Dr. Couch, what about 'support groups' for people who are sinners?
ANSWER: We certainly are not "supporting" people in their sin but we can have support groups for those who are seeking forgiveness and who are attempting to turn away from sins that are holding them in their sins! You quoted Matthew 18:15-17. Note that Christ calls those who are struggling "brothers" (v. 15). He says to reprove them "in private" not publicly to hurt them. If the brother listens "you have won your brother" and helped him in his struggle.
If he won't listen then take two or three brothers in order to convict him that "every fact (against him) may be confirmed" (v. 16b). Then if he refuses to change he is to be exposed before the church in order to bring about conviction (v. 17). I have rarely seen such stubbornness in sin though it can happen.
A support group should and can help but it should not be a crutch to keep the brother in his sin.
Thanks for asking.
--Dr. Mal Couch (2/12)