I’ve bolded that last part of the last quote above… confrontation doesn’t carry a connotation of love.
Jesus, as our High Priest and Triune God can confront - and I dare say in the particular judgement as he confronts us all, when it is my turn, I most likely will find fault in myself as I stand before him. Confrontation has an adversarial tone to it, an undercurrent of violence. Trust me… the sinner isn’t going to want to hear the sin.
But then how to admonish the sinner as a spiritual work of mercy?
(working with that bold section above) One only need to look at how our Lord admonished the sinner. Did he not stand between the woman to be stoned and the mob? Did he not “confront” the mob… no… he admonished them. Did he confront the woman, he knew her heart and her sin, no he forgive and admonish to sin no more? I dare say, even with Judas our Lord acted with love… knowing that Judas was going to betray him… and with a kiss. Christ could have confronted Judas at the table, surely Judas would have been at least restrained. No, our Lord admonished Judas, very clearly (( Matt26:23-24 )) and yet did not “confront” Judas. (( IMHO: If Judas had come to the foot of the cross and asked for forgiveness he would have received not only or Lord’s blessing but his protection too; greater the sadness in Judas’ treachery is his further loss of faith in our Lord’s mercy))
One only finds a very limited scope of confrontation between our Lord and Sinners in scripture. And I mean a true confrontation given with true anger and condemnation once such instance of confrontation is with the activities of the merchants and money changers within the temple proper.
I agree, this word has too much of a negative connotation.
Here we have the crux:
Christ has our most intimate relationship; thus, I would expect the most direct, no holds barred approach. Of course, if Christ appeared to me in person, I don’t think my poor heart could handle the encounter. (( Ish6:5 ))
Spouse: It’s our duty to help our spouse to reach heaven. To protect, to teach, to help and to expect that same of and from our spouse accepting and giving in the Love of God who created us from each other. (Gen2:22) The admonishment given here should be the closest to and like that in nature that we will receive from our Lord… be it done now with love so that we can atone and grow before our death.
Our Parents - I know that too many of us do not have a good relationship with our parents for all too many justifiable reasons and more the sadness for us all. However, for those of us that do have a good relationship, the more blessed in that their guidance and admonishment as adults can be so direct.
Our God Parents or Sponsors…
Never choose a God Parent nor Sponsor that wont take you or your children to task!
My sponsor has gone so far as to invite the priest over to the house, fed us dinner, and then pointed out neither my Wife nor I hadn’t been to confession in over 4 months and about to go on vacation. Got-to-love a Priest that has the purple stole in the front inside pocket of his clericals and a sponsor that cared enough to arrange things (you don’t think he didn’t know what was going to happen?).
And yes, I ask my wife when she last went, she asks me, and I’ve certainly asked her sponsor for help to get her into the confessional. You don’t think that wasn’t a small confrontation… and back she went, and I was in the line right behind her.
These are the people in our lives that have the duty to **confront **us in our sins, out of love for us and a desire to help us obtain the Kingdom of God.
As a close friend, or as a stranger… I wish I could say it any better than this:
Confrontation, just too many people with too many instabilities to confront and possibly be physically harmed by them for doing so… however, as God wills, so shall it be.