by Bob Burridge ©2011, 2021
Lesson 11: We Need to Help Other Believers
We need to help each other live in ways God says are right and pleasing to our Sovereign Lord. God calls us to be a family. Believers should look after one another just like brothers and sisters. We should pray for one another and try to find ways to stir up other believers to live the way God prescribes for his children. We are told in Hebrews 10:24, “And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works”.
We need to be good friends and good examples toward other believers. When someone does a good thing, or lives the way God says we should, we should encourage him.
We should also help other believers when they sin. When someone does wrong things, Christian friends should encourage him to repentantly admit his sins and to change his ways. Go to the person kindly and in private to help him do what’s right. If the person does not listen to what you tell him, then you should get another friend to go to him with you. It’s often good for the person you bring to be a Pastor or Elder from your church. They are specially able to help the person overcome his sin. We should never talk about other people’s sin with others in the form of gossip. This would hurt the person rather than helping him.
Jesus told us to help other believers this way in Matthew 18:15-16, “… if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ ”
Sometimes when the person sinning is a Church member, and he still will not listen to personal warnings about his sin problem, the officers of the church may have to try to help him more formally. Be sure you go to the officers privately and with a kind heart. The officers should try to help the person overcome his sin. If he will not listen to the church leaders, they might tell him not to receive the Lord’s Supper until he is ready to change his ways and admit to God that he has done wrong. He eventually may even have to be removed from membership in the church. Jesus explained in Matthew 18:17, “And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.”
When a member has to be removed in this way, we still must treat him kindly. The difference is that he should then be treated as someone who needs the life changing work of Jesus Christ. We should continue to pray for him, and do all we can to encourage him to sincerely repent, trust in the redeeming work of our Savior, and to live in a way that honors God. Our goal is always to help the person back to where he is living as God has commanded us.
(Bible verses are quoted from the New King James Version of the Bible)
Index of all our lessons on Bible Basics