I can do nothing on my own (ἀπ᾽ἐμαυτοῦ); as I hear (καθὼς ἀκούω), I judge; and my judgment is just (δικαία), because I seek not my own will but the will of the Father who sent me.” (Jn 5: 30)

“I hear,” (ἀκούω) says the Lord. He doesn’t only hear, however. He listens, like nobody else. In His profound, divine capacity truly to listen, He is perfectly “obedient” (ὑπήκοος, from the verb “ὑπ-ακούω,” meaning “to listen, give ear”) even unto death on the cross (Phil 2: 8). And this is what makes Christ’s judgment just.

As the God-Man reveals these awe-inspiring dynamics of divine “judgment” (κρίσις, literally, “crisis”), He is also teaching me something vital about our human “judgment,” discernment, and decision-making process: Specifically, that I should go about it not “on my own,” just in my own head, but in openness to “hearing” what God has to say about it, often through other people. “As I hear, I judge.” Because “I can do nothing on my own.” Lord, help me listen a bit more today, that my judgments may be just, in You.

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