BETA

Facts of the Matter

A weekly letter of encouragement and challenge to business and professional men and women
Wednesday, November 3, 1999
Dear Colleagues,

GUIDELINES ON ADMONISHING FELLOW-BELIEVERS:

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Good Morning!

Recently an acquaintance  sternly rebuked me on issues in which he was grossly mis-informed. My reaction was instant, angry, and retaliatory.  After all, he had violated my “rights.”  While still exercised over the incident, I managed to do a Bible study on the subject of  “admonition”Here is what I discovered:

1 – We are to admonish a fellow-believer as a brother, but  not treat him as an adversary:

If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of him.Do not associate with him, in order that he may feel ashamed. Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother.” (2 Thes. 3:14, 15)

2 –  We are to exercise humility, circumspection and gentleness in restoring a brother:     

“Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.” (Gal. 6:1)

3 –  We are to exercise wisdom in  admonishing others – in an atmosphere  of worship, and Biblical teaching:

“…Teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.”  (Col. 3:16)

4 –   We are to exhibit great compassion in admonishing others:

“…For three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears.” (Act. 20:31b) (See also Matt. 9:13; Jude 1:22, 23)

After cooling down, doing the study, and reflecting on I Peter 2:20 – 23, I had to go back and ask his forgiveness — not because he was right, but because I was wrong in my reaction to his unjust behavior toward me.

“…If you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example…When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.” (I Pet. 2:20b,23)

QUESTION: How are you responding to people who overstep the line with your “rights”? In anger? By retaliating? By sullen withdrawal? Or by forgiveness? 

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

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