There are rumors going around in New Life that Pastor Eric has personally asked certain individuals who are coming to our house churches to leave. Whenever I hear about things being spread around that are not true or being miscommunicated, I get a strong urge to do what Nehemiah did with some of the Jews who were disobedient to God and His Word 🙂
??I rebuked them and called curses down on them. I beat some of the men and pulled out their hair.?? (Nehemiah 13: 25)
I am joking but it definitely does concern and upset me.
Just recently I had called a mandatory house church shepherds?? meeting on Wednesday (9/14) to which every shepherd came except for those who were traveling. I talked about a few important things that they needed to know and be reminded of. One of the things that I covered during the meeting was the issue of those who are trying to commit to two churches by:
? Attending or having membership at different churches but are attending our house churches or
? Members of New Life who are regularly attending service at different churches on Sunday.
Let me share with you what I had shared with the shepherds so that all of us will be united and be on the same page. In this way, we will not go around gossiping and spreading faulty rumors amongst us acting as Satan??s cancerous agents.
? We believe that Christ is the head of the church, the church is His body and all the Christ followers are the parts of His body.
? We believe in the holy universal church that is made up of Christ followers from all over the world from past, present and future. This church will be completed when Christ comes for the second time.
? We believe in local churches and that they are visible representations of Christ??s body (Church in Rome, Church in Corinth, Church in Ephesus, New Life Fellowship, etc.).
? We believe that God wants and commands every Christ follower to belong to a local church. It is impossible for any Christ follower to grow spiritually the way God intended without becoming an active and committed member of a local church. A branch that is detached from a tree cannot grow or survive.
? We believe it is wrong and impossible for a person to be committed to two different churches at the same time. Just as a husband cannot be fully loyal and devoted to two different wives, and just as a part of your body cannot be attached to another person??s body at the same time, it is wrong and impossible for us to be members at two different churches. By trying to do so, those churches are being dishonored and neither the churches nor the individual will grow in the Lord.
? We believe that God primarily works through His local churches to spread the gospel to the ends of the earth and expand His Kingdom here in this world. Therefore, we must refrain from doing anything that hinders the effectiveness and strength of God??s church the way He had in mind. Being involved in two different churches is one of those things that makes God??s church ineffective. Therefore, we do not allow members of different churches to come to and get involved in our house churches. We also challenge New Life members who are regularly attending different churches on Sunday to choose one church to attend and serve at for the sake of their spiritual growth as well as for the health and expansion of God??s Kingdom.
These are the reasons why I am asking those who are members at different churches to stop attending NLF house churches and be faithful to their churches so that those churches will grow strong and healthy as well. And these are the reasons why I am challenging New Life members to be committed to New Life by serving at NLF and worshipping together on Sundays. Changing church membership is a serious matter because you are violating the Membership Covenant that you have made in the past before God and other members who were here before you. But with much prayer, if you come to a conclusion that you need to leave New Life, I would like to ask you to find a God-honoring and Bible believing church where you can devote your life. Remember that we are not in competition with other local churches. On the contrary, as I stated before, we are all part of Christ??s Body with one desire to glorify God. So it??s our hope to help grow other local churches and not hurt them by stealing their members.
There is no pastor who wants to pastor a small church. All of them want their churches to grow for various reasons. I want New Life to grow not just spiritually but numerically as well through reaching out to the unchurched and unbelievers. However, if I need to choose between a small healthy church that is sold out to do God’s will and a mega church that is filled with people who are committed in pursuing after their own comfort and convenience, I will always choose the former over the latter.
As a result of this stance of New Life, some of you will choose to leave this place and others will decide to be committed to New Life. Whatever you decide to do, I pray that your decision will be biblically based and your conscience clear before God.
By the way, please don??t forget that our house churches exist to reach out to our unbelieving friends and family members. This means, if these unbelievers come to your house church without coming to New Life worship on Sunday, that??s perfectly fine and normal. Just continue to pray for them and share Christ??s love with them!
Also, if this was not clearly communicated to you by your shepherds, I would like to apologize to you on behalf of your hardworking, yet imperfect shepherds!
I trust that you will not spread faulty rumors around. In this way, I don??t have to do that Nehemiah thing on you 🙂
No Comments to "Being a Member of One Church"