Gospel – Matthew 18:15-20 Since Jesus, the Good Shepherd, spared no pain to find the lost sheep, so Christ’s Church will diligently use God’s law and gospel to call the erring brother to repentance. The object is always to win the brother over. The church speaks with Christ’s full authority when it declares God’s judgment upon the impenitent sinner and pronounces full forgiveness to the penitent sinner.
15 “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. 16 But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector. 18 “I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 “Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”