29th August 2007
Righteous Judgment vs the 'Judge Not Deception' !!!
By Michael Jennings
name is Michael Jennings and I am part of a prison ministry team that
has gotten to know some prisoners rather well. While spending time with
these men over the years, I met some of the greatest men the church
will ever know in this generation. These men are true disciples of
Jesus Christ and are in constant pursuit of the three major components
that characterize a mature relationship with God- covenant, knowledge
and worship. I witnessed real fruit and true humility in their lives.
They lead daily lives of sacrifice, have a hunger and thirst for
righteousness, refuse to be controlled by carnal inclinations and
desire to know Jesus more fully in the power of His resurrection and in
the fellowship of His sufferings. Outside of prison, I’m sure saints
can know Him in the fellowship of His sufferings. But on the inside,
it’s a whole lot easier and quicker to experience it.
While they are
not perfect (none of us are while enclosed in this veil of flesh), they
are pressing toward the mark while others have replaced that
responsibility with legalistic conformity, empty extremes, fleshly
dominated cycles of behavior or partial to adopting apathy and
compromise. I was blessed to be able to fellowship with these real
Warriors and Lovers of God. At the same time I was sadden to see others
in such extreme hypocrisy and bound up in religious traditions and
commandments of men. If you believe those observations are judgmental
and uncalled for, I give you Jer. 2:34b and I Tim. 5:24-25 NKJV..”I
have not found it by secret search, but plainly on all these things”
“Some men’s sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgment, but
those of some men follow later. Likewise, the good works of some are
clearly evident, and those that are otherwise cannot be hidden.”
Awaken to Righteous Judgment
judgment is being restored to the church. A religious spirit has
deceived us for far too long into believing that we are not to judge.
In fact, you’re probably quoting Matt. 7:1 to yourself right now (or is
that a religious spirit ministering to you)?
“Judge not, that ye be
not judged.” That seems to be pretty clear cut. Some ministers have
pounded it into our heads from pulpits for so long, that we all are
real quick to pound someone else with it if they try to speak a word of
correction to us, “you’re judging me brother, judge not lest you be
judged!” We desperately need to rightly divide this passage of truth,
and not with the human reasoning and American dictionaries that has led
to such wrong understanding resulting in a destructive lack of
It was Jesus Himself who said, “Judge not, that ye be not
judged,” but then we find Paul saying in I Cor. 5:3 “For I.. have
already judged.. concerning him who has so done this deed.” Was Paul
being directly disobedient to the words of Jesus here? Of-course not!
But he would have been told that by the religious church today- “Now
Paul, you’re judging that man, judge not.”
Yes, Paul is judging and
rightfully so! Paul goes on to tell the Corinthian Church to deliver
such a one to Satan and put away from yourselves that wicked person,
and that they were to do it in the name of Jesus and with the power of
Jesus (I Cor. 5:4,5,13). Then in verse 12, Paul openly challenges them
in an attempt to awaken them to righteous judgment, “Do you not judge
those who are inside?” I Cor. 5:12 in the T.E.V. reads like this- “But
should you not judge the members of your own fellowship? The Anderson
Greek N. T. - “But isn’t it true that you people must judge those in
your own group?
It would seem as if we do have a contradiction here;
the instruction of Jesus in Matt. 7:1 vs. Paul’s actions in I Cor.
5:1-13. Why is it, that when we know God is leading us to speak a word
of correction into a situation that needs it and we have already
discerned the heart of the Father about it, that the very words “judge
not” shuts us down? It’s because we have a wrong understanding of Matt.
7:1, and ministers have beat the sheep with it for so long that we now
beat each other with it ourselves.
So what is the right understanding?
Greek word for judge #2919 Κρινώ, pronounced Krino, means here in Matt.
7:1- to condemn, to damn, to punish and avenge. Whereas, in I Cor.
5:3&12 it means- to judge properly, an issue of decision, to
distinguish. This living understanding, rightly dividing the word of
truth, sets us free to now obey both Scripture passages. Let’s remove
the controversy and the ignorant & demonic attempts to stop
We are to obey Jesus’ instruction not to condemn
lest we be condemned. For with what condemnation we damn with to punish
and avenge, the same measure will be measured back to us. We will reap
what we sow. And at the same time, we must obey our responsibility to
judge. In fact, this life within our church experience prepares us to
execute righteous judgment on a much larger scale- one day we shall
judge angels and the world (I Cor. 6:2-3).
Also consider this, Jesus
went on to say in Matthew 7:15-16, “Beware of false prophets... you
will know them by their fruits.” For us to be able to beware and know
calls for a judgment which allows us to distinguish and produce a
decision. This truth can free you and destroy that false mind-set. The
entrance of His words give light. The NAS says- The unfolding of Thy
words gives light, It gives understanding to the simple.
Prerequisites for Righteous Judgment
There are prerequisites required of us to be used by God in any significant capacity, especially righteous judgment.
and Understanding. What is righteous judgment? It is to be judged or
governed by a pronounced verdict which is just and fair. “I know, O
Lord, that Thy judgments are righteous.” (Ps. 119:75 NASB). Judgments
here is the Hebrew word #4941 Mishpat, meaning- a verdict pronounced
judicially, to be judged or governed to promote justice. “The LORD is a
God of [Mishpat]” (Isa.30:18) and “loves [Mishpat]” (Ps. 37:28).
judgment is required when disobedience, idolatry, arrogance, cruelty,
persistent unfaithfulness, abominations, ect.. continue. Most of the
time, the desired end result of righteous judgment is to produce
repentance and bring restoration- “Brethren, if anyone among you wander
from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who
turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death
and cover a multitude of sins” (James 5:19-20). “Brethren, if a man is
overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one..”
(Gal. :6:1). Know and understand that it’s not condemnation, but rather
righteous judgment if someone has determined that you have wandered
from the truth into error or have been overtaken in a trespass if they
seek to restore you. Quit telling people not to judge you if you need
to be judged. What you don’t need is condemnation. That’s not righteous
judgment, and neither is slandering, criticism or false and malicious
statements which are injurious to a persons’ character or a ministries’
There are other prerequisite conditions that must be met before one is to administer and execute righteous judgment.
Examination. Ministry without self-examination will never be used by
God to execute righteous judgment. Too much ministry is built on
unresolved anger, unhealthy needs for approval, and the instinct to
control. Failing to explore our own soul for unwholeness will only lead
to hypocrisy and partiality when we try to judge a situation and bring
correction, it will not minister the wisdom that is from above.
said, “Hypocrite! First remove the plan from your own eye, and then you
will see clearly to remove the speck out of your brother’s eye” (Matt.
7:5). “First remove the plank from your own eye.” First before what?
First before what would follow and be second- “..then you will see
clearly to remove the speck out of your brother’s eye.” Jesus desires
for us to be able to remove the speck out of our brother’s eye, but He
demands that we first examine ourselves and purify our motives. We must
first remove any obstacles that would obstruct or pervert our vision to
see clearly to minister to our brother. Let us remove the planks of
pride, arrogance, ignorance, contention (a quarrelsome spirit),
insincerity, operating out of a wounded spirit and especially
presumption (to speak or act without warrant, performing actions
without authority). Our brother will be delivered by pure hands (Job
22:30). “Let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and
spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God” (2 Cor. 7:1). “Draw
near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you
sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded” (James 4:8).
must abound in Love and be Spiritually minded. “And this I pray, that
your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all
discernment so that you may approve the things that are excellent [or
distinguish between the things which differ. Note from NASB] (Phil.
1:9-10 NASB). Love precedes everything, including real knowledge and
We also must be spiritually minded to make
righteous judgments and restore those overtaken in trespasses. “..he
who is spiritual judges all things..” (I Cor. 2:15). “..if a man is
overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in
a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted”
(Gal. 6:1). This verse in Galatians also shows us right approach-
spirit of gentleness; and right motive- to restore. This verse also
reinforces the self-examination principle- considering yourself. The
NASB says “looking to” yourself. The Greek word is #4648 ,,κο,,έώ,
pronounced skopeo, and means - to look toward, to contemplate, to spy
out. God will always speak the truth in love and by His Spirit.
Those who have heard the teaching of In the Name of Jesus by Warriors
and Lovers, have been exposed to a revelation of what true New Covenant
authority really is Scripturally in the Greek. It is not a verbal
expression, but a position of authority. And you can learn how to
operate from that position of Jesus’ authority in your everyday life.
It is a powerful truth which is characterize by at least three
different manifestations before one ever arrives at the Luke 10:19
delegation of “Behold, I give unto you power” (KJV). There are no
shortcuts to be able to operate on that level of authority. It’s the
level everyone wants to get to, but they’re totally ignorant of the
first three prerequisite levels. Jesus literally means there in Luke
10:19- Behold, I give unto you the right to exercise the power of My
Authority, but there is a price to pay to operate on that level, and
few be there that find it. We never attain to that level without
obedience to the first three. Likewise, we will never see clearly to
remove the speck out of our brothers eye until we first remove the
plank from our eye. But removing the plank only clears our vision; the
act of removing our brother’s speck requires authority!
Authority is the lawful right to enforce a delegated power!
says that the Lord gives authority for edification- “..if I should
boast somewhat further about our authority, which the Lord gave for
building you up and not for destroying you..” (2 Cor. 10:8 NASB). Even
rebuke is aimed at producing repentance and bringing restoration. In
Titus 2:15, ministers are instructed “to rebuke with all authority.”
found something in the Psalms that is very crucial for understanding
authority. “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your
throne” (Psalms 89:14). It’s righteousness and justice being operative
in our life that allows God to build His authority in us. Then Psalms
97:2 says- “Righteousness and justice are the foundation of His
throne.” I also personally believe that the chronological order of
these two Scripture verses are very important. Just as it is in the
Word, I believe this truth must first come to us as revelation and
become part of our worship to Him. Then it becomes part of our
declaration and proclamation to others about Him.
Glory to God! I
love His Word! I love the unfolding revelation that is alive, living
and capable of going into a situation and giving birth to life. Have
Righteousness and justice are the
foundation, the very place where He will establish His throne- the
governmental seat of His authority where He rules as King! And “Where
the word of a king is, there is power..” (Eccl. 8:4 KJV). On Mt. Zion
was the Tabernacle of David and the King’s palace. Zion was the seat of
worship and government. It was the place of Priestly and Kingly
Authority! God’s covenant people would ascend Mt. Zion to the
Tabernacle of David and praise and worship their God. And He would
enthrone Himself upon the praises of Israel with His manifested
presence and His demonstrated power and people were in awe of the LORD.
Michael's website: www.myspace.com/warriors_and_lovers