One Torah For All

One Torah shall be to him that is home-born, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you.
Exodus 12:49

Righteous Judgment
Understanding what is happening to another person

Matithyah (Matthew) 5:45
“that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He makes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust.”

When looking at the title and then reading the opening passage of Scripture, at first, one may wonder what they have in common. There seems to be a prevalent idea amongst those of a religious persuasion that if something bad is happening in another’s life, then it must be due to sin or wrong doing on his part to bring this about. While this idea could be true, it is not the only reason something bad may be happening in a person’s life. In fact, to draw the conclusion that whatever bad thing is happening is the result of evil-doing or sin with no other evidence except the bad thing is truly poor judgment.

The truth is, there are many things which cause evil to befall a person and his own actions is only one of the things that can cause this. It could be the sinful choices of someone he is close to which cause evil to befall him. It could even be someone he does not know. It could be an unrighteous government which causes the evil to come upon him. Or it could simply be because of the nature of the fallen world in which we live. To be able to determine which is the true cause, one must exercise true Spirit-filled discernment. It is even possible that there may be more than one cause which brings evil into a person’s life.

The passage above, as well as other passages, suggests that there is also another cause which brings evil into a person’s life. One which many often do not give proper consideration, that being, it may be a test from our Creator. He does test us in order to reveal to us what is inside of us, things that need worked on and changed for the better.

We have examined the idea of being tested by our Creator in the study: Testing of the Set-apart Ones. However, for this study the following passage is relevant.

Shemot (Exodus) 20:20
And Moshe said unto the people, “Fear not; for Elohim has come to test you, and that His fear may remain with you, that you do not sin.”

In order to be able to have a proper perspective of why something in happening in a person’s life, whether that be another person or even oneself, then he must understand that there are times when a person undergoes a test, which is directly from the hand of the Almighty. There are many such examples in Scripture, Avraham and Job being only two of those examples. In the case of Job, his closest friends were convinced that he had sinned and this was the reason he was suffering. Furthermore, they were also convinced that he was continuing to suffer because he would not confess his sin and repent of that sin. However, Job knew that he could not repent, simply because he was not suffering for that reason.

All but one of Job’s friends ended up walking away from him, perhaps shaking their hands in disbelief of his stubbornness. The one friend who did stay refused to be swayed by Job’s arguments that he had not sinned, at least not in this particular case.

Romans 3:23
For all have sinned, and fall short of the glory of Elohim.

It is easy to fall into this seemingly default mindset that when evil befalls a person, it is a result of sin in their life. However, this catchall thinking is not proper righteous judgement. It is not doing due diligence as Torah teaches to be done in all cases. While it is true that all have sinned and fall short of His glory, this does not say that personal sin is the only reason that evil befalls a person. Well then, one might say, “What about this passage?”

Yochanan Aleph (1st John) 1:8-10
8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

This was basically what Job’s friends were attempting to argue with him. Job knew that what had befell him was not the result of his personal wrongdoing. It was something that happened. He did not know exactly why, it even hurt, but he had nothing to repent for.

I dare say, that if someone in such a circumstance today said that they had not sinned to cause their suffering, this passage would be thrown into their face without so much as a second thought. But when one does this, has such a person speaking such words made sure that there is no log in their own eye before attempting to take the speck out of their brother’s eye?

If one is going to have righteous judgement, then it is demanded of him that he remove the log out of his own eye first. And this he must do each and every time.

Matithyah (Matthew) 7:3-5
3 “And how can you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the log that is in your own eye?
4 How will you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck out of your eye;’ and behold, the log is in your own eye?
5 You hypocrite, first remove the log out of your own eye; and then you shall see clearly to remove the speck out of your brother’s eye.”

This is what righteous judgment demands!

One cannot have righteous judgment of others if he does not apply this same standard to himself. First, put yourself under the microscope, fixing any and all difficulties, and then one will be able to see clearly enough to help his brother remove the lessor offense out of him. And yes, we do mean lessor offense, for this is what Yeshua taught when He referred to that which is in our brother’s eye as a speck and that which is in one’s own eye as a log. The log is greater than the speck, thus, the log in one’s own eye is the greater offense. It is the greater offense which must be dealt with first. Righteous judgment demands this. If one is not willing to take care of the greater offense first, then such a one is not exercising righteous judgment.

Once a person has done this, then and only then will he be able to see clearly what is happening in that other person’s life. Whatever it is that he sees, to properly understand it, it must be viewed through the eyes of Mashiach Yeshua. That is, it must be seen with love and grace. The following passage follows the above passage, just a few verses later. And yes, they are connected.

Matithyah (Matthew) 7:12
“Therefore, however you want people to treat you, so treat them, for this is Torah and the prophets.”

Once a person can see with great compassion what is happening to the other person, then he will truly understand what is happening to him. After all, is this not how you would hope to be understood by your family and friends?

Shabbat Shalom
Zerubbabel ben Emunah