Friday, August 05, 2005

Is church discipline dead?

My man Matt Wilks sent me *this* great article from Christianity Today about church discipline. It goes along with my post ->here<- about the recent events in the NHL as a lesson on church discipline. Here's a clip from the article:
The Protestant reformers named three "marks by which the true church is known": the preaching of the pure doctrine of the gospel, the pure administration of the sacraments, and the exercise of church discipline to correct faults...
In fact, every society on the face of the earth, past and present, has its codes of conduct, identifying behaviors it will not tolerate. The only questions are: first, who or what defines that code of conduct; and, second, how are violators of that code dealt with....
Very intersting stuff. I can't help but think about one of my pentecostal friend who talks about a church he used to attend. If a church member fell into sin, they had a ceremony where the member would be "handed over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh". This was done via a group cursing ceremony where they would actually pronounce death upon the individual, "destruction of the flesh", and then boot the offender who was never to return. That's the most intense I've heard. But what about you? Have you ever seen church discipline in action? What's your take on church discipline? When should it be done? How public should it be? Comment below, or on the discussion forum topic "Church discipline stories" ->here<-

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