“I do not even judge myself … It is the Lord who judges me”.
1 Cor 4:3, 4 NIV
Every day we make judgments about people. We have to make decisions – assessing whether this one is competent, that one reliable, or another one a fraud. It is part of life. And other people are assessing us.
In the church at Corinth it had gone too far and was causing problems between the various factions and divisions within the church. And judgments about the teachers were being made by people who were probably not very competent at making them, and who were not looking for the important things. Paul tells the people that he doesn’t mind what judgments other people make about him – it is not their mandate to make judgments anyway. Nor does he mind even if a court of law passes judgment on him. He doesn’t even judge himself. The only judgment on his work as an apostle that has any validity is the judgment God will make on him and on his work. That would be the one judgment that would count.
Those same judgments are made on all of us. We judge ourselves – and usually rather sympathetically. Other people judge us – often not so favourably. But the only judgment that really matters is what God thinks of us. We all have finally to give account of our stewardship to God himself – whatever area of responsibility he has appointed us to. And only God is able to judge. He knows the circumstances in which we have served him. He knows the deepest intentions of our hearts. He knows the amount of love we have shown, the failures, the faults, the fumblings. We can safely leave it to him.
Lord, in your love and mercy I commit myself to you.