The Bible does tell us to be gentle in our words. It is not right to needlessly upset and hurt people. Also, it is wrong to judge non-Christians by Christian standards. However, if your advice is merely to keep people happy and to make people like you, you're going to end up giving them unhelpful advice. In the end, when they find themselves in trouble after doing what you told them to, they are not going to thank you.
Proverbs 28:23 tells us:
Whoever rebukes a person will in the end gain favour rather than one who has a flattering tongue.Proverbs 27:6 is also helpful if you are on the receiving end of harsh advice:
Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.However, I'm sure I'm not the only one. So, I'm going to need your advice on this one:
- Are there occasions when giving the Biblical approach to a situation will not be applicable (i.e. when dealing with non-Christians)?
- How do you strike the balance between gentleness and truthful advice?
- Are there some circumstances when you should withhold your advice and suggest they get it from someone else?
So, next time somebody asks me advice, I will probably warn them that it might not be what they want to hear.
- What's the worse or best advice you've ever had?
- Do you find the balance between gentleness and truth hard?