Church discipline does not remove all evil from the church – for we are all sinners. However, church discipline restrains evil and visible sin in the church. Visible-defiant sin provides a poor example and is harmful to other Christians. Church discipline humbly removes from the church the infectious-haughty-proud-defiant-disorderly-rebellious sinners who profess to be brothers and sisters. Church discipline removes those who aggressively or passive-aggressively refuse to forsake their visible-indiscreet sin.
Yet, those who remain in the church also sin, but their sins are discreet, private, and unknown to most men (but are known to God). These remaining believers fight against sin, and they are at war with sin. They are frustrated by their sin. Yes, their discreet sins are just as horrid and rebellious against the Spirit. But, these remaining brothers and sisters have a different attitude toward sin; they are not haughty, proud, and defiant; instead, they are sad, humbled, and troubled that they chose not to walk or to be filled in the Spirit, but they remorsefully fulfilled the lust of their flesh, they regretfully were influenced by the world, they are sick that they listened to the Devil. These brothers and sisters want to be holy because HE is holy. They consistently repent of their sin, and they trust in Christ for His forgiveness.
Oh how sad church discipline must be for all involved. I wish all would be humbled, truly repentant, and reconciled to The Lord and His church. Reconciliation is the optimistic goal of church discipline.
Oh how I would hate to see church discipline. But, oh how we need to see it more. The evangelical church in America has turned a blind eye to defiant sin within.
God bless. Bob.
See scriptures below.
15 “If your brother sins, go and show him his fault when the two of you are alone. If he listens to you, you have regained your brother.
16 But if he does not listen, take one or two others with you, so that at the testimony of two or three witnesses every matter may be established.
17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. If he refuses to listen to the church, treat him like a Gentile or a tax collector.
18 “I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever you release on earth will have been released in heaven.
19 Again, I tell you the truth, if two of you on earth agree about whatever you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you.
20 For where two or three are assembled in my name, I am there among them.”
1 Corinthians 5
1 It is actually reported that sexual immorality exists among you, the kind of immorality that is not permitted even among the Gentiles, so that someone is cohabiting with his father’s wife.
2 And you are proud! Shouldn’t you have been deeply sorrowful instead and removed the one who did this from among you?
3 For even though I am absent physically, I am present in spirit. And I have already judged the one who did this, just as though I were present.
4 When you gather together in the name of our Lord Jesus, and I am with you in spirit, along with the power of our Lord Jesus,
5 turn this man over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.
6 Your boasting is not good. Don’t you know that a little yeast affects the whole batch of dough?
7 Clean out the old yeast so that you may be a new batch of dough – you are, in fact, without yeast. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed.
8 So then, let us celebrate the festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of vice and evil, but with the bread without yeast, the bread of sincerity and truth.
9 I wrote you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people.
10 In no way did I mean the immoral people of this world, or the greedy and swindlers and idolaters, since you would then have to go out of the world.
11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who calls himself a Christian who is sexually immoral, or greedy, or an idolater, or verbally abusive, or a drunkard, or a swindler. Do not even eat with such a person.
12 For what do I have to do with judging those outside? Are you not to judge those inside?
13 But God will judge those outside. Remove the evil person from among you.
2 Thessalonians 3
6 But we command you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to keep away from any brother who lives an undisciplined life and not according to the tradition they received from us.
7 For you know yourselves how you must imitate us, because we did not behave without discipline among you,
8 and we did not eat anyone’s food without paying. Instead, in toil and drudgery we worked night and day in order not to burden any of you.
9 It was not because we do not have that right, but to give ourselves as an example for you to imitate.
10 For even when we were with you, we used to give you this command: “If anyone is not willing to work, neither should he eat.”
11 For we hear that some among you are living an undisciplined life, not doing their own work but meddling in the work of others.
12 Now such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to work quietly and so provide their own food to eat.
13 But you, brothers and sisters, do not grow weary in doing what is right.
14 But if anyone does not obey our message through this letter, take note of him and do not associate closely with him, so that he may be ashamed.
15 Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.
16 Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with you all.