Ignoring The Need To Apologize Is Sin
August 2, 2014
If someone wrongs us, what is it we wish that person would do? Don’t we wish he would acknowledge his wrong-doing, apologize for it, and give us the assurance that he will not commit that wrong against us again? Likely this is what most everyone would expect from the wrong-doer, especially if there was a relationship already invested.
Let’s turn the situation around then. What if we are the ones who committed wrong against someone? Should we not acknowledge our wrong-doing, apologize for it, and give the wronged person the assurance that we will not do such a thing again? Or do we think we can just pretend the incident didn’t happen, or that it was no big deal, or that we have an excuse for it good enough that we remain, in our own eyes, okay, or correct, or righteous even in our wrong-doing? Maybe we actually think we did no wrong at all and the other person is offended for no reason.
Jesus has given us a command concerning such things, and it is not a suggestion. He has told us that if we know that a person has something against us (a grudge, a distrust, or a hurt) we are to go to that person and get it right before we offer any more gifts to God. (Mt. 5:23,24) In other words, we are not to continue to petition, or praise, or serve the Lord until we have genuinely attempted to reconcile with the injured party.
This attempt at reconciliation does not mean that we go to the hurt person for the purpose of defending ourselves or so that we can tell him he misunderstood. No, we go to him with a tender, humble, and sorrowing heart, taking this approach just as we would expect anyone should take with us.
Let us not pick and choose which of Christ’s commands we are going to obey, for we are to obey them all. In fact, disobeying one command is to disobey them all. (Ja. 2:10) Let us not neglect, therefore, the one about reconciling with a person who feels we have done him wrong.