Time for some honesty here. I am not yet to the point where I can say I fully appreciate this section of Scripture. Just reading through it I can imagine the endless numbers who have pulled out their Bible Beretta, loaded it with the Scripture bullets of “do not judge lest you be judged,” and fired it at anyone who calls sin for what it is. Then how many parents have made their children repeat the verse ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’ when they misbehaved to their sibling. (I think somehow our parents read this as “Don’t do to others what you would have them….”)
But just because it has been abused doesn’t make it any less valuable and even vital to spiritual life. These in fact are the very words of Jesus, written in the color red in most of our Bibles. And they definitely hold truth for our lives.
For example: “in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you” (v. 1-2). As one who has had a lot of experience in passing judgment, I can verify the truth of this. And as one who has been on the receiving end of both judgment and graciousness, I can say that I often mirror how I feel like I’m being treated. The hardest truth to swallow though is perhaps the realization that the people I dislike the most are the ones who resemble me most.