Forgiving & Letting Go Of Your Brother’s Sins
It’s never easy when someone wrongs you. From minor slights to major offenses, it comes with negative feelings. And left alone, those feelings can grow into something truly ugly.
The Bible has a lot to say about when a brother sins against you (or sins at all). Ultimately, we are supposed to forgive and forget. That much is made clear.
But how do you find the means to forgive and let go in these cases?
The Bible has some good advice for that too. Whether you’re dealing with a literal brother who shares your parents or a brother in spirit, forgiveness is the best way out of a life of sin. He needs the forgiveness of God, and you need to forgive him so that you can continue to build your relationship in a faithful and healthy way.
Here are a few things to remember that might help you succeed in forgiving your brother’s sins.
We all sin. We all have our own weaknesses and struggles, and we all know it. Every last one of us fails somewhere, somehow.
It helps to remember that about yourself when you think about your brother’s sin. It can help you find compassion when you say, “I’ve done wrong too.” (Say this to yourself, not necessarily to your brother.)
This isn’t an excuse or a way to wave away sin, but it allows you to approach the idea from the point of compassion rather than accusation, anger, or hate. When you can find compassion for your brother, it’s a lot easier to forgive and move on.
Confront Him, But Carefully
The Bible has very clear advice on this point. Go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone (Matthew 18:15).
It is important to talk about these things, whether it’s because you feel wronged or because you’re worried about what the sin is doing to him.
But by doing it quietly, you disarm the conversation. Coming from a place of compassion, you can remember the goal. You want to gain a brother rather than lose one. You’re trying to build each other up in your relationship with God, not tear each other down.
Don’t Let It Fester
Do not let the sun go down on your anger (Ephesians 4:26). One of the keys to forgiveness is to acknowledge the problem and face it. When you put off facing the feelings and bury them, they can lead to long-term resentment that doesn’t help anyone.
You have to do the hard and courageous thing and confront the problem early. When you do, remember the first two points. This is not a conflict; it’s an attempt to come together in the pursuit of beating sin.
Most importantly, keep God involved. Pary. If your brother is a believer, speak from scripture and make it about God. If your brother’s faith isn’t in the best place, remind him of the joy you’ve shared and why it’s worth doing the hard thing to overcome sin. When your goal is to bring him up in his relationship with God, forgiving and forgetting sin is easy (or at least easier).