From Heaven With Love


Need of the Delicate Touch

Do not put the erring one to shame by exposing his fault to others, nor bring dishonor on Christ by making public the sin of one who bears His name. The erring must be led to see his error, that he may reform; but you are not to judge or condemn. In treating the wounds of the soul, there is need of the most delicate touch. Only the love that flows from the Suffering One of Calvary can avail here. If you succeed, you will “save a soul from death,” and “hide a multitude of sins.” James 5:20. HLv 298.3

But even this effort may be unavailing. Then Jesus said, “Take one or two others along with you.” RSV. If he will not hear them, then, and not till then, the matter is to be brought before the whole body of believers. Let the members of the church unite in prayer and loving entreaty that the offender may be restored. The Holy Spirit will speak through His servants, pleading with the wanderer to return to God: “We pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.” 2 Corinthians 5:20. He who rejects this united overture has broken the tie that binds him to Christ, and thus has severed himself from the fellowship of the church. Henceforth, said Jesus, “Let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” But let him not be despised or neglected by his former brethren. Treat him with tenderness and compassion. HLv 298.4

If one neglects the duty Christ has enjoined, of trying to restore those who are in error and sin, he becomes a partaker in the sin. See Leviticus 19:17. For evils that we might have checked, we are just as responsible as if we were guilty of the acts ourselves. HLv 299.1

We are not to make the wrong a matter of comment and criticism among ourselves, nor to repeat it to others. While we seek to correct the errors of a brother, we will shield him as far as possible from the criticism of his own brethren, and how much more from the censure of the unbelieving world. As we wish Christ to deal with us, He bids us deal with one another. “Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:19. The issues of your work are for eternity! HLv 299.2

But we are not to bear this great responsibility alone. Wherever His word is obeyed with a sincere heart, there Christ abides. In the assemblies of the church and wherever disciples, however few, meet in His name, there also He will be. “If two of you shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father which is in heaven.” While by His humanity Jesus is a sharer with His disciples in their trials and sympathizes with them in their sufferings, by His divinity He is connected with the throne of the Infinite. HLv 299.3

Wonderful assurance! All the power of heaven combines with human ability in drawing souls to Christ. HLv 299.4