I’m not sure officially how many types of being judgmental there are, perhaps there is an infinite brand of sin for each individual based on each person’s life experiences. But I am convinced there are at least two dangerous types –
The first is when we judge someone for not seeming to follow the Gospel and/or the commandments of Christ, which is difficult for us to avoid doing completely on our own despite our efforts (the success in this could only come from the Divine Love of the Holy Spirit). We judge people for what see on the outside, what they do, not knowing the virtues in their hearts, and perhaps there are not many in certain people, or perhaps there are many, but it is for God to judge, not us. May God help us.
The second is when we judge people who we see trying to follow the Gospel and commandments of Christ. We judge them in a different way and tell ourselves that they must be doing this out of fear and compulsion. They must not really love Christ. Its must be unhealthy, not genuine. Sometimes we hold a subtle hostility to Christian piety because perhaps we cannot understand why anyone would choose to live this way outside of fear, compulsion and pride, and this can even happen inside the Church – because the world is everywhere, and everywhere we look, and everyone, and everything is fallen except for Christ.
“Do not marvel my brethren, if the world hates you” – 1 John 3:13
“Woe to the world because of offenses! For offenses must come, but woe to that man by whom the offense comes!” – Matthew 18:7
“ The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil.” – John 7:7
One person may wear long flowy skirts everyday out of fear, out of a coerced obligation of modesty, out of pride, who knows..whereas another person wears a long skirt everyday to feel like a princess of the Most High, to feel lighter in the spirit while draped in cloth like the Angels and Saints in icons, and because the conscience and soul feels healthier that way and closer to Christ. There are people who prefer to assume the worse intention when someone is doing something that seems to follow the commandments of Christ, in this case modesty…but this type of judgement seems to happen with every facet of life. The homeschooling family is paranoid, the family that does not watch much television is weak, afraid and scared and perhaps the family that does not let their children play violent, bloody video games is just afraid of masculinity or has “convertitis.”
The Greatest Commandment
The reality is when people who have tasted death in some form in their soul and body, taste the life of Christ, they will try to do whatever they can to preserve it (according to ability and possibily failing quite a bit). The lame who walks, does not want to be lame again. The blind who sees, does not want to be blind again. “As a dog returns to his own vomit, so a fool repeats his folly” Proverbs 26:11. Christ is life, the world is death…may we all have the strength to do what we need to do cast out the death of judgement and pursue Christ with all our our heart, soul and mind and to the naysayers, we have a quote from Christ himself to his beloved Apostle Peter: “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.” (Matthew 16: 23)