Restoring the Fallen (365 Days of Daring Faith – DAY 106)
Galatians 6:1 (NLT)
Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.
Throughout the Bible, Christians are exhorted to love, help, and serve one another. We are also admonished to not allow ourselves to fall prey to being perpetrators of passing judgment, condemnation, and gossip. This is a recurring command in Scripture because God wants us to reflect His love and humility in the world.
We are often quick to talk about a person who has fallen rather than help them get back on the right path. It is one thing to deliberately indulge in sin, but it is another thing to “be overcome” by sin. The word “overcome” in this context means to struggle with or to fight something. It is like a battle — you do your best to win, but sometimes you lose.
Adrian Rogers quoted someone who once said, “The Christian army is the only army in the world that shoots its wounded.” We shouldn’t be proud of such a reputation. Instead of criticizing, it is our duty to faithfully and dutifully reprove and strengthen. Instead of judging a brother or sister when they fall, God wants us to be by their side to help them recover and restore them to grace.
This is what Jesus did. He saw a sinful world, but He didn’t judge it. Instead He came to earth and extended grace and redemption, and offered peace and restoration. Instead of pushing us deeper into sin which leads to guilt and shame, He chose to pardon us. When admonishment is administered in a sincere, tender, gentle, and humble way, it is more efficacious and helps to produce the “peaceable fruits of righteousness.”
We ought to deal in this way because we too can be overcome by sin and find ourselves in need of help and grace. When we are faced with temptation, evil thoughts, and propensities to unfavorable behaviors, there will be others to come along side us and strengthen us. This is what the church is for. This is what Jesus came to earth to die for. And this is how Christians should seek to live and act towards one another.
“Anger is natural. Grief is appropriate. Healing is mandatory. Restoration is possible. ”
— Jane Rubietta