I hear many stories about people who have been hurt in church. Either due to ill treatment, made to feel left out, or were the object of gossip and judgment. Somehow they got lost in the midst of hundreds of people. Insignificant, unnoticed and unable to serve. We all know there’s no such thing as a perfect church. Everyone sins and makes mistakes. Yes, even that “man of God.” We’re all to learn, grow together and forgive one another. I am thankful that I have not been abused in any way by a church. However, there’s something more insidious that happens in some church buildings. It’s when we have been led down a wrong path, perhaps for years, by a man or a religion that doesn’t know God or the Bible.
A church building is where we are supposed to pray and worship God. It’s where we are to be rightly taught His word. Where we are trained and equipped to use our spiritual gifts, taught how to endure spiritual trials and how to witness to the lost. It’s a place where we encourage, exhort and help fellow Christians. It is not a place for the unregenerate (those not spiritually born again) to teach. Or those who repeatedly read into the scriptures what is not there, twisting them for their own agenda.
Some years ago when I had a Bible study in my home, a woman who belonged to a religion with millions of members, had her belief system torn apart piece by piece as we studied the Bible. She was terribly hurt and accused her church of lying to her. The emotional shock and feeling of betrayal was just too much that she stopped coming to Bible study. She died a few years later. I don’t know if she ever came to the cross of Christ and believed in what happened there for her salvation. I only know that her soul was crushed and giving up her religion was something she could not do. It was her life. She depended on the leaders to have a pipeline to God, to be His representatives on earth, enabling them to teach Truth. She didn’t search the Scriptures herself.
Although there are no perfect churches, we should never attend one or maintain our membership if it adheres to false teachings. The long term damage will one day reveal itself. Many who are led astray, may find themselves following this false teacher to an eternity separated from God.
So, if someone is telling you to stay in your church because you are sinning if you don’t go and overlook the fact that the pastor has some false beliefs, run! Get out of there! Have nothing to do with it. Do not listen to or condone false doctrines.
Sometimes the best church is the one most people overlook. That small, plain building where the word of God is rightly divided by a man who loves God and Truth.