13 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Brethren and sisters, God’s Love is paramount to all things Christ. For if we love our fellow men we will call them out of their sin. For the penalty of sin is eternity in Hell. We must always point to Christ Jesus who is gracious and merciful above measure.
But what happens if we call a brother or sister to repentance and they refuse to listen to you as well as any witness of the Holy Spirit? That may depend on their relationship with Jesus. It may also depend on the seriousness of that sin. I do know that Scripture says that many will fall away from Jesus in the last days. Reference 2 Thessalonians 2:2-4. And I think we are seeing many fall away in this part of the last days. For many profess Christ but it is a perverted Christ they follow. Only God knows for sure where that precious line is with each person. But as disciples of Christ who are stilling walking strongly in the Spirit we must still always point to the truth in love.
How must we point to Scripture in love? By telling the person how much we care about them and love them in Christ Jesus. We must also in a loving manner use Scripture to help the Lord shine a light on that area of the person’s life that they should repent of. But we cannot do this without the leading of the Spirit. But even when we are led of the Spirit that person might still refuse that witness and hurl insults. They also might hurl whatever sin they might think you committed at you. I caution you to talk to Jesus beforehand to make sure you truly have not committed any wrong. If you have, also seek that person’s forgiveness.
Here’s an example of how not to call someone to repentance. Don’t attack and make accusations without cause. Don’t make lists. And get right to the point. For if you love them there is no need to beat around the bush. God loves His children very much and will chastise us if need be.
3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. 4 You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin. 5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons:
“My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,
Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;
6 For whom the Lord loves He chastens,
And scourges every son whom He receives.”
7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. 9 Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. 11 Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
From experience a couple of times I have been accused of being unloving. Even when I was and didn’t want to see that person fall away from Truth. In cases like that what they are really saying is “Stop shining the Light of Christ upon my life”. All you can do is walk away. But you can still pray for them unless or until the Lord tells you to stop. Or that person truly comes to repentance in Jesus.
It’s difficult to let someone who we love [and who is continuing in error and un-repentance despite the Spirit’s warnings] to go on alone with God–to willingly sacrifice that relationship upon the altar of His love–turning them over completely to His providential care.
Yet, we can trust God with them (2 Timothy 2:13); and it is sometimes necessary.
Chasten away, O’ Lord!