Sunday, March 9, 2008


"...that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting..." Ephesians 4:14

I'll sometimes meet Christians who bitterly complain about being expelled from a church. Some complain about being expelled from several churches. They usually tell the same story:

The church, pastor, elders, deacons, etc., wanted to go in a certain direction. The person wanted to go in a different direction. After failing to convince the leadership, the person began a secret campaign to change the direction of the church. One tactic is to seek an adult Sunday School class; there the person can teach his own doctrines and standards, contrary to what the church believes. The person openly admits (later, after getting caught) that he was trying to change the church into what he thought it should be. A few will actually defend being deceitful, because "God called me to do this, so I couldn't tell them what I was up to." How do you know whom to believe?

Ephesians 4:14 warns us not to be carried about by doctrines that are brought in deceitfully. The preceeding four verses explain that God calls church leaders to lead the church in spiritual growth. The people who plot against the church leaders are described as being deceitful and cunning. But what if the person doing the plotting is right, and the leaders are wrong?

Obviously, the person believes he is right. But if he is, he needs to either submit to the authority of God's ordained leaders, or he needs to leave quietly.

1 comment:

Vince said...

I'm commenting on my own blog again, but it relates to the last article.

My wife and I were active members of an excellent Bible study. God blessed us in bringing a few first-time visitors, and the teacher and I were good friends.

However, the teacher is opposed to churches. He insists that we are in the age of lukewarm churches, and he advises Christians not to attend any church. A few months ago, we left a good interdenominational church on good terms, because God had called us to help start a New Testament Baptist church.

The new church began working with a third church in running a successful Saturday morning program for children. People at the Bible study would ask us about what we were doing, and we would tell them, even though we are not allowed to discuss churches at the Bible study. I had good things to say about all three churches, and I said them, in violation of the rules.

One day, the teacher called me at home and kicked us out of his Bible study. Is he an evil man? No. Does he run a bad Bible study? No. Were my wife and I guilty? Yes.

He wanted to go one way, and we wanted to go another. We were wrong not to leave earlier.