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The time for judgement is…not yet

At times the Christian community has attempted to separate good people from the bad in ruthless ways. For example in 17th century England the punishment for blasphemy was to burn the letter ‘B’ into a person’s forehead. If you offended again you’d be sentenced to death without the benefit of a priest and the last rites.

In Jesus’ own time certain people appointed themselves as the judge of who were good and bad people. The Pharisees often did this (their name means ‘the separated ones’). Jesus understood people much better. Not only did he not exclude sinners, he welcomed them. He declared that he had come, not to call the just, but sinners to repentance. Once welcomed, the sinful then had Jesus to guide them. This Sunday’s parable about the field in which the wheat and weeds grow together was the answer of Jesus to this question of excluding the sinful. Jesus wants to give everyone a chance. A chance to change, to give up sin and to love him. He knows that there is not one person who doesn’t need to change in some way. So he gives all of us time to look at ourselves and to have a change of heart. The time for us to be judged will come. Meanwhile, we are not to set ourselves up as judges of others. Instead we are to concentrate on changing ourselves.

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