Das fragte sich Matt Chandler. Ständig bekam er Argumente wie diese zu hören:
In conversations with these men and women I began to hear things like “The church is corrupt; it’s just about money and a pastor’s ego,” or “I love Jesus, it’s the church I have a problem with.” My favorite one was, “When you organize the church it loses its power.”
Zum Nachdenken kam er dann in einer Predigtvorbereitung (über Hebräer 13,17):
With conflicts already brewing over other doctrines that I viewed as far more central, I wondered if we should let this church membership thing slide and come back to it later. I was preparing at the time to preach through the book of Hebrews and “happened” to be in chapter 13 when verse 17 leapt off the page: “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”
Two questions occurred to me. First, if there is no biblical requirement to belong a local church, then which leaders should an individual Christian obey and submit to? Second, and more personally, who will I as a pastor give an account for?
Nachdem er weitere Texte aus dem Neuen Testament analysiert hat, kommt er zum Schluss:
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.
Dazu passend: Bücher von betanien zum Thema Gemeinde