7 Good Reasons to Leave a Church

What are some legitimate reasons for leaving a church? Here are seven.

“If your church begins to fudge on matters of orthodoxy, placing cultural relevance or social gospel initiatives above sound doctrine and biblical authority, look for another church. Sometimes a church outright embraces heresy and it is loud and clear, but more often the march away from orthodoxy is a slow and hard-to-discern series of small compromises.”

 

Discerning the Good from the Bad

In our consumer society, where prevailing wisdom says we should be loyal to products or brands only insofar as our needs and tastes are satisfied, it can be easy for churchgoers to have a very low threshold for leaving a church. The preaching loses some luster. The children’s ministry isn’t as fun as it could be. The worship leader’s hairstyle becomes bothersome. There are lots of bad reasons for leaving a church. But what are some legitimate reasons for leaving a church? Here are seven:

1. The church abandons orthodoxy.

If your church begins to fudge on matters of orthodoxy, placing cultural relevance or social gospel initiatives above sound doctrine and biblical authority, look for another church. Sometimes a church outright embraces heresy and it is loud and clear, but more often the march away from orthodoxy is a slow and hard-to-discern series of small compromises. If you see your church headed in that direction and your alarm bells go unheeded, get out sooner rather than later.

2. The church becomes more about politics than Jesus.

If you’re in a church that succumbs to the broader culture’s current “politics is everything” orientation, placing political activism above Jesus worship and gospel proclamation, you should look for another church. A church that is more interested in advancing a political party’s agenda than in advancing God’s mission is not a church where you should stay.

3. Transformation is absent.

Churches are not meant to be inert institutions where nothing and no one is ever changed. On the contrary, a church should be a living, growing organism where the Holy Spirit is sanctifying believers, changing lives, and transforming communities. If your church never sees people being saved or baptized, if church members never grow, and if nothing in the surrounding city is changing for the better because of the church, it might be time to find a new church.

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