Is judging an act of selfishness? I review books for a Christian publisher. I would say that 98% of the books I end up loving to read and have reread them at least once. Even though I don’t always agree with 100% of what is said, I don’t discredit the whole book. I guess that’s where the saying “Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water” came from! However, I am constantly amazed at the comments from people on a book if they don’t like one thing in it and bash the author or make rude comments about it, sometimes to the point that it degenerates into a chaotic frenzy. If you don’t care for something, just try to be positive, state the negative, and be done. We are so quick to judge something or someone by one instance. Respect for others is a matter of character and a call to humility.
We’re not the only ones to suffer this malady. The disciples judged the woman who poured out costly perfume on Jesus. Martha judged Mary. The Pharisees were always judging others based on their perception of holiness and missed what holiness was all about. We have to be careful that we hold our personal convictions as sacred and, well, personal. If we force them on others it becomes not a conviction but an overinflated view of our opinions.
Just as the handpicked disciples of Jesus were made up of all kinds of different personalities and characteristics, we are all different and He loves us all! We are not perfect, He sees our flaws and our errors but constantly endeavors to transform our character flaws into useful tools and strengths.
So yes, when we judge others it is a selfish act of using our narrow-minded yardstick to measure others. It is based upon our own personal head space where all kinds of thought processes take place.
Martha found herself rebuked. Not for performing her personal service to God, but for judging Mary in her personal adoration. Jesus defended the extravagant act of a woman over the disciple’s objections, calling it an offering acceptable even above giving to the poor.
God designed us all. Just like He designed and created the many birds, the fish of the sea and beautiful landscapes. From the snow topped mountain, to the bottom of the ocean floor there are a vast number of differences, not only in beauty but in the contrast that reflects His handiwork–so are we created.
It sure makes my selfish judging look mighty ugly. I’m reminded of my propensity to selfishness, to judging, of pride, and all other human limitations that I experience not to cause me to feel hopeless but to empty myself of me so I can be full of Him.