”
Philip is an Anglican, Quaker, and a member of the Third Order of Franciscans, and now lives in Felixstowe. Until July 2014 he was the Diocesan Environmental Officer for the Norwich Diocese. In June 2017 he stood as an Independent Candidate for the General Election in the Suffolk Coastal Constituency. He is now Associate Priest at St. John and St. Edmund in Felixstowe and a freelance writer on spiritual and political matters. He is available to run Quiet Days, give talks, presentations or to preach and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Philip is developing a new website www.revolutionoflovenow.com.
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