Admonishing sinners so to save your own soul - I am trembling, help!


#1

The Gospel reading today and 1st reading was about how we are responsible and accountable for admonishing the sinner and if we don’t we can go to Hell for not doing that! What about taking the plank out of our eye before we admonish the sinner? Also just applying that is very confusing to me. Please read on and advise. Thank you!

I mean like when I go to get my hair cut the hairdresser and I usually end up talking about our children and then that drifts to how we gave birth and then that usually drifts to some area that is sinful like tying tubes or something like that. I said nothing and prayed for her . Later I went to confession and the priest said I did the right thing since only the Holy Spirit can convert - yet what about this Gospel?? And the 1st reading.

Later my DH and I were talking about his workplace and that there are a lot of people there who don’t like the catholic religion and who are very liberal. There are plenty of oppurtunities for him to say something but wouldn’t it be like ‘casting your pearls before swine’? Isn’t it his duty to provide for us more important? Isn’t admonishing the sinner more directed for parents to do to their children? ALso catholic bashing is the only acceptable form of bashing. HR would not admonish someone for doing that, we believe, but if DH reproves someone - there will be hell to pay for it! I mean also when that was written in Israel everyone who was an Israelite practiced or at least was supposed to practice the Jewish religion. Nowadays you don’t know who is what. So if you reprove someone for getting their tubes tied or getting an abortion and they are a pagan then I don’t know.

I used to spend a lot of time trying to change the mind of congressmen/women and senators to vote more pro-life to only find out that the real way to change hearts is to raise your kids pro-life and catholic and to out reproduce the pro-deathers/anti-catholics. Now I spend a considerably less amount of time since I have a little one. My DS comes first.

I recall a true story of a woman who had 3 kids and was always defending the rights of the unborn at the abortion mill and in the end all 3 of her kids left the catholic religion because she was not a mom to them. In fact her husband was an alcoholic and one of the adult children was interviewed and he said ‘I’ll take the drunk over the pro-lifer any day.’ I know of another woman who ran a pro-life group for years and years, had 4 kids and all 4 are lost in terms of faith. I don’t know more specifics there.

Yet God says that if we do not reprove then we are responsible for their soul. Yikes.

Your take on this as a lay person, who has to hold down a job, etc. Thanks!


#2

Your kind and gentle heart are evident.
When I heard the gospel, I heard it talking about correcting a fellow believer. If they do not listen to me, then I bring a witness, from the church…and that does not work, then I bring it before the church.
I see one situation where, eg. my butcher says he is getting a vasectomy - I can discuss with him the reasons for my faith, but he is free to make his own choice. But with a brother or sister in the church, if their actions are going to lead them to hell, and I don’t say something, wow, that is not showing love.
Making sense?
Ezekiel was given very specific words, as were the prophets. He had to repeat them verbatim, or suffer for it. Not an appealing job description to me - I remember a reading earlier this summer where Jeremiah had to speak the exact word, and he ended up surrounded by people wanting to kill him!! Read Hebrews Chapter 11 - the world was not worthy of those prophets.
Next week’s gospel will help bring it together for you. John 3:17. Nope, I did not do a typo, I meant to write the verse where God sent His Son so that through him the world might be saved.
You are so right, the Holy Spirit convicts, and gives the grace of repentance - and we so need to pray for that to happen.

So, 1. if you are a prophet or a priest, you better not hold back from speaking the word of the Lord, and 2. correct fellow Catholics, and 3. pray for nonbelievers.

Did I make sense?


#3

Beans pretty well said what needs to be said here. But maybe we should practice how to say more of what needs to be said when we’re out there in real life. You’ve touched on apologetics, that is, explaining the Faith.

That’s hard for me, for I learned Catholicism as a child…took it as, well, gospel! :rolleyes: So, it’s taking a little homework to prepare for the “Oh, yeah?” I expect.

There are some wonderful resources on this site that I think might help you screw up your courage to speak about your beliefs clearly and gently when the opportunity arises.

I’ve heard that beating religion into the Heathen is not so much a good thing. :wink:

Ken


#4

I think the Holy Spirit tells us, and sets up opportunities for us to be in an ideal situation for that.

For instance, it was the bishops’ responsibility to set Nancy P. straight, publically. You and I could have told her until she was blue in the face, and have been pooh-poohed.

So many walk in ignorance because the rest of us assume they know. I can attest to the fact that this is not so.

It should be done lovingly, however. We should not assume they are being rebellious, or malicious in intent.


#5

You do not need to condemn anyone. But you could have said something along the line of ABC is against God’s natural law.


#6

Yet God says that if we do not reprove then we are responsible for their soul. Yikes.

There is an excellent chapter in Osuna’s Third Spiritual Alphabet [St. Teresa of Avila’s initial piety began with reading this book] that gives six guidelines regarding the duty of fraternal correction. (pg. 588)

  1. There is certain knowledge of the sin; do not correct on the basis of mere suspicion.
  1. Meekness in correcting; if we threaten angrily, we will provoke the person we discipline and cause him to commit further sin.
  1. There must be no one else more suitable for correcting. If some who are as good or better than I see the sinner or if they are his superiors or are more familiar with him, I can assume that one of them will discipline him. However, if it were certain they would not, then I would be bound to correct him provided the other five conditions were simultaneously present.
  1. There must be hope that my counsel will correct him. If this hope is not present, I should not discipline him.
  1. The sin must be mortal, not venial.
  1. There does not appear to be a better time or place for discipline than when I see him sin or when I choose to correct him.

Though it is not difficult to meet any one of the six conditions, the most troublesome is that of discerning whether or not the sin is mortal. If we cannot ascertain the seriousness of the sin, let us place our finger to the mouth, sealing our lips so we will not admit evil in our effort to do good.

In my understanding of #5, I think it is impossible to judge whether God views the sin as mortal or venial; we cannot know the full culpability that He attributes to the person’s intention. However, we can and should address the morality and seriousness of an action while being careful not to condemn the person. Teachers and administrators have a special duty to safeguard those in their care to insure they are not scandalized.

IMO, when a grave matter is public, the response or correction also needs to be public on the spot, so as to avoid giving bad witness or example to others. I’m thinking about St. John the Baptist who denounced King Herod’s unlawful taking of his brother Phillip’s wife, Herodias. And we know that it cost St. John his head! This is especially necessary when the young or the innocent are apt to misunderstand the action as neutral, rather than view it as the harmful evil it is.

As always, we pray for prudence and light from the Holy Spirit before we undertake fraternal correction.


#7

A former spiritual director gave me the following three guidelines regarding fraternal correction:
[LIST=1]
*]Are you the right person to give the correction?
*]Is it the right time to give the correction?
*]Is the correction likely to have the desired effect?
[/LIST]
If yes, go for it. If not, consider the “wait and pray” approach.


#8

Happy is sounds like you are right on track. Conquer the sin and sinner within ourselves.

Jesus showed us how to assign suffering solely to the body, the lower faculties and the senses so our consciousness can be plunged into the pure consciousness of our Lord. He showed us how to love God in all things so the more purely and simply we love in unity the more thoroughly our deeds will wash away our sins and purify our minds. Jesus meant for us to follow him intelligently and spiritually so not to be manipulated by literal interpretations that lead us away from love. Following Christ consciousness in our own way depends on our love not our superficial actions. It is love that blots out sin and knows no fear so there is nothing else a man or woman can do that is as beneficial as loving everything and everyone. When this happens, it is no longer we who love, but Christ that loves through us, it is no longer our bodies that live, but Christ consciousness that lives within us. This is the discovery of our true selves in Christ consciousness. Jesus died for us and reconciled us to his Father so Christ consciousness could live in us and unify us with God. This blots out the sinner.


#9

not sure about this. It is not **our **love which blots out our sin, but God’s grace.

When this happens, it is no longer we who love, but Christ that loves through us, it is no longer our bodies that live, but Christ consciousness that lives within us.

we are not annihilated here. It is **we **who love, by the gift of charity.

This is the discovery of our true selves in Christ consciousness. Jesus died for us and reconciled us to his Father so Christ consciousness could live in us and unify us with God. This blots out the sinner.

Christ consciousness sounds a bit New Agey to me. Just Googled it and it is New Agey! Oprah speaks of this, etc, etc…


#10

I believe this is a misinterpretation of the 1st reading. It was the prophet Ezekiel who was given the task of informing the house of Israel of their evil ways. If he did not warn them as commanded by God, he would be held accountable for their sins.

This does not mean we need to go out and admonish every person we see doing something wrong.

A friend of mine took this Scripture verse too literally and ended up admonishing his family members for various sins, that he deemed to be sinful, and literally drove them further away from the Church than they were before he got involved.

Jim


#11

In the mass I went to, the priest said something along the lines of: suggest, not demand.


#12

Focus on sin, not love seems strange to me.

It is not our love which blots out our sin, but God’s grace.

Think about sin and the mind is absorbed in sin, not God’s grace. Love is God’s grace.

It is we who love, by the gift of charity.

When a person loves, God is loving that is grace.

Do we ban certain words because they are New Agey? New Agey is not even a word. I don’t think we should be afraid of Oprah or expressing our spirit in a different way.


#13

sin is part of the picture and shouldn’t be ignored.

Think about sin and the mind is absorbed in sin, not God’s grace. Love is God’s grace.

we need to be aware of sin in order to avoid it. Thinking about sin does not remove God’s grace, but embracing sin does. God’s grace enables us to love.

When a person loves, God is loving that is grace.

God and the person are not the same. If a person loves, he is doing so by his own free will.

Do we ban certain words because they are New Agey? New Agey is not even a word. I don’t think we should be afraid of Oprah or expressing our spirit in a different way.

New Agey means like the New Age, which is neo-paganism. What is Christ-consciousness? I am guessing it is something to do with a person becoming Christ by some kind of awakening. This is false. We don’t lose our identity when we are united with Christ; we don’t become Christ.


#14

Is your catholic faith important to you?
Should your potential mate share your faith & values?
Looking for fellowship with other catholic singles?


#15

Originally Posted by soma View Post
Focus on sin, not love seems strange to me.

sin is part of the picture and shouldn’t be ignored by Nick

Psalm 25:7
Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O LORD.

We think of only one thing at a time, I think that the focus should be on love.

Quote:
Think about sin and the mind is absorbed in sin, not God’s grace. Love is God’s grace. soma

we need to be aware of sin in order to avoid it. Thinking about sin does not remove God’s grace, but embracing sin does. God’s grace enables us to love. by Nick

Galatians 5:13
You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature ; rather, serve one another in love.

Quote: soma
When a person loves, God is loving that is grace.

God and the person are not the same. If a person loves, he is doing so by his own free will.
by Nick

“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.” 1 John 4:7-8

[quote]New Agey means like the New Age, which is neo-paganism.

by Nick

[/quote]

Nick you must be an authority on paganism, new age, sin ect. I would suggest you concentrate on Christianity and love. Don’t worry about such small matters, strive to know the things of the Spirit of God.

1 Corinthians 2:14
"But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned."

I am guessing it is something to do with a person becoming Christ by some kind of awakening. This is false. We don’t lose our identity when we are united with Christ; we don’t become Christ.by Nick

“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.” 1 John 4:7-8

Awaken to love.


#16

Hmmm… Christian Mysticism encroaching here.

As the Mystic said to the hotdog vendor, spying the row of various, tasty condiments “Make me one with everything!!” :smiley:

Ken


#17

hi soma, what we are discussing is off-topic, so this is my final word and I will keep it short. I am not an authority on those things, the Church has the authority and I just follow what she teaches.

Concentrating on Christianity sounds fine (not Christianity AND love - why separate them?) As for small matters, if they are deceptive to the faithful then they need dealing with.

You say to strive to KNOW the things of the Spirit of God. We live by faith as interpreted by the Church. Salvation by revealed knowledge is Gnosticism. Just stick to what the Church teaches and you will be fine. :slight_smile:


#18

#19

I am very impressed with the way you treat your fellow-workers, littleone. I wish I could do that! I struggle with people’s insults and wish I could be nice in return. I am working on it, but haven’t got very far. You are an inspiration, thanks :slight_smile:


#20

littleone, your actions speak louder than words. I am inspirored by you. I will try to witness and be a better more loving Christian.


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