Church Discipline Is Not Mean

Rightly done, even if imperfectly, church discipline is an act of love that seeks the restoration of a brother or sister for that person’s well being. It is, after all, “a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10:31). He is a “consuming fire” (Heb 12:29). Continue reading →

When Elders And Ministers Cross The Line

In my experience, the vast majority of elders and ministers are selfless, gracious, kind, patient, and Christlike men. Most serve sacrificially. Most serve out of love for their Savior and out of love for their brothers and sisters in Christ. Unless one . . . Continue reading →

Church Commitment And The Costliness of Being A Flake

Guest Post by Leon M. Brown Are you a flake? That is, are you someone who illegitimately withdraws from commitments and self-righteously justifies your departure? Dr. Andrea Bonior, in May 2012, published an article for Psychology Today, where, in her introduction, she . . . Continue reading →

Heidelberg 85: Church Discipline Is The Second Key Of The Kingdom

In our late-modern (liquid), nominalist, it is widely regarded that truth claims and official acts are nothing but the exercise of power for personal gain. In other words, we live in a time of great suspicion. Whereas the dominant question of the . . . Continue reading →

Resources On Fencing The Lord’s Table

Some HB readers have been discussing the question of fencing the Lord’s Table. Fencing is a figurative way of speaking. There aren’t literal fences in Reformed Churches. It’s a way to describe the Reformed attempt to apply Paul’s instruction in 1Corinthians 11:27–32. . . . Continue reading →

The New Normal

Internet pornography is probably the number one pastoral problem in the world today. I wonder if it is set to become yet more so: as the social shame dimension passes away, it will be harder to maintain discipline on this issue. The . . . Continue reading →

How To Fence the Lord’s Table (2)

How to Fence the Lord’s Table (Part 1) There is irony in fencing the Lord’s Table. What should be a joyous celebration, after due preparation of course, and a communion of believers with their risen Lord and with one another, is for . . . Continue reading →

Is the Reformed Faith a Second Blessing?

In response to Jason Stellman’s monday post the question has arisen as to what should be required for membership in a confessional Reformed (e.g., Three Forms) or Presbyterian (Westminster Standards) congregation. The argument has been made that, in American Presbyterian churches, the . . . Continue reading →

On Lapsing Members: Coping with a Transient Culture

Re-Posted from Sept 9, 2009. The HB has addressed the problem of “churchless evangelicals” before. This question is a little different. How should consistories/sessions address the problem of members of a congregation who simply seem to disappear as if they’ve fallen off . . . Continue reading →

Now This is the Way It's Done

It’s one thing for consistories, sessions, presbyteries, classes, synods, and general assemblies to make statements against the Federal Vision (and the New Perspective(s) on Paul). Those were and are necessary and important preliminary steps but those statements must be followed with ecclesiastical . . . Continue reading →