Each Friday, a few guys meet at our church over the lunch hour for our Men’s Reading Group. For the past four months, we’ve been reading out-loud together The Exemplary Husband by Stuart Scott. It’s really been an encouraging time to read to each other and then pray for each other to apply the counsel we just received. On a typical week, we get through one long or two very short chapters. Today, we read Chapter 15, “A Husband’s Resolve: Helping His Wife Deal with Her Sin.” All three of us thought the following three paragraphs were especially helpful. After reminding us of how gracious and patient God is when He deals with our sin, and then quoting Psalm 102:8-14, Scott writes:
A believer should never be eager to rebuke another believer at the first sign of sin (Eph 4:1-2). This kind of behavior usually stems from a pride issue in which one sees himself as better than others. Sometimes all a husband has to do before his wife acknowledges her sin is pray. In some situations letting a person experience some of the consequences of their sin is enough to bring them to repentance.
There may be a rare time when a husband has to step in and admonish his wife immediately (e.g., if his wife is on a screaming rampage, or is going to do herself or the children harm). Usually, this is not the case. More times than not, giving a pointed rebuke is not even the second or third action a gracious and humble husband will take.
A gracious husband will also deal with his wife’s sin reasonably! Though every sin is serious to God, not every sin is a sin of the same magnitude or merits the same response. In the Old Testament, some sins received the death penalty, but not all of them. How we deal with an issue should be in keeping with the level of sin that was committed.