How Do You Respond When You Are Proven Wrong?
Every now and then I am wrong about something or someone.
Like many people, I am typically gracious to give the benefit of the doubt, to withhold personal judgment against others; but occasionally I come to a conclusion that, although is based on seemingly solid evidence at the time, ends up being less than accurate.
The Jewish believers were concerned about Peter’s recent conversation with a group of Gentiles (non-Jews). They sincerely believed that salvation through Jesus was specifically and solely given to the Jews.
Then Peter, who himself had to be taught by The Lord through a vision to have a different mindset, told his Jewish brothers what God said about the Gentiles, what He did for them in pouring out His Spirit to them, and what He intended for them – that salvation through Jesus was offered to every tribe, tongue, and nation.
The story itself is compelling, but it is the response of the Jews that impresses me most.
When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.” (Acts 11:18 ESV)
How should we respond when we are proven wrong?
1. Stop speaking and listen. Pride argues; humility listens. There’s no need to keep defending and justifying that which has been proven wrong, inaccurate or less than beneficial.
2. Thank God for revealed truth. The disciples didn’t condone their misbelief, but neither did they condemn themselves for having been wrong. They simply acknowledged the truth revealed from God, embraced it as truth, and thanked God for the lesson.
3. Change your mind and your actions will change. Those Jewish believers no longer practiced bigotry against Gentiles. They changed.
Are you so busy defending yourself that you have ignored revealed truth?
Are you more agitated and embarrassed by being viewed as wrong, or do you truly want to be a person that walks in truth?
What relationships are you missing out on simply because you refuse to acknowledge your wrongs?
It’s better to BE right than to be RIGHT.