Discipline

Churches in India: A People “Formed for God”

By Aubrey Sequeira | 9Marks Journal: Healthy Churches around the World | 12.12.2016

As a result of a low view of preaching for many years, the health of churches in India has suffered. Yet through a growing number of faithful shepherds, faithful preaching, and your prayers, the Lord may bring to India the reformation its churches need.

Churches in Israel: Proclaiming the True Messiah

By David Zadok | 9Marks Journal: Healthy Churches around the World | 12.12.2016

Churches in Israel are growing in evangelistic confidence and doctrinal care, even as they wrestle with the cost of being identified with Gentile believers.

Churches in Spain: A Smoking Flax He Will Not Quench

By Andrew Birch | 9Marks Journal: Healthy Churches around the World | 12.12.2016

Though many of the churches in Spain often confuse or lose the gospel in their preaching, there is a small and growing network of churches who love gospel clarity and church health.

A Guide for Praying Nation by Nation

By Jonathan Leeman | 9Marks Journal: Healthy Churches around the World | 12.12.2016

One of our hopes for this Journal is that it will spur you on in prayer for our brothers and sisters around the globe. To that end, we’ve compiled a list of prayer requests from our contributors.

Mailbag #43: Relationship to Excommunicated Members; Baptism & the Developmentally Disabled

By Jonathan Leeman | 12.02.2016

— How does your church care for an excommunicated member when they show up at church? — Can a person who wants to be a member of the church but is functionally at the level of a child be baptized?

Mailbag #42: Hypocritical Church Discipline; Pre-Marital Counseling for Two Unbelievers?

By Jonathan Leeman | 11.18.2016

—Why do churches discipline for sins like homosexuality and adultery but not other sins like gluttony or vanity or greed? —Would you do pre-marital counseling for two unbelievers? If so, what would you cover?

Mailbag #41: When the Church Votes “No” on a Clear Discipline Case; The Biblical Case of “Lay Elders”

By Jonathan Leeman | 11.11.2016

—What if the congregation votes “no” in a clear case of discipline? —Are “lay elders” a biblical category?

25 Years Ago, “Nine Marks” Was Born

By Mark Dever | 10.28.2016

On October 30, 1991—25 years ago this Sunday—Mark Dever wrote a letter to a church in Massachusetts. They needed a new pastor and wanted to know what they should be looking for. Mark responded with a list of nine must-haves—a list that has since become known as “nine marks of a healthy church.”

Mailbag #39: Turning Elder Training into a Program; Divorced, Repentant, but Not Seeking Reconciliation?

By Jonathan Leeman | 10.28.2016

—Is it wise to turn elder training into a program? —Can a divorced member of the church be repentant without seeking reconciliation with their spouse?

Is There Such a Thing as Church Authority?

By Greg Gilbert | 9Marks Journal: Authority: God's Good and Dangerous Gift | 09.30.2016

Here are seven points regarding the keys of the kingdom, and how local churches exercise authority through their use.

Book Review: Being There, by Dave Furman

Review by Paul Martin | 09.12.2016

This excellent new book is a how-to manual to care for the hurting.

When Do You Practice Church Discipline? And How Do You Confront the Sin?

By Jonathan Leeman | 06.01.2016

What sins should result in public church discipline? And how should we confront brothers or sisters in sin?

Mailbag #38: How to Shepherd Every Member; Shepherding by the “Parish Model”; What’s the “Church” in Matthew 18?

By Jonathan Leeman | 05.20.2016

— How can the elders of a large church ensure every member is both known and cared for? — We’d like to divide our church members by families and individuals and then designate them to a particular elder. What do you think of this approach? — In Matthew 18, what does Jesus mean when he says “tell it to the church”?

Mailbag #37: Congregationalism in China; A Defense of Building Bigger Buildings; Notifying the Recently Disciplined; Supporting a Widow Who Has Left the Church

By Jonathan Leeman | 05.10.2016

— How can something like congregationalism work in China, with its networks of related house churches? — The leaders at my church want to build a bigger building, yet it seems to me a waste of money. What should I do? — After someone has been disciplined for non-attendance, should the church notify the person as a final act of congregational care? — Twenty years ago, our church made a commitment to financially support our former pastor’s widow. She has since refused to attend our church. What should I do?

Mailbag #36: When Nominating Elders May Cause Disunity; Your 9 Marks Aren’t Enough; A Difficult Pastoral Situation

By Jonathan Leeman | 05.02.2016

— Should I move forward with installing a plurality of elders, even if the decision causes disunity in the church? — I agree with your nine marks—but seriously, where are the marks of love and prayer and missions? — The grandmother of an unwed and pregnant teenager wants to have her granddaughter’s baby shower at the church. How should I think through this?