“Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” 2 Timothy 2:25-26
Paul knew that there would be people in the church who are not really serving God. They would fight against true believers in various ways. He warned Timothy not to get into arguments with them. Now he states that one must gently instruct them in order to get them to repent and turn to God correctly.
Arguments and disagreements occur in the church all the time. Sometimes they are about non-spiritual things, such as the color of the carpet. Other times they are about the interpretation of the Bible, what is sin and what is not, or the order of the end times.
These arguments have, at times, caused great division, and splits, in the church. When it comes to doctrinal or Biblical interpretation, usually one side is correct, at least partially or for the most part.
Often the side that is correct bashes the other side. They will condemn the person and being ungodly. There is no love in this at all.
In these verses you are told to gently instruct the person. Use kind, caring, loving words to point out the truth. People who are in the wrong are being blinded by the devil’s schemes. The world has veiled their eyes so that they cannot see the truth. Yanking that veil off will only scare them and make them hold tighter to the falsehood.
Jesus was gentle with non-believers and those who saw things in a different way because of the blinding of the world. He calmly pointed them towards the truth. At that point many repented and turned to Him.
As you speak gently with a person at odds with you, you have a greater chance of them seeing the truth.
Seek God in how to speak to a person so that they will turn to Jesus. God is the only one who can break them from the trap they are in. Don’t get into an arguing match and lose everything.
I pray today that God will reveal to you what you need to take a solid stand on; that God’s Spirit will guide you in teaching others His truth; that God will use you to release others from the traps of the devil; and that many will come to Jesus through you.