Posted January 5th, 2012 at 08:19 AM by Lois
In searching for a new church after leaving an unhealthy one, people often have questions such as these: Do you think it is OK to attend a church that you don't agree with everything they believe in? Do you think God will fault us if we go to a church with who we disagree with some interpretations of the bible?
Even in the New Testament, we find that everyone didn't always see things the very same way. The Bible speaks to the matter in Ephesians 3:
"Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. ....It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ." (verses 2, 3, & 12, 13- NIV)
One thing you will find, if you haven't already, is that as you go on in your walk with the Lord, some beliefs are going to change or become more defined. This is because we are ever learning and growing.
Can one find a church where they are in agreement on every single matter? My guess is the answer is probably not. Even while I was in the UPC, I didn't always agree with the pastor on some issues. The ministers within this group do not see eye to eye on everything, thus the many variations of some teachings.
As believers, we are to grow together in the Lord. To me, as long as a church teaches the essentials and isn't into some blatent false teaching, then there isn't anything wrong or potentially harmful with attending, even though you may not be in complete agreement.
Look at it this way. Are you married? Do you and your spouse see eye to eye on every matter? My guess would be no couple does. :) Should this mean the two of you should not remain together? Certainly not!
There are church areas where I personally feel a need to draw a line and this is probably true with everyone. Let me share a for instance from my own experience. When I moved to another state, I started attending a church that seemed okay. They were tolerant of the beliefs of others. But then there came a time where they began promoting an author who was scheduled to speak at their church. The main pastor proclaimed that he felt this author was a prophet for our time. I believe this author to be in error and in no way believe he is a prophet. Making a proclamation that someone is a prophet was no small matter in my eyes. In this instance, I felt I had to leave.
If you are looking for the perfect church, there is none and never will be.
To me, what matters are the basics. I wouldn't have to be in agreement...