Archive for ‘May, 2011

Is Local Church Membership Biblical?

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Ecclesiology (doctrine of the church) is important — Jesus died for his Tribe, and he has promised to build it, use it and come back for it. The question of whether or not local church membership is biblical, or even helpful, is especially relevant given the cultural backdrop of modern-day believers. Our friends over at 9 Marks (a ministry we love and commend to you) spend a lot of time focusing on what healthy New Testament churches look like, and what biblical ecclesiology is. The following is an excerpt from a recent article by Matt Chandler hosted at 9 Marks on the issue church membership:

When you begin to look at these texts it becomes clear that God’s plan for his church is that we would belong to a local covenant community of faith. This is for our own protection and maturation, and for the good of others.

If you view church as some sort of ecclesiological buffet, then you severely limit the likelihood of your growing into maturity. … But when church is just a place you attend without ever joining, like an ecclesiological buffet, you just might consider whether you’re always leaving whenever your heart begins to be exposed by the Spirit, and the real work is beginning to happen.

Read the entire article here.

What Kind of Friend are You?

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The following is an excerpt from a series on friendship by our friends over at the Acts 29 Network:

Godly Friends

Prov. 13:20 – “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”

Devoted Friends

Prov. 17:17 – “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”

Prov. 18:24 – “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.”

Sanctifying Friends

Prov. 27:6 – “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.”

Prov. 27:9 – “Oil and perfume make the heart glad, and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel.”

Fake Friends

Prov. 19:4 – “Wealth brings many new friends, but a poor man is deserted by his friend.”

Prov. 19:6 – “Many seek the favor of a generous man, and everyone is a friend to a man who gives gifts.”

Sinful Friends

Prov. 16:28 – “A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.”

Prov. 17:9 – “Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.”

Prov. 22:24–25 – “Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man, lest you learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.”

Painful Friends

Prov. 25:17 – “Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor’s house, lest he have his fill of you and hate you.”

Prov. 25:19 – “Trusting in a treacherous man in time of trouble is like a bad tooth or a foot that slips.”

Prov. 25:20 – “Whoever sings songs to a heavy heart is like one who takes off a garment on a cold day, and like vinegar on soda.”