Judge Not – A Poem

In church on Sunday the sermon was based in part on Matthew 7:1-5 (NIV):

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

Our pastor made a comment about this passage that I had thought about before, but not in a long time. He said that when it comes to nonbelievers, we Christians should never pass judgment on their behavior. As believers who have the power of the Holy Spirit to guide and correct us we have a hard time measuring up to God’s standards. How can we expect those who don’t even know Him, and do not have the blessing of His Holy Spirit to help them, to follow His truth?

As I thought about this an idea for this poem came to mind.

Judge Not

“Did you notice how Ted’s breath
still smelled of alcohol,
even still this morning?
He must have been really drunk last night,”
gossiped Esther to Melanie.
“He is such a loser and
a sinful alcoholic.
I think the boss should fire him.”

“Did you see Lola last night
with that guy from Accounting?
I hear that’s the sixth guy she’s dated
in as many months,”
Melanie gossiped to Jean.
“It’s no wonder that floozy
doesn’t have a husband!”

“Did you hear about that guy Brad
who embezzled a small fortune
from our biggest client?
They say he’s been stealing for years,”
gossiped Jean to Esther.
“What a terrible, greedy man.
He probably spent it all on fast cars!”

“See you at Bible study tonight,”
said Esther to Jean and Melanie,
after she slipped a pack of post-it notes
and a few pens into her purse.

“See you there; I won’t be late,”
answered Jean,
knowing full well she would be
because she had to drop the kids
at her ex’s house first.

“I’m looking forward to it,”
quipped Melanie,
as she wondered whether
there was still any vodka
in the bottle in her fridge.

Ted sat at the bar again,
lost and alone thinking no one cared.
If only he could find
the true meaning of life.

Lola sat next to her date,
hoping he was nicer
than the last six guys she’d dated.
If only she could find true love.

Brad sat in his jail cell, wanting to die.
Maybe the life insurance money
would pay his wife’s doctor bills.
If only he could find hope.

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10 Comments

Filed under Faith, Fiction, Jesus, Life, Poetry

10 responses to “Judge Not – A Poem

  1. smudge

    amen
    I became aware that Jesus mainly judged (and there are different aspects to the word traslated as judge that English doesn’t show I think), the religious ones (the Pharisees and the Saducees) rather than the ordinary people who were struggling with their daily heavy loads (either physical or emotional etc).
    We can all, and maybe should, judge some actions (if we did not then we would not believe that anything is wrong, even judging), but should not judge the person, their heart, their motives.
    That is God’s work, and I am often very glad that it is not mine, as many things in life, can be so complicated, not black and white.
    As the apostle Paul said ‘I do not even judge myself…’
    and yet I think he (elsewhere) speaks of ‘examining ourselves’.. I think I know the difference…as I tend to be my worst judge, yet I try to find the balance of examining my actions and motives.

  2. You done gone to meddlin’ now. Seriously, though, that was excellent! We could all use a healthy dose of that.

  3. I love how you showed this in a poem, Linda, So well done and it really gets the point across! God bless you and all the ways He speaks to us through your work!

    • Deb, I sat on my deck for about 10 minutes arguing with God about not wanting to write this poem. “It’s too hard,” I said. Of course, in the end I wrote it and it fell into place much easier than I expected. Then at work today I caught myself being judgmental about something someone had done, the instantly realized I had done the same thing myself. He works in interesting ways, to be sure. Peace, Linda

  4. generally, i find religious people the most judgmental of anyone i know. there are exceptions. i know one very very religious person who is the least judgmental person i know, and my x-husband is a judge and is very judgmental and hates religion…i just mean, in general…

    radiation rampage

  5. Gay

    And for me the harshest judgment those “who name their faith with religion” make is “assuming” that that other woman or man has none. Because a person doesn’t knock at the door of temple, synagogue, mosque, chapel or church is certainly no reason to know whether he has faith. The strongest believers I know manifest it through their actions not through some acknowledged beliefs.

  6. ugh…harsh reality…we are all sinners and have fallen short, thought we often over look the little things…and big things, esp if it is us doing them…smiles.

  7. Susie @ SPTP2011

    Ouch Ouch Ouch
    Very Powerful and helps us take that “Big Gulp”
    God Bless all of our journey’s towards being more like Christ
    susie

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