My Bible doesn’t tell me not to judge anyone, ever. So I will go ahead and judge those who say that judging is wrong, mean-spirited, un-Christian.
Really, this whole idea of “non-judgmentalism” is doing great harm to the world at large; it keeps people silent in the face of various kinds of sin, evil, and injustice, and it also makes the non-believing world view Christians as namby-pambies, as practitioners of the religion of Being Nice as opposed to a religion of active goodness.
And the Bible does not forbid judging.
I actually began typing a comment on the blog piece I linked above, but I saw that such a comment would not be well-received as the comments were unanimous in their agreement with the blogger. And I’ve learned that it usually is profitless to debate with liberals, whether they wear a Christian label or an atheist label. To a liberal, those who disagree are just wrong, no matter what arguments they marshal in support of their dissenting opinion.
My intent was to ask the blogger whether she was not herself performing an act of judgement, in warning Christians not to judge. There is no getting around this; if a Christian maintains that judging is wrong and un-Christian, then he or she should not feel free to judge others for an act that he or she is obviously performing. Isn’t that hypocrisy as well as the ”sin” of judging?
The modern liberal pop-psychology-oriented Christian thinks that it is unloving to ”judge” someone, but if they are habitually sinning, the Bible counsels us to correct or reprove that person. That is part of the role of Christians, to offer reproof and correction to our brothers and sisters, and in several places the Bible tells us that the righteous man will receive correction gladly. Proverbs 12:1 is a passage which teaches this, and there are many other examples.
Another favorite argument of the ‘do not judge’ faction is the old ”hate the sin, love the sinner.” Some quote this as Scripture or tantamount to Holy Writ. It is not.
It is not in the Bible. Anywhere. Nor is anything like it.
It did not come from Jesus, nor from any of the Apostles, and it definitely is not from the Old Testament.
Where is it from? Apparently from Gandhi, who, last I checked, was a polytheistic Hindu, though many postmoderns elevate him to near-sainthood or demi-god status. But can’t a Hindu speak a truth that we can respect? Secular people can honor whoever they please but Christians should not make nonbelievers their spiritual authorities or guides.
In any case, I’ve thought this through over the years, this issue of being able to ‘hate the sin while loving the sinner.” It is not doable, not feasible for anyone who is honest.
Sin implies a human sinner; a person is doing the sin. The sin does not exist on its own. If we attempt to ”love the sinner” we end up either turning a blind eye to the sin or actually arguing for it, attempting to minimize its importance or seriousness, in our attempt to preserve our love for the sinner. If it is a sinful child of ours, or a sibling, a parent, anyone close to us, we tend to want to gloss over the import of the sin, and especially to defend our loved one if someone criticizes their behavior or ‘lifestyle’. In some cases, parents in particular will end by saying that the sin really is no sin at all, and there are cases in which some people have abandoned their faith, which to them is preferable to believing, as with homosexuality, that the sin is an ‘abomination’ as the Bible says. There are people who have lost their faith in the attempt follow Gandhi’s command to love the sinner.
If we really love someone we don’t want to see them lost to a sinful way of life, such as addiction, sexual deviancy, or criminal behavior. Is that being too judgmental or unloving? How much more uncaring it is to turn a blind eye, or worse, to ‘enable’ someone and to give them the false comfort of saying that they aren’t really bad people after all, they are just fine as they are, God loves them unconditionally. The Bible says otherwise, however much we may not like that. [Psalm 5:4-5]
Does this mean we have to ‘hate’ sinners? No, but we are to avoid their company. No, that does not mean we don’t try to ‘witness’ or to reach out but we are to avoid ungodly associates.
One more last thing: the blog I linked above says that the Bible condemns gluttony more than homosexuality — that’s a new one on me. Gluttony is mentioned in the Bible as a sin, but I guess I missed the part in Leviticus where it’s called an abomination or where it is a stoning offense, a capital crime. The commenters think that fatties are more under God’s condemnation than sexual deviants. Apparently they read a different Bible than mine.
Besides, there are thin gluttons. I know of bulimics and bulimarexics who eat gluttonously then purge, like the old Romans did in their vomitoria. We thought the ancient Romans were so decadent with their gorging and purging so that they could gorge some more — yet how are bulimics who binge-eat considered sick people rather than just gluttonous or decadent?
Incidentally the word decadent, you’ll notice, is used only in connection with food nowadays, not with sexual deviancy. Sexual deviants need to be loved and to be told they are ‘God’s children’ while only those who judge can be judged with impunity.
Paradoxical, isn’t it?
Update: There is a somewhat related post on Vox Day’s blog, having to do with the war on ‘hate speech’, and on the issue of ‘hate’ in a Biblical context. Someone references the Gandhi commandment about loving the sinner, hating the sin, etc. Read the piece and the comments here. It’s worth reading.