Theological Insights from a Modern Perspective

Sin is offending God, or going against His wishes/desires for us. When someone offends you or does something you don’t want then you could say that they have sinned against you, though we usually say that they have pissed us off.

My wife works in fast food, and my daughter in grocery checkout, their tales of customer behavior are legendary. One customer went into a tirade because they didn’t get enough salad dressing packets for their side salad – they wanted 12. Or the customer who called corporate headquarters because my daughter couldn’t ring through their monthly WIC check, checks are good the entire month, they tried to use it on the first of the next month – 17 minutes after midnight.

When we lose our temper against someone else, for no good reason (unrighteously), and lash out against them then we have sinned against them. We owe them an apology, at the very least, but do we ever offer it? Jesus tells us:

“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.”

But, if we are the sinner wouldn’t it be better if we went to them, rather than making them come to us?

On the other side, if someone does come to you to apologize do you accept it, or stubbornly hold your ground and refuse their apology? I’ve seen this happen a lot, for reasons of pride or spite we stand our “moral high ground” rather than holding out our hand in friendship. Jesus is just as clear here when he tells us:

(Peter) “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.”

No, this does not mean we forgive them 490 time, but rather unendingly, for no one would be expected to track 490 offenses, that would be both ludicrous and petty.


Do not sin against your brother, but if you do then seek their forgiveness.

If your brother sins against you do not stand your ground, but do as you Father in heaven has done with you and offer your forgiveness, not begrudgingly but with glee.

There is no reason we can’t all get along so long as we remember that we are all children of the same God.

Comments on: "Has someone sinned against you?" (1)

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