I have judged many as guilty and worthy of hell in my thoughts. I’ve made decisions about how I will live with others based on my own truth and what I think is acceptable to me. Its easy to measure others by your own standards rather than use the standard of God’s law. In His law, those who have accepted Jesus as Lord are righteous and even when we sin, we are not condemned.
But what about those who’ve no knowledge of God’s love for us and what Jesus did on Calvary? How are they to know they don’t have to be condemned for their crimes?
The answer is simple. We who know the truth of Christ dying for us and taking all of the sins of the world and removing any need for condemnation in our own life, should reflect that to those we meet. There is no need for us to add our own judgement and condemn others to hell, when the very nature of sin brings with it its own judgement and condemnation. We must follow the example of our Father God, who after Adam and Eve sinned took the time to seek them out and cloth them when they recognised they were naked and exposed. His compassion and love did not disappear in the presence of sin, because God is love.
How can we do this when it may be very obvious to us that the friend or family member or even the stranger has or is living sinfully?
We love. It is as simple as that. We love and we remember the peace and assurance that came to us when we realised that God was not sitting waiting to bash us over the head and send us to hell but that He created an escape route that brings us into right standing with him for all eternity.
In the bible book of St. John Chapter 8, when the men brought the woman found committing adultery to Jesus, they wanted to hear what He would say so they could find an opportunity to accuse him and have him arrested. They knew the law and according to it, she should be stoned but Jesus’ response was filled with love and a full understanding of what they wanted to do. Any of you who have no sin in your life, throw the first stone at her, He told them. The bible says from the eldest to the youngest they left. When Jesus looked up and saw that she was still there but her judges had left, He said go and sin no more.
Sin is no respecter of age or personality. At all times we struggle with the temptation of it and there are times we give in. Yes, it would be great to grow older and be wiser but learning to live beyond the temptation for sin is a lifelong journey but not impossible.
God’s love for us, through the finished work of Jesus makes it very possible to live free from sin and condemnation.
I recognise that I have missed many opportunities to show God’s love and the power of forgiveness in the choices I make. This is not about being tolerant of sin and making others feel their choices are without cause and effect. It is simply to show love and share God’s wisdom with a reminder that they can live free of sin. Show them by your own life that there is more to life than being bound to choices that bring condemnation and its own mental prison. Embrace them with love and give them the space to grow into the Children of God that we all are. Be patient with them when they falter and remind them gently that God does not condemn and neither will I.
Some people believe that without the heavy hammer of judgement people will continue to live sinfully but I have found that the more I know of God’s love for me, it’s the more I want to please Him. That desire to please Him, empowers me to make choices that will keep me in fellowship with Him. For when I choose sin, which always brings its own jacket of condemnation and judgement, I feel naked and alone. I choose to live a life where I don’t have to wear jackets of condemnation and where I can feel the presence of God.
How do you share a message of no condemnation with others?