“If anyone sins and commits a breach of faith against the Lord, by deceiving his neighbor in a matter or deposit or security or through robbery; or if he has oppressed his neighbor.”
Then the verse goes on. What strikes me in particular about this verse, is the relationship between sin against a man or a woman, a neighbor, and how that affects one’s relationship with God. Did you hear at the very beginning of Leviticus Chapter Six, Verse Two: If anyone sins and commits a breach of faith against the lord … So this is something someone has done to breach faith against God. This is something they’ve done against God, but then you keep reading and the actual sin is deceiving a neighbor. In a matter of deposit, or security, or through robbery. Or oppressing a neighbor. Don’t miss the relationship here to deceive your neighbor, to lie to your neighbor, to do harm to your neighbor, to oppress your neighbor is a breach of faith against God.
May we confess our sins accordingly to others and to God.
Sin against others is unfaithfulness to God. We need to see sin this way. When I think about sinning against someone else, I need to confess that to that person. I need forgiveness from that person. But the reality is, in a much greater way, a more ultimate way, my sin against that person has been a sin against God. That God has been offended. My faith in him has been breached in my sin against this other person. I need to spend time in confession before God. I need forgiveness from God for that, which I do to someone else. Whenever we sin against someone else, we need to also see it as sin against God. Process through it accordingly. Pray through it accordingly.
God, help us to see. Help us to realize that whenever we lie, whenever we deceive, whenever we hurt someone else in some way, that we have sinned against both that person and You. Help us to confess accordingly.
Even in our own lives right now, help us to see areas where we may have hurt, oppressed, offended, sinned against, deceived someone else. God help us to take that seriously. Help us to go to that person in confession, to ask for their forgiveness. In the process, God, help us to do the same before You. Help us to realize what an offense, what a breach of faith, our sin against someone else is ultimately to You.
God, help us to see both the horizontal and vertical components effects of sin, consequences of sin, and the need for reconciliation on both levels. With other men and women who we’ve sinned against and ultimately with You. God, we praise You for making that kind of mercy possible from Your hand, for making reconciliation with You possible. God, we pray for that kind of reconciliation then with other people that we sin against. God, we pray for Your grace and Your mercy to be the foundation for our reconciliation with them as well. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
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