Is Judging others a mortal sin?


#1

What does it mean to judge others? Is this a mortal sin? Jesus said not to judge, but I can’t find an example in the books I have that says this is a mortal sin? For example if I see a man full of tattoos and spiked mohawk hair and I think to myself I bet he’s trouble. Is that a mortal sin, or only if I say they are going to hell?


#2

Well… unless YOU have the same amount of tats, and similar spiked hair…you have no place to say or think anything…

that is the spirit of what Jesus was saying…“remove the BEAM from your OWN eye before telling another about their splinter”

ie…make sure YOU have no mortal sins on your soul, and arent doing the same exact thing another is doing before you even think about approaching them…and then…it must be done in charity.

Example: A person who goes to Church once a year to only meet minimum obligations telling anyone they should go to church more often… etc…

Ps…I know they look like total morons and probably arent mental heavyweights in debating anything other than Punk or Metal music…but ones appearance doesnt mean they are headed for Hell. :wink:


#3

We need to distinguish between judging actions and judging people. To take a very obvious example, if you see someone killing another or robbing a bank, you must recognize the evil of the action. What you may not do is make assumptions about the dispositions of the person doing the bad act - you don’t know if he truly understands that it’s wrong, you don’t know if he’s acting with complete freedom, in summation, you don’t know if he’s really responsible for his action - you cannot judge the inside.

Now, as to YOUR sinfulness in doing this…if you just have a passing thought that the punky looking guy might be up to no good, that doesn’t really cause him any harm, and would probably be, at worst, a venial sin. If, on the other hand, you base an important decision about him upon your impression of his appearance and your judgement that he’s probably dishonest or bad, and he suffers as a result, that could be a more serious sin on your part.

If you see another person commit an evil act, you must recognize the evil inherent in the act, you can be concerned for his salvation, and you have a duty to pray for his salvation. That’s not the same as saying, “He’s going to hell.” You cannot know that, but you can fear it and pray for him.

Betsy


#4

[quote=dizzy_dave]What does it mean to judge others? Is this a mortal sin? Jesus said not to judge, but I can’t find an example in the books I have that says this is a mortal sin? For example if I see a man full of tattoos and spiked mohawk hair and I think to myself I bet he’s trouble. Is that a mortal sin, or only if I say they are going to hell?
[/quote]

To judge a person is to judge the state of their soul, or to presume to know what judgement such a person is due. This ability is reserved only for God, and to presume otherwise is a form of blasphemy. However, in cases such as your example, taking caution due to external appearances is not sinful, because outward signs are often reflections of internal realities. So long as you don’t believe that such hair and “body art” automatically *makes *the person bad, there is no sin.


#5

[quote=Dr. Colossus]To judge a person is to judge the state of their soul, or to presume to know what judgement such a person is due. This ability is reserved only for God, and to presume otherwise is a form of blasphemy. However, in cases such as your example, taking caution due to external appearances is not sinful, because outward signs are often reflections of internal realities. So long as you don’t believe that such hair and “body art” automatically *makes *the person bad, there is no sin.
[/quote]

Also, we are right to judge a persons actions, just as long as we do not judge thier intentions. Sinful actions are sinful regardless of the persons intentions which is why we can and should make fraternal correction, but we never know the persons state of mind and cannot presume to know their intent; to do so would be sinful.


#6

I would disagree that we cannot judge a person’s intent. If they take a roundhouse swing at someone in my presence, I most certainly can judge that their intent was to hit that person. What I cannot judge was whether or not they intended a moral vs. and immoral act. They may have believed that they were defending, or actually were defending, an innocent third party. Or they may have intended to commit murder by beating. That, I can’t judge. That they intended to hit the person, that I can judge. That they were delusional, and thought they were hitting a punching bag, I can’t judge from the facts stated.

We are told “judge not, lest you be judged”; and that goes to the morality or immorality (subjective, not objective) of the person’s act.

I can judge that contraception is immoral; that the Church teaches (it is always an objectively sinful act). But I cannot condemn someone who is contracepting; I don’t know what they were taught or believe. And if they say to me “I know this is a mortal sin and I’m going to do it anyway”, I am not judging, I am listening; they are stating their moral intent.


#7

[quote=otm]I would disagree that we cannot judge a person’s intent. If they take a roundhouse swing at someone in my presence, I most certainly can judge that their intent was to hit that person. What I cannot judge was whether or not they intended a moral vs. and immoral act. They may have believed that they were defending, or actually were defending, an innocent third party. Or they may have intended to commit murder by beating. That, I can’t judge. That they intended to hit the person, that I can judge. That they were delusional, and thought they were hitting a punching bag, I can’t judge from the facts stated.

[/quote]

You confused me a little bit here, saying that you disagree that we cannot judge the persons intention but then you went on to explain (better than I could) that we cannot judge their intentions.

I am pretty sure that we agree with each other. :slight_smile:


#8

Hey :wave: I have a question too! I thought you had to be a christian and believe in Jesus to be saved. So, one time while reading about Near-Death Experiences, it was about a Muslim or a Bhuddist who had an NDE. In my mind i said “I’d love to here this one” (kinda grinning when i thought that) :frowning:
Instantly Assuming that the certain person would have an NDE of hell. Did i commit a Mortal sin by judging someone in this way? I only realized my action after i had said this. I’m wondering if i Commited any sin.:shrug: I would love to hear a response!
Thanks.


#9

While I agree that it’s a bad idea for us to judge the soul of another person (for no other reason than it’s impossible), I’m not sure that Jesus technically forbade it. It seems to me that what Jesus said was that if we do attempt to judge then we can expect God (and others) to judge us by the same standards we are using. And who of us is not guilty of sin?

But on the hand, to presume to be able to judge the heart and soul of another is essentially a claim to be God and that is a serious sin against the First Commandment. It would certainly meet the “serious matter” component of a mortal sin.

As others have stated, we can and must sometimes judge the morality of the actions of others.


#10

I’m Worried that i might have sinned by assuming a person would go to hell, or if I wanted something bad to happen. I regret my thought, after I realized what I did. (Im clarifying my question I asked before). I need to know if i commited mortal sin :eek: for me to recieve Communion.


#11

As a general rule, if one has to ask after an act was committed if it was gravely sinful, or even sinful at all, then it was not a mortal sin. In order for a sin to be mortal, three conditions must be met:
-the sin must be grave matter
-the person has full knowledge of the sinfulness of the act
-full consent to commit the act

It does not sounds like you meet that criteria. I would talk to a priest about these issues. He will be able to give you more guidance.


#12

i think its only a mortal sin if you find yourslef hating people who you thnk are … “off”…

“you will know them by their fruits.” (dont know what psg that is…)

we are to love everyone and pray for everyone but we are NOT to be intimate with just anyone… I learned that lesson the hard way… & I’m not just talking about romantic intimacy… I’m talking about being close friends w/ people who do not believe as we do… BAD idea…!

be not un-equally yoked w/ unbelivers… as the Sciprtures say…


#13

i think we should, in a sense, always assume that EVERYONE (everyone we don’t know… & many we do) is going to Hell… because for one thing, a lot of people DO go to Hell… :eek: … Jesus and mary and the saints all tell us that it is not easy geting to Heaven / avoiding Hell… so its best to assume that people need… “encouragement” in the right direction. If we preach to someone who is already converted, no harm done but if we do not preach to someone who needs it, we will be held accountable for that person’s soul… (basically)…

I think sometimes we Christians are too cowardly in witnessing … sharing the Word… :frowning:


#14

See i was worried because i only discovered i was Condeming people recently. Also, if Mortal sin destroys charity, then if you are in doubt to whether or not you commited mortal sin, yet you commit an act of Charity, does this prove your in a state of Grace???:hmmm: Am scrupulous so i do have some anxiety with sin.


#15

[quote="baltobetsy, post:3, topic:4808"]
We need to distinguish between judging actions and judging people. To take a very obvious example, if you see someone killing another or robbing a bank, you must recognize the evil of the action. What you may not do is make assumptions about the dispositions of the person doing the bad act - you don't know if he truly understands that it's wrong, you don't know if he's acting with complete freedom, in summation, you don't know if he's really responsible for his action - you cannot judge the inside.

Now, as to YOUR sinfulness in doing this...if you just have a passing thought that the punky looking guy might be up to no good, that doesn't really cause him any harm, and would probably be, at worst, a venial sin. If, on the other hand, you base an important decision about him upon your impression of his appearance and your judgement that he's probably dishonest or bad, and he suffers as a result, that could be a more serious sin on your part.

If you see another person commit an evil act, you must recognize the evil inherent in the act, you can be concerned for his salvation, and you have a duty to pray for his salvation. That's not the same as saying, "He's going to hell." You cannot know that, but you can fear it and pray for him.

Betsy

[/quote]

Am totally confused now on JUDGING OTHERS. There is co-worker, who is also catholic. At times I think that they are abusing the word “judging”. Last week I came in the office (morning) and I saw her and said to her “Hey X, what's the matter with you? Are you ok? I find that you are looking kinda down these days”. They jumped up and said to me “don’t judge me, just because I am looking this way don’t really mean that I am that way.”...

There is not much teaching on judging and if there is, it only explains it to you in a manner that is difficult to understand. Additionally, she also says that she does not lie and does not know what is hurt. I feel sorry for her and mad at her because in my view there is not perfect person and to say that you do not hurt or lie is like fooling yourself. Because of this I have pulled away from her.

Could you please help


#16

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