Monday, July 22, 2013

Who Has the Right to Rebuke Me?

Who Has the Right to Rebuke Me?
Rabbi Yehudah ben Shomeyr

Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican. Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. – Matt.18:15-20

When an issue comes before me twice or more in short period of time I take this as a sign that HaShem wishes for me to address the issue. I was asked recently about believers rebuking other believers and then I myself was rebuked by a total stranger!

Taking our cue from the passage above; one may reprove one in sin, but there is a protocol. The implication is that those reproving must know you well enough to have a relationship with you and they must know fully your situation. Also they must be in and well known and trusted in your physical and or cyber community. What they are reproving another of must be backed by Scripture and the Scripture must be given in context. If this criteria is met the reproof must be (and I emphasis) done in love and in private and the one reproving must be right with God themselves. If all is in order and if they that are being reproved will not listen, then 2 or 3 others believers should brought in on the matter as witnesses and encouragers of repentance and if the offending party will not listen after that they need to be brought in private before authoritative elders which implies those reproving and the reproved must be part of the same community, synagogue or organization and have appointed, agreed upon and known and trusted elders in order to render a decision and verdict. If after this the person being reproved will not repent one then must cut ties with them all together.

So beware of stern, unloving or deceptively unloving self-appointed, self-righteous judgers of other peoples spirituality who do not know you personally and yet claim to be some authoritative figure in your life, those who say they have a, "Word of Yah" for you, or that "Yah revealed" something to them about you. If they truly did have a “word”; 1. The Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) would have either revealed it to you first or confirmed the revelation in your spirit upon hearing it. 2. It would have been backed up by Scripture.

Example: After blocking someone online who sent me a “nastygram,” I was contacted again by the person through another profile and was given a fiery and stinging rebuked by a total stranger. I never meet them or had any type of relationship with them and they were rebuking me not over doctrinal issues, but over Halacha, the way I choose fulfill certain commandments that has nothing to do with ones salvation. This was my reply;

“This is the first and last correspondence that I will have with you.

You are blocked because: I "Don't have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels." (II Tim. 2:23)

I have much better things to do with my time than to waste it arguing simply because you have a different halacha than me…

Many of our disagreements are addressed my website.”

Many who feel they have the right to rebuke anyone simply because they are a, “Prophet, Apostle” or “child of God” or our “brother or sister in the LORD” but such are classic “red flag” predators who like satan are roaming lions seeking whom they may devour. Bottom line, you do not have to listen to or take any spiritual rebuke from someone you do not know and or trust and who is not a part of your spiritual community and especially if you have not willing put yourself under their authority.