J.C. Ryle, Daily Readings
Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgement. (John 7:24)
We are often to ready to be decieved by an appearance of good. We are in danger of rating some men as very good Christians because of a little outward profession of religion and a decent Sunday formality -- because, in short, they talk the language of Canaan and wear the garb of pilgrims. We forget that all is not good that appears good, even as all is not gold that glitters, and that daily practice, choice, tastes, habits, conduct, private character are the true evidence of what a man is. In a word, we forget our Lord's saying: 'Judge not according to the appearance.'
We are too ready, on the other hand, to be deceived by the appearance of evil. We must remember that the best of men are but men at their very best and that the most eminent saints may be overtaken by temptation and yet be saints at heart after all. We must not hastily suppose that all is evil where there is an occasional appearance of evil. The holiest man may fall sadly for a a time and yet the grace within him may finally get a victory. Is a man's general character godly? Then let us suspend our judgment when he falls and hpe on. Let us 'judge righteous judgment.'