What does it mean to judge? It means to form an opinion or to make a decision. Mormon said, “I show unto you the way to judge” (Moroni 7:16), and then explained that we ought to make decisions according to what is right and good, which we can know by the light of Christ. “See that ye do not judge wrongfully,” he warned, “for with that same judgment which ye judge ye shall also be judged” (Moroni 7:18).
Jesus said, “Judge not,” and then followed up with the same warning: “For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged” (3 Nephi 14:1-2, Matthew 7:1-2). On another occasion, He said, “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment” (John 7:24).
What is righteous judgment? The obvious answer is to apply the criterion given by the Savior and by Mormon: Judge others in the way that you would like to be judged. Would you like others to give you the benefit of the doubt? Would you like them to emphasize your strengths and your successes and deemphasize your failures and weaknesses? Would you like them to give you credit for your good desires, even when you fail to live up to your expectations and aspirations? Then that is how you should judge.
Alma counseled his son Corianton: “See that you are merciful unto your brethren; deal justly, judge righteously, and do good continually; and if ye do all these things then shall ye receive your reward; yea, ye shall have mercy restored unto you again; ye shall have justice restored unto you again; ye shall have a righteous judgment restored unto you again; and ye shall have good rewarded unto you again” (Alma 41:14).
Today, I will strive to judge righteous judgments. I will remember that the way I judge others will determine the way I will be judged. I will strive to be generous, fair, and kind in my evaluation of other people and in my decisions throughout the day.
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