The Myth of Never Judging The Myth of Never Judging That we are never to judge is an idea not taught in Scripture. NASB John 7:24 "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment." AMPLIFIED John 7:24 Be honest in your judgment and do not decide at a glance (superficially and by appearances); but judge fairly and righteously. What does "judge" mean? In the New Testament the word translated "judge" means: try, investigate, inquire into, discern, pass disciplinary judgment [passing censuring sentence as the facts require], discern the difference between right and wrong, decide grievances, disputes, and quarrels, think over and make up your mind, searchingly examine, pay attention and weigh and discern [what is said], examine, test and evaluate. Do not judge? Do not judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves. Matthew 7:1 The Amplified Bible "7:1 Judge not. As the context reveals, this does not prohibit all types of judging (v. 16). There is a righteous kind of judgment we are supposed to exercise with careful discernment (John 7:24). Censorious, hypocritical, self-righteous, or other kinds of unfair judgments are forbidden; but in order to fulfill the commandments that follow, it is necessary to discern dogs and swine (v. 6) from one's own brethren (vv. 3-5)" (MacArthur Study Bible, Word Publishing, 1997). A careful reading of the NT and a study of the passages in which the English word "judge" appears may surprise you. According to the Scriptures (see below), Christians are to judge: - all things - those who are inside the church - the world - angels - what is said or taught - ourselves So believers are to judge at least six different kinds of things or individuals. Scriptural examples of Christians judging are presented below. All Scripture quotations are from the Amplified Bible. 1 Corinthians 2:15a But the spiritual man tries all things [he examines, investigates, inquires into, questions, and discerns all things]... 1 Corinthians 5:12 What [business] of mine is it and what right have I to judge outsiders? Is it not those inside [the church] upon whom you are to pass disciplinary judgment [passing censuring sentence on them as the facts require]? 1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints (the believers) will [one day] judge and govern the world? And if the world [itself] is to be judged and ruled by you, are you unworthy and incompetent to try [such petty matters] of the smallest courts of justice? 1 Corinthians 6:3 Do you not know also that we [Christians] are to judge the [very] angels and pronounce opinion between right and wrong [for them]? How much more then [as to] matters pertaining to this world and of this life only! 1 Corinthians 6:5 I say this to move you to shame. Can it be that there really is not one man among you who [in action is governed by piety and integrity and] is wise and competent enough to decide [the private grievances, disputes, and quarrels] between members of the brotherhood, 1 Corinthians 10:15 I am speaking as to intelligent (sensible) men. Think over and make up your minds [for yourselves] about what I say. [I appeal to your reason and your discernment in these matters.] 1 Corinthians 11:31 For if we searchingly examined ourselves [detecting our shortcomings and recognizing our own condition], we should not be judged and penalty decreed [by the divine judgment]. 1 Corinthians 14:29 So let two or three prophets speak [those inspired to preach or teach], while the rest pay attention and weigh and discern what is said. 2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine and test and evaluate your own selves to see whether you are holding to your faith and showing the proper fruits of it. Test and prove yourselves [not Christ]. Do you not yourselves realize and know [thoroughly by an ever-increasing experience] that Jesus Christ is in you--unless you are [counterfeits] disapproved on trial and rejected?