“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” (Matthew 7:1–5, NIV 1984).
“If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone.” (John 8:7, NIV 1984).
My Musings – How many of us would like to be judged in the same way that we judge others? Very few, I would think. Perhaps this is the reason no one cast that first stone. We seemingly have 2020 vision when it comes to seeing the faults in others, while being blind to our own. So, we cast stones. And not all the stones we throw are literal. We use words that sometimes cause more hurt and pain than a real stone would.
We vigorously defend our right to speak our mind and voice our opinions without censure, while sometimes being violently offended when someone has different mindset or an opposing viewpoint. Each of us has a tendency to draw our own lines on tolerance and what constitutes free speech. Our sometimes caustic comments always seem to fall within those boundaries, while even well-reasoned and civil arguments by others holding opposing opinions are deemed out of bounds.
My Advice – Let’s try to understand where other people with opposing viewpoints are coming from. We may continue to disagree, sometimes with very good reasons because what is being espoused in hateful, divisive, prejudiced or inciting violence. Let’s remember that getting down in the gutter with them means leaving the high ground. Remain civil, and never do “battle” on the battlefield chosen by the other side.
Other times, we may be see the merit to their way of thinking, that we might not have otherwise seen with the plank in our eyes. “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1, NIV 1984). Even on “social” media.