The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
Our weekly memory verse - "Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment" - must serve as a guiding light in our walk with God through the Lord Jesus Christ (John 7:24).
"Righteous judgment" simply means whatever accords with God and His revealed truth in Scripture. "What does the Bible, rightly interpreted, say about this matter? We must implant this guiding question in heart and mind. Of course "appearance" does not always conflict with the Lord and His truth. Many circumstances, events, conditions, and people give evidence to God's presence and working, and are. As Philip declared to Nathaniel, "We have found Him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph" (John 1:45). However, we do well to also realize that the things of God often belie the appearance viewed by our eyes and mind. We will miss much apart from this understanding, and will also misinterpret much.
The cross upon which the Lord Jesus died at Calvary did not appear to bear "God… manifest in the flesh" (I Timothy 3:16). It rather appeared for all the world as the final earthly venue for yet another guilty or unfortunate one. From our vantage point, of course, we know better. No more doing of God has ever occurred, or will occur, than the suffering and death of Christ on His cross. However, in the immediate moment, it did not look at all like that. It rather appeared as the absence rather than the presence of God, as taunters cruelly suggested, "And they that passed by railed on Him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save Thyself, and come down from the cross" (Mark 15:29-30).
The scoffers stood on perhaps the holiest ground that exists on the planet Earth, stained by redeeming blood and graced by the sacrifice of the God who became man, and the man who remains God. They missed such "righteous judgment." They missed truth and reality. I cannot criticize them, blind as they were, because how often in my own way, I have judged according to appearance rather than righteous judgment. I too have stood on holy ground, but saw it as common, or even more, as condemned. Thus, the determination to judge according to the righteousness of God and His Scripture-assured presence, involvement, and working must grow in my heart and mind. Perhaps you feel the same. If so, let us pray for each other that we will see all things in the light of our Lord and His truth, realizing that the presence of God often exists in direct proportion to the appearance of His absence.
"We walk by faith, not by sight."
(II Corinthians 5:7)
Weekly Memory Verse
Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.