Handling the Sin of Others



“If you brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained a brother.” Matthew 18:15


Beloved,


I hate sin. I hate how my sin hurts others. God made us to live in community. The design was to live in a perfect community in perfect fellowship with Him and our fellow man. This picture of perfect community living in perfect fellowship with God and others is the destination of all Christians as we press on towards the goal of the heavenly call of Christ Jesus. But we still live in the flesh until the Lord returns or He calls us home. So as a people, we still must deal with sin and in particular our own sin and the sin of brothers and sisters against us. We cannot allow sin to fester and grow into bitterness and anger.


Jesus says that, “If a brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault.” This is very simple and sound advice. No one likes to be confronted in their sin, but when we are it is a gift from God. I sinned against someone in the church this past week and the dear saint came and told me my fault. It was the Bible coming to life. I was so grateful for this person to make me aware of my sin. It was a blessing to me. Knowing your sin hurts someone is an awful feeling, but when the offended person handles it biblically and works for restoration, God takes it and brings good out of it.


Can I ask a personal favor? If something that I have said or done hurts you, walk in the words of Jesus Christ and come and tell me my fault. If something that someone else does or says hurts you, walk in the words of Jesus Christ and go and tell them their fault. It takes courage to speak up, but a deeper and closer relationship is waiting on the other end. For look at the second half of the verse, “If he listens to you, you have gained a brother.” There are two responsibilities that God gives in this verse. One is to the offended party: go and tell him his fault. The second is to the offending party: listen to them. Listening to one you offended takes humility and is a sign of wisdom. Proverbs 9:8, “Reprove a wise man and he will love you.”

Praise God for Jesus’ simple and sound advice in how to work for peace in His body, the church. The challenge of his words is not in their complexity, but in obeying them. Let us walk in obedience to the words of Jesus.

In Christ,


Pastor Dave

Steven Brazzell

Charlotte, NC