Friday, January 16, 2009

Can the modern church structure follow Galations 6:1-3?

"Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch of yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ."
Last week I went over to pick up a friend and take him to our Saturday night home fellowship supper. I brought my family along since we would be going straight over to the house where we were meeting. So I went into the old apartment building. As I entered it reaped of alcohol. There was a lot of noise coming from upstairs. When I went up the stairs there was an open bottle of beer on the steps. Then on top of the stairs a gentleman was sliding along the hallway drinking. I somehow avoided a collision and went to knock on my friends door.
I got to the apartment and his door was opened and the light was out. Then some young lady came out from another apartment and said oh he is over here. I went to her apartment and there was my friend drunk. Man I was fuming inside. I just looked at him and said ok then walked off. I went down stairs and got into my van. The kids asked where J was at. I told them something came up and he couldn't come.
This gentleman is someone I have been mentoring in the Lord for over 2 months. I meet at his house every Thursday evening for Bible study. We had agreed that I would come over on Saturday and pick him up. So when I got there and found him in the condition I did it just hit me wrong.
I went to the fellowship and couldn't get him off my mind. Then as I was just pondering about washing my hands of everything. (Of course I really wouldn't do that), but it was just random thoughts. Anyway as that was going on the Lord showed me Galations 6:1-3.
As I read the word it was like the Lord was saying you know what to do.
So my thought is this. How many pastors, or church members could actually do something like what Galations 6 says given that the only time they ever meet is on Sundays? Then it is only for a short time so they don't hardly get to know each other.
How many people in a given church are in a transgression and no one knows it? How can someone who is spiritual restore them if all they know of someone is their first name, hand they shake or a face they see on Sundays?
So it seems that we should be having more of an intimate meeting time when we come together. More than a greeting time when a song is playing then you go back to your seat.
You see if I didn't have a close knit friendship with my brother I mentioned then who would I be to tell him how to walk? Since I have had time to fellowship and share the word I have his respect and can come to him with gentleness to see him restored. I can do all of this without being rebuked by him.
I ended up at his house last night (Thursday) for our weekly bible study. I had told him on Monday to read Galations without telling him why. So last night when we went through the study he realized that God was speaking correction. He understood and didn't get upset.
So I am here to say we need to really know each other more. We need to be more aquainted with our neighbors in Christ in order to hold each othere accountable. Also as we do this making sure we don't fall into the same temptations as Paul also warns.
It's like the old song says: "WE ARE FAMILY! ALL MY BROTHERS SISTERS AND ME!"
Can you sing that song and mean it when it concerns where you fellowship?

1 comment:

Lionel Woods said...

SO,

Brother, you are right. It is funny that most times we see two extremes and one normal reaction.

1. Is straight ignoring the sin
2. Is jumping straight to rebuking/correction/church discipline

The normal mode of operation is to just stop dealing with the guy. He is a drunkard will always be a drunkard so let him stay in his drunkeness and just find someone who is "serious" about being discipled!This is where many of us fall in. Just punt the dude and move on find someone who will do everything we ask.

But real realtionship doesn't allow a man to wallow in sin, but also will not just get rid of the person. He is your brother, thus we are to restore with gentleness and even help the brother carry his burden of struggling with alcohol. It is much easier to do the first two and though it hurts takes much less time to do the third. But to walk with a brother through thick and thin that takes the Spirit (patience, gentleness, love, "putting up with")