Take the following verses out of Matthew.
Matthew 5:23-24 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
Now, I don’t remember the exact words the guy used, but when talking about what this verse meant he said something like verse 22 is talking about being angry with your brother (or whomever), so clearly (clearly to him, anyway), verses 23 and 24 are speaking about if that anger is coming between you and God. More particularly, it discusses not harboring anger.
Hmm, that’s interesting. Let’s take a look at the passage and see if that’s what it means. What does the verse say you are doing? Well, it says “…you are offering…” and that you “remember”. Both verbs are in the active voice, which just means that you personally are performing the action. What do you remember? Well, you remember your brother has something against you. In other words, he is angry. What is your brother doing in this verse? He “…has something against you…” The verb in this phrase is also in active voice, meaning that he himself is angry. Therefore, in this verse, are you angry? No. Obviously then, it couldn’t possibly be talking about your anger coming between you and God since you’re not the one angry.
“But wait” someone might say. We didn’t consider verse 22. Perhaps that might change the interpretation just like this guy says. So let’s also look at verse 22.
Matthew 5:22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.
So, who is Christ talking to? Well, this passage is in the Sermon on the Mount, so He’s talking to His disciples, not just His apostles. He’s also not indicating any specific individual, but He says “everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment.” The word “everyone” would mean “any person”. So he’s not just talking about you being angry, as this person states. He’s talking about any person being angry. Now, there is nothing to suggest or imply that this means that the person in verse 23 who is presenting his gift at the altar is the one angry since verse 23 very clearly says the brother is angry and that you are the one presenting the offering.
Therefore, what these verses mean is what they say. If you know someone is angry at you, then you are supposed to attempt to initiate reconciliation. That would involve you going to that person and discussing the issue face to face. In fact, because verse 24 says that you are supposed to “leave your gift at the altar”, to fail to do this is sin, since “leave” is an active imperative—in other words, it’s a command not a suggestion.
We have a few more verses to examine. I pray you are encouraged.