Why Rushing to Judgment is Wrong

Why Rushing to Judgment is Wrong: A Christian Perspective

Everyday people come online to join the bashing bandwagon. They read one or two sentences of an accusation against someone and they quickly jump in to hurl invectives at the person. Some do this for fun, others are dead serious and would like to see harm come to the object of their outrage. But all such rush to judgment is wrong.

A few weeks ago, people were mad at Pastor Joel Osteen of Lakewood Church, Houston, because a stash of money and cheques were found in the wall of his church by a plumber. People don’t wait for explanations or for all the facts to come in, they just constitute themselves into prosecutor, judge and jury and pass the most punitive verdicts.

They seized the opportunity of the discovered stash to rant about Osteen’s wealthy status (which they believe is improper for a Christian preacher). For example, two people tweeted as follows:

Dan Pereira
Joel Osteen is a Criminal who steals from the poor & gives to the Rich, himself! A plumber found envelopes of cash & checks hidden in a bathroom wall of his church!! When will these fools stop giving money to hucksters like #JoelOsteen? #TaxTheChurches
8:24 AM · Dec 3, 2021

Good morning and Happy Friday to everyone who agrees that leaders of filthy rich mega churches like Joel Osteen who stuff the walls of their church with $350,000 in cash should be taxed.
In fact, tax ALL of the churches.
8:44 AM · Dec 3, 2021

Joel Osteen
(Image credit: Joel Osteen’s Facebook page)

However, the money that was found has been established to have been stolen from the church in 2014, so it’s not Osteen’s personal money. Osteen has often been attacked also for his feel-good preaching and prosperity messages.
(Read my views on Christians and wealth here.)

I’m not surprised about unbelievers who rush to judgment. They probably don’t know any better and feel accountable to no one. What worries me is when Christians heartily get involved.
We are supposed to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13-15). We are meant to bring clarity and healing to people and situations and we can’t do that by constantly rushing to judgment and condemning people.

I think it’s arrogant to express strong opinions about everything because we can’t possibly know all the details. I think if we must speak on an issue, we should do so with love and grace, put ourselves in the shoes of the person we’re speaking about and give them the benefit of the doubt. Many people’s lives have been destroyed by unwarranted cruel judgments online and many wrongdoers have been given a pass due to hasty media exoneration and public pressure arising therefrom.

Ephesians 4:5 admonishes us to speak the truth in love and Colossians 4:6 charges us to always speak with grace and season our words with salt. I believe that is part of how we can let our light shine before men so they can give glory to God with us (Matthew 5:16), rather than seizing every opportunity to pull down people God made in His image and died for.

That you don’t agree with someone’s preaching does not necessarily invalidate his ministry. God has not called everyone to share the same message or to use the same methods. Take time to listen and learn more about what people are doing. And even if you find they are Biblically off base, pray for wisdom on how to address it, so that you don’t in your zeal and anger end up doing the devil’s work of accusing the brethren and creating unnecessary rifts in the body of Christ.

Why Rushing to Judgment is Wrong

Another side of rushing to judgment is defending or completely exonerating people accused of wrongdoing in the heat of the moment. While we should not join the mob to cancel people and call for jungle justice, we should not declare people guiltless or defend them profusely simply on the basis of media narratives that are often agenda-driven and devoid of facts. We should only call for calm and proper investigation, reminding people that the accused ought to be deemed innocent until proven guilty.

The case of Jussie Smollett, the Black American actor who claimed he was attacked by supposed White supporters of America’s immeduate past president, Donald Trump, in the wee hours of Jan. 29, 2019, illustrates the folly of rushing to judgment. Many prominent people and media strongly supported Smollett and called for severe punishment for those responsible for the alleged “hate” crime. They used the case as evidence of their claims that Trump and his supporters were racist and violent.

Investigations by the Chicago Police Department, however, showed that Smollett had hired help from two Nigerian born brothers to fake the attack and attract public sympathy to improve his career prospects. But even as the matter was put on trial, those who had rushed to side with Smollett (who had been milking public outrage over his earlier report of the “crime” by making media appearances), stuck to their guns in spite of evidence to the contrary. They continued to paint Trump supporters as hateful because Smollett alleged that his attackers poured a chemical on him, cast racist and homophobic slurs at him and hung a noose around his neck.

Although the charges were dropped through the intervention of Black District Attorney Kim Foxx, who had connections with the Smollett family, the investigations were subsequently reopened and Smollett was charged with six counts of filing a false police report. On Dec. 2021, he was convicted of five of the six counts.

So, those who demonised Trump supporters on Smollett’s say-so and defended him when the Chicago PD first suggested he was lying have been left with mud on their faces.

Always remember that you don’t have to judge everything and if you must comment on a matter, wait for the facts to come in first and pray. It is only then that you can meet up with the injunction of our Lord Jesus: “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment” (John 7:24 – KJV).

(This post was first published on my Facebook profile on Dec. 4, 2021 in a shorter form.)

Joel Osteen stolen money scandal explained as plumber’s shocking discovery takes internet by storm

The Jussie Smollett trial: Timeline of how this case ended up in court

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  • Egbo Paul Uchenna

    Insightful post, I wish Daddy Freeze can see this.

  • Emmanuel Ejiofor

    I couldn’t agree more! People always rush to take sides these days and it’s very bad because sometimes, it ends up being false accusations. The best thing a Christian should do is wait for the full details or better still, don’t comment at all. Infact, it is better not to comment online on controversial matters these days because the full sides to the stories are not always revealed.

  • Ojukwu Mmesoma Favour

    Honestly, I wonder why people judge others even without facts. They just get chaff news or information and then jump into conclusions. Most of these people don’t even have the best of lives, because I believe no one is perfect.
    P.s I’m not supporting wrongdoings.

    Matthew 7:1

  • I wonder why people judge others without knowing anything about them. They just get information about you and then jump into conclusions.

  • Uzochukwu Angel

    This matter of judgment is not a trivial matter. These days, people tend to criticize Christians and it is appalling. May God help us all.

  • Aniaku Oluchi Victory

    This is a post that many people especially young people should learn from. It is very unfortunate that many of us young people don’t verify facts or research on things before diving in conclusions. Thank you for this post ma it is very needed in this time.

  • Wonodi Success

    This is so true. We shouldn’t be so quick to judge

  • Jacenta ossai

    Will rushing to judging someone ever come to an end? There is an allegedly ongoing beef between Hailey Bieber and Selena Gomez currently trending on social media, and the fans of the latter are inciting hateful words and comments towards the former without any first hand information of the issue. People just love to hate and wish to see others downfall. We should learn to control our tongue and fingers when trying to give an opinion. We should learn to be prudent in our speech.

  • Agwubuo Ebube

    Judgement is of the Lord, not for humans


    Jumping to conclusions before knowing the full details of a story never turns out well,that I know from personal experience. Thank you Ma I really learnt alot for this post

  • Ogbu precious

    Thank you ma for this piece, indeed as Christians we forget that we are not judge others so we won’t be judged

  • Francis precious Ifeoma

    People should not judge others so as not to be judged too, Judgement is of the lord.

    We should stipe being in a haste to judge people.

  • Francis precious Ifeoma

    We should stop being in a haste to judge people.


    Christians really need to stop judging and leave it for God.

  • Favour Chigbo

    If there’s one thing I’ve learnt in life it’s that everything you think is right could actually be wrong.

    It takes a great deal of maturity to live in that knowing and have our judgements constantly filtered through that sieve.

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