Unconditional Love – BT17
Words of judgment often embrace the Law making us ‘legalistic’
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The many words for “judge” or “judgment” come from the root verb krino or noun krisis where we get our word “crisis,” essentially mean to separate things or people into groups, piles, or parties, right or left, right or wrong, sheep or goats – note the political party similarities of ‘the right’ elephants or the ‘the left’ donkeys/asses. This “separation” is what a judge would do, hopefully rightfully/equitably/fairly critiquing, criticizing, and scrutinizing others by hopefully not being partial or showing favorites to some people while rejecting others. That the kind of “separation” a bad judge would do. Judgment treats people as if they were being dragged to court.
What’s worse is the attitude of “I can determine a verdict and pass sentence, like any judge would do, whether for acquittal of the charges or condemnation and punishment.” The context determines if the judgment is legitimate, but the NT tells ordinary people who are not legitimate judges that they simply are in the wrong for trying to be a judge at all.
The Law itself acts like a judge, doing this same critical, ‘separating’ of judgement, sentencing, and condemnation. The Law, lawyers, and the judges all “shoot their arrows” and “points their fingers” right at people. The Torah/Nomos Law is “a measuring stick” to evaluate people’s relationship with God under the old covenant-agreement by “pointing the way, guiding, or instructing” us about God’s will.
Due to the weakness of the flesh, the Law did more than just “make sin experientially, relationally ginosko known” (a) so that “sin might be shown to be sin” (b). It actually “increases sin in us” (c) because “in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the Law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death” (d), so “through the commandment sin might become sinful beyond measure” (e). Thus “the dunamis dynamite-like enabling-power of sin is the Law” (f), especially that “sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived us to produce in us all kinds of” sin that the commandment prohibits (g) and/thus “through the commandment kills us” (h). Is it any wonder Paul calls it “the Law of sin and death” (i)? The Law was called “the ministry of death” (j)! Considering how many terrible things are written about the Law in the NT – see Logos Word of God – BT8, it’s crazy that Christians would want anything to do with it! Yet, Christians still quote and try to follow OT Laws. These ‘legalistic Christians’ are often the most judgmental because ‘judgment comes from the Law!’ <Notes> a) Romans 7:7, b) Romans 7:13, c) Romans 5:20, d) Romans 7:5, e) Romans 7:13, f) 1 Corinthians 15:56, g) Romans 7:8, h) Romans 7:11, i) Romans 8:2, j) 2 Corinthians 3:7.
But not all forms of judgment are wrong! Some are very right! The Greek differentiates many forms of right and wrong “judgment” that you would never see in your English bibles! We’ve seen that krino/krisis simply means “to judge or separate/divide into 2 piles/parties of right or left, right or wrong,” so the context tells us if this is ‘right or wrong’ judgment. However, there are other Greek words that indicate more clearly other kinds of ‘right or wrong’ judgment – see Unconditional-Love – BT2. God’s will WAS known by the Law, but under the completely-different-in-kind, superior New Covenant, we should be relying on discernment of good versus evil by the Holy Spirit, especially if we are to “judge rightly” – Least Among You – BT7, – BT8, New Covenant Ways – BT16.
As Christian musicians, once again the OT Law can have profoundly negative effects on us, not just to fan the flames of sin, but to make us ‘legalistic Christians’ when we are supposed to portray Grace, not Law! Most of the time we don’t have the ‘right’ to be judging others and so when we do, we are actually doing the same thing Satan does – accusing people by the Law to make them feel guilty. We end up doing His dirty work! There are a few situations where we are called to judge others, but to “judge rightly” we really need to be listening to the discernment of the Holy Spirit!
Lord, give us Your mind and heart to be full of unconditional-love and grace, not the critical, pointing finger of the Law. Fill us with Your discernment by the Holy Spirit so that we can rightfully judge between good and evil in OUR own lives.
Spiritual Education, Unconditional Agape Love, Forgiveness instead of Judgment, Emotional Healing, Living like Christ, Greek and Hebrew words for Judgment, We shouldn’t act as judges, God is the only just judge, The Law judges, The NT says bad things about the OT Law, The Law once did reveal God’s Will, NOW Christians are to discern God’s Will