Question: “I feel so betrayed by a very close friend! What should I do and how should I handle it so that I can keep my Christian witness and glorify the Lord in the process?”
Every one of us has been betrayed at one point or another by a friend, family member, or church member. When this happens, we need to understand that we are not alone. There are many examples we see around us and in the Scriptures about betrayal from King David, Job, and Samson to name just a few. The Psalmist tells us about the greatest betrayal of all times, when he writes a prophecy about Christ’s betrayal in Psalm 41 where he says, “Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me” (Psalm 41:9). We then see that this takes place in Matthew 26:26 where Judas, “sought an opportunity to betray him.”
It seems that the closer the person is to you the more the betrayal hurts! And the sad thing is that it is many times the ones we love the most are the ones that we hurt the most. When we trust someone, but then find that they have gossiped behind our back or broken our confidence by telling someone else our “personal secret,” it hurts.
So what do we do when this happens? The Bible tells us that we are to do just as Christ did and forgive that person. I know this is easier said than done, but it is the right thing to do. Forgiveness is hard when you’ve been betrayed. But the question we must ask ourselves is, “Haven’t we betrayed someone else, at one time or another?” Of course, we have. Maybe we didn’t mean to do so, but we did. Or maybe we didn’t betray them in the “strictest” sense of the word, but we did so by gossiping about them, not standing up for them when someone says something bad about them, or maybe we still hold a grudge about something they did long ago. Jesus was very clear about this in Matthew 6:14-15, when he said, “if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” If you or I have not forgiven someone, but have received and are expecting forgiveness from God, then we are living contrary to what we claim. Jesus also tells us in Matthew 7:12, “whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” This command goes both ways. You would not want someone gossiping or betraying or not being forgiving toward you, so you must never gossip, betray, or be unforgiving to them.
So, when (not “if,” but when) we are betrayed we must seize the opportunity to show that person mercy and forgiveness just as we ourselves want to receive. Also know that almost everyone has been betrayed by a friend at one time or another, so take heart; you are not alone. Maybe through this time in your life the Lord will use it to grow you and allow you to be the instrument of grace and mercy that the other person needs to see.
We at First Baptist Church Timpson, would love to have the opportunity to show you what a loving and caring church is all about. I pray that the Lord will give you healing and forgiveness through this time of betrayal in your life! If you would like to submit a question to be answered, please email it to: email@example.com. For more extensive answers, please join our Wednesday Night Bible Studies where we will address these questions and many others that pertain to faith and life. At First Baptist Church Timpson, on Sundays we have Sunday School and Life Groups @ 9:30am and worship @ 10:45am and 6:00pm. On Wednesday we have our Fellowship Meal @ 5:15pm and then Bible study groups start @ 6:00pm for all ages: Kingdom Kids (PreK-5th grade), Youth (6th - 12th grades), and adult. FBC has a place for you and we would love for you and your family to come, worship together, and grow. When you need us, you can contact us at (936)254-2220 or send us a message through Facebook or on our website at www.timpsonfbc.com. Our address is 715 N. 2nd St, here in Timpson, TX.
Bro. W. Dee Daniel