Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Because "discernment" is often confused with "judging," I am going to explain judging first.

"Judging"--recognizing your own sin in someone else, whether or not it's really there.

Romans 2:1 tells us "Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things."

As a weapon of sin, judging has both strong and weak points. It gives a false accuser confidence, because the accuser actually believes the accusations. A weakness is that the false accuser does not realize how many people recognize him as a false accuser.

A Christian who understands judging can use it effectively. When I taught Christian school, I would sometimes deal with enraged parents whose children had lied to them about their misbehavior. Listening to the parent's accusations against me, I learned what the parent's spiritual problems were and was sometimes able to help them. Don't laugh--less than half of all Christian school teachers enter their third year; I lasted ten years and had better behavior than most of my peers.

People who judge often insist that they are discerning, even though they have their facts wrong. The idea is that judging is making false accusations, while discerning is making true accusations. Neither belief is true.

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