Confess your faults and oughts to others, but confess your sins unto God.
(1) Confess Faults and Oughts: “Confess your faults one to another” (James 5:16). If someone has ought against you or you have ought against someone you ought to privately go to that person seeking to reconcile and restore your Christian relationship. Do not attack the person but attack the problem. Usually the one who seeks restoration displays the most character. It seems many talk much to others who can do nothing about it. “Gripping is talking to someone about something who can do nothing about it.” Our policy is that if the gossip/rumor is told by a third-party or a non-witness then we do not repeat or relay it. Recognize the sources: The Lord adds & multiplies – The devil divides & takes away. Some people brighten a room when they enter, others brighten a room when they leave. Fact: It is not who is right but what is right. Don’t be bitter – Be better! “Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar…first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift” (Matt. 5:23). “And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you” (Mark 11:25).
(2) Confess sins unto God: “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Stop confessing to others who can do nothing about it. There is only one mediator between God and man, Christ Jesus (1 Tim. 2:5). Unconfessed sins remain unforgiven. Confessed sins are forgiven.
Lesson to Learn: If there is now anything between you and God – Go to God. If there is now anything between you and another person – Go to “that” person. Why? “My brethren, these things OUGHT not so to be” (James 3:10). This is the ministry of reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18). The purpose is not rejection but restoration. “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault… restore such an one in the spirit of meekness” (Gal.6:1). Remove Strife – Restore Unity (Psa. 133:1). Don’t be a problem maker – Be a peace maker! Do it! You will be glad you did and so will God and others. The greatest testimony to the world is a changed consistent Christian life. “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:35). “And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Cor. 5:18). As we have been reconciled let’s also practice the ministry of reconciliation by removing all Faults and Oughts.
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