Work of the Gospel
One of the hardest things to do in life is confrontation. One of the easiest things to do is point out the fault of others. Have you ever noticed that? When someone wrongs you what is your first inclination? It is to attack, is it not? When you’re young, you might attack directly. I have boys. They’ve become adept at the right cross. But as you get older you find that direct confrontation doesn’t work very well. It’s usually the guy that swings in retaliation that gets caught. If you watch NFL football you know this is true. Most personal foul penalties are thrown against the guy who is retaliating against the instigator. So, instead of confrontation, you find an audience and make known your offender’s sins. This has the affect of both hurting the one who hurt you AND gaining sympathy and justification in the eyes of your audience. This is much easier to do. What’s the problem with this approach? It’s fine if your goal is to tend to your own wounds, inflate yourself where you’ve been deflated. It’s NOT fine, however, for your brother.
The bible, thankfully, has some things to say about that. This passage opens up with instruction for the believer in Christ:
Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness.