A slightly complex looking passage from scripture today but as we all slowly but surely find our thinking changing due to lock down and “new rules” towards how we are living and the changes in “church” activities I believe there is a risk to us. the risk of upsetting folk or being upset.
2 Corinthians chapter 2 and verses 6 to 8 say this: “This punishment which was inflicted by the majority is sufficient for such a man, so that, on the contrary, you ought rather to forgive and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one be swallowed up with too much sorrow. Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him.”
When put together with II Corinthians 2:11, the apostle Paul is saying that a godly sorrow that leads a person to repentance can actually give Satan the opportunity to turn a person’s feelings about their sin into an abnormal self-pity, which will destroy that despairing person’s relationship with the church and with God. He can turn such a person into a bitter cynic. The Devil is that clever.
It does not end there. In addition, as we make mistakes as surely we will, he can turn the righteous indignation of those who are offended by another’s sin into bitter self-righteousness if they do not forgive and forget and move on. He gets people going and coming unless they are aware that he can turn something good into a ploy to destroy a person’s relationship with God and the church.
These are not the only weapons that Satan has in his arsenal. Remember, we are involved in a war, and a general will employ every kind of ploy, device, tool, or subtle plan to beat and / or confuse the enemy. He will use decoys, infiltration, subversion, propaganda, rumours, misleading leaks of information, and sometimes a frontal attack with diversions on the flanks.
Satan is no different. However, God makes sure to warn us of his subtlety. The Devil creates distractions and illusions to deflect us from reaching our goal. He has the ability to make things that are in God’s purpose unimportant (for instance, material things or vanity) seem important, while eternal, spiritual things he makes seem unimportant, unnecessary, and unrealistic.
So let’s all remain on guard as we press on together