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Saturday, May 19, 2012

When Jezebel is Your Baby Sitter and Spike is a Friend of a Friend on Facebook: Christians and Judging Others

"None of us liveth to himself" ~Romans 14:7

By Unknow ( [CC-BY-SA-3.0
 (], via Wikimedia Commons
I've been thinking about judging lately.

We're fond in today's relativistic society of saying "Don't judge".  It is easy to focus on Matthew 7:1 ("Do not judge."), but to ignore 1 Corinthians 15:33 ("Do not be deceived: Bad company ruins good morals).

When was the last time you allowed your defenseless, impressionable young child into the care of another, without using your judgment?

When did you last allow your young daughter of marriageable age to spend time with a young man, without exercising discernment?

Paul did not mince words in telling the Corinthians that they are to judge the behavior and choices of other believers (1 Corinthians 5: 12-13).  

France-Noirmoutier-Sel brut
Sea Salt
 By --Pinpin 20:24, 19 September 2006 (UTC) (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-2.5

 GFDL ( 
Clearly, "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23), but, we must have some role in protecting ourselves from exposure to immorality.  Call me old fashioned, but I think that this responsibility especially extends to men, in regards to what they allow women to be exposed to through their association.

The current trend in popular society to suggest that morality is a personal matter, and varies relative to personal opinion and experiences, is a dangerous one.  I think that we can see where it has gotten us.  Add to that the fact that feminism has bought for women both "freedom" from the protection of men (physically,emotionally, and otherwise) and the presumed responsibility of protecting themselves...and we are in the midst of quite a cultural mess.

Jesus Christ will stand in final judgment.  That is his role, not ours. However, while we are here, we must use our judgment, informed by scripture, to protect and advise our families and the whole body of Christ, to ensure that the 'salt will not lose it's savor' (Matt. 5:13).

I am only 44 years old.  I am not so far removed from those that are in their 20s and 30s right now.  But, the things that I see in the media and social networking feeds are positively shocking to someone of my generation.  That means that in just 20 years, we have made tremendous progress in our descent into a moral abyss.  I cannot imagine where we will be in another 20.  

Add to that the fact that media was not nearly as readily available or technologically advanced as it is now.  Social networking, and, in fact, the internet itself, was not readily available at ones fingertips, during most of that time.  The access and exposure to aspects of culture that one would not allow in ones living room have multiplied exponentially and are now...readily available in ones living room.  It is a situation ripe for unprecedented desensitization.  

There was a time, not at all long past, when men did not allow other men to curse in front of a woman.  We now have a generation of young adults, women included, who are perfectly comfortable with far worse.

I can't see any way to protect ourselves or our families, other than using our judgment, and teaching our children to do the same.

Pax Christi,

 (Authors: Elliot:Protestant, Dilsaver:Catholic, Elliot: Protestant. Kineke:Catholic, Smiljanic: Orthodox  )    
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  1. so true! We live in a tolerant society which equates loving people with accepting their sin. I love myself but I can't stand my sin! G.K. Chesterton writes, "Tolerance is the virtue of a man without convictions." Thank you for expressing these thoughts about judging others!

  2. Exercising good judgement and then making an intelligent decision from it is a process of discernment. We are quite right in making moral determinations from a rightly informed conscience concerning objective behaviors. What we cannot judge is the state of one's soul as it relates to God. To judge is, in the biblical sense, to either condemn or acquit a person. Only God can do that. We can always judge actions, however, and we should. Then we should act charitably on our judgements, such as when a parent forbids a child to associate with certain other children because they are disrespectful of others' person, personal property, they lie and deceive in other ways.

    If we hate the sin but love the sinner then we judge the sin but not the sinner.

  3. This has been an ongoing lesson for me as a mother. Instead of judging though, I just see it as setting boundaries. I had a good friend (non Christian actually) give a good perspective on this when I needed to set such boundaries on an unhealthy relationship and bad influence on my kids. She said to say "I love you and I respect your freedom to live the way you live but that doesn't mean I can allow myself or my kids to be around it".

  4. I agree. I'm in my late twenties, and I was raised in a "sheltered" homeschooling family, so like you, I'm often shocked about what I see on TV or on Facebook. I agree with Barb about "hating the sin but loving the sinner." And exersising judgement in what we let into our homes via media.

  5. I completely agree, I have often said that I would never look at my neighbor in the middle of moral chaos and take my child over, sit them in their living room window and say "watch and be entertained"....but we let them watch it on TV all the time. It's amazing what people will watch as entertainment or read on the internet and allow into their homes, that they would never do in "real life", the lines are becoming blurry. Soon there will be no lines. I'm fearful of what society will be when my 5 year old is 25.

  6. Excellent, excellent, excellent!!!!!

    I often tell my husband that I expect him to teach our boys how to treat women, and it's my job to teach my daughters how to act around men, and to expect to be treated with respect.

    Homeschooling helps our family so much, to keep tighter reins on what my kids are exposed to.

    Thanks so much for linking up this post! Wonderful!

  7. Good points, Michelle. I heard this in my 20s, and it's scared me ever since:
    What one generation allows in moderation, the next generation will have in excess.
    I turn 50 this year and have watch our morals drop like lead balloons. I'm praying like crazy for the generations that follow.

    Thanks for linking up!

  8. Excellent post! I agree completely and so glad to read your post.


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