Faithlife
Faithlife

sermon031807

Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view
Notes & Transcripts

·     One of the marks of the true church is church discipline

·     Matthew 18:15-18 is one of the main scriptures used to teach discipline within the local church.  Let’s return there for a minute

·     Matthew 18:15-18 15 “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. 16 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. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. 18 Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. ESV

·     A good reference work to have in your homes is a book called; “The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge”.  It is a book that gives the scripture references and parallel passages for every verse in the Bible.

·     One of the references for Matthew 18:15 is Luke 17:3.  Let’s open our Bibles to that passage.  Listen to the passage in context.


·     Luke 17:3-10 3 Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, 4 and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” 5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you. 7 “Will any one of you who has a servant plowing or keeping sheep say to him when he has come in from the field, ‘Come at once and recline at table’? 8 Will he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare supper for me, and dress properly, and serve me while I eat and drink, and afterward you will eat and drink’? 9 Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.’ ” ESV

·     Our subject is; “Forgiveness is a part of discipline are you willing to obey?”

·     This passage is similar to Matthew 18:15 but first of all starts with a warning; ‘pay attention to yourselves!’

·     This warning is needed then and it is needed today because of the direction that this passage is going and the typical direction that we tend to go.  Therefore, New Hope, take heed to yourselves

·     If your brother sins, the ‘New King James’ has ‘if your brother sins against you.  I like the English Standard Version because it removes the excuse that can be made, he may have sinned but since it was not against me, I did not get involved.

·     You need to rebuke him, express sharp, stern disapproval of his actions or behavior.  You need to reprove, reprimand or censure

·     In the original language the word was used to warn to prevent an action or bring an action to an end

·     This is you brothers and sisters having discernment about each other

·     And Scripture gives you that authority to engage in this

·     The purpose of this is for the brother to repent.  Listen again to the definition of repentance;

o       It is a heartfelt sorrow for sin, a renouncing of it, and a sincere commitment to forsake it and walk in obedience to Christ

o       It is not just a conversion activity, it is also a sanctification action

·     The obligations of Matt 18:15 and even Galatians 6:1, which says, “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted”, are repeated here

·     An offended brother or sister must approach the offender and seek to bring him to repentance and endeavor to bring about a reconciliation.  That is bring about confession, forgiveness, and a new relationship where peace and fellowship replaces enmity and alienation

·     If he repents then forgive him!  And this is a command not a suggestion.  Jesus plainly states that if as the result of the rebuke the offending Christian says that he is repentant, the offended brother or sister must forgive him or her.

·     Let me be clear on what I am saying here, This passage says forgive him!

·     By forgiveness I mean; no longer continuing to dwell on the sin that was forgiven.  Forgiveness is the promise not to raise the issue again to the offender, to others, or to oneself.  When one has forgiven another, there ought to be a complete change in the relationship that follows, a new relationship.

·     But, in reality, because you are the offended brother or sister, you may ask or think about one of the following questions

o       Shouldn’t I wait for the fruit of repentance before forgiving?

o       What if I don’t feel forgiving toward him or her?

o       Do you mean that I am to forgive him because he says that he’s sorry?

·     Our Lord Jesus Christ is all wise and the answer to these concerns that you have today was already addressed in time past and are also in this passage.  Look at verse four

o       And if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.

·     You must forgive him. (period)

·     So the questions should I wait for fruit fitting for repentance or must I grant forgiveness merely on the basis of one’s statement that he or she repents are addressed in this verse.  Verse four clearly disagrees with waiting

·     Seven times in one day, there is clearly no evidence of change within this time period. 

·     Indeed, if a brother does the same thing in the same day, the only evidence that has been presented here with the actions is negative.

o       Speaking of fruit, fruit takes time to grow.  It takes care and nourishment.  And it is very seldom immediate.  The illustrations in the plant world bare that out.

·     After being rebuke, repenting, and being forgiven once, he continued to sin (possibly in the same way) six more times.

·     It is certain that Jesus does not condition the granting of forgiveness on the behavior of the offender after forgiveness, but rather hangs the granting of forgiveness upon the brother’s verbal testimony alone.  Listen to verse four again; “and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.”

·     And seven times in a day returns to you saying, “I repent.” Forgiveness must be granted.

o       It is the saying, not the subsequent doing on his part that should cause the offended one to grant forgiveness

o       This may be hard but still – Amen church

o       It may seems too difficult but still – Amen church

o       Well my faith is not that strong or I just don’t have that much faith but still – Amen church

·     And your feeling and thoughts have not caught our awesome God by surprise because He is Lord even those concerns are handled by His Word, let’s read on Luke 17:5-6 5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6 And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.

·     Your problem my brother and sister is not lack of faith.  Jesus points out that even a small amount (as small as a grain of mustard seed) could do wonders.

·     So what is the issue?  The issue is not that you need more faith, the issue is that you need to exercise the faith that you have and stop making excuses. 

·     The issue is not about quantity the issue is about quality.

·     If what is said here presents a problem?  Then the problem is not one of faith.  It is the same problem that answers why there is an erosion of authority.  It is the problem of obedience. 

·     “Forgiveness is a part of discipline are you willing to obey?”

·     Christ has said what to do and they, his apostles and disciples were to obey.  That same Word comes to us today, are you willing to obey

·     But you say; ‘I don’t feel forgiving toward him or her!”  I base my response on my feelings then let’s read on Luke 17:7-10; 7 “Will any one of you who has a servant plowing or keeping sheep say to him when he has come in from the field, ‘Come at once and recline at table’? 8 Will he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare supper for me, and dress properly, and serve me while I eat and drink, and afterward you will eat and drink’? 9 Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.’ ”

·     My brother, my sister, put yourself in the place of this servant, tired and hungry, his feelings.  How do you think he felt as he prepared the supper (and there was instant nothing in those days, everything was made from stretch)

·     His feelings may have told him, ‘forget about feeding the master you worked hard in the field, therefore feed yourself.’

·     So, hard as it was, thankless as the task might be (verse 9), and against his feelings, he did what was commanded.  The servant was obedient

·     The Lord Jesus makes the point in verse 10

·     So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.’

·     Forgiveness, is a duty because the scriptures command it.

·     Forgiveness is not something that we should get all excited about and want to make it a big deal because someone is doing it. 

·     We are unworthy servants and we have only done what was our duty.  You have only done what was expected of you and nothing else.

·     My brothers and sisters, when we know better, we can act better.

·     How many of you sitting here today need to repent of the sin of not forgiving.  And because you have not forgiven, many are still recalling and going through all of the pain and emotions again and again. 

·     Forgiveness is the promise not to raise the issue again to the offender, to others, or to oneself.  When one has forgiven another, there ought to be a complete change in the relationship that follows, a new relationship.

·     How many of you sitting here today know of brothers and sisters who are living in the sin of not forgiving and you have done nothing

·     Pay attention to yourselves, if your brother or sister sins, rebuke him or her

·     Ask the Lord to guide you in these matters

·     Seek prayer for your lack of forgiveness

·     Pray for the offender in your life and go to him or her

·     And my brothers and sisters, if you have heard these words do not harden your hearts in rebellion

·     Let us pray.

RELATED MEDIA
See the rest →
RELATED SERMONS
See the rest →