Much that needs to be done in the Church is difficult due to it’s structure. The church as organized has difficulty keeping purity. We have minimized the inherent cost of following Jesus to a prayer thus creating the “Virtual Christian.”
There are 224 million Christians in the US. Wow! if this were actual we would live in a type of utopia. But we don’t! In the Church we don’t even have an ideal body and this in a supposed group of Christians. Makes you think huh?
With the church so disconnected it is hard to sort through the people determining who should be helped or removed. The affect on the church and the culture is apparent. How do we know? We said they would ” know us by our love” yet we aren’t. We are known almost universally as hypocrites. Many of us are not personally responsible for this negative PR but are affected by it in spite of our good works.
In a cattle herd we cull. We go through and determine the best stock and cull the rest therefore having a better herd that reproduces with the qualities that are valued and marketable. It’s is a hard world and tough decisions are made.
Heartless? No! If done Bionically it will produce fruit and give an opportunity for repentance for some and insure those who want to continue in sin can. Now they have that liberty without messing up the rest of their lives with the hang-ups of religion while purifying the herd. A perfect bargain at twice the price!
The criteria for culling is clear. 1 Peter 5:5 “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” NIV It is clear there are some that need grace and we the church are eager to give it since we have so bountifully benefitted from it. It is in our new nature.
But as true as we are to grace we need also fidelity to the other scriptures. 2 Tim 3:1-5 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
We could list many verses but I won’t belabor. With cattle some do not have the stomach to do the right thing. Killing isn’t easy, nor is cutting someone loose from the church. But we are to be bold and to love the Church enough to do the hard work. The fantastic thing about the Church is the door is always open for repentance for those removed. 1 Cor 5:4-5 When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present, 5 hand this man over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord. NIV
Preaching more clearly the call and cost of the Christian will filter out many of those spurious types. This is a certain element that must be changed. Actually this is central. The idea is start with good stock. Then there will be less need to cull.
I won’t entertain comments about whether or not it should be done. The scripture is clear and the case is closed.
But how do we do it?
How should the church structure reform to perform this work judiciously?
Do we know people well enough in the Church to even see what is going on with them?
How will we change this?