Summary: Rebuke those you love.

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In 2 Timothy 4:2 the Apostle Paul tells Timothy to "Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, Rebuke, Exhort, with all long suffering and reaching."

Well today there is a lot of Exhorting going on, and some convincing, but we have forgotten how to rebuke in a Christian manner. Webster defines rebuke as "to express sharp, stern disapproval of; reprove; reprimand." This is what we as a people are failing in.

Proverbs 27:5 says "Open rebuke is better than love carefully concealed." A salutary word aimed at correction for one's good is better than a genuine love that lacks the strength to risk correcting someone.

Or, to put it plainly: "If you love someone you will correct them when they sin!

We, as a society have moved away from this most important command. We are becoming like the prophesied people in 2 Timothy 4:4 "And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."

What are the fables are you turning to? Wealth, fame, entertainment, drugs, new age movement, universal spirituality rather than the Holy Spirit? Do you see a friend making these mistakes? If so, have you rebuked them in love?

Who enjoys punishing someone you love? I hate having to send my daughter to the corner when she is bad, but I have to. She must learn right from wrong, and it is my duty to instruct her. If I didn't rebuke her, I would be failing her setting her up for a fall later in life.

If you truly care about your friends and family, don't be afraid to rebuke them when you see them go astray. And most importantly, don't be angry when they do the same to you.

God's peace and love go with you all, amen.

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