Mailbag #68: Does a Church’s Maturity Affect Church Discipline Approach? . . . Should We Bring into Membership a Family Who Doesn’t Speak Our Language?By Jonathan Leeman | 11.10.2017
— Should a congregation’s age, spiritual maturity, and experience of church discipline play into a “muddy” church discipline decision? — How should we maintain a robust membership process while taking into account a new family’s language barrier?
Mailbag #67: What Should Members Vote On (And How) . . . Responding to Members’ Foolish Social Media PostsBy Jonathan Leeman | 11.03.2017
— What are considered “important matters” for members to vote on—and how do you practically carry out the voting process? — How should I respond to a church member’s foolish use of social media?
— Is preaching required in missionary contexts, or do Bible studies suffice? — “Closed communion” seems exclusive and arrogant. Is it in the Bible?
— What should a church include in its Statement of Faith? For example, should a SoF be explicitly Calvinistic? — How should a church handle a situation when it’s been determined an elder isn’t “apt to teach”?
— How should adult children respond to the unrealistic demands of their parents? — An excommunicated member continues to come and participate in the Lord’s Supper. What should we do?
— How should we treat our 18-year-old daughter’s relationship with her girlfriend? How do we love them without condoning their sin? — Should all churches have a plurality of elders, or are there some churches that simply cannot have a plurality of elders?
Mailbag #62: How to Encourage Attendance at Members’ Meetings; The Relationship between Baptism & Church MembershipBy Jonathan Leeman | 05.19.2017
— Could you provide some wisdom for how to handle situations where members are consistently neglectful of attending members’ meetings? — I understand that baptism should precede church membership. But must membership always follow baptism?
— Does God want some churches to die, regardless of how faithful the leaders are? — How would you counsel a couple where the husband views pornography because the wife has no interest in sexual relations, but is still upset by his actions?
— Do you have any tips on how quickly or slowly pastors should preach through books? — Should Sunday mornings primarily aim for edifying believers or evangelizing non-believers?
— What are some of the pastoral principles, pitfalls, and guidelines when dealing with church members who doubt their baptism took place after their conversion? — A church member wants his daughter to be baptized twice, in two different churches. How should I respond? — As a church considers planting or revitalizing, how much should they take into account a building’s architecture?
Mailbag #58: Does the State or Church Have Authority to Marry; Counsel for Re-Writing Our ConstitutionBy Jonathan Leeman | 04.07.2017
— Who has the authority to marry: the state or the church? — Four brief questions from a pastor who’s rewriting his church’s constitution.
—Do the Scriptures obligate believers to follow their pastor so long as what he commands is not contravened by Scripture? —Should we nominate someone as an elder who will be leaving the church soon? »
— Is it okay to tell my church members, “You should never vote for a pro-abortion candidate”? — Would you say churches that don’t practice membership or discipline are not true churches?
— Can you explain your church’s “care list”? — Does marrying an unbeliever warrant church discipline?
— What should I do when my conviction is at odds with my church’s tradition (like baptizing young children)? — My wife doesn’t want me to be a pastor. Does that disqualify me?