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Summary: The Bible tells us how to handle the criticism that we receive from other people.

MATTHEW 5:11-12 “HOW TO HANDLE CRITICISM”

A) Criticism has had as much adverse effect on the body of Christ as anything that has ever

come up against it!

* Someone has said, “Christianity is the only army that shoots their own wounded.”

* We have far too many in the body of Christ that the only exercise they get is “jumping” to

conclusions and “running” people down!

B) Everywhere you look, you can find the result of negative criticism!

* Criticism will drive away a seeking sinner ... It will crush a new Christian.

* It will mar a preacher’s testimony ... It will hurt the attendance and spirit of the church.

* It will drive a wedge between a husband and wife ... It can cause untold trouble in the church.

* No one will ever know, this side of heaven, how much damage has been done by vicious

criticism!

C) There is one consolation though ... We will know at the Judgment Seat of Christ!

* Jesus told us that we would be accountable for every idle word in the judgment (Matt. 12:36-37).

* With this in mind, let’s look at a few simple rules to remember when facing criticism .......

(1) WE ARE TO LOVE OUR ACCUSERS! * That is certainly easier to say than to do!

A) When someone is running you down and saying things that are untrue, it’s hard to have a

good attitude toward them! * But listen to what Jesus taught us in John 13:35 …….

* “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

* He taught us that the world would be able to tell if we were Christians by our love one to

another! * DO THE LOST SEE LOVE AMONG CHURCHES?

* It’s very important that we demonstrate Christ’s love, even when we’re being sinned against

and persecuted!

B) Jesus was our example of this attitude on the cross!

* He was despised, rejected, falsely accused, beaten, spat upon … And still He asked the Father

to forgive those who sinned against Him. * Be prepared to have accusers …….

* Paul warned us that all who live godly will suffer persecution! (2 Tim. 3:12)

C) Anything that is “moving” is producing friction! * It’s easy to point a finger at someone else.

* We need to pray the same prayer the old Indian prayed … “Lord, help me not to criticize my

fellow warrior until I have walked a mile in his moccasins.”

D) Everyone has their own idea as to how things should be done! * Such as …….

* How the preacher should preach … How the church should be ran … How children should be

raised … How this should be and that should be …….

* And we are very quick to give our opinions whether we’re asked or not.

E) But only God knows how many folks have been turned away from church because of the

criticism of some of the membership!

* As the Pastor of RLCC, I don’t mind you measuring my preaching, my family, or my conduct

by the Word of God … You have that right …….

* But you don’t have the right to be critical based solely on mere opinion!

* We are different, no doubt about it … We’ll have disagreements …….

* However, we must not be too quick to judge or criticize!

(2) WE SHOULD PRAY FOR OUR CRITICS! * That’s about the last thing you feel like doing!

A) Honestly … There are some people that’s just hard to love! (Can I get an “amen” there?)

* One of the best ways to learn to love them is to pray for them!

* It’s amazing how accusations and rumors can circulate, and most often are not true or honest!

B) But one thing is for sure … It’ll cause you to pray more and to be more determined to stand

for what is right!

* It’s hard to criticize … It’s hard to talk bad about a brother when you are regularly praying for

him. * Look at 1 John 4:7-8 …….

* “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God,

and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”

(3) YOU SHOULD SPEAK GOOD OF YOUR ENEMIES! * Matt. 5:43-44 …….

A) We don’t need to retaliate … That is not our place to! * Rom. 12:19-21 …….

* The greatest avenger of all is the Lord Jesus Christ … Vengeance is not ours, but His!

* If we retaliate, it shows our lack of restraint and that we have not died to self!

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