General Synod Calls on RCA Members to Seek Personal Reconciliation

Date Posted: 
Monday, June 11, 2018

On Monday, June 11, General Synod approved a recommendation calling on “all members of the RCA to honor Christ’s words in Matthew 18:15-17 by seeking personal reconciliation.”

In Matthew 18:15-17, Jesus says, “If another member of the church sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone. If the member listens to you, you have regained that one. But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you, so that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If the member refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.”

The recommendation (OV 18-18), based on an overture from Mid-Hudson Classis, interprets Jesus’ words as emphasizing that it is better to deal with conflict relationally when possible. The overture also came out of a recognition of General Synod’s limitations as “a single assembly (General Synod) that only meets once a year, with only a small portion of the church present in its deliberation.”

“Too often we have focused on Christian discipline in its formal forms and forgotten that all Christians (regardless of judicatory) are called to work out their conflicts with each other first in personal relationship,” the overture said.

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