Jesus takes the church of Thyatira to task because they are tolerating someone with a Jezebel spirit to remain in a position of leadership and influence (see Revelation 2:18-29). This is still a message to the church today!
However, for some reason Christians have made “confrontation” a dirty word. We don’t confront people in error, especially those who are in leadership positions within their church. Perhaps equally as wrong: when we do confront, we do it in a way that is destructive.
The goal of confrontation is restoration, not destruction!
In Revelation 2, Jesus gives us five steps toward healthy, biblical, God-honoring confrontation:
- Don’t tolerate a Jezebel spirit by remaining silent (v. 20). Instead we need to follow the principles in Matthew 18:15-17 and 1 Timothy 5:19.
- Allow the one whom you’ve confronted time to repent (v. 21a).
- If they don’t repent, don’t rescue them from God-inflicted punishment (vv. 21b-23).
- Run away from secrets (v. 24). If something more than Scripture is required by the Jezebel leader, reject it.
- Don’t run away from the situation, but hold on to Jesus until Jesus returns (vv. 25-28).
Not one human is infallible, but Jezebel not only claims infallibility, but also demands blind allegiance to her teachings. But it is just as wrong to tolerate Jezebel as it is to confront her unbiblically; Jesus opposed both.
One way for us to always avoid these two extremes: Try to out-serve one another, just as Jesus directed us—
“You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.” (Matthew 20:25-28)
If you are near Cedar Springs next Sunday, please join me as we continue our series on The 7-Star Church.