The Simple Truth 2-Minute Bible Study

What Does James 4:11-12 Mean?

July 04, 2021 Julie Carruth
The Simple Truth 2-Minute Bible Study
What Does James 4:11-12 Mean?
Show Notes Transcript

BIBLE STUDY PODCAST

Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?” (James 4:11-12 NIV)

In today's Simple Truth Bible Study Podcast, we explore why it's wrong to judge others. I think we can safely assume we all know that it's wrong to judge others, but WHY is it wrong?

In today's Bible Podcast, you will discover:

  1. What the original Greek verbiage tells us about how long this problem has been occurring within the early Church.
  2. What is "the Law" that James is referring to here in this verse?
  3. What it means to "judge the law."
  4. How we reconcile this with other scriptures that tell us to judge the sins of other believers (Galatians 6:1, 1 Timothy 5:20, Luke 17:3, James 5:19-20)?

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Do you ever struggle with understanding the Bible?
 
 You're not alone.
 
 The Simple Truth Bible Podcast was created with you in mind.
 
 Subscribe at TheSimpleTruthPodcast.com and we'll be waiting for you every morning in your inbox.
 
You'll never miss a day of digging deeper into God's Word so that you can understand the Bible more and grow closer to God.  

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Hey, welcome to The Simple Truth. I’m Julie Carruth.

Today’s verse comes from James 4:11which says in the NIV, Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sisteror judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.” 

So, James is saying we are to not speak evil against our brothers and sisters in Christ. (which makes sense) The original Greek verbiage indicates that this has been an ongoing problem within the early church. 

So, what’s the problem with judging? James says When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it. What does this even mean? 

So, let’s try and break this down and see if we can simplify this verse. 

First, we ask the question, “What is the law?” James 2:8 told us the royal law was “Love your neighbor as yourself” which originally came from Leviticus 19:18.  

So, then we ask what does it mean that I am “judging” that law? 

I believe what James is saying here is we think we’re superior to God’s Royal Law. It’s like we’re saying, “Nah, that law doesn’t apply to me.”  

And then James brings this thought to a close in James 4:12 with, There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor?” 

So, how do we reconcile this with other scriptures that tells us to call out other believers for their sin?  

How do we respond when someone points the finger at us and tells us the Bible says not to judge others? 

Well, I believe it’s all about your motives. 

When we judge another Christian’s sin with pure motives, our desire is to restore them back into a relationship with God. Our motives are loving and pure.   

However, today’s verses speak to those believers who are gossiping out of evilness and a desire to hurt the other brother or sister in Christ.  

Your simple truth for today: When tempted to judge another believer with impure motives remember that it’s not your job. That job belongs to God alone.

I'm Julie Carruth, and I'll see you again tomorrow.  

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Do you ever struggle with understanding the Bible?  You're not alone.  The Simple Truth Bible Podcast was created with you in mind. Subscribe at TheSimpleTruthPodcast.com and we'll be waiting for you every morning in your inbox. You'll never miss a day of digging deeper into God's Word so that you can understand the Bible more and grow closer to God.  

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