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Thread: Do we have room for overt sinners in our Churches?

  1. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ickisrulz View Post
    What position are you taking and on what issue? Of course we are to spread the Gospel in an attempt to reach all sinners. But we are also to confront evil and disruptive conduct in our assemblies. These are not contradictory tasks and are both prescribed in Scripture by the same Apostle.
    I am sure he will let you know what his point is!
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  2. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmort View Post
    Again, I would refer you to Paul who makes it very clear on who is to run the churches and what qualifications they must have. Simple deal. Read it and you will know the answer. Amazing how little people know. Read Paul's letters which contain simple, clear, and umambigious instruction on how the churches are to be run and by who.
    The O/P asks the question about overt sinners in our churches....he didn't identify the Bible in his opening...the discussion "morphed" into a discussion of the Bible..not of the congregation....there are many houses of God that do not have the Bible and don't have Paul's letters...

    No trying to pick a fight but it again comes back to a question (I'll rephrase) that who makes a decision to oust a sinner considering there may not be a guideline like Paul's letters.....I am not a Mormon..I'm not a Jew...I'm not an Arab nor an Asian and I think they would have to look elsewhere to see who makes decisions in their churches..I also know of religions with churches that forbid certain behaviors like dancing, and encourage certain behaviors that some might consider sinful like the consumption of alcohol as part of a service.

    Guess I grew up (in the church) being taught things and as I grew and watched it seemed many of the same "mortals" made decisions for the partcular congregation that I felt were "exclusive rather than "inclusive" and I guess that doesn't match what the God I understand has tried to instill.

    A friend died recently ...a group of us attended the services in his church...during the funeral the minister stopped the rite and said that "Earl would want all his friends to join him in his faith"..the minister then offered to welcome any "visitors" during the service should they want to go through the ritual right there and then to join...Again I've seen this happen before and while I don't particularly understand I accept...but then he said "and any of you that refuse to join Earl and resist will not be allowed to join him in Heaven"...I left along with a number of other "sinners". That minister was making a judgement of my spiritual condition based on his personal beliefs and he was excluding me from God's world because of his personal ideas...

    I was probably considered an "overt" sinner by refusing Baptism at that time..I was Baptised and Confirmed decades ago...but in a different place and under different circumstances.

    I attend a particular spiritual group as part of my life...a portion of what we believe is "The ultimate authority is a loving God as He may express himself in our group conscience...our leaders are but trusted servants...they do not govern". Kind of like that.
    Last edited by HATCH; 08-13-2017 at 09:54 PM. Reason: fixed qoute

  3. #83
    Boolit Master

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    [QUOTE=opos;4099986]
    Quote Originally Posted by jmort View Post
    Again, I would refer you to Paul who makes it very clear on who is to run the churches and what qualifications they must have. Simple deal. Read it and you will know the answer. Amazing how little people know. Read Paul's letters which contain simple, clear, and umambigious instruction on how the churches are to be run and by who.[/QUOTE

    The O/P asks the question about overt sinners in our churches....he didn't identify the Bible in his opening...the discussion "morphed" into a discussion of the Bible..not of the congregation....there are many houses of God that do not have the Bible and don't have Paul's letters...

    No trying to pick a fight but it again comes back to a question (I'll rephrase) that who makes a decision to oust a sinner considering there may not be a guideline like Paul's letters.....I am not a Mormon..I'm not a Jew...I'm not an Arab nor an Asian and I think they would have to look elsewhere to see who makes decisions in their churches..I also know of religions with churches that forbid certain behaviors like dancing, and encourage certain behaviors that some might consider sinful like the consumption of alcohol as part of a service.

    Guess I grew up (in the church) being taught things and as I grew and watched it seemed many of the same "mortals" made decisions for the partcular congregation that I felt were "exclusive rather than "inclusive" and I guess that doesn't match what the God I understand has tried to instill.

    A friend died recently ...a group of us attended the services in his church...during the funeral the minister stopped the rite and said that "Earl would want all his friends to join him in his faith"..the minister then offered to welcome any "visitors" during the service should they want to go through the ritual right there and then to join...Again I've seen this happen before and while I don't particularly understand I accept...but then he said "and any of you that refuse to join Earl and resist will not be allowed to join him in Heaven"...I left along with a number of other "sinners". That minister was making a judgement of my spiritual condition based on his personal beliefs and he was excluding me from God's world because of his personal ideas...

    I was probably considered an "overt" sinner by refusing Baptism at that time..I was Baptised and Confirmed decades ago...but in a different place and under different circumstances.

    I attend a particular spiritual group as part of my life...a portion of what we believe is "The ultimate authority is a loving God as He may express himself in our group conscience...our leaders are but trusted servants...they do not govern". Kind of like that.
    A group of people who do not use the Bible as the authority for their faith and conduct would not be considered a "church" as understood by the majority of the posters in this thread. Such a group would do whatever they decided I suppose. There are lots of organizations and clubs that have by-laws for the removal of a member.

  4. #84
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    Wow, Opos! I'd probably have left, too! But that's me. I might have stayed just to see if somebody was going to force me out, but I doubt it. I just came back from the funderal home for a very old friend, who'd fought many battles in his life. There weren't many people there. PJ was never a "social animal." Like Sammy and Frank, he always did things HIS way. He had learned few social skills when young, but was one of the most heartfelt people I've ever known, and liked privacy or being with a few good friends whom he trusted implicityly. He didn't have the best judgment, and didn't use foresight much, but he was one heck of a man, however you wanted to measure him. I'm not really sure if he found Christ before he died, but I suspect strongly that he did. He was looking for Him all his life, really. I will miss my friend, despite all his clear faults that he often acknowledged himself, and fought with for many years. I can't help but feel that I should have had more contact with him, and witnessed to him. He was not one to take well to the usual Bible pounding and citing of scripture. You had to really touch his heart, and if you did that, you'd hit paydirt, for his was as big as anyone's I've ever known.

    Many churches would ostracize him or even cast him out. In so doing, they'd have prevented a man who was really searching for a real understanding of our Lord, from attaining that understanding. I cannot for the life of me understand a church that did something like that. But that may just be me, admittedly. But each one of us HAS to find an answer to questions like these, and follow them and our consciences, and hope we're right. For me, I'll never cast someone out or have much patience with a church that did that, barring extremely grievous behavior that might endanger the congregation. I've yet to see an example of that, though, so .... I remain in favor of going to the individual displaying such "abhorent" behavior, and counsel with them. If that didn't work, after enough tries to convince even the reluctant to carry them on, then maybe .... MAYBE ..... then I could understand a church turning someone out. But knowing how churches tend to operate, and many within them, I doubt those inclined to oust members would really put forth a lot of effort towards bringing them into more reasonable compliance with the church's teachings. That's just been what my EXPERIENCE has been through the years regarding this principle. Others and their views may well vary, and are certain to do just that, but that's MY view, if it's noone else's.

    Casting people out of a church has very far-reaching consequences, and not only for those cast out, but for the members remaining within the church, too. I've never seen judgmentalism NOT grow, over time, once it's given in to. It's Christ's job to judge. Not ours, ultimately, unless and until it becomes SO egregious that it cannot be ignored nor tolerated. IMO, casting someone out is the very last resort, and should be VERY rare. But where I've seen it done, it always seemed to be those of meager means, and those who contributed heavily to the church got a lot more "free rein" than those who were "easier targets." Maybe this varies in other locales, but that's been my experience around here. And human behavior doesn't vary much, no matter where you are, what language you speak, etc., so I'll always err on the side of hoping the church and its members will do the "backsliders" some good. That's just my essential nature, and I know we've been given instructions that are supposed to contribute to building and maintaining a healthy and vibrant institution in the community. But those instructions CAN, IMO, be taken too literally and with way too much relish, and CAN be applied way too soon by us mortals. We all have a tendency to try to "think" with our hearts, and "feel" with our heads, and that's exactly backwards from what God intended us to do with our hearts and heads! That's one of the reasons I tend to err on the side of possibly saving another soul, and that also has a lot to do with the simple fact that I've seen some people respond that I'd NEVER have anticipated would, and I've also seen some who I thought surely would respond, who just walked away, on occasion, even laughing.

    We never know who's going to respond to the Word and who won't. We may THINK we know, but all too often, we're just "supposing" and NOT really "knowing!" With that in mind, how can anyone stand in judgment over someone so as to throw them out of a church, when Christ is THE thing they need most?

  5. #85
    Boolit Master
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    100% brother, 100%!

    I got no responses regarding Jesus parable of the tares. It still seems to me it covers most of this kind of situations. In pulling up the weeds you pull up the crop as well, but I suppose you wouldn't leave the bull in the bean field all season either.


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  6. #86
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    Don't be chasing the sinners off, after all Christ came to see them primarily.
    If you have a problem sinner in the Church you go to him and confront him with another Church member...you explain the sin and help them to get squared away. If they continue then you go again with Church members and tell them to 'skiddattle' or as the Brit's might say 'Bug Off Buddie' you ain't gotta clue!
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  7. #87
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    Perhaps I'm wrong, but I was taught this parable is the answer to most church problems.
    Yes, you are wrong, yes, you were taught wrong, but you can correct that. The biggest issue with the churches of today is ignorance parading as knowledge and being spoon fed to the pew potatoes because, you know, the real deal is a little to controversial and we certainly can't have any controversy.

    2 Timothy 3:5-7

    The second, is the need for people to "be somebody" and the holier than thou horse manure encountered in almost all churches, each one a little step closer to God because, we're so pious and special......

    I'm not going to take two or three hours to try to educate you or the people here who Cain's father truly is, or who the tares are the seed of, or ask why is it taught Adam and Eve were driven from the garden for eating an apple. (a clean fruit)

    Isn't it ironic that Jesus would offer this,

    Joh 8:31-32 KJV Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; (32) And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

    And just a few verses farther along offer this.

    Joh 8:42-45 KJV Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. (43) Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. (44) Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. (45) And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.

    The tares, the sons of Cain, the son of Satan.

    That will be my final post in this particular thread, the pearls of wisdom offered have been trodden in the filth of ignorance and I'll not offer anymore.

    That will no doubt fill some with joy because it appears to be basic human nature to accept the reassuring lie rather than the inconvenient truth.

    The old wine skins get hard and brittle and the truth bounces off them like golf balls off a cement floor, doesn't even leave a dimple.

    Well, I guess that's enough, I truly wish all of you well, and pray The Father will unstop ears and remove the scales from your eyes so that you can see The Mystery of Iniquity that is already well under way. In Jesus name, so be it!
    Last edited by claude; 07-15-2017 at 03:28 AM.

  8. #88
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    Claude

    You may not post here again, but know I do stand corrected on this parable as it clearly is the weeds of the world, not the church. No ones words have fallen on deaf ears, even if most of us don't see eye to eye.

    Thank you again

  9. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    Claude

    You may not post here again, but know I do stand corrected on this parable as it clearly is the weeds of the world, not the church. No ones words have fallen on deaf ears, even if most of us don't see eye to eye.

    Thank you again
    Here here! Now this is what it is about!

    Thank you Thundarstick

    and

    Amen
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  10. #90
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    There was a youth pastor here who was skirting trouble. He was warned and continued compromising ways. He got one of his flock pregnant and was finally dismissed. ow many times do you warn??

    If they had let him go earlier, he would have done the deed in a different church.

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    Wow! Stuff like that does indeed happen, Shiloh. And it's always SO sad and egregious! But that's not the kind of thing I thought was being considered here. My take was that it was a member of the congregation that was exhibiting un-acceptable behavior, like maybe drunkeness, drugs, running around on his wife, and things of that nature. Certainly, if there's a suspicion of something like you outline, it needs to DEFINITELY be looked into, and if any confirmation can be had, they need to be immediately and unceremoniously dismissed, and the locks to the doors of the church changed immediately! To do otherwise is to be complicit with what inevitably usually occurs! But the average errant church member? That's quite another matter, IMHO.

    Churches often attract some VERY improper peope - wolves in sheep's clothing. Examples might be Jim Baker and the other guy who was caught in some VERY unChristian activities, including stealing from his own church! The pillars of the church HAVE to deal with people like that, and do it speedily and with finality upon getting evidence of misbehavior in the leadership of the church. And God bless them for handling situations like this! Most really, really hate being a part of things like this, but they do valuable and indispensable work for their churches, when they do so.

  12. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackwater View Post
    Wow! Stuff like that does indeed happen, Shiloh. And it's always SO sad and egregious! But that's not the kind of thing I thought was being considered here. My take was that it was a member of the congregation that was exhibiting un-acceptable behavior, like maybe drunkeness, drugs, running around on his wife, and things of that nature. Certainly, if there's a suspicion of something like you outline, it needs to DEFINITELY be looked into, and if any confirmation can be had, they need to be immediately and unceremoniously dismissed, and the locks to the doors of the church changed immediately! To do otherwise is to be complicit with what inevitably usually occurs! But the average errant church member? That's quite another matter, IMHO.
    OK...now I am confused about your position. In your post #23 you had a drunken deacon who beat his wife. You thought keeping him around was a good idea. Why get rid of a youth pastor who got his girlfriend pregnant? What is the difference between the two situations?

  13. #93
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    Drunkeness and violence toward spouse and family got a man in a rehab program at no cost to him.
    He continued and was asked to to attend church until he stopped. After stalking his wife and family, the law to involved.
    He eventually lost his wife and family. Haven't heard about him in years.

    Another was a doper who could stay off of illegal narcotics. He was good for a while and would relapse. He quit coming to church after a while.
    Our pastor saw him several months later and could tell he was back on drugs. Shortly after that, it was announced he died of an overdose.

    The doper guy was always welcome. The violent drunk wore out his.

    Shiloh
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ickisrulz View Post
    OK...now I am confused about your position. In your post #23 you had a drunken deacon who beat his wife. You thought keeping him around was a good idea. Why get rid of a youth pastor who got his girlfriend pregnant? What is the difference between the two situations?
    No need for confusion. The wife was content to stick with her husband, as I think she had a right to do, even if it's easy to question her judgment in it. A preacher who gets a parishoner pregnant, has brought a new life into the world without any intent to really care for it as it should be taken care of, and this decision has tenacles that can reach out into many areas of life. Young women often get so caught up in their emotions that they don't think about pregnancy, but a man surely can't these days, not to mention STD's, etc. A man in the midst of an addiction is quite another quantity from a man who chooses sin for its emotional value, and quite naturally, need to be dealt with differently. You don't treat non-addicts with addiction treatments, and visa versa. Is it clearer now?

  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackwater View Post
    No need for confusion. The wife was content to stick with her husband, as I think she had a right to do, even if it's easy to question her judgment in it. A preacher who gets a parishoner pregnant, has brought a new life into the world without any intent to really care for it as it should be taken care of, and this decision has tenacles that can reach out into many areas of life. Young women often get so caught up in their emotions that they don't think about pregnancy, but a man surely can't these days, not to mention STD's, etc. A man in the midst of an addiction is quite another quantity from a man who chooses sin for its emotional value, and quite naturally, need to be dealt with differently. You don't treat non-addicts with addiction treatments, and visa versa. Is it clearer now?
    The other way to look at this is that the church should have protected the wife from her abusive husband despite what she wanted. It is a well known fact that emotions cloud battered women's judgement. Not to mention the idea that this man held a position of honor and respect in the church as a deacon that he was allowed to keep. This church failed miserably in this situation.

    Once a man realizes he's an addict, it is on him to change his ways. The world may call an addiction a disease, but the Bible says we are all accountable for our actions. If this fellow couldn't control himself when he drank...he should have moved away from his poor wife until he got his act together.

    Which is worse? Beating your wife or giving into natural desires and engaging in sex with a girlfriend? Or another way to ask the question, which would bring you greater shame if done by your own son?

    In order to be biblical, the youth pastor should have been encouraged to get married and then have all the sex he wanted. The drunken, abusive deacon should have been removed from office and then arrested.

    "Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain." 1 Tim 3:8

    "But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion." 1 Cor 7:9
    Last edited by Ickisrulz; 08-11-2017 at 06:25 PM.

  16. #96
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    It's hard to show Christ love towards an addict when you despise them for their own weakness. At one time in my life I didn't believe addiction was a disease until I was faced with it in my own family. One kind of diabetes is caused by a persons life style, sedentary, what they eat, how much, and over weight. You ask any of these diabetics if they intended to become a diabetic and they will certainly answer no, but they are! Now that they are, they have a choice to treat the disease, or not! Just like food addicts, substance abusers make choices every day that impact their lives and others who love them! Now I ask you, do you advise a wife to leave her husband if he contracts some other disease that's left untreated? The diabetic who looses his legs or eye sight and becomes abusive towards his wife? You bet it happens just the same way, I've seen it! It never ceases to amaze me how the "church" will rally around one disease and drum another straight to hell, because it's just the sinners weakness! God bless all who have never delt with addiction in a loved one, but God bless even more the ones who have and have seen them through it!

    I've said everyone's got an ax to grind, so here's mine. By and large I have found clergymen to be some of the least educated and least helpful for an addicted person to reach out to for help!

    We're all weak! It just depends on what your weakness is amen?

  17. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    It's hard to show Christ love towards an addict when you despise them for their own weakness. At one time in my life I didn't believe addiction was a disease until I was faced with it in my own family. One kind of diabetes is caused by a persons life style, sedentary, what they eat, how much, and over weight. You ask any of these diabetics if they intended to become a diabetic and they will certainly answer no, but they are! Now that they are, they have a choice to treat the disease, or not! Just like food addicts, substance abusers make choices every day that impact their lives and others who love them! Now I ask you, do you advise a wife to leave her husband if he contracts some other disease that's left untreated? The diabetic who looses his legs or eye sight and becomes abusive towards his wife? You bet it happens just the same way, I've seen it! It never ceases to amaze me how the "church" will rally around one disease and drum another straight to hell, because it's just the sinners weakness! God bless all who have never delt with addiction in a loved one, but God bless even more the ones who have and have seen them through it!

    I've said everyone's got an ax to grind, so here's mine. By and large I have found clergymen to be some of the least educated and least helpful for an addicted person to reach out to for help!

    We're all weak! It just depends on what your weakness is amen?
    I don't despise addicts. This is a connection you are making that just isn't in my post.

    My points are: 1. When a person is dangerous to be around vulnerable family members should not be around them. 2. An abusive alcoholic should not be a deacon. 3. Everyone is accountable for their actions and decisions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ickisrulz View Post
    I don't despise addicts. This is a connection you are making that just isn't in my post.

    My points are: 1. When a person is dangerous to be around vulnerable family members should not be around them. 2. An abusive alcoholic should not be a deacon. 3. Everyone is accountable for their actions and decisions.
    Yes!!!

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    "We're all weak! It just depends on what your weakness is amen?"

    Paul believed there were and and are suitable candidates. Perfect, no, but qualified to serve yes. Get someone through the door. Give them a fair chace to "grow." If there is no inclination to improve, then there is a exit as well.

  20. #100
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    Used to smoke, drink, use recreational drugs. and hung out with people who did.

    Clean, sober, no tobacco, and stay home and mind my own business. I have sympathy for dopers and drunks. I used to be one many years ago.

    Shiloh
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