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Judging Judgment


JUDGING JUDGMENT - juj'-ing, juj'-ment: Often in the Old Testament for "to act as a magistrate" (Ex 18:13; Dt 1:16; 16:18, etc.), justice being administered generally by "elders" (Ex 18:13-27), or "kings" (1 Sam 8:20) or "priests" (Dt 18:15); applied to God as the Supreme Judge (Ps 9:7,8; 10:18; 96:13; Mic 4:3, etc.; Ps 7:8: "Yahweh ministereth judgment," vividly describes a court scene, with Yahweh as Judge).

Often in the New Testament, ethically, for (1) "to decide," "give a verdict," "declare an opinion" (Greek krino); (2) "to investigate," "scrutinize" (Greek anakrino); (3) "to discriminate," "distinguish" (Greek diakrino). For (1), see Lk 7:43; Acts 15:19; for (2) see 1 Cor 2:15; 4:3; for (3)see 1 Cor 11:31; 14:29 m. Used also forensically in Lk 22:30; Acts 25:10; and applied to God in Jn 5:22; Heb 10:30. The judgments of God are the expression of His justice, the formal declarations of His judgments, whether embodied in words (Dt 5:1 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) "statutes"), or deeds (Ex 6:6; Rev 16:7), or in decisions that are yet to be published (Ps 36:6). Man's consciousness of guilt inevitably associates God's judgments as declarations of the Divine justice, with his own condemnation, i.e. he knows that a strict exercise of justice means his condemnation, and thus "judgment" and "condemnation" become in his mind synonymous (Rom 5:16); hence, the prayer of Ps 143:2, "Enter not into judgment"; also, Jn 6:29, "the resurrection of judgment" (the King James Version "damnation"); 1 Cor 11:29, "eateth and drinketh judgment" (the King James Version "damnation").

H. E. Jacobs

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