“You cannot determine the greatness of something by its appearance.” – Bishop Sheridan McDaniel
Have you ever looked at something from the outside only to find out later it wasn’t quite what you thought?
Many times we look at other people’s appearances and we come to conclusions about them based on how they are dressed, what they look like, or because of the kind of car they are driving.
Unfortunately, later on we find out that people are not quite what they seemed to be on the outside.
On contrast, God does not look at appearances. Instead, He looks at our hearts.
But the world has a different view. Most people judge others based on what they see on the outside.
So the questions is, how can you see people the way God wants you see them?
Is It Okay to Judge Others?
I’ve noticed that most people, including myself from time to time, judge others by their appearance. The problem with this approach is that appearances can be deceiving.
For example, there are times when a salesperson in a luxury store decides not to sell their products to an individual that is “dressed down”. The customer is not wearing expensive clothing and so the salesperson is mistakenly led to believe that that person cannot afford their products.
Think of things like high-end shoes, purses, or cars.
Salespeople who sell these high-end products often look for buyers who dress a certain way because they know that if the customer can afford to buy expensive clothes, then they will more likely be able to buy their expensive products too.
However, sometimes there are wealthy customers who like to dress-down and not look the part. When they are judged by their appearance, the salesperson will then miss out on an opportunity.
Likewise, I believe that if we had seen Jesus in biblical times, then we may have judged Him by His appearance.
He was a carpenter. He didn’t dress fancy. He didn’t live in a nice place.
And He didn’t eat at the best restaurants of the time, but instead ate with the sinners and tax-collectors.
You and I would have made a tremendous mistake in judging Jesus based on His outward appearance!
How to Have Eyes that See People the Way God Sees Them
Fellow Christian, we need to change the way we look at people. We have to view others the way God views them.
That’s because you never really can know someone just by looking at them from the outside.
Hebrews 13:2 encourages you to entertain strangers because you never know whom you are speaking with. After all, you could be speaking with an angel in disguise.
Also, it could be a test from God. He warns us not to judge others not just when it comes to outward appearances, but also when it comes to other people’s sins.
Mathews 7:1-5 says:
“Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgement ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.”
Luke 6:37 says:
“Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal, it shall be measured to you again.”
Beware of Deceptive Christians
Unfortunately, there are a some Christians who have deceiving appearances too.
Usually, they are the ones who are at church every Sunday and want you to believe that they are “holier than thou.”
They can say all the right words, they know “Christianese”, and from the outside, they seem to be super-devout Christians.
However, if you were given an insider’s look into their lives, you would see a hypocritical life filled with sin and unrepentance.
You might know someone like this and Jesus warned us to not be hypocrites like the Pharisees.
John 7:24, “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgement.”
We should not judge these folks either.
We must humble ourselves and truly live holy lifestyles every day.
We need to walk the walk and talk the talk.
God already knows who we are. Therefore, we should live a lifestyle that glorifies God and in which we will be happy to show others our true appearance.
In conclusion, never judge people unless you want God to judge you in the same way that you are judging others. All judgement should be left to God.
Also, do not give deceiving appearances to others.
Practice what you preach.
Live the holy lifestyle that makes our Holy Father proud.
Treat others with the love of Christ and people will notice that there’s something different about you.