Q. My wife and I had been attending a country church for several years. At some point, the pastor started removing long-time members who didn’t agree with his idea of a “seeker-friendly” contemporary church from the board. Then he appointed board members who were new-comers, did away with traditional services, and caused many senior members to leave the church, including us.
Since then, we have been trying to find an evangelical church that isn’t either seeker-friendly or one of the very legalistic churches that remind me of the Judaizers that plagued the early church. I don’t want to behave like those mentioned in Hebrews 10:25, but in our area, I see apostasy in every church I’ve contacted. What to do?
A. I can’t prove this in Scripture, but I think the true church is being taken back to its beginnings, meeting in homes and in small groups. The falling away, spoken of in 2 Thes. 2:3, is taking place before our eyes as the so-called Emerging Church siphons off those who aren’t really born again and are eager to be a part of the latest trend. These people are sometimes called “Christians in name only.” Paul said they have a form of Godliness but deny its power, and we should have nothing to do with them (2 Tim. 3:5).
Jesus said that in the last days the believing Church would have little strength but would keep His word and not deny His name. He said He would come for us soon and to hold on. (Rev. 3:8,11) On the other hand, He will spew the apostate church out of His mouth because it would consider itself wealthy and in need of nothing, while He stands outside the door knocking, trying in vain to get in. (Rev. 3:16,17,20).
Hebrews 10:25 says we shouldn’t give up meeting together. But this doesn’t mean you have to settle for a church where you’re not comfortable. You can take part in a Bible study, a fellowship group, or a home church. If you can’t find a church to attend, look for one of these, or ask some of the others who have left to join you in starting one of your own.