“So if you are about to place your gift on the altar and remember that someone is angry with you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. Make peace with that person, then come back and offer your gift to God.” Matthew 5:23-24 (CEV) *
In the world man feels that if he’s been done wrong, he should pay the wrongdoer back in some form or fashion. Jesus is saying something completely different. He doesn’t say if you have something against another man go to him and make things right. What He says is the exact opposite. It says if you know someone who has something against you, you should go right away and make things right with them. That goes against the grain. It requires a trace of humility-laced boldness. To go to another person, possibly even someone you don’t care for can be extremely difficult. You have no idea how they will react to what you have to say. It’s something that needs to be done as soon as you realize the rift has taken place. With the Spirit within as your guide, place your gift at the front of the altar (where all sacrifices were made) and go to the one who has an issue with you. Do it now rather than later so things don’t end up getting blown out of proportion.
There is someone of much greater importance that has an issue with us. The issue is a sin and that someone is Almighty God. This issue rears it’s ugly head each time we do something that is against God’s standard. When we come to the realization that the Lord has an issue with us, we must go to Him to make things right. The Lord has the balm to soothe our wounds and it’s His desire to administer it to our aching soul. We must shed all self-righteousness and humble ourselves before Almighty God. He loves us and desires for us to be like Christ in attitude, words and action. It’s our decision to seek forgiveness from the One we have offended by our ungodly lifestyle. God doesn’t wish to grind us under His heel, but rather to forgive and bless us.
Regardless of whether it’s creator or a created being, we must go to those who have an issue with us. We need to apologize for our part in it and offer the hand of friendship as a means of patching things up between you. God sees a willing heart that seeks reconciliation and cleanses that person of all iniquity. The mortal man will see a willing heart to seek reconciliation and hopefully forgive you as well. Even if he doesn’t, you have obeyed the Lord’s instruction and that‘s all that is required of you. Until next time, walk with the King and be a blessing!
Resource(s): The American Heritage Dictionary; The Asbury Bible Commentary.
* Contemporary English Version