Jesus was not against judging between good and evil. If someone steals your money, it’s appropriate to judge him to be a thief. On the other hand, Jesus was against the kind of judging that assigns motives to someone else’s actions, especially when we are guilty of an even greater misdeed. A good example would be judging a neighbor to be lazy because he doesn’t mow his lawn as often as you would like, when your own house is a total disaster on the inside. Jesus teaches us to focus on our own inadequacies rather than looking next door for a distraction from our personal failures.
It’s very common for guilty people to try and shift attention away from their own misdeeds by judging the misdeeds of others. Jesus wants us to judge our own behavior rather than assigning motives to the behavior of people we may not even know. When we are guilty of selfish, unloving, or unkind behavior, Jesus wants us to identify those misguided tendencies and change course. Pointing our finger at someone else will not correct our mistakes. We need to be more concerned with keeping our own house in order, rather than judging the actions others.
Rather than judging others, we are far better off offering understanding and actually providing assistance of some kind. Helping others will go a long way towards correcting many of our own inappropriate behaviors. Serving God by serving others stimulates our spirit and opens our eyes to what God wants our life to be. If the neighbor isn’t mowing the lawn as much as we would like, we need to go next door and find out how we can help. Judging accomplishes nothing. Helping accomplishes a great deal.
Keep in mind, when you encounter someone who is judgmental, that person is very likely hiding something that is keeping them from an honest relationship with Jesus. Someone who is constantly pointing out what they perceive to be the problems of others may have a misguided understanding of salvation through Jesus Christ. None of us will ever live a perfect life; this is why we need a Savior. This is why believers need to stand together in fellowship and support rather than judgment. Only the shed blood of Jesus can cover all of our sins and render us acceptable to God. Our mission is to look inward and judge our own behavior, not the behavior of others, while at the same time looking outward for opportunities to offer assistance whenever and wherever possible.