Matthew 7:1-2. Judge not Our Lord now proceeds to warn us against the chief hinderances of holiness. And how wisely does he begin with judging! Wherein all young converts are so apt to spend that zeal which is given them for better purposes. He must be understood as forbidding all rash and unfavourable judgments, whether of the characters of others in general, or of their actions in particular, glancing, probably, in these as also in some other expressions in this chapter, on the character of the Pharisees, who were very culpable on this head, as appears from divers passages in the gospels, such as Luke 18:9-14; Luke 16:14-15; John 7:47-49, (compare also Isaiah 65:5,) and their unjust censures of Christ. Our Lord’s words imply, Judge not those about you in a rigorous and severe manner; nor pass unnecessary or uncharitable censures upon them, as many of your countrymen are in the habit of doing: nay, judge not any man, without full, clear, and certain knowledge of the blameableness of his conduct, nor without absolute necessity, and a spirit of tender love. That ye be not judged Yourselves with the like severity. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged Of God and man. “If you judge charitably, making proper allowances for the frailties of your brethren, and are ready to pity and pardon their faults, God and man will deal with you in the same kind manner; but if you always put the worst construction on every thing that it will bear, and are not touched with the feeling of your brother’s infirmities, and show no mercy in the opinions you form of his character and actions, no mercy will be shown to you from any quarter; God will treat you as you deserve, in the just judgment he shall pass upon your actions, and the world will be sure to retaliate the injury.” Macknight. And with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again Awful words! So we may, as it were, choose for ourselves, whether God shall be severe or merciful to us. God and man will favour the candid and benevolent: but they must expect judgment without mercy, who have showed no mercy.
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