Prayer: Great God, we come before You today with thoughts tumbling around in our mind. Help us to focus today on You. Help us to focus our lives today in the stillness of Your Word. Help us to be at peace. This we ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Read St Matthew 18:15 – 20
What do you do if a brother sins against you? Do you stomp away in anger? Do you say “not my problem”? Do you harbour the hurt in your heart? Jesus teaches the disciples that if someone sins against them, they need to go and show that person his fault. Go and Show the person his fault…. just between the two of you. If the person listens to you, then all is forgiven. But if the person does not listen then Jesus says to take one or two others along and try again. If the person refuses to meet or listen this time then tell it to the Session. And if the person refuses to listen to the Session, then the person shall be treated as a pagan or tax collector. Remember that tax collectors were considered the bottom feeders of the Jewish community. Yet even the tax collectors remained in the love of Jesus.
Go and Show the person his faults. This is something our Church (local and Presbytery and National) does not do today. During the time of the reformation, Jean Calvin insisted that all Presbytery meetings must spend time in reconciliation – in going and showing the other minister’s and elder’s their faults. This not only brings about healing in Churches but also creates a responsibility that says, “We care about you and your journey in Christ”.
Go and Show the person their faults must begin with our Ministers and Elders. They are our spiritual leaders. They are our example of the love of God and sharing that love with the community. If Ministers and Elders sit in Presbytery and Session Meetings and fume in anger over decisions made then what kind of an example are they to the congregation?
Responsibility and Reconciliation are not easy things to do but they are essential to living a whole and healthy life in God.
Prayer: Lord of Life and Strength, You heal us from all our faults. Set us once again on the path to Your glory and righteousness. We come before You now asking for forgivness of those things we have forgotten to do…… Lord hear our prayer. We come before You now asking for forgiveness for those things we have decided in anger…… Lord hear our prayer. We come before You now knowing that You forgive us from all our faults and from all our sins. For this and the life we live, Hallelujah. Amen.