9-11 Makes Us Remember / Sins Against You
9-11 Makes Us Remember
September 11, 2018 was the 17th anniversary of the tragic day of terror in our country. September 11th will always be remembered by our country and the entire world. There are three things that that day reminds us of:
1. The wickedness of this world. Ever since Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, the darkness of sin has plagued this world. Hate. Envy. Murder. Stealing. We live in a world of sin. A twisted and perverse world. Mankind proves over and over just how bad they can be. It is on all sin that God is going to bring judgment and wrath: “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God”(1 Corinthians 6:9-10). As Ecclesiastes says, “See, this alone I found, that God made man upright, but they have sought out many schemes” (7:29). 9/11 is a sad reminder of just how evil this world can be.
2. The frailty of this life. On 9/11 many, many lives were lost. In an instant. In one day. We mourn for the loss of all souls. This life is temporary. It can end in an instant. Our bodies are fragile. We will not live forever. All of us will succumb to the way of all mankind. “What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” (James 4:14). In this world there is old age, sickness, accidents, etc. One day our life will end. Then what?
3. How much we need God. We live in a sinful world. We live in a frail world. Without God we are hopeless. We need God to forgive us of our own sins (Romans 3:23-24). We all need saved from the darkness of this world, from Satan. We all need eternal life. This physical life will not last. God promises eternal life with Him in Heaven for all who will believe, repent, and obey. Without God we would have nothing to live for. Without God there is no joy. No point. No hope. We need God! “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). “For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (2 Corinthians 5:1).
God is calling us out of the darkness of sin. And He will help us overcome all the evils around us in this world. We have to repent of our own sins and then fight in the Lord’s army against Satan and sin. We don’t have to fear death. God gives us hope. God gives us eternal life. We have something, the only thing worth living for! I need God. You need God. Everyone needs God. So come to Him. Live for Him. Then you’ll live with Him in Heaven.
Sins Against You
What do we do when somebody does something wrong toward us? How do we handle situations when we’ve been hurt or angered by someone? One way is to ignore that person and have nothing to do with them ever again. Another thing is to gossip about them to others to make yourself feel better and make that person look bad. One could also go to that person and tell them what for in anger and ugliness.
But none of the ways previously mentioned are how God wants us to handle these kinds of situations. God wants us to seek reconciliation. Peace. Love. Forgiveness. Look at how Jesus told us we should handle situations in which we have been wronged or hurt in Matthew 18:15-17.
“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.” This is how we should first deal with a problem we have with someone. Keep it between you two alone. Don’t go gossip or complain badly to others. Go to that person and let them know what they did or what you didn’t appreciate. Hopefully they will be willing to hear you out and acknowledge what they did wrong. If they won’t listen to you then look at the next step.
“But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses.” Now the goal here is NOT to gang up on that person to bully him into apologizing. It isn’t about putting that person down. It is about taking others with you who will help you plead with that person in love to make things right. So that others know that you are actually trying to make things right. If that doesn’t work then move on to the next step.
“If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church.” Is that to make them look bad in front of everybody? Absolutely not. It is so even more people can encourage, admonish, and pray. And so that everyone will know that that person needs to make things right. That you’re still trying to make things right. Unfortunately, if they still don’t listen then there’s only one thing to do.
“And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.” When someone absolutely refuses to repent and make things right, there is nothing more you can do. All you can do is move on. Leave that person alone. Pray for them that one day they will come to their senses. Do not be ugly to them. Do not hate them. Admonish them as a brother. Love them. Hope for reconciliation to come.
How will you handle the next time someone does wrong against you? Will you do it your way? Or God’s way? Make sure to do it God’s way. God’s way is the only way that works. It is the way of righteousness. It is the way of eternal life.