Wednesday, January 5, 2011

To Correct or to Defend

Which is the higher priority of a Christian - to correct his neighbor, or to defend his neighbor?

Granted, I will contend that we ought do both. But which, in this sinful, fallen world, takes higher priority, which is easier to do?

I tend towards defense. To have love and compassion upon the erring, the weak, the abused (whether completely unjustly abused, or even one who is receiving more abuse than is meet, right, or fitting for his restoration). These things are always approved. When is gentleness and care ever warned against?

But correction - there we have warnings a plenty. There we are warned that when we see the speck in our neighbor's eye, we must find the log in our own. There we are warned that by the measure we use it will be measured against us.

And I think these warnings are apt. If I defend, I am called to defend even those that I personally don't like. Defending isn't about me. However, if I correct, there lies the temptation to correct not according to God's standards but according to my own desires - where my correction becomes an attempt not to align people to God's Will, but to align them to my will.

Which is your higher priority - to correct or defend? If we see some in some error, do you wish to correct them, or defend them (even if that defending them is from themselves)?

1 comment:

christopherdhall.com said...

Always defend to others. Always. Correct with caution, and always privately.