There are times when it is important to offer correction to a brother or sister who is distorting the word of God. It is on this point we must be careful. Paul refers here to rebuking those who are offering false teaching and leading people astray. This is not a blanket call to judge others for whatever we see their failings to be. Paul was concerned about the integrity of the message of God. So when people were willfully teaching a message inconsistent with the Gospel, Paul instructed Titus to be stern in correcting them. Paul doesn’t say anything about tone, but as Paul wrote a great deal on how believers should treat each other, it is easy to conclude that this “rebuke” should be offered in a spirit of love.
The goal of rebuke is to establish a faith that is solid. It is not used as a weapon to tear someone down. May God give us wisdom to guide us into all truth and keep pure the spirit of the teachings found within God’s word.
Author: Carol Rittenhouse