The Bible has many instructions on how Christians should go about their daily lives and where these instructions can be found. It is a wealth of knowledge that directs each and every choice that we make on a daily basis, but despite having access to all of these resources, we are still prone to make mistakes because we’re human. Now, what should we do when another person commits a sin against God? What are we going to do, ignore it and try to move on, or confront it directly and deal with it?
In the book of Ezekiel, the Lord commanded us to be vigilant and to refrain from turning a blind eye to sin. He told us that we will be required to look out for each other in the Lord. We have a responsibility to sound the alarm and let others know about wrongdoing. We will be held responsible before the Lord if we do not pay attention to this instruction from Him.
We can always turn to Scripture for guidance on how to live properly as Christians, because it teaches us what is pleasing to God, as well as what the Lord despises most. If we want to be taught the proper way to live as Christians, we can always turn to the Bible. This is where our foundation is laid, and our actions in these circumstances must be anchored in the will of the Lord. When we stand before Him someday, we will be held accountable for failing to fulfill our responsibilities. We can’t just sit back and do nothing, as that would be an abdication of our responsibilities. If we fail to fulfill our responsibilities, we may also be held accountable.
We cannot simply say that “my brother is the sinner, and not me,” or “He will be the one to bear the consequences of his actions, not I.” Remember, God commanded us to look out for one another and correct others, lest they perish in their sins. We must support one another in our Christian walk so that when we stand before the Creator and He asks us what we did on earth, we will be able to respond by saying that we worked for the Lord. If we stand by and watch our brother wallow in sin, we will not be able to accomplish what we set out to do. First and foremost, we have been given the charge by God to go out in the world and tell people about the love that God has for them, in the hopes that they will come to know Christ themselves.
It is critical that we fill our lives with the message that the Lord Jesus Christ has for us, and as a result, we have a responsibility to inform others about proper behavior and correct them when they’ve gotten things wrong. God entrusts us with his wisdom so that when we are confronted with situations like these, we will be able to discern what actions are most consistent with His will and act accordingly. As followers of Christ, we are the Lord’s representatives here on earth. Therefore, we must be careful with what we do because, unknowingly, we become a blessing to others. When His glory is manifested in the way we live our lives, He will also be glorified. Sometimes, it is so overwhelming that we feel entitled and think that it’s okay to have done something wrong. Other times, we cannot see if we have done something wrong because we’re blinded by emotion, which causes us to overlook whether or not we have committed a sin. It is the responsibility of a brother or sister to remind and assist us in moving in the right direction. If we take such a rebuke in a positive light and ask for forgiveness, then it’s a beautiful thing. However, if others stand by and do nothing, then we are missing an important opportunity to do something that we should be doing.
In the book of Psalms, David prayed that when he was corrected by a brother, it would be like medicine that would soothe him, and he should not refuse it because it would be something that would help him grow spiritually. David is a man who perfectly exemplifies the character of God. We should take heart from the fact that, even though God may have looked favorably upon him, David still desired to be corrected in the event that he committed a sin. In the same way, as Christians, it is our job to help others by correcting them and reminding them of what God wants.
Because the Lord commands us to do so, we must correct the actions of our fellow believers in Christ. If we fail to do so, we will have failed to fulfill our responsibilities. On the other hand, when we do this, we must not pass judgment on the situation; rather, we should forgive the situation, because that is an inherently good course of action.
The Bible reminds us of our responsibilities as Christians. Here are some verses that can help us understand how to behave in such a situation.
7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
8 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
9 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil, which shall not break my head: for yet my prayer also shall be in their calamities.
Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.
1 Thessalonians 5:14
Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.
2 Timothy 3:16
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
If we love someone, we don’t want them to endure the repercussions of their sinful actions before informing them of what will take place in the future and why. If they are going to suffer as a result of our fear of correcting them, our fear that we will not be listened to, or our fear of losing a friend or brother, then we cannot say that we truly loved them, because in the end, they will be the ones who are suffering.