A part of our malaise, or lack of conviction, maybe a better way to put it, lack of formation in thought and life concerning church is our failure to speak truth to each other. We see a brother or sister in Jesus failing in some way, or in some danger. And we don’t step in to try to help them. Or for that matter, we may not be much open to such help when we need it, as well.
We need to be willing on both sides. To both offer help, and to receive it. When we think someone may be on a wrong path, we do well to ask questions. And we don’t do well to rationalize sin in any way, shape or form. It is one thing to acknowledge our own struggle perhaps in the same area, or in another sin area. It’s another thing entirely to actually justify it in some way. Like, “Well, everyone does that.” Or, “It’s really not a big deal.” Etc.
Of course we’re going to have to approach this with grace, as well as truth. We do so with the humility that recognizes and acknowledges that we are no better at all, and that we are all in need of grace in all of life, in every way.
This is a missing chord in Christianity today. I often think of the advantage Roman Catholics or those who practice confession of sin to a priest have over the rest of us. I’m not in favor of that practice, which brings its own problems, along with the fact that I don’t think it’s according to God’s word, pure and simple. But we do need accountability to each other. We are all priests for each other, and the world, in and through Jesus. We need to be humbly present for each other, first of all praying for a brother or sister we think may be in error. And willing and ready to step in to help.
We need to recover this directive, and put it into practice. We are not on our own. We need each other, indeed we are in this together in Jesus for the world.