May 2, 2021
Responding Biblically to Criticism
Sam McVay, Jr.
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Sam teaches on the biblical response to criticism as modeled by King David and the Apostle Paul.
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King David knew criticism, rejection, slander, and persecution almost his whole life.
Whether it was demonized Saul, disgruntled leaders, or divisive Absalom, David knew relational trouble from a young age until the end.
Psalm 109 is one of many places that talk about how David was under relational pressure and how he set his heart to respond to it.
Psalm 109:1-4 (ESV)
1 Be not silent, O God of my praise!
2 For wicked and deceitful mouths are opened against me, speaking against me with lying tongues.
3 They encircle me with words of hate, and attack me without cause.
4 In return for my love they accuse me, but I give myself to prayer.
The apostle Paul also had an unusual amount of relational trials that led to slander and many physical sufferings.
But is stunning how he wrote and responded to these trials.
Romans 12:14-21 (ESV)
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.
15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.
17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.
18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.
19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”
20 To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.”
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Paul, who was filled with the Spirit of Jesus, manifests Sermon on the Mount responses to enemies.
Jesus said to love our enemies and bless those who curse us.
Some steps when experiencing criticism:
1. immediately pray asking for Holy Spirit help in responding as Jesus – ask for a change of “default”
2. try to learn something from it
3. extend an invitation of love and restoration to the source
4. resolve not to slander the person to others
Sermon, Sam McVay, Jr., Criticism