Church Split Called Doctrinal?!

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by The Lost Alpaca, Nov 18, 2002.

  1. The Lost Alpaca

    The Lost Alpaca
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    I have a friend who's attending a split off of the church I attend. Unfortunately he's become really close with the pastor of said church... who used to be the pastor of the whole church, but who decided he wouldn't be willing to abide by his contract and stay within the church constution. So basically he resigned but the next sunday he and the head pastor who had also resigned were leading a "bible study" with several of the church's members.
    The worst part is that several of this church's members are claiming that what they've done is completely allowed by scripture.
    So I've shown him the verses that show that Christ and Paul taught on keeping the unity of the local church, but he refuses to listen.
    I wouldn't have so much of a problem with my friend going if I didn't know that the members of this other church are continually gossiping about our church, and the pastor knows about it but doesn't do anything. Infact one of the wives of an elder there told one of our members "the reason your church has so much cancer is because there's so many sinners".
    That and the pastors are both incredibly legalistic.
    Oh and our church later found out after the split (because we were silly enough to not research the head pastor before he came) that the pastor had acctually split another church in the same way before. So there's evidence that it was a planned split, and I get the impression from talking to some people from that church that they were trying to get "the real Christians".

    So yeah... if anyone has any advice that I could use to show my friend how utterly... uhhh... that he's wrong... that'd be great cause it sucks.
     
  2. Johnv

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    I personally don't believe that church (institutions) splits are doctrinal or non-doctrinal. They just are what they are. Churches most often seep to split because of a disagreement in doctrine, belief, practice, or custom. As long as humans remain imperfect, church institutions will remain imperfect as well.

    I don't think that helps you much, but I tend to view denominational differences with a grain of salt.
     
  3. Dr. Bob

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    The ethics (or LACK of ethics I should say) in splitting a church, then feeling God's will to start a new church with the disatisfied segment, smacks of scheming and a divisive spirit.

    Pastors who feel it necessary to leave a church ought to leave town, whether or not some others may also opt to leave and start a new work. It is simply not ethical.

    I have a special challenge in my ministry, since I am long-term interim, then will move on to another church/group in the same town. Some from a church may feel a special kinship to me or enjoy my style of preaching.

    I cannot keep them from going to a new church, but simply remind them that I am very temporary.
     
  4. The Lost Alpaca

    The Lost Alpaca
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    thanks, yeah the main justification that I keep hearing is that it's because the members all started it and so they were just ministering to those who wanted them to. But the point that's been raised a lot is... if you wouldn't minister to them while they were with others, and you genuinely felt God calling you to do elsewise then why go lead a "bible study" with them.
    The unfortunate thing is that I did join the splitters for a while before I realized that it wasn't right. So my friend thinks that the only reason that I don't like his church is because their pastor treated me like... anyway, which isn't true, I mean. yes he did kinda treat me with the same amount of respect that got a ton off people mad at him at the church. But the reason why I left was because I realized how wrong it was, I still love a lota people in that church tons... the worst part is I LIKED a lot of them more than the people who stayed. And I think a major problem is the fact that the pastors are both such good teachers that everyone assumes they must be right on everything. Infact I kinda catch that same behavior in my friend. Normally he questions EVERYTHING, but recently at a meeting of the church it was decided that the ushers HAD to wear ties, because someone had complained about people wearing inappropriate things... or stuff by North american culture is inappropriate. If anyone else had made that decition I have very little dout he would have quickly brought up the point of Paul rather having women dress modestly, and a tie is kinda the opposite. I mean there's nothing wrong with a tie, I love mine... but I should have at least heard some objection to the impossition of world values on the congergation... and I heard none... it's really sad because he's SUCH a smart person.
     
  5. The Lost Alpaca

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  6. Ben W

    Ben W
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    What is the specific reason they gave for leaving?

    I have been through a church split also, concerning speaking in Tounges, It wasnt a good thing to happen at all.
     
  7. The Lost Alpaca

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    their reasons were varried, in general the pastors wanted to do some stuff that the elder board didn't want to do. Stuff like the Pastor was told that he couldn't speak on the end times. Why?
    Cause he would loudly proclaim the catholic church as the antichrist without propperly explaining why.

    Another one was they went behind the elder board's back and disbanded the praise and worship teams. Which personally I didn't care, our church has never been big on doing worship that could be confused with exherberant.

    The pastors had basically for their second year in office done a WHOLE LOTA stuff what had made people really made, stuff like flat out lieing to people, counceling people that emotions were completely useless and that they shouldn't matter at all... they do matter that's why we have them, they should not dicatate how people live, but they're useful.
    They got rid of all the different Cell Groups in the church, in general they had been very very rude to some people and overly nice to others.

    So when they decided to resign before facing up to the consiquences, their faithful following of people who God was working in because they'd benifited from the preaching decided HEY LETS GO WITH THEM!
    A friend of mine has described it as... the pastor and his friends left and started their own church.
    And really that's how it was. The pastors were friends with almost half the church. And they harassed people into leaving the church and joining them. I know one person told me that some people had bugged him to come and leave the church because there were to many sinners... I guess they have blow up people at their sunday morning services.

    No one really knew exactly WHY they left or resigned... it was kinda really cloak and dagger.
    The head pastor had been involved in a rival before, and ever since that's been his BIG thing and so I think he was trying to weed out the people that he thought would be good for the revival and get rid of the people who he thought were less spiritual.
    The funny thing was I talked to one of the people from that church who described them as the more spiritual members. I found that quite halarious.
    The pride was dripping so much I felt like getting a bucket.
    Ironically the verse Bryan posted in 1st Corinthians 11:18, right after that talks about how the pastors worked, they kinda tickled the ears of the people they liked, so they'd follow.

    One guy made it clear in a meeting once he was very unhappy about the fact that he hadn't been an elder yet.
    Which is ironic because our old pastor says he asked him a bunch.
    But now he's a decon there "because they veiw elders as being pastors".
    The worst part is there wasn't one reason... there were a bunch of dumb stupid things that people decided mattered.
     
  8. Pastor Larry

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    The initial post doesn't really give the reasons (at least as I saw). There are valid reasons for leaving a church, and IMO contrary to Bob's, valid reasons for starting a church in the same area. Based on the last post, it seems the church has some serious issues which points out its unbiblical organization.

    First, what is this church doing with an elder board that tells the pastor what he can and cannot preach on? All elders in the NT are pastors (it is not just a matter of "what they view" as you say, but rather a matter of what Scripture teaches). You will search in vain for a ruling elder board. It simply is not there. The pastor/elder(s) is the one in the church with authority. This scenario demonstrates the problem and the abdication of leadership that this "ruling elders" schemem presents. The pastor, who is given the charge to preach teh whole counsel of God, is told that he indeed cannot preach the "whole counsel" of God; he must omit certain parts of it. That elder board is wrong. The pastor should have stood up to them and rebuked them. A church should never tell a pastor what to preach. If he is not preaching biblical, then discipline him by first confrontation, and then removal. But to tell a pastor he must avoid certain topics is patently unbiblical, no matter who it comes from.

    Second, why do you need the elder's permission to disband a worship/praise team? Is not the pastor the one given charge in the church? Is he not biblically responsible for the direction and leadership of the church? Once again, you see the problems with bad organizational structure. It may have been unwise to disband it but that is not at issue. It is an issue of leadership in teh church.

    Getting rid of cell groups is certainly not an biblical matter however unwise it may have been to do without making the case and working change through time. Being rude to people is a problem. In short, this pastor may have some major problems. However, these problems would be solved by organizing the church biblically and teaching them how the local church is to operate based on scriptural terms. There may be questionable ethics involved, a matter which would be wrong. But on the face of it, and with the limited information you have given here, there were certainly good reasons for the pastor to leave that church as well as apparently good reasons for the church to ask the pastor to leave. Unfortunately, there seems to be wrong on both sides. As for that pastor starting a church in the area, that may be unwise and if Bob is referring simply to the pastor being the one to start the church, I am inclined on the whole to agree with him.

    I assume there is more than this and it is hard to form an opinion solely on these things. It would be unwise for us removed from the situation to pass full and final judgment on the whole situation so please take these as observations based on the limited information given here.

    [ November 19, 2002, 12:47 PM: Message edited by: Pastor Larry ]
     
  9. The Lost Alpaca

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    Personally I don't agree with the entire concept of an elder board. But at the same time, I think it worked out best in this situation because the Pastors weren't able to completely screw over the chruch.

    Basically our whole set up is mildly messed up. But the reason why the pastor couldn't preach on revelations was not because they wanted to control him or anything, it was because they didn't want him to completely piss off a whole section of the church that doesn't KNOW the differenecs between Catholics and Prodostants and then tell them their brothers or sister or sons or daughters are part of the antichrist.. this rarely sits well with people, esspecially those who arn't wise enough to understand the concepts involved (not that I agree with them either.)

    That said, the elder board shouldn't have had to stop him from preaching on that topic, he should have known that was a DUMB topic for a sermon.
     
  10. Pastor Larry

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    While I am not sure that bodily functions should be used as expressions on the Baptist Board, my point would be different. It appears that you are saying that a pastor should not preach on a topic because it might offend people. That seems as bad someone telling him what to preach. If your pastor believes that, then he should be able to make a biblical case that would convince the hearer.

    The truth is certainly offensive to people. While I am not personally convinced by the position you reference, it certainly has some merit and cannot be disproved from Scripture. A good many godly faithful exegetes have held it through the years. I personally think it is too narrow for the biblical text. However, we must admit without compunction that those who are catholic by conviction (that is, they understand and accept what the catholic church teaches) are unsaved. One cannot hold to biblical truth while at the same time having an understanding belief in the catholic doctrine. (I make a careful designation of "understanding belief" as opposed to those who do not fully understand the catholic doctrine). We, as preachers and even as Christians, cannot avoid doctrines of Scripture simply because some immature Christians might be offended. The answer is not avoidance but rather teaching. I believe a case can be made that this is the primary job of the pastor: to teach the doctrines of Scripture. If he cannot teach doctrine from Scripture, he should not be the pastor. We must handle these things with love and concern, but we must speak the truth in love. Recently, two life long Catholics (57 and 34) came to salvation in Christ and within a few weeks realized their relatives were lost and that their loved who had passed on without "doing what they did" (in their words) were in hell and that they would never see them again. That is encouraging to see that kind of growth as people wrestle with Scripture and learn from it.

    I would encourage you to give this whole idea of "offensiveness" of the truth some more thought.
     
  11. The Lost Alpaca

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    there's a reason that I didn't say cause he knew it would offend people.
    Offending, and pissing people off are two different things. You can offend someone without angering them.
    IE I can offend someoen with the fact that I'm a Christian but not intentionally try to anger them by shoving my God in their face and saying believe in Him for no reason without letting people know WHY I'm a Christian. This frustrates people and makes them angry. Not because you're wrong, but because you'er being stupid in how you tell them.
    Likewise the pastor would have been stupid to preach on his veiw of the antichrist because sunday morning is ment to help grow the church spiritually. I do not know how when people still don't get more basic things, how telling them who you think the antichrist is is helpful.
    Infact it's not, that's like giving a grade 9 student a book using termanology that you havn't taught them. Or giving you a Koran without you knowing Arabic. You may be able to understand it, but it's presented in a way that will make it so that you can't understand it, and so you shut off to the teaching because the person doing it isn't being a good teacher.
     
  12. Jessie

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    [ December 11, 2002, 11:02 AM: Message edited by: Jessie ]
     
  13. The Lost Alpaca

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    yeah... I dono they're looking to buy a building... and I can't help but wonder if I'll be praying for it to burn down once they buy it [​IMG]
    but yeah.. I dono the entire idea of a church split is DUMB.
    It's like... why on earth would a mass amount of people leave... esspecially whenan elder board is supposed to prevent things like that. I mean there'll always be people who like causing trouble but that shouldn't take away the nice people!
     

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