Scripture Reading: Matthew 7:1-5
Key Verses: Matthew 7:1-2
“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.”
As we wrap up this discussion on social drinking, I want the last word to be about grace – not judgment. I have lead churches that have always discouraged social drinking. I, personally, have always believed that drinking alcohol is not beneficial to the Body of Christ. My thinking is based more on the concerns and love for weaker brothers and sisters in the Lord. BUT… I have never felt condemning of those who think differently than I do.
If social drinking is wrong, and that is a debated issue among sincere Christ followers, being judgmental and critical of another person is not debatable and it is wrong! Our scripture for today is clear – we are not to judge others for what they do or choose not to do as they walk with the Lord. I have done my best this week to show why I believe what I believe on the social drinking issue. But if you disagree, we are still brothers and sisters in God’s family and there should be no animosity between us simply because we don’t take the same approach to an issue.
In my opinion, a pastor of a church needs to set leadership standards based on their interpretation of the scriptures. These standards are about leadership, not qualifiers of what a “good” Christian is or isn’t. I know many good, sincere Christ followers who might not qualify for leadership in a church, but certainly are in good standing with our Lord. Every church must set standards that “fit” them but need not (and should not) be judgmental about the person’s relationship with Jesus!
Father, give me a gracious spirit, generous toward my brothers and sisters in the Lord. Remind me when I get critical of another, how that hurts you. In Jesus’ Name, amen.