Church Part 7 Church Discipline
IV. Marks of an authentic church: Baptism; Lord’s Supper; Church Discipline
C. Church Discipline Why/how does a church exercise church discipline? What’s the purpose of discipline: for the person? For the Body?
Gal 6:1 Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any fault/trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness...
1Cor 5:5 deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
1. Purpose - To protect and purify the Bride of Christ so it can reflect His Glory
” (1) To bring glory to God and enhance the testimony of the flock. http://www.bible.org/docs/theology/eccles/churdisc.htm
(2) To restore, heal, and build up sinning believers (Matt. 18:15; 2 Thess. 3:14-15; Heb. 12:10-13; Gal. 6:1-2; Jam. 5:20).
(3) To produce a healthy faith, one sound in doctrine (Tit. 1:13; 1 Tim. 1:19-20).
(4) To win a soul to Christ, if the sinning person is only a professing Christian (2 Tim. 2:24-26).
(5) To silence false teachers and their influence in the church (Tit. 1:10-11).
(6) To set an example for the rest of the body and promote godly fear (1 Tim. 5:20).
(7) To protect the church against the destructive consequences that occur when churches fail to carry out church discipline...”
a. Why needed: Pride/Independence, Weakness, and the Deceitfulness of sin
A person in need of being disciplined is not connected to the Head of the Body, yet can frequently think they are; they are in isolation. The spiritual separation from Christ is visibly demonstrated by their physical separation for the Body of Christ. A sinning unrepentant believer can be so deceived by the promises of Satan that they are taken captive by him to do his will. A deceived person is blind, living in the dark, hiding from the light. 1Jn 1:6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
2Tim 2: 25 in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, 26 and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.
b. Why reluctance: Selfish love, Immaturity, Carnality - worldly values, Uncertainty
Just like a parent hesitates to do what is in a child’s best interest, so a church can fail to love as Christ wants them to. An immature believer frequently lacks discernment and the ability to recognize sin and the awfulness of its consequences. Like Satan in Eden, they minimize the consequences of disobedience, buying into Satan’s original lie.
1Cor 5:2 And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he who has done this deed might be taken away from among you. 3 For I indeed, as absent in body but present in spirit, have already judged (as though I were present) him who has so done this deed. 4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you are gathered together, along with my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, 5 deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. 6 Your glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole lump? 7 Therefore purge out the old leaven...11 But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner----not even to eat with such a person 1...Do you not judge those who are inside? 13 But those who are outside God judges. Therefore "put away from yourselves the evil person."
See Church Discipline An Evidence of Christian Love - Gil Rugh http://www.biblebb.com/files/CHDISCIP.HTM
2. Process (see outline How to Respond to Carnal Christians) and especially Mat 18:...
Private 15 if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother.
Factual 16 But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established
Public 17a if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church,
Rejection 17b let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.
Binding 18 Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. 19 Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them."
Titus 3:10 Reject a divisive (one who chooses own way) man after the first and second admonition (warning),
2Th 3:6 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves from every brother that walks disorderly (#813), and not after the tradition which he received from us.
2Thess 3:14 if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed.
3. Product: Instruction and either: Restoration or Destruction 2Cor 2:7; 1Cor 11
1Tim 1:20 of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.
1Tim 5:19 Do not receive an accusation against an elder except from two or three witnesses. 20 Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear.
Destruction of the Flesh: A unrepentant believer from whom Christ has withdrawn His shielding protection is naked to the physical and mental onslaughts of Satan, much in the way Job was attacked and ruined. The Lord Jesus allows a person and those around him/her to reap the consequences of sin without mercy until they repent. The flesh is a desire for the temporal (power, pleasure, and possession) often garbed in the robe of the hypocritical Pharisees. God goodness in disciplining sometimes leads to repentance as sinning believers discover that sin isn’t as much fin as they thought it would be and that Satan is not as good a master as Christ.