Dealing with Others’ Sin

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In this life, we will sin and be sinned against. Thankfully, the Bible gives us clear direction on how to deal with the sins committed against us.

We learn three things from Luke 17:1–10 about dealing with the sins of others in conflict.

First, rebuke those who sin against you.

Jesus doesn’t say to talk about them but to talk to them. “If your brother sins, rebuke him” (Luke 17:3). This doesn’t mean you confront them behind an e-mail, text message, voicemail, or letter. This is an opportunity for you to personally and privately confront them over the matter. Remember, the goal is not condemnation, but rather restoration by pointing them to Jesus (Matt. 7:1–5; Gal. 6:1)

Second, forgive those who sin against you.

If those who sin against you repent, forgiven them (Luke 17:3). If they don’t repent, forgive them. This doesn’t mean that your relationship will be restored or that they’re made right with God. It simply means that you forfeit your right to judgment and leave them to God.

Third, when dealing with the sins of others, keep rebuking and forgiving.

Jesus says, “If he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him” (Luke 17:4). Do you have a number? Are you done forgiving the person who’s done you wrong time and time again? Jesus says, “Don’t do that. If you love me then you need to love them. Keep rebuking and forgiving.”

Is there anyone you need to forgive today? Ask God for the grace to help you lovingly approach them in a way that brings glory to him.

Adapted from the sermon “How to Fight to the Glory of God,” part 69 of the 100-part sermon series on the Gospel of Luke.