Romans 2:1 and 14 & 15
• You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.
• 14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.)
I’m remembering an exchange with a good man long ago who was not a believer. I just did not know how to respond to a discussion about good people without God who do good things and people who claim to love God who do bad things. So I took the well traveled legalist approach. They were wrong and he was wrong. Neither of these two areas of judgment ought to be practiced and I was wrong too. This part of Romans suggests these graceful alternatives:
I can give God the credit for the good that is accomplished even though the one doing it may not be giving Him the credit…and I can honor that person as well without judging his position with God.
Discrediting someone else’s relationship to God is a very risky proposition. It discredits my own relationship to God. It’s a flashing beacon that there’s something about myself God wants me to examined first. It’s a beacon that brings badly needed Grace into the picture. Grace that covers both of our situations and reminds me that neither of us can survive without it.