The Folly of Judging by Appearances
John 7:19-30
Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keeps the law? Why go you about to kill me?…

Two knights met in a wood one day, and saw between them a shield fastened to a branch. Neither knew to whom it belonged, or why it was there. "Whose is this white shield? " said one. "White? Why it is black!" replied the other. "Do you take me for blind, or a fool, that you tell me what my own eyes can see is false?" And so words were bandied about until the dispute became so violent that swords were drawn, when a third knight came upon the scene. Looking at the angry men, he said, "You should be brothers in arms. Why do I see these passionate gestures, and hear these fierce words?" Each knight made .baste to explain the imposition which the other had tried to practice upon him. The stranger smiled, and riding to one side of the shield, and then to the other, he said, very quietly, "Do not charge with your weapons just yet. Change places!" They did so, and, behold, the knight who had seen the white side of the shield saw now the black side also; and the knight who had been ready to do battle for the black stood face to face with the white side. Ashamed of their hot haste, they apologized one to the other, and rode out of the greenwood as good friends as ever. The lesson taught in this story is very important. Half the misunderstandings and quarrels which disturb the peace and destroy the happiness of families and neighbourhoods might be prevented, if those who engage in these disputes could see both sides of the question at once. How wise, then, are those people who are careful never to form hasty opinions, and who wait until they have seen or heard both sides, before venturing to determine which is right!

(J. N. Norton, D. D.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Did not Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keepeth the law? Why go ye about to kill me?

WEB: Didn't Moses give you the law, and yet none of you keeps the law? Why do you seek to kill me?"

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