We should judge to avoid sin

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I want to commend Catholic guest columnist Paul Rosenthal for his informative column regarding the election (“Voting your faith in 2012: Social justice, abortion and apples,” Nov. 4), and about some who were rightfully described as “fake” Catholics. One cannot be pro-choice and Catholic.

Yet, many of us witnessed professed Catholic television pundits, during the election, who would perhaps fit into the category of “Catholics in Name Only.”

Joseph O’Connell asserted in his letter (“Writer should ‘judge not’,” Nov. 6) that Mr. Rosenthal was judging another’s soul. Instead, Mr. Rosenthal was rightfully judging another’s actions. Jesus, Himself, calls for this formal judgment on the part of the Church in Matthew 18:15-18.

We cannot judge a person’s state of soul, of course, or their thoughts or motives. Yet, we are to judge one’s actions. We are to make proper judgments to admonish a sinner to encourage him to repent. That is the goal: to save the sinner’s soul. We are to make judgments of behavior, attitudes, and ideas in order to protect our loved-ones and ourselves from danger. We are to avoid people who practice dangerous and sinful behaviors. We cannot avoid them until and unless a judgment has been made that such people are those who the Bible tells us to avoid.

The idea that we are not to judge is a doctrine of error. Satan loves for us to think that we are not to judge! Satan wants us to avoid making judgments. If he can convince us of this, sin can abound without criticism, and we could continue in our sin without accountability.

If Christians would like a glimpse of what it may be like after President Obama completes his assault on our religious liberties, I would encourage all to view the film/DVD For Greater Glory. This true story and inspirational movie depicts how the corrupt Mexican government, from 1926 to 1929, attempted to suppress the religious liberties of Catholics who resided there. The Cristeros family fought back against religious persecution in an uprising and counter-revolution for their love of Christ.

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myfather15
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myfather15 11/15/12 - 09:58 am
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@galaxygrl

I like your beliefs but also must agree with ICL that we are to discern between right and wrong. I just don't believe EVERY WRONG is Sin against your soul. I also believe it's our duty, not to interfere with individuals FREE WILL and not to try to FORCE people to worship God, but to WITNESS for Him. Because He does love EVERY ONE of His Children. But Even He says, that those who shall perish shall be as the Sands of the Sea and thats a lot of people. If we can witness to ONE individual and it helps, then it's a wonderful blessing. I've had many people on the streets that I've dealt with, come back to me and thank me for being kind to them and witnessing. I've seen God work in their lives and change them, after they sought Him. I'm a Deputy and unfortunately, many I deal with are drug and alcohol addicts. YES, I will speak to them and witness. It's the most awesome thing to experience when one comes back and says thank you for talking to me, I found God and I'm doing so much better. Now, I know I only witnessed, I had no part of them being SAVED. As you said, only God does that. But I will witness for Him and if someone doesn't want to hear it, I will keep my mouth shut.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 11/15/12 - 11:51 am
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Myfather, to answer your

Myfather, to answer your first question, no I do not believe it is a sin if my neighbor disturbs me with his/her loud music or walks across my lawn. This is just someone being inconsiderate or thoughtless, but to me not a sin.

If I speak to this person and voice my concerns in a loving Christian manner and they continue to play their music loud or continue to walk across my lawn without permission, then I’d say this becomes a trespass and therefore becomes a sin.

I’m a little confused in what you are trying to state and I understand we have different beliefs on a few things, but according to scripture the only thing that would send someone to hell is the rejection of Jesus Christ, not sin. The difference I believe is that in your view (as I understand your comment), the neighbor playing loud music and the children crossing your lawn, have committed an offense (or Trespass), where as I do not believe a trespass or sin has been committed until those individuals who have disturbed my peace have been confronted and they continue with the same action. As I stated, the Hebrew definition is guilt/rebellion which would occur when the neighbor purposely continues to offend me. The Greek meaning is to miss the mark or deviate from what is right, which would occur after the neighbor is made aware of the offense but continues with the same action. How can a trespass occur when knowledge of the offense is not first acknowledged.

As for all sin being equal or not equal, I don’t believe I stated either way, but the penalty for sin without salvation is the same (death). With salvation in Christ, unrepented sin only robs the Christian of his/her blessings but will not send them to hell. We are all sinners, some saved by Grace, some who have not yet chosen Christ, but humans will continue to sin until Christ return and all stand before the Judgment seat.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 11/15/12 - 11:58 am
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As a second note, myfather, I

As a second note, myfather, I know that your witness in this community is a blessing and I pray that God will continue to place you in areas where you can plant the seed and spread His Word. May we always give God the glory and may He guide and protect your daily.

galaxygrl
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galaxygrl 11/15/12 - 12:24 pm
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Praying

InChristLove, Praying is simple. Pray for everyone without ceasing. You should pray for your family, your friends,your enemies, people you have never meet, people you have meet but don't really know, that way you are opening a window of opportunity to them. I think discernment is an important gift but discernment is different than judgement. I think that we judge by appearance, action, class, color, size, none of these things is how God sees us. We are his children, all of us. He knows us because he created us. For me the question is why is this person in my life and how can I do what God wants me to be a servant to them and him. I am human, I judge, but I question my filter because it might keep me from some important work. That's why I try to fall back to grace and mercy. I fail at this everyday but I am committed to my journey.

Alphonsus
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Alphonsus 11/15/12 - 02:24 pm
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galaxygirl

galaxygirl, I agree with ICL and myfather15. We have to discern between right and wrong, otherwise we place ourselves in a dangerous situation. Your mindset that we can never judge is not in line with the teachings of Christ.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 11/15/12 - 03:26 pm
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galaxygirl, I believe the

galaxygirl, I believe the only difference in judgement and discernment is the emotion involved. If someone is committing a sin and I judge that this person's action is wrong, that is discernment. If someone is committing a sin and I judge the person doing the action, then that is judgement with condemnation. It is a fine line and most times a difficult thing to get right because we are human and we naturally want to condemn the person committing the act but as you said, life is a journey and we just need to keep our face lifted to Christ and hope we get it right most times.

As for all being children of God.....I tend to disagree with this statement. We are all God's creation that is true but you can only belong to two families. Either you are adopted into the family of Father God through the blood of Jesus Christ or you are a child of this world which Satan is the Father. You are either one or the other.

John 3:6 says "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit."

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