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'Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged! Matthew 7:1


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Initial post: 31 Dec 2013 10:22:16 GMT
Isn't this utter rot?

I mean we all judge people all the time. We put people in prison on the basis of such judgement, we give them jobs, ignore them, praise them, blame them etc. etc.

Also why should anyone be afraid of being judged? I expect to be judged fairly, on the evidence of my achievements, arguments, work, conduct etc. But I am not afraid of being judged, indeed I welcome fair judgement.

Have I missed the point of this? I often (even on these threads) hear Christians saying that they don't judge while doing just that. Indeed how could they help but judge? I don't think this is possible unless you stop thinking.

Why are such saying accepted even though they manifestly contradict common experience and common sense?

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 11:00:14 GMT
Acts5v29 says:
Good morning,

The meaning is not:

"judge not, or you will be judged"

but

"judge not **in order that others will not judge you**"

Those who take the high ground in any discussion set themselves up as judges, but so often do so in order that they will not be examined themselves. The Pharisees had made a practice of this, thus is what Jesus had in mind.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 11:35:08 GMT
Last edited by the author on 31 Dec 2013 11:37:08 GMT
'Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged! Matthew 7:1'

Mr. Anthony Wilde says:- Isn't this utter rot?

Simple answer:-
Yes. Absolute rot. But you should realise the Bible (in it's entirety) was not written by any one man.

Like all the other ancient writings/legends/histories and myths (what's in a word?) that modern religions around the world are based upon, the Bible is a repeatedly censored/edited collection of history stories, moral/legal/family advice etc.... assembled by many people, for many reasons, over a period of perhaps three thousand years or more? Hence contributions like that from Matthew above have to be understood in the context that they were written; the circumstances of the era they were written for.

At that time the Roman Empire was a multi-racial police state. A society that had expanded beyond it's natural limits and had already begun to experience the racial/religious balkanisation, that ultimately led to it's breakup/collapse.

Within it's controlling elite however, were many highly educated intelligent and sophisticated men who, while having life or death control over the subject races of the Empire; genuinely wished to create a fairer, more 'perfect' society across the territories they governed.

By contrast, Matthew (along with Jesus and the other 'apostles' ) was a political radical, intent on fermenting the widespread revolt that would ultimately destroy the Roman Empire and everything it stood for. Rather like the hippy/anarchist types of the 1960s?

When this scripture is taken in it's proper historical context; it's meaning becomes obvious. Matthew's words were aimed at these 'sympathisers within the system' because, as a known political agitator; he was rightly terrified of being arrested and 'judged' for HIS deeds! Deeds for which tradition says he WAS ultimately crucified in Greece!

So when understood in context, his seemingly balanced/authoritative:- 'Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged!' can be seen for what it was; the ancient Roman 'religious' rebel's equivalent of the modern hippy/anarchists 'Peace' slogan/mantra. It was spewed for the same reason as well. In the hope that it would protect anti-social troublemakers from getting the beating/punishment they richly deserved!

I consider this glaring failure by the West's self-styled 'christian' Authorities to educate the masses about the reality of the Christian faith utterly inexcusable. These sanctimonious hypocrites parade around in their mitres, cassocks, dog-collars etc.... milking the masses for money, sympathy etc... BUT have utterly failed in their basic task. IE: Explaining even the most simple historical truths about Christianity or it's origin to the people they profess to 'guide'.

"Let them alone : they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.(Matthew 15:14 KJV)"

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 12:57:55 GMT
My question did not really concern the historical origin of the saying, but its illogicality and moral absurdity vis--vis the fact that people still consider it Christian wisdom.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 13:13:48 GMT
Of course it's absurdly illogical, and whenever parts of the bible are shown to be illogical or false the rationalisations start in an attempt to square this with the claim the bible is the inerrant message of a deity with limitless knowledge and power. Of course the claims of a being with omniscience, or omnipotence both are illogical themselves.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 13:20:10 GMT
I find it strange that no Christian has seen fit to put me right.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 13:20:44 GMT
Sheldon,

If there are two ways of reading a passage and one of them is absurdly illogical, why would one select that reading? This seems an absurdly illogical approach.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 13:56:20 GMT
Drew Jones says:
He didn't say there are two ways to read *this passage*. What happens is that people stop reading this passage and appeal to a false idea of 'context' whereby they try and great a diversion with another section of the Bible entirely that meets their preferred requirements.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:00:56 GMT
Last edited by the author on 31 Dec 2013 14:02:31 GMT
You seem not to realise the " illogicality and moral absurdity " you speak of; is a direct result of the historical situation, amidst which the phase originated?

Why?

You will clearly realise the benefit this 'defiance of the obvious' type of thinking brought to the draft-dodging/drug smoking hippies of our own era; so why is it so difficult to see the historical parallels?

Especially when you realise that Matthew's words were directly challenging a long-established and far more rational/effective moral code, encapsulated within scriptures such as those below:-

Exodus 21:22-25.
"22 "If people are fighting and hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely[a] but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman's husband demands and the court allows. 23 But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise."

Deuteronomy 19:15-21.
"15 A single witness shall not rise up against a man on account of any iniquity or any sin which he has committed; on the evidence of two or three witnesses a matter shall be confirmed. 16 If a malicious witness rises up against a man to accuse him of wrongdoing, 17 then both the men who have the dispute shall stand before the Lord, before the priests and the judges who will be in office in those days. 18 The judges shall investigate thoroughly, and if the witness is a false witness and he has accused his brother falsely, 19 then you shall do to him just as he had intended to do to his brother. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you. 20 The rest will hear and be afraid, and will never again do such an evil thing among you. 21 Thus you shall not show pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot. "

Posted on 31 Dec 2013 14:06:14 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:16:31 GMT
Reply to glorify the LORD.

Another passage from the New Testament (carefully phrased to carry a double-meaning) issued at the time because the followers of Christ were a small unpopular minority, within both the Jewish people and the Empire.

A far more honest representation of Biblical advice to the faithful in time of war is shown below:-

Deuteronomy Chapter 20.
1 When thou goest out to battle against thine enemies, and seest horses, and chariots, and a people more than thou, be not afraid of them: for the LORD thy God is with thee, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

2 And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people,

3 And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them;

4 For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

5 And the officers shall speak unto the people, saying, What man is there that hath built a new house, and hath not dedicated it? let him go and return to his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man dedicate it.

6 And what man is he that hath planted a vineyard, and hath not yet eaten of it? let him also go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man eat of it.

7 And what man is there that hath betrothed a wife, and hath not taken her? let him go and return unto his house, lest he die in the battle, and another man take her.

8 And the officers shall speak further unto the people, and they shall say, What man is there that is fearful and fainthearted? let him go and return unto his house, lest his brethren's heart faint as well as his heart.

9 And it shall be, when the officers have made an end of speaking unto the people, that they shall make captains of the armies to lead the people.

10 When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it.

11 And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, that all the people that is found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee.

12 And if it will make no peace with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it:

13 And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword:

14 But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God hath given thee.

15 Thus shalt thou do unto all the cities which are very far off from thee, which are not of the cities of these nations.

16 But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth:

17 But thou shalt utterly destroy them; namely, the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee:

18 That they teach you not to do after all their abominations, which they have done unto their gods; so should ye sin against the LORD your God.

19 When thou shalt besiege a city a long time, in making war against it to take it, thou shalt not destroy the trees thereof by forcing an axe against them: for thou mayest eat of them, and thou shalt not cut them down (for the tree of the field is man's life) to employ them in the siege:

20 Only the trees which thou knowest that they be not trees for meat, thou shalt destroy and cut them down; and thou shalt build bulwarks against the city that maketh war with thee, until it be subdued.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:20:14 GMT
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Posted on 31 Dec 2013 14:23:13 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:37:02 GMT
Last edited by the author on 31 Dec 2013 14:38:40 GMT
In reply to your post on 31 Dec 2013 13:20:44 GMT
Mr. W. D. Burchell says:
Sheldon, If there are two ways of reading a passage and one of them is absurdly illogical, why would one select that reading? This seems an absurdly illogical approach.

Could you show me the post where I suggested there were two, and only two, ways to read anything? How you theists do love your straw man arguments.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:37:54 GMT
Last edited by the author 34 minutes ago
C. W. Bradbury says:
You seem not to realise the " illogicality and moral absurdity " you speak of; is a direct result of the historical situation, amidst which the phase originated?

Ah, and there was me thinking an omnipotent being could do anything, wait a minute??

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:38:16 GMT
Can you answer Helen's questions please.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:44:17 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:44:38 GMT
Mr. W. D. Burchell says:

Sheldon,

If there are two ways of reading a passage and one of them is absurdly illogical, why would one select that reading? This seems an absurdly illogical approach.'

Hi Mr Burchell,

What is the other way of reading the passage?

That is really my question. It is so obviously false that I must have misunderstood it. How am I to read it?

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:47:01 GMT
'C. W. Bradbury says:

You seem not to realise the " illogicality and moral absurdity " you speak of; is a direct result of the historical situation, amidst which the phase originated?'

That may well be true. But I don't care about what it resulted from, but why people still accept an absurdity, this is a live problem (Not to say that the historical problem is not interesting, but not really what I am after).

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:48:57 GMT
'glorify the LORD says:

blessed are the peacemakers said Jesus{pbuh} the messiah of Israel'

I'm sure that are very blessed.

But I don't really see the relevance of the remark. Or rather, I see some kind of vague connection but it doesn't really attempt to address the question.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 14:58:37 GMT
So no you can't then?

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 15:00:42 GMT
In a way that rationalises believing it is the inerrant word of god, clearly. I find that idea so subjective that the whole exercise is pointless, but then I don't see the point in trying to believe something that all the evidence contradicts, and none supports.

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 15:00:55 GMT
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In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 15:05:08 GMT
>>> says:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/iran/9546513/Iran-resurrects-Salman-Rushdie-threat.html
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2004/nov/07/terrorism.religion
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8636455.stm

In reply to an earlier post on 31 Dec 2013 15:14:10 GMT
Henry James says:
I have always interpreted the verse to mean
"Until you are judged by God in His infinite wisdom,
you are in no position to judge others."

And since you will never have God's infinite wisdom
you are on thin ice ever judging others.
There is so much about their situation you can't know.

There does seem to be some truth in that.

On the other hand, you are correct, Tony.
We judge others, and ourselves, all the time.
And we must to function.

Maybe the wisdom is to realize we are judging, as we must, based on imperfect knowledge.

When the Pope said of gays, "who am I to judge," he implied that there is so much about a gay person's life that he doesn't understand well enough to judge.

He probably could make a judgment about Hitler, though the Catholic Church famously collaborated more than condemned in that case.
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Discussion in:  religion discussion forum
Participants:  22
Total posts:  175
Initial post:  31 Dec 2013
Latest post:  5 Jan 2014

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