“God offered him, so that by his blood he should become the means by which people’s sins are forgiven through their faith in him. God did this in order to demonstrate that he is righteous. In the past he was patient and overlooked people’s sins; but in the present time he deals with their sins, in order to demonstrate his righteousness. In this way God shows that he himself is righteous and that he puts right everyone who believes in Jesus.” Romans 3:25-26
God overlooked people’s sin in the past, that is what stood out to me from this passage. I am thankful because that let Him pursue me. He sent Jesus so that I can be forgiven of my sins, not so I could run from it. When I put my faith in Christ, I can now walk in His righteousness. He saved me. Now He deals with my sins. He corrects Me through discipline. He prunes me to produce more fruit.
We often try to hide our sins, even though the Bible says to confess them. We give this air that we have it all together, and make it impossible for those struggling to come to us for help. We think we’re hiding it, but God will deal with it.
Then we stay silent about the sin we can see, especially in fellow believers. We don’t want to make it look like we are judging others, so we keep those thoughts to ourself . We don’t want to appear to think we are better. We overlook it was Holy Spirit that brought it to our awareness.
Or we see those people standing on the street corner condemning passersby to hell as they innocently drive or walk past. We don’t want to be categorized with “those people.” I’ve been there. We should definitely be speaking into the lives of our Christian brothers and sister. Paul’s tells us to warn, encourage, help and be patient. We are told to see that others behavior is good.7
“We urge you, our friends, to warn the idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. See that no one pays back wrong for wrong, but at all times make it your aim to do good to one another and to all people.” 1 Thessalonians 5:14-15
This scripture reminds me of a recent video I watched that accompanied a devotion, day 7,
Killing Kryptonite with John Bevere. The video portrayed two friends on the cliff of a mountain. They see another friend who was
blind about to walk of the cliff. One wanted to say something to stop the blind man from walking off the cliff. The other stopped the friend, and actually just cheered the guy on for being so brave. He was being politically correct, not wanting to offend the man who was blind. Ultimately the man walked off the cliff.
It’s absurd to think we would allow a friend to walk off a cliff, yet for whatever reason we are perfectly content to stay quiet while they plunge into sin. It is an uncomfortable conversation at times. There have been times in my life where I debated with God all day before obeying. The fruit of that difficult conversation saved a marriage though.
My spiritual mentor will ask me at times if I want her to speak what is on her heart for me. I appreciate her asking, even if my answer is always yes. She knows her part, her responsibility; she also knows that once I have heard, I become responsible for it. It is my job to take the word of correction and act on it.
We have to realize that we are not doing anyone any favors when we are silent about sin. We need to speak in love and grace. We seek Holy Spirit’s guidance, but we don’t need to question if it’s Him. Our flesh would not ask for the discomfort of the conversation, it’s not volunteering to be sacrificed. The enemy would not encourage us to help someone turn from their sins. He came to steal, kill and destroy.
God sent Jesus to point us towards forgiveness. Holy Spirit will guide us to repentance. He will give us grace in our sin, even through correction and pruning. He can give us the words to speak when we are confronting, in love, the actions of another. He can empower us to set the example in front of the unbeliever, knowing our actions will speak louder than any megaphone.