To Judge or Not to Judge!
In my other letter I told you not to have anything to do with immoral people. But I wasn’t talking about the people of this world. You would have to leave this world to get away from everyone who is immoral or greedy or who cheats or worships idols. I was talking about your own people who are immoral or greedy or who cheats or worships idols or curse others or get drunk or cheat. Don’t even eat with them! Why should I judge outsiders? Aren’t we supposed to judge only church members? God judges everyone else. The Scriptures say, “Chase away any of your own people who are evil.--------1Corinthians 5:9-13
This is the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Corinthian Church, in this letter, Paul is giving them advice on CHURCH DISCIPLINE. There seem to have been a problem of IMMORAL CHURCH MEMBERS, those who were IN the church and STILL PRACTICING or LIVING an IMMORAL LIFE.
Paul’s instructions to that Church was pretty cut and dried. He first lets the Church know who, exactly he was talking about. He says that it is NOT the WORLDLY PEOPLE but those who PROFESS to be FOLLOWERS and are MEMBERS of the Church and STILL LIVING IN SIN.
He tells them that it is NOT his job to judge the OUTSIDERS (worldly people) but that it IS the job of the TRUE BELIEVERS that are CHURCH MEMBERS to JUDGE those that are IN the Church and STILL PRACTICE their IMMORALITY. He ends his instructions with words of AUTHORITY, from the SCRIPTURES: “Chase away any of your own people who are evil.”
A LOT of people have argued about whether we, as church members, have the right to judge other church members, I believe that God’s word plainly tells us whether we have that right or not. I do want to say that I believe that this is probably the last thing to do, after the immoral church member has been visited with the options to REPENT or TURN AWAY from their IMMORAL lifestyle and they REFUSE to do so.
The Word of God is the WORD OF GOD, whether we think it is RIGHT or NOT, it is STILL THE WORD OF GOD and we as His Children need to OBEY IT. NOTICE, also Paul instructs the Church to NOT even EAT with them. His words are pretty strong, but it is EXACTLY what God desires and EXPECTS of those who are TRUE MEMBERS of the BODY OF CHRIST.
The PURPOSE of CHURCH DISCIPLINE is NOT to CAST the individual out of the Church PERMANENTLY, but to bring about RESTORATION of the ERRING MEMBER and to bring them back into the CHURCH BODY after a TRUE REPENTANCE is made.
If you have never given your HEART and LIFE to Jesus, and are LIVING in SIN, then you can change your lifestyle by: CONFESSING your sins to God and asking Him for His FORGIVENESS, BELIEVING, with ALL your HEART that Jesus died for YOU and is ALIVE, in Heaven, making intercession for you, before God, then ACCEPT His gift of SALVATION. Do it NOW, while you STILL can. He’s waiting!!!
If you’re a TRUE BELIEVER and are in a Church where you KNOW that there are MEMBERS or a MEMBER that is LIVING IN SIN and the Church is doing NOTHING to correct it,(CHURCH DISCIPLINE) you need to find out why and if they are not abiding by the WORD OF GOD. I would find another Church to worship in. Just saying!