Jesus said to his disciples,
“Things that cause sin will inevitably occur,
but woe to the one through whom they occur.
It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck
and he be thrown into the sea
than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin.
Be on your guard!
If your brother sins, rebuke him;
and if he repents, forgive him.
And if he wrongs you seven times in one day
and returns to you seven times saying, “I am sorry,”
you should forgive him.”
And the Apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.”
The Lord replied, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed,
you would say to this mulberry tree,
‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”
Jesus is realistic at the beginning of this passage: “Things that cause sin will inevitably occur…” We all have experienced that – we are all sinners. We all have weaknesses in our lives that make us more susceptible to sin. That is real life. None of us are perfect.
Yet, Jesus cautions us that we better not be the cause for sin for us or someone else. This should send shivers down our spine because Jesus says, “It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea that for him to cause one of these little ones to sin.” Wow. “Be on your guard!”
Have I caused someone else to sin?
Do my words or actions lead myself or others to sin?
What needs to change in my heart that is going to lead me to wholeness and holiness?
Do I need to ask forgiveness from anyone that I have led to sin?
Jesus tells us that if someone sins against us, we need to forgive them. The Lord is quick to forgive us our sins if we seek His mercy.
Lord, increase our faith. Increase our trust. Help us to despise sin and to seek holiness.