Old Meeting House Congregational Church (1643)

The Best Hidden Church in Norwich

Some Insights Into Criticism

Human beings have many valuable gifts which depending on how we use them can be a real blessing or a curse. Perhaps one of the most significant is the ability to think critically. It lies behind all of man’s greatest scientific achievements. Yet in the spiritual life it is a hindrance rather than a help. Jesus made this very clear. “Judge not that you be not judged, for with what judgement you judge you shall be judged.” This is a law written deep in the nature of personality. Every time we judge another we lay a measuring rod against our own lives. In Matthew chapter seven and verse two we read “and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” We cannot escape this judgement even if we would. Every judgement we make against another registers a judgement against ourselves, even though no one is there to see or hear our judgement. This is a law which has never been fully understood. If we did understand we would cease judging at once, in our own interest. One phase of it is quite clear. The fault in another which causes us most annoyance is generally a fault of our own. We see the splinter in another’s eyes because there is plank of timber – the same material but more of it – in our own. For example, if we are proud we cannot stand pride in another. If we are selfish we hate another selfish person. If we are superior we hate others who give themselves airs. We always hate most in others the sins we suffer from ourselves. Our characters are revealed in our judgements. Criticism is a denial of love. Let’s remember then the words of Jesus, “judge not that you be not judged.”


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