I’m confused here…did someone judge YOU, or did someone judge WHAT YOU SAID?
This is an important distinction that drives me wild, frankly. You hear it all the time, for example, from homosexuals who say, ‘You’re judgemental, you’re judging me!’ when you are judging their actions to be death to their souls.
We all have to judge actions and situations and facts; none of us CAN - none of us is CAPABLE to - judge the state of someone else’s soul.
You’ve got to clarify terms.
Can you judge the actions of someone? Of course, all the time: that guy ran a red light - period. It happened. The cop saw it. He gets a ticket and pays the fine. Your kid threw that rock through the neighbor’s window, destroying his property. It happened. It was bad. Discipline must follow. If you start saying, ‘Well, no one can judge anyone’ and don’t distinguish between judging souls (which is God’s domain) and judging actions (which we all have to do), then you might as well get rid of the ten commandments, the police force and the court system - we don’t need them if we should never judge anybody’s actions for fear of being judged ourselves.
You have to be so careful with, ‘A thief can’t judge a thief.’ Too many parents fall into that illogical thinking and use it as an excuse not to train their children: “Well, if I stayed out all night and got drunk when I was 14, how can I tell my child not to do it?” It’s precisely because you HAVE committed that sin, seen the evil of it and repented that you are in a position to know what you’re talking about when you say, ‘You shouldn’t get drunk.’
But whether you’ve done it yourself doesn’t matter. Should every judge on the bench be someone who has never, ever told a lie, thus making him suitable for judging when someone has committed perjury? We have objective standards, laws, commandments, that we use to judge people’s actions. We don’t judge in comparison to ourselves and our perfect behavior; we judge according to the laws God has laid down. Any old sinner can do that.
If I am currently now making my living by stealing, there’s a difference between saying, ‘Stealing is wrong, so don’t do it’ (judging the action), and ‘You’re a bad person because you steal’ (judging the person, and being a hypocrite into the bargain). The distinction seems lost in this discussion.
Judging actions is different from judging people: “Hate the sin and love the sinner” illustrates this principle. We MUST judge our own actions as sinful or good; we MUST, in love, judge the actions of the people around us and do what we can - prayer, intercession, intervention, etc. - which prudence tells us can help that person stop doing something self-destructive, like sin.
If someone said to you, 'You are a bad *person *because of what you wrote, then that person is risking being judged the same way by God. If the person said, ‘What you wrote was judgemental,’ then that person is not judging *you, *but the content of your message.
It’s so common in America today for people to yell, 'JUDGEMENTAL!" like it was the first deadly sin. Judgment is good, folks. It helps us tell the difference between fresh fish and rotten, between a good job and a bad job, between a lie and the truth. But the concept has been hi-jacked by pop culture to mean, ‘You disagree with my views, therefore you are a bad person.’
It sure is disappointing to think that intelligent Catholics are buying into the notion that any kind of judgement automatically makes someone a hypocrite.