Session 4

The best way to handle someone else’s mistake

From Genesis: A 7-Week Devotional

We don’t like it when others call attention to our mistakes. Yet, how often do we call attention to others when they mess up? Maybe we told the rest of the office about our co-worker’s affair. Or maybe, we like to remind our spouse of his or her mistakes in the heat of an argument.

In Genesis 9:18-28, Noah is naked, drunk, and asleep in his tent. His youngest son, Ham, called attention to the situation by telling his older brothers, Shem and Japheth. Instead of drawing more attention to their father’s shame, Shem and Japheth quickly covered their father with a blanket, saving him from further embarrassment. When Noah heard what happened, he blessed the descendants of the older sons and cursed the descendants of the youngest son.

It matters how we treat people when they are at their worst. The Bible teaches that love covers sin, it does not dishonor others, and it keeps no record of wrongs (1 Peter 4:8; 1 Corinthians 13:5).

Jesus demonstrated this when the religious leaders brought an adulterous woman to Him. The leaders publicly shamed her and demanded her death. Jesus diffused the crowd by reminding them of their sins and refusing to condemn her. Jesus covered her shame (John 8:1-11).

Jesus also covered our shame. He took our punishment by dying on the cross in our place (1 Peter 3:18). When we remember what Jesus does for us, we can resist the temptation to call attention to others' sins. Instead, we can embrace the opportunity to show Jesus' love by covering their shame.


  • When someone makes a mistake do you tend to call attention to it or help them fix it?
  • How does reflecting on how Jesus has covered your shame motivate you to cover others' shame?

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