Human beings always have had conflict with one another. Conflict can sever once-good relationships that can go unresolved throughout one’s lifetime.
When we think of unresolved conflict, we might think of the Hatfields and McCoys. But it can happen in your home, workplace, neighborhood and, yes, even in the church.
In Matthew 18, Jesus instructs us on how to deal with this issue among fellow believers. The principle here is that if someone offends us or sins against us, we are to go to them and try to resolve the issue. If this doesn’t work, take one or two people with you to help iron out your differences.
If this doesn’t work, then take the matter to the church, where, hopefully, you have a group of sensible people who can come to a fair decision. And if this doesn’t work, the guilty party should be looked at as an unbeliever and the church should have nothing to do with that person unless they repent.
What would our churches be like if we followed Jesus’ teaching on this issue? When a lot of Christians have issues with someone else, it leads to gossip, slander and division in the church when it could have been nipped in the bud with an honest conversation.
May God help us to be shining lights to those outside our fellowship by promoting peace among those within our fellowship.