Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
– Galatians 6:1
A person in the church has been found out. A person has sinned against their family. An elder was caught cheating on their taxes. A pastor was fired for stealing from the congregation. You name the situation and it has happened in the church. This is what Paul is addressing in this passage.
We tend to think that Paul should solely give instructions and rebuke to the transgressor regarding how to get right with the church and God. Instead he spends the first five verses addressing the individual who will confront the brother or sister in Christ. To Paul, this could cause a sin or problem just as awful as the one committed by the fallen brother or sister in the first
We can learn three things when trying to restore a fellow believer to keep us from sin while doing it. First, we should be spiritual, this is of the utmost importance. If we aren’t right with God and a mature believer our pride and deep rooted sin will surface. Second, we should confront the person in order to restore them and not to shame them. Third, we must understand that the roles have the potential to be reversed and we could be the one in need of restoration. Think of those who have left the church because they were hurt and shamed rather than restored when confronted about their sin. How many of those would have remained in the church if these three principles were considered? Do you harshly judge your Christian brothers and sisters while falling into temptation yourself?