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EMOTIONS, part  20 - Love  Shown  to  Brothers  and  Sisters
In  Christ ...cont... quotes

1)     If after following Step #2, and still the guilty party refuses to repent, then and only then can this issue move on to taking Step #3.

Step #3: “tell it unto the church”

     The church mentioned here is not the whole world-wide church, but only the local church.  This means that if the guilty brother or sister is not a member of your local home church then this third step cannot be followed with them.  In this case you are forced to leave them with God to deal with, but continue praying for them until God tells you to stop.

     If both you and the guilty party are members of the same local home church, then you and the extra few individuals are free to bring this sad issue before the entire local church membership regardless of who the guilty party is.

     “Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.” 1 Timothy 5:19.

2)    After all members of your local church are made aware of the issue, they must first make sure there is sufficient evidence to prove there has been sin done against you.  They must also investigate into whether or not Step #1 and #2 have been properly followed.

     “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.  Abstain from all appearance of evil.  And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:21-24.
     “Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and show mercy and compassions every man to his brother”. Zechariah 7:9.

     If your local church discovers that you and/or the extra 1 or 2 individuals did not properly follow either the first or the second step, then they must reprove you all and refuse to continue any further until the previous two steps have been properly followed.

     But if the local church discovers that sin has been committed against you, and that the first and second steps were properly followed, then all the members of your local church are to join with you in trying to lead the guilty to repentance.

3)   If the guilty party finally repents, they are not to be chastised for waiting so long, and no grudges are to be held against them.

     “Sufficient to such a man is this punishment [having to be reproved and rebuked by all his fellow home church members], which was inflicted of many.  So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.  Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.” 2 Corinthians 2:6-8.

4)   If after the whole local home church has repeatedly tried to lovingly lead their guilty member to confess and repent of their sin, and still the guilty flatly refuses to do so, then the fourth step is to be taken.

Step #4: “let him be unto thee as a heathen”

     This reveals that the guilty party has been disfellowshipped from church membership and from church fellowship.

5)   If every aspect of the 3 previous steps of Matthew 18 have not been properly followed, but the church body still judges, condemns and disfellowships their member, this unjustified disfellowshipment is not upheld by God, but the woe of heaven is now upon that entire church body.  This is because by unjustly disfellowshipping a member of the body of Christ they have also thrown their Lord Jesus Christ out of their church!
     “But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.” Luke 11:42.

     “And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels”. Matthew 25:40-41.

     Since Jesus is no longer in that home church, then any who were fellowshipping would be Biblically justified in fully separating themselves from that church group!

     “If any...consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.” 1 Timothy 6:3-5.

6)   If every aspect of the 3 previous steps of Matthew 18 have been properly followed, and the majority of the home church members are convinced that this 4th step should be followed, they should disfellowship the guilty unrepentant member out of their church and from their church fellowship.

     “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.” 2 Thessalonians 3:6-7.

     Being properly and justly disfellowshipped out of a local home church will also be endorsed and upheld by God.

     “Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.  Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 18:18-19.

     This does not mean that probation has forever closed on that disfellowshipped individual at that point.  But it does mean that they cannot be saved in that Christless condition until they fully repent and again accept Christ as their Saviour.

7)   After the guilty church member has been justifiably disfellowshipped by their local church body, this action is not to be broadcast to the entire world-wide church body, but is to remain confined within the local church.  There is still a chance for the guilty party to realize their sins and be brought to repentance and acceptance of Christ once again.

     “He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.” Proverbs 17:9.

     Only in cases where a sinful issue is big enough to affect all the Remnant churches around the world should they be made aware of this disfellowshipment and the reasons why.

8)   “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, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.” Matthew 5:23-24.

     These verses reveal that if you know someone has something against you, you are to take the initiative and go to talk with them privately.  The longer this issue remains unsettled allows it to fester and gives the Devil more opportunity to blow it all out of proportion.

9)   What if the sin of the guilty party was committed out in the open, and not in private?

     “Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.” 1 Timothy 5:20.

     This verse reveals that public sins can be rebuked publicly without needing to follow the steps of Matthew 18.

10)   “...be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.  For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.” 1 Peter 3:8-12.

     “As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.  And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.  Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.  And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me....And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.” John 17:18-23, 26.

     “Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.  No man hath seen God at any time.  If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us....And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.  Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.” 1 John 4:11-12, 16-17.

     “Let brotherly love continue.” Hebrews 13:1.

     “Finally, brethren...Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11.