Looking Beyond

john 7 24

Ever judge a book by its cover?

Of course you have.  I've done it too.  What about another person?  Maybe by the way they looked or something they said that didn't rub you right?  You don't have to answer because I know…..

We all judge one another.

What if I told you that Jesus himself instructs us to judge?  It's true.  In John, when Jesus is teaching at the temple courts….the Scribes and Pharisees are questioning him about who he is and where he got his power (sort of a WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE situation).  They judge him for healing a man on the Sabbath and he confronts their anger with the truth; "My teaching is not my own.  It comes from the one who sent me." John 7:16  He goes on to explain that whatever HE does comes directly from God (His Father) and that it isn't for them to decide if it is right or not but if they are genuinely seeking God's will…..they will see who deserves the glory.

People today are no different than the Jews in Jesus' day.  We look at a situation or person and make assumptions, usually way off from reality.  But our hearts deceive us and we oftentimes get it all wrong.  Jesus understands.  Just like He did at the temple.  That's why He instructs us to NOT judge by appearances but to judge correctly.

What is correctly?

Jesus knows our heart.  He knows we know our heart.  Our motives flow directly from that same source, our heart.  Each of us have a capability of justifying our actions, thoughts and the resulting judgement that comes from them.  What might be wrong for someone else…..we know how to twist it to be okay for ourselves.  Some might call that righteous indignation.  The Scribes and Pharisees that were drilling Jesus that day, were doing exactly that.  They weren't interested in truth, they were plotting His death and LOOKING hard for any little thing to trap him.

How often do we do that to other's?

We look for reasons to pick them apart or to find fault.  Our ability to see what we THINK we see prevents us from seeing what GOD SEES.  We end up missing their heart.

So, today……Look beyond what you think you see in those around you.  Don't look at their surface…..seek what's really inside their heart.  That's the kind of judgement Jesus was talking about.



Forgive me when I misjudge others.  It's not my job to weigh right and wrong, it's Yours.  I'm called to love.  Help me to always extend grace and to see with eyes like Yours!


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