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Church Discipline

Church Discipline

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Church Discipline

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  1. Church Discipline What? Two kinds? Purpose? Necessity? Examples? Why Not?

  2. Church of Christ • Identifiable body of baptized believers working and worshipping together. • Christians are to live in the doctrine of Christ • Discipline is required to maintain this proper relationship—instructive (preventative) and corrective (punitive)

  3. Definition • Hebrew word “musar” from “yasar” (Prov.3:11-12; 13:24; 22:15; 23:13; Deut.8:5; Job 5:17; Ps.94:12; Job 36:10 • Greek “sophromismos” ASV in II Tim.1:7 not in KJV • Best expressed in two Greek words: 1) “paideia” & 2) “paideu” • Paideia: (Eph.6:4; II Tim.3:16; Heb.12:5-6) • Paideu: (I Tim.1:120; Titus 2:12; II Tim.2:25; I Cor.11:32; II Cor.6:9; Heb.12:6; Rev.3:19; Heb.12:7; Lk.23:26,22)

  4. Discipline • Training or experience that corrects, molds, strengthens; Esp. mental faculties or moral character. • Primarily, an admonishing or calling to soundness of mind or self-control. • Instructive – preventive in nature; education • Corrective – chastising or penalizing in nature

  5. Discipline • Instructive (preventive): learn God’s will in order to apply it to our lives to prevent whatever sin, you can fill in the blanks Eccl.12:13-14; Js.1:22 • Corrective (punitive): failure to apply God’s law in our lives I Jn.1:7 versus those who walk in rebellion (Is.59:1-2; I Jn.1:8,10)

  6. Necessity • Prov.13:24; Eph.6:1-4; civil gov’t Rom.13:1-4 • God is not the author of confusion I Cor.14:33; there is punishment for violating God’s law • Adam & Eve Gen.3:17-19,23-24; 2:17 • The old world Gen.6:5-7,13 • Nadab & Abihu Lev.10:1-2 • Ananias & Saphira Acts 5:1-10 • We realize God doesn’t deal directly with violators today; He doesn’t deal out punitive action however we MUST respect God and His commands (Mt.10:28; II Pet.3:10)

  7. Purpose church discipline serves? • To Obey God (I Cor.5:1-5; Mt. 18:15-18; 2 Thess. 3:6-15) • Keep the church pure (Josh.7:1,11; 1 Cor. 5:2,6,7; we may think we can ignore a brother’s sin: Mt.16:5-12; Gal.5:7-9,13: II Jn.9-11) • Save the soul of the erring one (1 Cor. 5:4-5, Js.5:19-20) • Protect others in the church (1 Cor. 5:6) • Be an example to the world (Mt. 5:13-16; II Pet.2:2-9)

  8. Examples • Those who sin against a brother (Mt. 18:15-17, Lk.17:3; Rom.2:11; Gal.6:1; Js.5:19-20; I Thes.5:12-15) • Fornicator, covetous, unclean (I Cor.5:1,4-5; II Cor.12:21-13:1-2; judge those within I Cor.5:12-13; Eph. 5:3-5) • False teachers, divisive men (Rom. 16:17-18; I Tim.6:3-5; Titus 3:10-11; II Tim.3:5; IIJn.10; Acts13:44-46; Rom.2:8-9,11-13; Prov.6:16-19) • Disorderly (II Thes. 3:6,10,11,14,15; I Thes.5:14; Heb.10:25; II Tim.4:10)

  9. Who Should Be Disciplined? • I Jn.1:7 walk in the light vs. those who walk in rebellion (Is.59:1-2) • Christ’s authority Mt.28:18-20; Col.3:17 -I Cor.5:4-5; Jesus reigns as head over the church (Col.1:18) -Those on outside belong to Satan (Eph.2:12; Col.1:13) -To be admonished by the saved, one is delivered back to the kingdom of darkness (I Tim.1:18-20 (Hymenaeus & Alexander) -Affect of church discipline (II Cor.2:6-8; bring him/her back to the Lord) • The brother or sister who refuses to repent of sin. • Fellowship is not severed because of a particular sin being committed, but rather, because of an unrepentant attitude or disposition of heart toward the sin or sins committed.

  10. When Do We Withdraw? • Establish that sin has been committed • Sin must be proved (1 Jn. 3:4; Mt. 18:15-17) • Proof of Achan’s sin shown to all (Josh. 7:22-23) • Cannot act on hearsay (1 Tim. 5:19) • Give sufficient time to reach the erring (Mt. 18:15-17) • Time given for entire church to act • Visits, cards, admonishments, & prayers • After all efforts fail—action taken (1 Cor. 5) • Withdrawal—last step in long chain of efforts to save the erring brother or sister

  11. Who Would Not Support Church Discipline? • Other sinners (2 Cor. 12:21-13:2) • Ignorant and untaught (Lev. 5:17) • Grumblers looking for a complaint • Those who think they know better than God how to save the erring. • Those with little faith (2 Cor. 5:7) • Those who put fellowship with men above fellowship with God (Mt. 10:37; Jn. 12:42-43). • Power-seekers (2 Sam. 15:4)

  12. Corrective Church Discipline • Appointed by God to save His erring children! • Who are we to fight against God (Acts 5:39)? • Who are we to question God (Rom. 9:20-21)? • Can we withstand God (Acts 11:17)?

  13. How To Treat Those Who Have Been Disciplined? • Public announcement (1 Cor. 5:3-5) • “Mark” (Rom. 16:17) • “Withdraw” and “Note” (2 Thess. 3:6, 14) • “Admonish” and “Reject” (Titus 3:10) • Individual Practice of Discipline • Proper support of whole body (2 Cor. 2:6) • Do not keep company with him (2 Thess. 3:14) • Do not associate with him (1 Cor. 5:11) • Do not eat with him (1 Cor. 5:11) • Do not receive him (2 John 10-11) • Treat as a heathen and tax collector (Mt. 18:18)

  14. Reasons Given For Not Practicing Discipline: • We are not to judge. • Tear up church and do more harm than good. • It will harden them in their sins. • No one is perfect, we all sin. • Their family will be upset if we discipline. • Our other preachers never said much about this. • We didn’t withdraw from some in past years, its not fair to start now.

  15. Questions • Could I work on the same job? • Could I eat in the same café? • Could I accept invitations from other Christians if they also invited those who were disciplined? • What if my spouse is disciplined? • What about the parent-child relationship?

  16. Cut off From his people Gen. 17:14 Exod. 30:33, 38 Lev. 7:20-21, 25, 27 Lev. 19:8; 23:29 Num. 9:13 Exod. 32:28-29 Lev. 10:1-7 Deut. 13:6-11; 21:18-21 Josh. 7:15-25; Deut. 24:16 1 Sam. 3:13; 1 Kgs. 15:11-13 Ezra 10:3, 4, 11 Matt. 10:34-36 Matt. 12:46-50 Luke 9:62 1 Cor. 5:11 2 Thess. 3:6, 14-15 Matt. 18:15-17 Are Family Members Exempt?

  17. Working With God To Save Souls • God Has Done His Part • Sacrificed His Son For Us • Revealed Plan For Saving Souls • We Must Do Our Part • Warn the Unruly – Gal. 6:1; 1 Thess. 5:14 • Withdraw From Disorderly – 2 Thess. 3:6 • Public Announcement – 1 Cor. 5:4-5 • Private Application – 1 Cor. 5:11 • Sinner Must Do His Part • Repent, Confess, and Correct – Acts 8:22