I have not seen a church today that doesn't invite people to attend in order to reach the unsaved. Or that feel God is going to clean up the newly saved and He will sanctify. Scripture even tells us that it is God who is able to make them stand. Even my own church holds these beliefs. So...could someone offer their insight into this
1 Corinthians5 1 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and of a kind that even pagans do not tolerate: A man is sleeping with his father’s wife. 2 And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have gone into mourning and have put out of your fellowship the man who has been doing this? ….
…5 hand this man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh so that his spirit may be saved on the day of the Lord….
…9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. 11 But now I am writing to you that you must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler. Do not even eat with such people.
12 What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? 13 God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked person from among you.”
This seems to say two things to me. First that we’re not told to not associate with the unsaved, but to not associate with the saved acting wickedly and to put them out of the church. And secondly, it speaks of God judging those outside the church and us judging those inside. That seems to say that only the saved should be inside in the church, should be gathering together with believers.
That seems to say that only the saved should be inside in the church, should be gathering together with believers.
Just as a quick response off the top of my head, the 'church' can be defined differently here.
The 'church' is defined as the body of Christ, all of God's children. (body of Christ)
The 'church' can also be defined as the building that we go every week to fellowship, learn and participate in corporate worship. (physical building)
Also, there are seeker friendly churches...sometimes people attend 'church' (building) to find out about God, but they are not part of the 'church' (body) (yet).
We have no right to judge anyone outside the body because they are outside the body. But those who are inside the body of Christ have claimed to know God, have the Holy Spirit, and therefore, are responsible to grow. One way of love is that we will encourage and support one another to do that. The way of love towards unbelievers is that we will show and tell them Jesus because we are The Church.
So.. to answer your question. I believe the 'saved inside the church' is not referring to a building, but rather to the worldwide body of Believers.
Non-believers should always be welcomed into the building. They are also welcome into the Body, and of course the only way is through Jesus.
Well in the instance of believers, even Paul speaks of weak or growing Christians, I discovered last night that Chris and Roxy had some problems. He was saved and delivered from drugs. She seems to have been saved as well and goes to the altar and prays and lifts her hands in worship. But she keeps asking Christ to buy beer for her and she still does drugs and he's refusing to partake in that and says he wants to do what's pleasing to God. So they broke up. But in this instance, and don't get me wrong, I like Roxy, the church will of course welcome her in and considered her saved and needing deliverance. So I'm trying to figure out how this relates to what Paul states.
But she keeps asking Christ to buy beer for her
Do you mean she's asking 'Chris' to buy beer for her? (sorry ...couldn't resist)
I was gonna say.. "I don't think the answer will be yes"
Kudos to Chris for standing his ground...
Roxy is going to need support. She's too young of a believer to be kicked out of the church. She needs mentoring by the sounds of it.
Is there anyone who would be able to study God's word with her. Let the Holy Spirit do the convicting and the healing.
Well this is why I'm trying to figure out Paul's message here in conjunction with his messages about encouraging the weak and about maturity in Christ.
We offer all types of Bible study in various locations but she's never been interested in joining one. I know they get to church in Chris' work truck because they have no other transportation, so not sure if that's why she hasn't done a Bible study. Chris hasn't either.
Ultimately it is her choice. Ask her point blank 'why?' she hasn't gone. If you put information in front of her that she is not interested in hearing it may turn her away entirely.
I have a friend who says she's saved, she believes in Jesus etc.... but she isn't living her life to show it. I have not severed contact with her, but I have slowly disengaged myself over many years. When she asks bible questions, I prayerfully answer them, but I answer them from the perspective that she is not saved.
New American Standard Bible
You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.
I invited her to bible studies for about 6 years. I even started a few on my own for her benefit. She would either attend 1 or 2 and then stop, or she would promise to attend and not show up. I don't know what the issue is. I can make my judgements about it, but as far as I understand, if anyone is in Christ, the old has gone and the new has come. This person, as a new Creation, has a new identity with new desires, and one of those undeniable desires is the desire to come to Christ to know Him.
I haven't seen any fruit, so to the best of my knowledge, I have made a choice on how to act around her. Since there is no fellowship opportunity, I treat her as a non-believer. Which basically means I share the gospel with her and let her know how Christ has made a difference in my life. If she calls me for advice, I tell her how God's word gets me through, and point to the points in scripture where I personally have received encouragement and peace. I also share personal testimony stories of God's faithfulness. When it comes to just 'hanging out', mostly our times together are over a cup of tea, and I prayerfully listen to her unless she asks me a direct question. So a lot of the time she does most of the talking. That's how I have felt led to handle the relationship.
She's accountable to God, so I have to steadily remind myself to leave her in His hands. It's heartbreaking because I know how God could give her wisdom, comfort and peace through her many difficulties, but she won't turn to Him and stay there.
I'm open to biblical advise though on how to handle the relationship....
Well I try to take this that Paul says, and figure out how it relates to encouraging the weak.
The pastor's sermon yesterday was about our words. He showed clips of some true story. There was a boy who didn't believe he could win a race but his friend told him he believed in him. The boy won. Years later he was in the military and in a plane crash. He and 2 others survived and were in a lifeboat. One kept saying "we're gonna die", the guy the story was about and the other guy kept saying "shut up, we're not gonna die". The one who kept saying we're gonna die, died. I don't know about the other two as we didn't continue further than that.
The pastor spoke of being around negative people and how we need to stay away from them so they don't affect the words we speak. After church, I told him that I'm glad everyone didn't stay away and some stayed and encouraged me. I was very negative. But that has changed a lot. I also sort of mulled over to myself that if one is afraid a negative person is going to affect their words, then they're obviously not as strong as they might think either.
If we're to encourage those weaker Christians yet Paul says to put them out of the church, I'm trying to figure out how you do both.
I don't think the message is to weaker Christians. I believe it's for those who have a consistent pattern of sin, but as considered to be as mature in the faith.
How long has Roxy been a believer?
Not long. She just started coming to church in the last year.
She's just a baby in the faith.