Skip to comments.FBC JAX FL member threatened w/arrest: Church Discipline - FBC Jax Style - Part 1
Posted on 12/06/2008 5:48:37 AM PST by graceforrahab
Based on what I know about the Anon 11:51 situation, our discipline committee is acting more like a gestapo, as someone posted yesterday. A man is accused of being divisive in the church through blogging, so the committee as a first step of "reconciliation and restoration"... writes a letter outlining the sins, attaches a trespass warrant banning the man AND his wife from the property until they meet with the committee. I haven't yet found that part of the church discipline process yet in Matthew 18, but maybe its in the Greek text that only Mac himself understands. The committee then sends two of the most long time tenured staff members to the man's house on Thanksgiving Eve, one of them his former Sunday School teacher he says, to deliver the letter, with no explanation. The man immediately replies (he has given me the copy of his reply letter) he will gladly meet with them if he can get the bylaws in advance to understand his rights and the committee's function, and if he can bring representation. By the way, the man explained in his reply to the committee that they wished to see their daughter sing this past Wednesday night and desired the tresspass warnings to be removed, but the man says the committee refused unless he and his wife FIRST met with the committee without the bylaws being provided, and without any representation, prior to the Wednesday night service. So the man said he and his wife complied with the trespass warnings and did not attend the services with their daughter.
(Excerpt) Read more at fbcjaxwatchdog.blogspot.com ...
Has anyone heard of such a thing? A pastor feels so threatened by a blogger that they issue trespass warnings unless and until "said" person meets with the Disciplinary Committee.
Is it even legal?
As to the legality, the deck has been stacked against him, and any other challengers to the power elite with the changes in the Bylaws which incorporated the disciplinary committee. Reportedly the members voted and approved the bylaws, even if they were stupid enough to vote for them site unseen.
Legal? A church can and should be able to run itself how it sees fit, would we want Congress or the Senate making laws about who can or who can not go to a church? Given the separation between church and state, I doubt if a law would even be constitutional.
So, it's probably legal to decide that one of their members is no longer a member, or to ban him and his wife from their property.
I think in Jacksonville Anon and his family should be able to find many other churches that would welcome them.
It sounds like their approach to church discipline is messed up. But please help us if lawyers and courts get in involved.
Can you notify your Baptist list members of this thread?
Sounds like something out of The Effective Church Splitter's Guide
Chuch discipline is supposed to remain in the church. The Bible specifically admonishes believers about taking legal action against one another. You are apparently have taken sides with the person to be disciplined and are stirring the pot by going to secular message boards with it.
As long as their actions are within the canon law of their church or within their congregations own by laws it is legal. And unless it involved some sort of violation of civil law the courts would not hear any pleading about the church’s activities from this man.
***divisive through blogging****
I’m assuming the man was criticizing something/someone related to the church on his blog.
My experience as a pastor says it’s an awful lot easier to criticize than to be a leader, so my initial impulse is to write this down as sour grapes. Anyone who undertakes any project in a church always gets the standard treatment of the spectator-Christian. (He/she could have/should have done XYZ, blah, blah, yada, yada.)
That said, my sense of the biblical discipline process is that it is supposed to be a healing mission and not an antagonistic mission. To hand someone a letter and not say anything, not encourage, not explain, not anything except some severe “serving of papers” is a bit bizarre, and in my reading of the bible, diametrically opposite of the biblical intent.
They all sound like they could use a trip to the pharmacy to get a new bottle of wisdom pills.
That might depend on what he is saying on his blog about the church. I didn't read it all by clicking the link but it sounds like the poster is pimping his/her own blog here.
The church has a right to tell disruptors to go elsewhere, the same as the mods boot people from F.R.
Sounds like there is a whole lot more to this that is “below the surface” than is apparent on the surface. I will pray for them all but I learned a long time ago not to go “stomping” in piles of unknown “stuff”...
Welcome to FR.
Yes, it is legal. Indeed, if anything, your complaints seem to arise from the fact that they have taken steps that a good lawyer would recommend.
Since it appears that the bloggers have not followed Biblical mandates, church discipline would seem to be not only appropriate, but necessary.
It does sound like the bloggers would be happier in a connectional church rather than one that is congregational in structure.
I didn't read through all of the posting, but I didn't see any denial that the target of the discipline was the owner or had a controlling interest in the blog. Perhaps you could highlight that language for my benefit.
Perhaps the solution would be for the attackers to step from behind their masks of anonymity.
thanks for the ping. this is interesting and I, like a previous poster believe that there is more to this...
A little context here: Is this a minister or church I should have heard of? Your church?
I took your #6 comment that you were saying I am the blogger person. I’m not.
My questions re the public apology were in regard to the letter being delivered to the wrong person. If the church nailed the wrong person then do you think they should apologize publicly?
Truth is that I'm just not wise enough to know. All I can say is that I pray for the people in my own situation(s) and leave the rest to God.
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