When Jesus Asks You To Judge
Luke 7:36 – And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to meat.
Luke 7:37 – And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,
Luke 7:38 – And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.
Luke 7:39 – Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.
Luke 7:40 – And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
Luke 7:41 – There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty.
Luke 7:42 – And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?
Luke 7:43 – Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
Hello readers, back with a new blog today. This is pretty cool what we’re talking about today. I can’t believe I hadn’t seen this before. And really, I’ll only touch the hem of the garment of this one today. Hopefully you read it all the way through because there’s a wonderful picture in here of the whole “judging” issue, and it ties in with salvation! Well here goes… When Jesus asks you to judge. One of the things that this society and Christians are big on is “don’t judge”. It seems like the only verse that people know (and even then they don’t) is Matthew 7:1 – “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” Maybe that’s all you know about “judging”.
If you look at the context of that verse, Jesus is warning us about holding someone to a standard that doesn’t apply to ourselves. For example, you may be pretty harsh on someone who has committed adultery, but you’re a fornicator and full of lust yourself. Imagine if God sent some people to hell for sinning, but then some to heaven even though they’d sinned. You’d say he’s a pretty bad Judge. So Jesus here is warning us about perverting right and true judgment. And if you just look at our society and even the Christians, our land is full of that. Condemning someone for what you are guilty of while excusing yourself is hypocritical and wrong. You can’t judge rightly when you’re a hypocrite and completely messed up in your mind.
The thing is, we all judge. Judgment is a necessary part of life. You judge what time your meat is ready to eat, you judge when to make that turn across traffic in your car, you judge whether or not that person you like is fit to be your spouse. You judge where to go and where not to go, you judge who you’ll be friends with and who you won’t be, you judge everything. Even those saying “don’t judge” are judging. They’re judging you for judging! They’re doing exactly what Jesus said not to do, judging in hypocrisy, because they’re judging you while telling you not to judge. This ties back to Matthew 7 of course, making one set of rules for you and a different set of rules for someone else.
Jesus was warning against the hypocrisy in judgments we make. And this world is in one big contradiction of judgment. Look at the people that were against Jesus Christ, they judged him to be a liar, a deceiver, a false prophet, full of devils, a blasphemer, a law breaker, a son of fornication, and so on. They demonized him in every way, shape and form. Yet, Jesus wasn’t any of those things. But they were! They were full of envy, jealousy, lies, and murder. So that’s the type of judgment that Jesus experienced at the hands of wicked men. Jesus suffered in the flesh, he suffered the hypocritical contradictory judgment of man, and so will anyone who follows in the steps of the Christ. Being judged by this world is part of following Christ, and being judged unfairly and in hypocrisy at that. That’s part of taking up your cross.
The Bible has plenty to say about judging. Those verses help to deliver a balanced and complete truth on the issue For instance, the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 2:15 – ” But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.” Paul was writing to a church that couldn’t make good judgments on just about anything. That’s why it’s a book of rebuke. And look here, Jesus Christ himself said in John 7:24 – ” Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” So we need to be able to make judgments. It’s a must. We must judge, just it’s HOW we judge, Jesus said we must judge righteously. As a Christian, if you think about it even just a bit, of course we need to be able to judge. We need to be able to judge what’s right and what’s wrong, what’s truth and what’s lie, what’s holy and what’s profane.
Our land that we live in is positively crying out for righteous judgment, and in fact can only be redeemed by judgment. Isaiah 1:27 – ” Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.” It was judges that God raised up in the book of Judges that delivered his people time and time again. They’d lead the nation back to truth, to God’s word, to righteousness after they’d gone deep into sin and rebellion against God. So we need to get the right view of judgment, a Biblical view of judgment. Righteous judgment, which Jesus commanded us to do, is making judgments based not on our own thoughts, opinions, ideas, theories, philosophies and wisdom… because they can all be and are wrong. We must subject our judgment to God’s word, we must have truth with which to make judgments from. Our judgments have to be founded on the truth of the word of God. Without the Bible, which is a book of judgments, you can’t make right judgments.
I saw something recently in scripture I hadn’t noticed before. And I’ve quoted the story from Luke 7 at the beginning of this blog. In this scripture, a Pharisee called Simon invites Jesus Christ to dinner. Well that’s pretty good. He’s interested and wants to have a chat. Seems harmless. Makes him feel pretty important, I’m gonna sit down and lets discuss things as equals Jesus. But Jesus comes along. And they sit down to eat, but while they’re in the middle of their dinner, a woman comes in. Hey, she’s not supposed to be here. This is where important and reputable people are. What business has she got here? She’s a woman who people have a pretty low opinion of, she’s deemed “beneath” Simon the Pharisee. She’s a sinner, and people know it, and she knows it. And she knows her place.
She’s got an alabaster box of precious, costly ointment in her hand. She goes to where Jesus is, and she begins weeping profusely. And she doesn’t take a seat no, she crouches down and with her tears she begins to wash his feet. She uses her own hair to wipe his feet, and she kisses his feet and anoints his feet with the ointment. Well some decorum please! The Pharisee is feeling a little uneasy. And he thinks to himself, in his high and mighty Pharisee mind, and he thinks if Jesus was a prophet he surely would know what kind of woman this is. He wouldn’t have anything to do with this woman! Pharisees didn’t associate with this sort of woman, it’s embarrassing to him that she’s even there. Are we like this Pharisee so far? We better watch the attitude we have to people. We have an inflated view of how good we are, and we tend to think others are beneath us and less deserving to be at God’s table.
Anyway, Simon didn’t say anything, he just kept what he thought, his judgment about Jesus and about the woman, and really about himself as well, he kept his judgments to himself. He didn’t say what he thought. But Jesus answered his thoughts. Ever been thinking, and God’s word speaks to you? How many times has God interrupted your thoughts?. God knows what you’re thinking, his word discerns you far more than you discern it and him. And Jesus answers him and says, Simon I’ve got something to say to you.
Simon’s like, sure, what is it? And Jesus tells a short parable. He did because often we are so resistant to truth, our shell is so hard, sometimes we can only understand truths about ourselves in parable form. For instance, maybe nobody can tell you anything in life. You’re resistant to input. You can’t and won’t see if you’re in the wrong. You won’t have the ability to see how proud and lustful you are. No, you’re pretty good. So was Simon the Pharisee. Ask yourself this… am I more like Simon “the Pharisee” or this woman “the sinner”. If your attitude, your behavior, your life was told to you in parable form or if they made a movie of you (a true movie), would you like what you saw? It’d be pretty confronting and pretty ugly wouldn’t it.
Anyway, Jesus proceeds to tell a story about a certain creditor who had loaned money to two people. The they use their credit and rack up a debt. One racks up a much bigger debt, but they both owe him. And there comes a day when it’s time to come up with the money. That’s how credit works. Most of us use or have used credit cards right? So they’re both in debt, and they both are required to pay up. But they can’t! They have nothing to pay with. So they go to the creditor… sorry I can’t pay it. But when they had nothing to pay with, the creditor quite simply forgave both them. What a deal!
And Jesus Christ asks Simon the Pharisee… who do you think loved this creditor more? And Simon the Pharisee has a think about it, and he answers as says, I suppose the guy that was forgiven more loves him more. And Jesus said to him, thou hast rightly judged. Just think about this now in the context of judging. Jesus encouraged this man to make a judgment, and make a good one, a sound one, a true one… a righteous judgment. When Jesus speaks to you through his word today, he’s asking you to make judgments.
This parable was about Simon and the woman, they’re the two debtors in this story. Simon’s a smart man, I’m sure he understood what was being said. But he answers Jesus, and what he says is right. Jesus says, thou hast rightly judged. God is all for you making good and righteous judgments in your life. And Jesus was giving this man an ability and opportunity to look at his own life, his own attitude, his own heart, his own righteousness. See, Simon had made wrong judgments, but he’s being given a chance to make right judgments that can change his life forever. He doesn’t think he’s a sinner, but he is. He doesn’t love Jesus Christ nearly as much as this woman does. He thinks he knows more than Jesus… but he doesn’t. Not nearly. You’re not nearly as smart as you think. Where does judgment start? It starts by looking at yourself in the light of God’s word… and that will straighten up your thinking. If Jesus fixes our thinking, he’ll fix our judging as well.
Well, well, I know we are speaking about judging today, but the gospel story is in these verses. When it comes to judgment, salvation is at stake. You won’t be saved until you judge yourself as a sinner in the light of God’s word with an unpayable sin debt. You won’t be saved until you see that God is your creditor, and forgiveness is extended to you through his Son, Jesus Christ. How many people in this world cannot make even the most basic and necessary judgments which will save their eternal soul.
Did you know you’re living on credit? You’ve been given the breath of life. You’ve been given a body, hands, feet, mouth, ears, sight, a brain. You’ve been given ability, capacity, and time. You’ve been given the sun, the moon, the wind, the rain, the seasons. You’ve been given food, water, heath, vitality, youth. You can have adventures, you can work a job, you can go outside and go for a run. That’s all been given to you. You’re on credit, and your life is entirely due to the grace and goodness of God. You didn’t create yourself, you don’t sustain yourself, you’re on credit.
But with your credit, you’ve accumulated a debt in life. See, when humans were created, they were given everything, they were put over creation, they were blessed exceedingly, man walked with God in the garden of Eden. But with this life given to us, with this ability to make choices, and make judgments, with it we racked up a debt of sin instead. Man went on God’s credit, because man is very evil, yet God gives grace to us who do not deserve it every day. That’s credit.
See, we are on credit because we’re being given life and time and opportunity that we do not deserve, and which we will have to answer for. You’re living on credit every day. It’s extended to you by God. The credit we are on is longsuffering, mercy, goodness, and grace. We sure are using that up in sin aren’t we? We would rightfully go to hell if we died today, as in this life we’ve all racked up an unpayable debt. As life has gone on, our debt has got bigger and bigger. And we have nothing to pay with! How can you pay your sin debt? You can’t. Try all you want, try your best, do better… but that’s counted as “when they had nothing to pay” in the sight of God. Have you judged yourself of all that?
Sin started with a bad judgment. Eve judged what Satan had said to be more true than what God had said. She judged that tree pretty good for eating and pleasing to the eat, with fruit to be greatly desired. Adam joined her in her poor judgment, and they and we all began to be in debt. Sin is a debt. It’s a debt to God. God gave us everything, and we brought disobedience, rebellion, death. Look at the murder, the sexual abuse, the immorality, the pain, the suffering, the evil. Not just that, but the pride, the selfishness, the envy, the jealousy, it goes on and on. Man’s got a big debt to his Maker. People often say, why does God care? How is it his business what I do? Because your life is given and sustained by God. Your very life and being comes from him. You are responsible and accountable to him. It is his business. You answer to your creditor, who’s extended you a long line of credit.
You know what credit is? You use your credit card, and you’re spending money you don’t have. That’s what credit is. You’re spending time you don’t possess of your own will, it’s given you by the Lord. Everything you are, everything you have… it’s because of the grace of God right now. You don’t have as much control as you think. You don’t know the day you’re going to die, you don’t know how you will die, you don’t know when. We aren’t even in control of our bodily functions, when you swallow food, you’re actively processing and digesting and eliminating it. Your body does it for you. You don’t make your body work, it does it all for you. Yeah… that’s how in control you are.
Simon the Pharisee had made a lot of poor judgments in this thinking. You know why he’s a Pharisee? They think they’re better than others when they’re not. He didn’t realize his self righteousness was worthless, as yours and mine is. He didn’t know who Jesus really was. He thought he knew better than Jesus. He thought he was better than this woman. And he’s making all sorts of judgments… and they’re terrible. Because his thinking isn’t right about Jesus, about himself and about the woman. He has no capacity to judge rightly, because he’s wrong about everything. That’s why Jesus tells him the parable. Jesus is going to fix his judgment, Jesus is going to enable him to judge in truth and in righteousness.
The sin debt must be paid. These two in that story, they used credit for a fair while, but then the day came they had to front up to their creditor. One day, each of us will front our creditor. You can front him now, while forgiveness is extended. God gave you a long line of credit didn’t he. Year after year, and you’re spending all that grace God has given you. And how are you spending it? You’re spending it on disobeying him, rebelling against him, on pursuing your lust and feeding your pride. But one day you’ll stand before your creditor, your Creator, the Lord God… and what then? One day, it’ll be payment time, and that won’t be a day to get more credit. No, it’ll be account settling time. And if your account isn’t settled now with the blood of Christ, that’s one account you’ll never be able to pay off in eternity.
Whether you think you’re pretty good or you know that you’re the worst of the worst, we all have that sin debt, and we’ve been adding to it since the day you were born… and we can’t pay it. I can’t pay it. Simon can’t pay it. That woman can’t pay it. But the difference is… the woman knows she can’t pay it. That’s why she loves Jesus Christ who has forgiven her of her sins and is going through complete humiliation of her own pride and she’s wiping Jesus feet with her tears.
I titled this blog “When Jesus asks you to judge”. So with all that we’ve discussed, it centers on a story that Jesus told Simon the Pharisee, and he asked Simon a question to help Simon make some good judgments and correct his wrong judgments that he had thought to himself. In correcting him, he led him to salvation’s opportunity. And that’s what Christian judgment is all about, it’s about seeing souls saved. When you tell someone they’re going to hell if they reject Jesus Christ, it’s so they can be saved, not so they will go to hell, but so they don’t have to.
Jesus wants you to make good judgments for your life. Those good judgments lead to salvation and service to God. Right judgments come from right thinking. Those good judgments will enable you to be salt and light in this dark world. You can’t live a life obeying, honoring and glorifying the Lord if you don’t have the ability to judge rightly. Righteous judgments founded the best nations this earth ever saw, and perfect righteousness is what will frame the world to come and Jesus’ eternal kingdom. It is both possible and necessary to make good and right judgments when guided by the Holy Bible and the Spirit of truth.
Judgment must begin with us judging our own selves, and coming to an understanding of who and what we really are. Then you won’t be a hypocrite in judging others. Then you won’t be an idiot who is just an exercise in contradiction in all their arguments and judgments of life, all because you’re in contradiction with the Lord in your life. Simon was confront with a story, a story which was about him, which was to help him see things clearly. Did Simon ever see Jesus Christ as the creditor? Did he ever see himself as a sinner just like the woman? Did he ever receive forgiveness? Or did he judge himself as not needing forgiveness because he was so good already.
Maybe your thinking is entirely wrong like Simon today. You’re kidding yourself about yourself. And you can’t judge anything right. That’s why you’re a “don’t judger”. Because that’s your excuse and justification you’ve worked out for yourself. Maybe you are a pretty good person, well Pharisees prided themselves on being pretty good people. You’re self righteous. You think you know what’s what, but you don’t. You don’t see your own bankruptcy before God. Yeah that woman was a sinner, but Jesus saved her from her sins. That’s why she’s on the floor worshiping her Saviour, but look at this Pharisee, he’s too proud.
So when people say Jesus said not to judge… well that’s just not true. He asked this Pharisee to make a judgment. Jesus asked him to make a judgment that revealed his own issues. See, that Pharisee was in violation of what Jesus had said in Matthew 7. He was judging in hypocrisy, because he was also a sinner. He thinks that if Jesus was a prophet, he’d know that this woman was a sinner and would have nothing to do with her. His judgment was wrong. Because he’s a sinner. By his own rationale, Jesus shouldn’t be sitting with him either. He’s a sinner too. So he’s got this low opinion of this woman, and a low opinion of Jesus… but he’s the guy with the problem. He’s a sinner just like the woman, just she knows it, and he doesn’t.
If you read on, you see Jesus forgave this woman. If he answered Simon’s thoughts, he also knew this woman’s heart. Simon’s sitting at his table struggling to make a right judgment, but this woman has judged Jesus Christ to be who he said he is. That’s why she’s where she is, that’s why she’s doing what she’s doing. She knows who she is, and she knows who he is. Simon thinks he knows what’s going on, but he has the least idea. We have no record that Simon’s sins were forgiven. Maybe he was, maybe he just needed to get a better idea of who he was and who Jesus was. But we know Jesus forgave this woman, we know this woman had faith, we know this woman went in peace. She had peace with God. When the debt is paid, you have peace with God.
The reason why people don’t love God enough to want to obey him or follow him in just about any area of life… it’s because we haven’t been forgiven anything. We think we’re pretty good. We say don’t judge, but we’re making judgments, just we can’t make a right judgment to save our lives. Ironically, because being able to make a right judgment is what will save your life. This woman made a judgment to trust Jesus Christ with her pride, with her sin, with her life. That was the right judgment.
Maybe you can’t make a right judgment even about judging. You’re like Simon, high and lifted up, thinking yourself worthy to be sitting at the table like you’re on equal terms with Holy God. Maybe you’re like Simon, your thinking is wrong, your judging is wrong. Simon couldn’t see what Jesus could, Simon didn’t know what Jesus did. People today can’t make a right judgment about themselves or about Jesus Christ. They can’t even judge whether they’re a boy or a girl anymore. They don’t judge right and wrong anymore. They don’t realize they need to be saved. And as the Bible says, they end up judging themselves unworthy of salvation. They don’t need to be saved, they don’t want to be saved. Crazy!
So today we see that Jesus does ask you to make judgments. He wants you to make right judgments about who and what you are and who and what he is. It’s OK to not see, to not know, none of us do. We need the illumination of the Holy Spirit of God and God’s word to make our thinking right. Simon’s thinking was way off, so was his judgment. Jesus helped him to see the truth. So he could make a right judgment. Which he did. He did say the person that was forgiven more loved more. Thou hast judged rightly. Your salvation is going to come down to whether you judged rightly. You need to make the right judgments about God and his word, and about yourself. Your eternity depends on it. Get your thinking straight, get in God’s word. Sanity is at stake. Soul is at stake. Salvation is at stake. See your sin debt, see you can’t pay it, see the forgiveness that is extended to you. Maybe then you’ll love the Lord Jesus Christ just a bit, maybe one day as much as this woman did.
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Joseph View All →
Hi, my name is Joseph Zadow. I am a 32 y/o Bible Blogger. I was new to blogging once! God’s word is the best thing that we can be given, and once we have it and know it for ourselves it is both a privilege and responsibility to bring it to others! We are blessed to be a blessing! I am a sinner (for sure!) saved by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ and I am a Lord Jesus Christ follower. He is faithful even though I rarely am to him. I believe the Bible is the word of God, and stake my life on it. My destination is heaven. As they say, I’m just a passin’ through this world… although most of the time it’s more like hangin’ by a thread in Jericho! I love playing sports – particularly cricket… I currently work on an orchard and a side hobby business of mine is growing vegetables etc – they are good for you! I love writing. Always happy to talk, so feel free to leave a comment. You can read more about me and my blog here – kjvbibletruth.com/about :)
I cried several times while reading this article. I can only cry out to the Lord for His continued grace, mercy and help. I never considered that when judging, in hipocrisy, we think we are better than Jesus. The Lord used this article to give me much to think about, to repent about, to examine myself and to put myself at His feet in humility for my hipocrisy and sin debt.
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Thanks for reading and for the comment Valerie. As they say, all ground is level at the foot of the cross