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Cut Off Non-Believing Family

Does Matthew 5:30
'And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast [it] from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not [that] thy whole body should be cast into hell.' mean we have to cut off non-believing family members from us?

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 ---cj on 3/27/11
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Good addition, Leslie - it can be a connection to anything, or anyone - if that anything/anyone causes us to sin
---Peter on 4/7/11


NOTE TO MODERATOR: I hope this doesn't create a problem, I have no idea how it happened, but the reply from " _r " is mine. Some how my name failed to get completed before sending in the reply. Sorry about that.
---Reba on 3/30/11


While this verse may apply to any person in your life (including family) that is harming your relationship with God, this verse mostly applies to your own personal sins. Yes, sometimes we must cut off relationships with people (including family) that might be harming our relationship with God, but we must also cut off ties to sins in our life, so we can grow closer to God.
---Leslie on 3/28/11


The 'offend thee' here implies 'cause you to sin'. It is unlikely that being with unbeleiving family members will actually do that - though you may have to refuse to join them in doing some things that are sinful.

But it is not a command to reject others, only reject that which causes you to sin
---Peter on 3/28/11


You would not be considered a christian if you did this. You need a mentor or a more mature christian to teach you the Word of God. You have pharisees running around misinterpreting scriptures and doing more harm than good to themselves and others. This is very damaging and very sad. We are never to do anything like this. We should be an example to unbelievers. Another thing: You are to share the gospel with unbelieving family and others. This is one of the reasons you were saved. Not to just keep this to yourself and become set in your ways. It is more to being a christian than people believe.
---Robyn on 3/28/11




The only time I recall the bible speaking of something close to this is in 1 Cor. 5:11, where it tells us to not keep company with someone who claims to be a Christian yet is living in sin.Jesus,Himself, ate with Publicans & sinners to witness to them of who He was."But now I have written unto you not to keep company with any man that is called a brother be a fornicator or covetous or an idolater or railer or a drunkard or an extortioner with such an one no not to eat."
---r on 3/28/11


\\Matthew 5:30 is referring to the members of your body who cause you to sin\\

You err, knowing neither the scriptures nor the power of God.

Many people have so interpreted this, leading them to castrate or otherwise maim themselves.

This is a non-uncommon Semitic hyperbole. The Psalms are full of them.
---Cluny on 3/28/11


It is ALWAYS good to pray for the salvation of non-believing family members, and also to share the Gospel with them. The Bible says that if you are saved, you become the seed, and you and your household shall be saved. However, sometimes God will tell us to cut off family (like Abraham) so we ourselves can draw closer to God and not drift away from Him. Jesus said that if you are to follow Him, you must (sometimes) leave your family. My advice, since God is all about family, is to pray about it and see if God would have you cut off that person from your life or not. Sometime we do have to cut off people because they can harm our walk with God.
---Leslie on 3/28/11


Matthew 5:30 is referring to the members of your body who cause you to sin. You need to be an example of christianity to your family. You are not better than them to cut them out of your life. Pray for them, tell them about Jesus. Show them you are who you say you are.
---shira3877 on 3/28/11


They are already "cut off". And we reach to all sinners, including relatives who are not Christians, however God leads. It says, "even His brothers did not believe in" Jesus, in John 7:5. But Jesus did talk with them. But Jesus "did not commit Himself to" people who did not believe, I get through John 2:24. Paul reached to "all men" > 1 Corinthians 9:19-23 > he was "free from all men", but he "became as" those whom he was reaching to, but without compromising what really matters. Jesus became as sinners, by coming in a human body (Hebrews 4:15), reaching us at our level, but not compromising what really matters.
---Bill_willa6989 on 3/28/11




I stuck with my family for over 20 something years, loving them and listening to all of their bitterness towards my father (biological father). I had a counsellor tell me to get away from them because their bitterness was going to make me take a nervous breakdown. I just coudln't stop them from bashing other people and coudln't listen to all the gossip about other family members. So sadly, I cut my family off. My father died and all they could do was bring up every sin he ever committed. I forgave him, they chose not to. I couldn't hear them anylonger, so in my case it was best to let them go. Jesus said,"Let the dead bury the dead."
---Donna5535 on 3/28/11


You have to live "Christianly separately" but not totally cut-off from them. If you are totally cut-off from them, they cannot learn from you or be influenced by you for Christ's sake. You will not share anything that could lead you to sin with them anymore.
---Adetunji on 3/28/11


Only if they are stumblnig your walk with God. Otherwise no.
---candice on 3/27/11


If we do, and even cut off non-believing friends/strangers, how can we ever witness the Gospel to them?

In IC.XC.,
---Ignatius on 3/27/11


Absolutely NOT! We are to pray for and witness to those in our family who are not believers, yet, hoping that the Lord will draw them to Himself. The cutting off jesus was speaking of was parts of our own body that offend, indicating that we should hate sin so strongly that we would be willing to mutilate our bodies if necessary to prevent the offense. He was not necessarily telling us to mutilate ourselves either, but to be ever watchful of our actions.
---tommy on 3/27/11


No. We are to love our families as we love ourselves, and be a testimony to them.
---Trish9863 on 3/27/11


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