Colossians 3:16 - "Admonish one another with all wisdom..."

Most of the One Anothers feel so good to the recipient that it’s hard to mess up how we dispense them. I’ve never offended someone by trying to encourage him. No one has ever resented me for comforting or supporting him.

But admonishing is different. 
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When admonishing someone, we must be careful how we do it. That’s why 2 Timothy 4:2 says, “Correct, rebuke and encourage – with great patience and careful instruction”. It’s like the difference between driving down miles of straight, open highway and driving in the mountains. When on the open highway, we can put the car on cruise control and take a mental hike. But in the mountains, we must slow down, focus, and continually adjust to the changing terrain. 

Most of the One Anothers can be dispensed liberally and without caution. But before admonishing someone, we should carefully consider issues such as:
• Does this person indeed need to be admonished?
• Am I the right person to do it?
• When and where should it take place?
• Does this person know that I love him?

Here are some practical suggestions for admonishing others:
1. Before admonishing someone, make sure you're not guilty of the same problem! (Matthew 7:1-5)
2. Make sure your admonition is based on Scripture, not on your personal beliefs, preferences or opinions. (Ephesians 5:4)
3. Consider the best time and place to approach the individual. (Ecclesiastes 3:7)
4. Approach the person privately. (Matthew 8:15)
5. Make sure your actions are properly motivated. (1 Corinthians 4:14)
6. Admonish gently. (Galatians 6:1)
7. The admonition should be clear, accurate, and thorough. 
8. When we admonish someone, we should not tell him what do to but how to do it, and if possible, be willing to journey with him through the process. 
9. Subsequent to admonishing someone, reassure him of your love for him. (2 Corinthians 2:7-8)

Written by Don McMinn, Ph.D. ( — May 08, 2013

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