The Word This Week

Matt 18:15…

If you’re looking for a basis for unforgiveness in God’s Word, you won’t find one.

On the contrary, we read the opposite.

Even in the instruction for dealing with a brother - (a believer) - who sins against you, Jesus’ entire instruction is based upon reconciliation and restoration, and never unforgiveness.

When His Church gathers together it is a gathering of forgiven sinners. We know forgiven sinners continue to exist in a body of flesh, which remains susceptible to the sins of the flesh. While we are no longer to be given over to sin - but to be dead to it - the flesh still rears its ugly head on occasion and will continue to until we either physically die or are raptured into His kingdom.

As a result of this reality, we are at times called to deal with a brother who has sinned against us.

Fortunately, Jesus gives us exact instruction in how to deal with this situation, that His Church not devolve into an assembly of brothers and sisters who hold onto offenses and as a result see those in His Church as those they cannot and will not have anything to do with.

While we DO get to choose our friends, we do NOT choose our brothers and sisters. We see here there is no excuse for broken relationships in His Church. None.

The onus is upon us to restore relationships, and never to allow a root of bitterness to grow in our lives pertaining to a fellow believer who sins against us.

Even in the painful eventuality someone refuses to repent of their sin and must be put out of His Church, the instruction is to send them back into the world so they may be quickly reminded of all they are missing in the relationships they have been blessed by in His Church – and be motivated to repent and return as soon as possible.

And we are to receive them back into fellowship once they do.

Hopefully, and meaningfully, the parable Jesus tells His followers will be the sort of brilliant reminder for us which will not only motivate us to forgiveness but show us how we are to do so.

Pastor Bill