The Church and Exclusion
To summarize, there are three words that characterize this brand of fundamentalism: rigidity, domination, and exclusion- pg.35
Many modern Christians like to change the rules of the church because they can no longer agree with what the Bible says on certain topics. They feel that the secular culture’s changes are more moral than God’s rules, more fair, and allows nice people back into the church to help govern it.
There are a lot of reasons why modern Christians have altered their views about traditional biblical belief and church practices. To be up front, not all the protests are wrong as many people throughout church history have d=been misguided and taken the wrong message from biblical instruction
But they are not correct on many issues facing the church today.
There is a fine line between legalism and obedience to God’s word. Legalism can be defined as ‘we have always done it this way and we will always do it this way’ and those phrases are said eve if the church practices are not biblical.
Most of the time legalism come sin when men have altered God’s rules and forced their adherence on anyone who joins the church. Obedience is just as rigid as legalism but in a positive way. True obedience follows God’s instructions correctly despite he the change sin secular culture and church membership.
God has set down his rules and since he is a fair God, those rules are rigid and do not change from era to era. The rules God laid down thousands of years ago still apply for the most part today.
What God declared as sin in the beginning, 5,000 years ago and even 2,000 years ago is still sin today. They do not change because if they did, God would not be fair or just.
As it always has been and always will be, there will be people in and out of the church who seek dominance over others. They will use the Bible to justify that dominance and support the rules they have laid down.
Jesus already warned us 2,000 years ago that their would be chaff among the wheat. We should not be traumatized by seeing it take place but follow scripture properly t stop it from ruining the church.
BUT this situation does not mean that getting people to obey the Bible is an act of dominance. God does not provide escape clauses to allow people to avoid obeying his instructions and commands.
Obedience is key to entering into eternal life and having God on our side. It is hard to say we love God yet disobey his very commands because someone feels those instructions are out dated, out of whack wit culture and so on.
Jesus lamented about this when he said, ‘why do you call me lord yet do not do the things I say?’ Getting people to obey is helping people see that Jesus is lord and his instructions are meant to be followed. They are not acts of dominance.
Again, many modern church people think that excluding certain humans from participating in the church or church leadership is wrong. These people have chosen alternative preferences, genders, alternative leaders and much more. To them exclusion is discrimination and wrong.
Unfortunately, those who take that view also ignore what God has declared sin, evil, and wrong for his church. They try to change what God has said through a variety of means, including re-translating certain passages of scripture, to allow them t practice sin and call evil good.
They are offended that the true church excludes them from what they think they have a right to posses. They are mistaken and the church has the right to exclude these people because they are not following God, obeying his word and refusing to give up their sins.
Exclusion is not wrong when God’s rules are obeyed correctly and applied properly. Sin cannot enter the church for that is opening the hen house to let the fox inside.
The Church Is God’s Representative
There is a passage of scripture that talks about the faithful servant. It can be applied to the issues discussed here in this article. Those who do not want to obey God correctly and allow for alternative practices to enter the church are not being faithful servants.
They are saying that God said one thing in the Bible but meant something else. That is not representing God correctly and misleads the people into thinking they are okay, when their are still full of unrepentant sin and in danger of going to hell.
The Church has to represent God correctly honestly stating his rules and options to avoid hell. How the unchurch world views God depends largely on the how the church acts and repeats the biblical message.
Some Final Words
When practiced correctly, rigidity, obedience and exclusion are not wrong. Jesus has even said that not all who call him Lord will enter into heaven because he never knew them.
Those who continue to disobey God and practice sin do not know Jesus and will be excluded fro heaven. After all heaven or paradise is God’s home and his rules that matter.
Do not be fooled by those modern Christians who want to change biblical rules to be more inclusive, less dominant, and less rigid. They are making the same mistakes all sinners make and do not have the authority to change God’s rules.
God’s rules do not change no matter how much the world changes. But the world doe snot really change. It is still sinful and lost as it was in the time of Noah when God brought judgment on the humans of that time.
The church needs to continue to represent God and his word correctly to be good and faithful servants.
© 2019 David Thiessen