Why Am I in a Church like the One I’m in? pt. 2
Churches today use a lot of different means to get people to join. They often start with the interests that people have, their carnal desires, hoping that their lust could be a jumping off point for spiritual interest later. A whole new theology has been built around this, a doctrine to justify talking people into coming to church on their terms. Fundamentalists, evangelicals, emergents, and even the orthodox use marketing techniques and strategies to lure people in. This does give one major explanation for why you will hear people offer many different reasons why they attend church or why they go to the church they do.
In my first submission in this series, I contended that God should be the top priority for why you’re in the church you’re in. God should be what and Who church is about. This one thought should serve as a baseline for elucidating why we’ve joined the church we have. In one sense, the thinking about God relates to the subject of eternity. Since we believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, we make decisions based upon the fact that we will face God some day and that He is our ultimate Judge. With this in mind, all the following reasons for why I’m in the church I’m in do relate to the first. All the reasons hence will correlate to the first reason. All the other reasons consider what will please God, since He is why I’m in church.
With pleasing God as the major grid for my church decision, the doctrine and practice of a church stands as the next two criteria for joining a church. I want a church that believes and practices according to Scripture. As long as a church keeps the same, right doctrine and practice, I will stay a part of it. I see those as the emphasis in the Bible. We want the right view of God and then to do what He says. Those both keep God in the highest priority. We know God exalts His Word. Jesus said that those Who love Him will keep what He said. With all other factors considered, belief and practice will determine what church I’m a part of.
If a church continues in the right doctrine and obeys the Bible, I can keep fellowshiping with it. I may have a personality issue with someone else in the church. I want to get that resolved. Of course, that’s what God wants me to do, but it will be worth it to remain in fellowship with a church that believes right and does right. Even if I’m the one that has been offended, I want to do what it takes to stay in the church.