Bible Study From Matthew 18:15-20
Most of us have had this happen at one time or another in our lives.
Or, maybe it was us who did the hurting.
Either way, Christ says we should pray to God for help, then go directly to that person to solve conflicts face to face, and forgive.
When a Friend Does You Wrong …
“If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother.
But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every fact may be confirmed.
If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.
“Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.
For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.” – Matthew 18:15-20 NASB
How Friends Solve Conflicts – Does He Mean Us?
Who is Jesus talking about in these passages?
According to many scholars, He is directing this message toward Christians and those sins committed that hurt fellow followers. For instance, the people of a church hurting each other.
When Someone Sins, Are We To Be the Judge?
The lesson does not mean we go out and confront everyone in church we “don’t like” or to continually gossip about them behind their backs.
Not at all.
Jesus is giving us a way to deal with inner congregational conflict to find peaceful solutions to bring the church together in harmony.
Get It Out in the Open
Our natural tendency is to turn anger inward and resent people who have done us wrong. We tend to talk to others but not to them.
Christ says to go to the person with whom we have conflict first.
In a Gentle Way
This is an almost impossible task for many of us (including me) but, if we approach them in the right way, let them know how their words or actions hurt us, and then forgive them as God forgives us, we might be able to restore a friendship and relations in the church family.
[easyazon_image align=”left” height=”160″ identifier=”0781414199″ locale=”US” src=”http://www.makingchristknown.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/51LIBYBeXEL.SL160-1.jpg” tag=”bobpardphot-20″ width=”107″]Before going to your friend who has hurt you; pray. Ask for guidance from God to help you in your approach.
Church decisions should always be based on prayer and listening for answers.
No matter how we feel about others who have wronged us, God should have the final say in the matter.
God will settle the conflict in His on way, and not always in a way we would have handled it.
Love in Christ
If you would like to learn more about how to receive the love and life-changing experience of Jesus Christ, please take a look at John 3:16.