Wednesday, July 30, 2014

To Confront or Not to Confront

One of the difficult questions in community is when to confront another believer. I have seen situations where people confronted others on every issue, no matter how minor. This can lead to a situation of mutual recrimination that is the opposite of community. But I have also seen cases where almost nothing was ever dealt with and things were allowed to fester until they exploded. There is a place for love to cover a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8; Proverbs 10:12; 17:9). This is important, because we are all sinners (Romans 3:23; 7:14; 1 John 1:8-10), and to hunt out every sin of everyone is nothing but a recipe for strife. But there is also a point when things need to be dealt with (Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Corinthians 5:1-5; 2 Thessalonians 3:11-15). Now this must be done with gentleness, with a view toward restoring them (Galatians 6:1; Hebrews 12:12,13; 2 Corinthians 2:5-11). But it is often a difficult choice which way we should take in a given case. We need to carefully weigh the effect on themselves, others, the community, and those outside the community if the behavior in question is allowed to continue unchallenged. But we should not be to quick to jump to one extreme or the other. 

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