by Wangari Murathe
11/15/2012 / Devotionals
"If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector." (Matthew 18:17 N.I.V)
God forgives only those who repent of their sins. He does not expect us to accept being downtrodden, abused and taken for granted. This is what would happen if we forgive those who sin against us without them being repentant. Bad behavior must be challenged and confronted. "If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that 'every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.' If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector." (Matthew 18:15-17)
Even though you must show Christian love to everybody, you must set relationship boundaries with those who want to repetitively act without impunity towards you .You must not let them soil you and make your life weary and bitter. Forgive them from a distance without laying yourself up for fresh wounds.
It is impossible for a man to be freed from the habit of sin before he hates it, just as it is impossible to receive forgiveness before confessing his trespasses... Ignatius
Copyright Wangari Murathe. All rights reserved.
Wangari Murathe has a passion for inspiration and empowerment through Christian writing. Visit http://www.faithfood.net/ for more Daily Devotionals and inspirational Christian stories and articles. She can also be contacted at wamurathe@yahoo.
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