3 When the wicked cometh, then cometh also contempt, and with ignominy reproach.
3 When wickedness comes, so does contempt, and with shame comes reproach. (NIV)
Sinning in plain sight
You probably know or know of someone who does whatever he or she wants. There is no apparent care about what others think, because they keep doing things that annoy/disturb/gross out/offend most everyone around.
You probably find yourself thinking unholy thoughts, such as “God, just smite him already!” or “I should just smack her!”
This is how contempt comes.
The good Christian wants to point out how this person is sinning. It is good to bring people to an awareness of sin in the hope that they repent.
However, if done with contempt, we should expect a backlash, for we are acting no better and not showing true love to our neighbor.
Of course, when sin is exposed and guilt is felt, we may still see a backlash even if we confront sin in love.
When a person feels shame, the first reaction from our sinful nature is to justify, excuse, and defend. Often times this happens through attacks on the one who exposed the sin, such as the good Christian friend.
As Adam and Eve hid in the bushes, a sinner caught in sin hides in hatred and contempt.
If the sinner is called out in a moment of contempt, there comes a good, old-fashioned fight!
When the Holy Spirit convicts us, how do we respond?
Do we respond out of shame, trying to justify, excuse, and defend our sin?
Do we respond instead out of reverence and thankfulness, repenting and praising God for His grace and love?
Gracious God, thank You for grace and forgiveness. Thank You for going to the cross in spite of our wickedness and contempt. Help us to love all, especially those who show contempt for Your Son and righteousness.