Past generations of Christians have been guilty of excess in judging other people. The Inquisition and the Salem witch trials are glaring examples, but other examples abound throughout history. Today we live in an age of greater understanding and acceptance, which is certainly preferable - unless it degenerates into careless acceptance of things which are clearly wrong - in which case the pendulum swings too far the other way. We are to be tolerant of debatable things, but clear sin is to be dealt with. "Withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly" (v. 6).
Praise your heavenly Father for being the perfect Judge:
"O Lord God of Israel, the One who dwells between the cherubim,
You are God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth.
You have made heaven and earth"(2 Kings 19:15).
"Lord God of Israel, there is no God in heaven above
or on earth below like You,
who keep Your covenant and mercy with Your servants
who walk before You with all their hearts."
(1 Kings 8:23)
Pause for praise and thanksgiving.
Pray this confession to the Lord as you seek to keep your life free from sin:
Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits . . .
Bless the Lord, all His works,
In all places of His dominion.
Bless the Lord, O my soul! (Psalm 103:1-2, 22).
Confess any sins that the Holy Spirit brings to your mind, and pray this affirmation to the Lord:
"The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show
Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him."
(2 Chronicles 16:9)
As you make your requests known to the Lord, include:
greater love for other Christians,
missionaries in Europe and Asia,
whatever else is on your heart.
Finally, offer this closing prayer to the Lord:
"Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen." (Revelation 7:12).