It is mine to avenge; I will repay. —Deuteronomy 32:35
Judging people is elbowing in on God’s exclusive territory. This verse is quoted twice in the New Testament—in Romans 12:19 and Hebrews 10:30. That means that it is not your job! “That’s my privilege,” says God. Judging is God’s prerogative, nobody else’s. If we move in on His territory, God looks at us and says, “Really? You’ve got to be kidding.” To move in on the territory of the eternal Judge will get His attention—but not the kind of attention we want!
The word godliness means “being like God,” and there are certain aspects of God’s character that He commands us to imitate. God wants us to walk in integrity. He wants us to walk in truth and sincerity. But there is an aspect of the character of God where there is no trespassing allowed, and the moment we begin to point our fingers at other people, we are on it—we are sinning. That aspect is being a judge.
If you and I are foolish enough to administer uncalled-for criticism, we should remember three things:
1. God is listening.
2. He knows the truth about us.
3. He is ruthlessly fair.
God has a way of exposing us just when we begin to think, There is no way that could happen to me. The Lord promises that equitable judgment will be administered. The word equitable means “fair” or “just.” All of God’s judgments are ruthlessly fair. At the judgment seat of Christ, before which we will all stand one day, for once in human history judgment will be fair.
Nearly every day we hear of the courts letting someone off, and we say to ourselves, “Where is the justice?” But God’s justice is always fair. The question is, will it occur here in this present life or in the life to come?
Excerpted from Total Forgiveness (Charisma House, 2002).