The Review and Herald


November 14, 1907

“Judge Not”


The work of judging his brother has not been placed upon any man. “Judge not,” the Saviour says, “that ye be not judged; for with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” He who takes upon himself the work of judging and criticizing others, lays himself open to the same degree of judgment and criticism. Those who are ready to condemn their brethren, would do well to examine their own works and character. Such an examination, honestly made, will reveal the fact that they, too, have defects of character, and have made grave blunders in their work. If the great Judge should deal with men as they deal with their fellow workers, they would regard him as unkind and unmerciful. RH November 14, 1907, par. 1

“Why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye,” the Saviour asked, “but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” RH November 14, 1907, par. 2

The scribes and Pharisees were very rigid in their rules, very severe in their judgment of others, and unmerciful in condemning. They exalted themselves as judges among the people; and while they justified the course of forbidden action that they themselves indulged in, they were quick to condemn with scornful words the course of others, even of those whom God was using to do his work. Their criticism of Christ and his disciples was severe and denouncing, and placed them in a false light before the people. To the view of the Pharisee his individual sins were as the mote, but that which he saw to condemn in others he represented as a beam. Christ declared to such, “Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.” RH November 14, 1907, par. 3

Christ did not make himself a judge among men; but he was heaven-appointed to lay down correct principles for the rule of the human family. He appoints agencies to carry out these principles; and by him “princes decree justice.” In the advancement of his cause in the earth, he would have men appointed to deal with the erring who will be kind and considerate, and whose characters reveal the similitude of the divine,—men who will show the wisdom of Christ in dealing with matters that should be kept private, and who, when a work of correction and reproof must be done, will know how to keep silence before those whom it does not concern. Unbelievers should not be given opportunity to make God's people, be they ministers or laymen, the objects of their suspicion and unrighteous judgment. RH November 14, 1907, par. 4

When it becomes necessary for a minister to do a work of correction, he should be very careful to act righteously and wisely. He is not to denounce the erring harshly before those who know not the truth. The unconverted judge the servants of God by such actions, and conclude that this can not be the work of God. Those who are not of our faith, but who are convicted of the truth, when they see a lack of unity among the ministers who claim to be obeying the truth, close the door of their hearts, saying, We want none of these things. Thus by the exercise of unsanctified speech, souls are turned from the truth, and an example given that opens the way for the things of truth and righteousness to be lowered in the dust. Our workers, when tempted to speak hasty words of criticism and judgment, should remember that silence is golden. RH November 14, 1907, par. 5

I am instructed to bear this message to ministers: Judge not after the desire of your own mind. Do not, in order to carry out your own plans, bring forward that which will condemn another. Such a work is not a work of righteousness, and is one which God forbids. If you are under the sweet influence of Christ's Spirit, it is your privilege to give counsel to your brother; but if you are not under the direction of the Spirit of God, keep silence. It is God's prerogative to judge, not man's. Man is debarred from the seat of judgment by the words of Christ, “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” RH November 14, 1907, par. 6

My brethren, the time has come for every man to examine critically his own case. The time has come for men to keep their words of fault-finding for their individual selves. Let those who have been free to express their ideas regarding the error of their brother's course, examine their own lives by the light of the Word of God. There is a great work of reconversion to be done before the way for the Lord's coming shall be prepared. Men and women who have long professed to serve the Lord need to experience the quickening power of the Holy Spirit. RH November 14, 1907, par. 7

Great care should be exercised in choosing men to occupy positions of responsibility as guardians of the churches. My brethren, do not make this choice blindly, lest the flock of God be given an example that will teach them to tear and devour. The men who bear responsibilities in the cause of Christ should be men of prayer and humility. They are to act like men who in all their dealings with their brethren are guided by the Spirit of God. They are to give an example of righteousness. They are sacredly to guard the reputation of those who are doing the work of God. RH November 14, 1907, par. 8

I have been shown that some of the leaders in the work have acted the part of an inconsiderate father who loses control of his words and spirit, and who acts severely with his children because he supposes it necessary to show his authority. Often such a father, in exercising his ruling power, gives an example of passion and injustice, which strengthens the evil. The parent who deals thus with his child does it a great wrong, and needs to turn his indignation and censure against himself. I have been instructed to say that those workers who have carried this spirit into their labors and plans in the conference are as surely stumbling-blocks to souls as is the inconsistent parent to his child. RH November 14, 1907, par. 9

God never intended that in his work the mind of one man should control the mind of another. Those who are trying to carry out their personal plans should carefully consider whether they are following the example of him who said, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Those who follow in the footsteps of Christ will not act the part of an accuser, passing judgment on those who they suppose make mistakes. RH November 14, 1907, par. 10

We have a most solemn message to bear to the world. Let those who suppose that they are to have authority, remember that they are men under authority. A higher power than that of any earthly potentate is to rule them. RH November 14, 1907, par. 11