...if we be honest with ourselves,
we shall be honest with each other.  ~ George MacDonald

Jesus Wept 

Jesus Wept

 

“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector. (Matt 18:15-17, NIV)

 
 

Most of what is said in the video above is very good. We must be careful to first ask the person who is complaining about someone if they have talked with that person about this issue. If they have, gently tell them that you're willing to listen to what they have to say about their brother or sister, but only while that brother or sister is present.* (Note: I consider the maker of the video above to be a cult leader. See here. I've shared this particular video because it contains a very important message, which is very well communicated, despite one major error (see the footnote below).  


Following Jesus guidelines on this issue is one of the most important things we can do. It is particularly important for the health of churches.  No one wants to be in a place full of gossips.


The following video is the best lecture I've ever heard about how Christians, as individuals and as a church, should deal with a sinning brother ( don't be fooled by the title).

 
 

"If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector." (Matt 18:17)

 

The Church is supposed to be a place full of warm, considerate and kind people. If a church is, then being kicked out ought to be enough to make a person think hard about what they've done and hopefully, bring them to their senses (see 1 Cor 5:5).


The punishment of removing someone from the church will not be effective if all the church members continue to treat the offending brother as if nothing happened. How did the Jews treat pagans and tax collectors in Jesus day? 

--



* I say most of the advice in the first video is good because in the 9th minute the speaker is clearly wrong when he says that the unrepentant brother should be treated as a non-Christian. Those who do not claim to be Christians should not be punished by the Church (See 1 Cor 5:9-13 below).

I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.


What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you” (1 Cor 5:9-13).