Judge Raymond Voet, of Ionia County, Michigan, has a posted policy in his courtroom stating that electronic devices that cause disturbances during court sessions will result in the owner being cited with contempt.
Recently, Judge Voet’s own phone interrupted a prosecutor’s closing argument. Voet dutifully held himself in contempt and fined himself $25. He said, “I broke the rule and I have to live by it.”
Judge Voet’s action is admirable. He would have appeared to be a hypocrite if he had ignored his own rules.
Jesus warns against hypocritical judging in Matthew 7:1-5. Many people mistakenly believe that Jesus forbids us to ever try to correct anyone who is sinning. However, he plainly teaches that those who are not walking around with a 2×4 in their own eye have the ability—and perhaps the duty—to help others get a speck out of their eye.
The lesson is: Make sure you take a good, long look in the mirror before you try to get someone else’s life straightened out.