Judging Others

I’m impressed with how our policing agencies are promoting the slogan, “See Something Say Something.” During the course of my life I made a few friends who are in law enforcement. As I have gotten to know them personally I find them no different from me on the surface. Obviously just as I was indoctrinated by the circumstances of my life, my friends were indoctrinated by their circumstances. Yes there are people who are evil at the core but most human beings are products of the environments from which they were raised. If you raise a child to be a bigot then that is usually what they become. If you raise them to be more acceptable of people who are different they become more tolerant.

Over my years I have wrestled with the notion of blaming people of a certain persuasion for the atrocities committed by someone of their race. That is simply bad judgment. For example if a black person robbed a bank are we to say all black people are bank robbers, absolutely not! People show a litany of differences, both good and bad traits, but that has more to do with the individual than a race or culture. Yes there are cultural and even racial traits but to define an individual merely by race or culture is just silly.

When you get to know people genuinely you might find that human beings have more in common than we suffer from cultural identification. For example in America, black people suffered from discriminatory practices committed by white people for hundreds of years. Does this mean that all white people should be blamed for the evil acts of people who are white? It is easy to hate a person because of the color of their skin but isn’t that the same thing that we find detestable? Likewise when we see radical Muslims bomb a public facility indiscriminately killing innocent people, do we think all Muslims are like that evil? No! Very bad people come in all races, cultures, religious, and personal distinctions. Bad behavior is what we should be criticizing rather than the culture or race of the perpetrator.

Have you ever traveled on the highway and saw a really bad automobile accident? After the shock of witnessing something so horrific most of us would rush in to help the victims even if it meant putting ourselves in harm’s way. We don’t usually think of the consequences but only that another human being is in need and we are the ones in position to help. I would guess that most people would do what they could.

Mankind was created in the image and likeness of our Creator. Everything that is good about God actually exists in us but we have the choice to be good or not. We can do good or not. Our heavenly Father wanting us to be like Him with the ability to choose our own fate gave us choice. What we do with our choices is up to us.

In my lifetime I have made some really bad choices. Perhaps I thought it would make me prosper or popular, but regardless I am the one that decided. Now that I am older and wiser I am more careful with my choices. I am also aware of the reality of God. Therefore things that I do are not done in secret. Our Creator knows every act and deed, even our thoughts. So when you decide to make an unwise choice, just know that what is done in the dark will eventually come into the light of truth.

If anyone of you out there is without sin, let him or her cast the first stone… “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Matt 7:1-2