How should we respond to misunderstandings? - Misunderstandings - TouchPoints

How should we respond to misunderstandings?

1 Corinthians 12:1And now, dear brothers and sisters, I will write about the special abilities the Holy Spirit gives to each of us, for I must correct your misunderstandings about them.

Luke 19:11The crowd was listening to everything Jesus said. And because he was nearing Jerusalem, he told them a story to correct the impression that the Kingdom of God would begin right away.

Matthew 5:17“Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to fulfill them.”

Joshua 22:10-13But while they were still in Canaan, before they crossed the Jordan River, Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh built a very large altar near the Jordan River at a place called Geliloth. When the rest of Israel heard they had built the altar at Geliloth west of the Jordan River, in the land of Canaan, the whole assembly gathered at Shiloh and prepared to go to war against their brother tribes. First, however, they sent a delegation led by Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest. They crossed the river to talk with the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh

We should have a desire to correct misunderstandings and proactively resolve them. Uncorrected, misunderstandings can lead to very undesirable outcomes.

Joshua 22:16, 21-23, 29“The whole community of the Lord demands to know why you are betraying the God of Israel. How could you turn away from the Lord and build an altar in rebellion against him?” . . . Then the people of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh answered these high officials: “The Lord alone is God! The Lord alone is God! We have not built the altar in rebellion against the Lord. If we have done so, do not spare our lives this day. But the Lord knows, and let all Israel know, too, that we have not built an altar for ourselves to turn away from the Lord. Nor will we use it for our burnt offerings or grain offerings or peace offerings. If we have built it for this purpose, may the Lord himself punish us . . . Far be it from us to rebel against the Lord or turn away from him by building our own altar for burnt offerings, grain offerings, or sacrifices. Only the altar of the Lord our God that stands in front of the Tabernacle may be used for that purpose.”

To communicate openly, we must both speak and listen so we can fully understand. Asking thoughtful questions and giving thoughtful answers helps avoid misunderstandings.

Joshua 22:30-31When Phinehas the priest and the leaders of the community—the heads of the clans of Israel—heard this from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, they were satisfied. Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, replied to them, “Today we know the Lord is among us because you have not committed this treachery against the Lord as we thought. Instead, you have rescued Israel from being destroyed by the hand of the Lord.”Once the truth is known, misunderstandings should be resolved and perceived offenses should be forgiven.

Joshua 22:32-33Then Phinehas son of Eleazar, the priest, and the ten high officials left the tribes of Reuben and Gad in Gilead and returned to the land of Canaan to tell the Israelites what had happened. And all the Israelites were satisfied and praised God and spoke no more of war against Reuben and Gad.

Resolving misunderstandings can bring a great sense of satisfaction.