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When Is It OK to Leave a Church?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
July 16, 2021 1:30 pm

When Is It OK to Leave a Church?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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July 16, 2021 1:30 pm

Episode 751 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

Show Notes

CoreChristianity.com

 

Questions in this Episode

1. Why are we told in the New Testament to not eat the meat of animals who were strangled?

2. Is there any difference or preference between cremation and burial?

3. When Cain was exiled after killing Abel, who was he so afraid of hurting him? Were there other people in the world at that time?

4. I grew up in an apostolic pentecostal church but I am now going to a Bible-centered church. My question is: is it normal to experience spiritual warfare as you transition out of church traditions?

5. What are the "Days of Mercy" mentioned in the Bible?

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HOW DO I CHOOSE A CHURCH?

 

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The following is a prerecorded version of core Christianity.

When is it okay to leave a church that's just one of the questions will be answering on today's addition of core Christianity this is Bill Meyer along with Pastor Gabriel Sanchez and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day.

You can call us right now with your question.

At 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 if you don't get through. You can always leave us a voicemail and you can post a question on one of our social media sites watch us on YouTube if you have an email question for us.

Here's the address it's questions at core, Christianity.com. We do our best to go through our emails every day so you can send us a question that way will first up today let's go to Jan in lost Springs, Kansas Jan, what's your question for pastor atrial. I read several times where they do not eat. I offered to idols, do not engage in immoral sexual acts. Do not eat strangled animals or blood actually said and led. So my question is what you mean by strangled animals to be in the contents of such more important things to an excellent question, and there are a number of discussions in the New Testament particular about food.

It was offered to idols is a sort of a gray area issuing the days of the apostles because there were some people who were really bothered by meat sacrificed to idols. You know that they their conscience you had left this sort of old form of worship pagan worship. Their coming into the church and they see believers eating this meat that had been offered to an idol in the market and they just how could you do that you know that their conscience was pricked they were cost to stumble with other other believers who maybe had a stronger sort of conscience and who knew none idol is nothing there there there. They're not real this this meat is not. Meno magically cursed or something like that so they would eat regardless of the fact they had been offered to an idol services. This debate this conflict in the early church and the apostle Paul.

His point in a number of different books in particular books like the book of first Corinthians is don't cause your brother to stumble. Don't cause your sister to stumble whatever you're doing and if if you're you're doing something that's hurting the conscience of your brother you should be very careful not to give offense by your actions, and so there there some there's some flexibility there with that question in particular. But as far as the. The prohibition related to animals that were strangled in the blood that kind of a thing.

I think you referring to acts chapter 15 and that section really important chapter for us to know in the Bible. Acts chapter 15. It's the Jerusalem Council.

It's when when the disciples the apostle apostles of our Lord came together to discuss churchwide issues that that that that they were needing to work through Annie and that serve at the forefront was welcoming Gentiles into the church and what the church is going to look like now that you have this mixed community Jews and Gentiles worshiping side-by-side together met and it's there that you you have.

Essentially, this exhortation acts chapter 15 verse 19. Therefore, my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, but should write to them to abstain from the things polluted by idols and from sexual immorality and from what has been strangled, and from blood for from ancient generations Moses had in every city, those who proclaim him, for he is read every Sabbath in the synagogues. Now why those things in particular. Well, my view is there's a couple ways of looking at this one so that this transition stage in the history of the church. The old covenant the old system of worship is is being done away with the new covenant has been inaugurated by Jesus in his very blood he talked about this when he instituted the Lord's supper at his crucifixion. See you before to have this this overlap here a little bit with the old system with the temple and its sacrifices in the ceremonial law being done away with in this new system being put in place that is the new covenant and and with these expectations. In particular, Jan, I think these are things that that the disciples wanted to encourage the churches to observe so that there could be peace in the church as you imagine you have these these Jews who have accepted Jesus, who have all of this sort of carryover from their from their life in Judaism and and these are some of the things that God commanded under the old covenant you not eating things with the blood things were strangled, some of those ways of eating foods were associated with pagan worship and so he's just thing.

Look, don't don't don't do that you Gentiles were coming to the church probably shouldn't do that because that's good cause conflict in the body of Christ, the disciples here are trying to create an atmosphere of peace togetherness with this new Jew, Gentile church coming together around the gospel. So that's what you have those those things specifically mentioned because those were those would have been stumbling blocks for the Jewish people that they would've seen among the Gentiles. And so, great, great questions are to go little bit longer there but it's just a great question and appreciate your call. We love your questions here core Christianity and you can call us 24 hours a day and leave your voicemail at 833. The core let's go to John in Seminole, Oklahoma John, what's your question for pastor atrial and I'm on the last lesson and remember I'm looking well for our beach buried or cremated asking that question is, is there any difference in the religious world in the biblical world that Mars is one thing except on the other not.

Hey John, thank you for your question. The point that the real thing we focus on here is you were talking about the afterlife entering into the presence of God. It is not the manner of our burial matters.

First and foremost, it's who did we trust in hooded we believe in.

While we lived on this earth do you think of the sums of ancient societies like the Egyptians, and they have these ornate burial practices and they would bury now or entombed the pharaohs with all of these you know artifacts of golden things that they hope to carry with them into the afterlife. That kind of thing. But the reality is none of that mattered.

None of that mattered.

The way we were buried.

Whether you're cremated or you go out go down into the ground you're buried in a coffin that that's that's not what God is most concerned with God is most concerned with is who are you trusting in where is your hope we trust in Jesus Christ and we have the hope also John of our bodies being resurrected from the dead by the power of God. Whether were cremated or buried not because of how we were buried again but because we are in Jesus, who himself rose from the dead, and so I think that the biggest question you ask yourself is is a you there's a freedom here with with regard to the cremation or burial you have to think are free to choose either one, and that God is not can it curse you.

Either way, you know, bury his neck and displease the Lord, because you you chose to be cremated instead of buried or buried instead of cremated. The real question for you is do I know Jesus and I am am I in him, and my trusting in him. That's what matters.

On the day of judgment. We stand before the Lord, why have Christ in my heart by faith. And if you have that, then you have the hope of the resurrection of the dead as well.

Thank you for your question John, thank you so much for your call and for listing the core Christianity.

We really do appreciate you. By the way, we have a core correct question on this particular topic on cremation. You can find that by going to core Christianity.com/questions just look for the question on cremation we do receive a lot of the questions about that.

This is core Christianity with pastor atrial Sanchez.

Let's go to Kimberly in Bluff city, Indiana OnStar Bluff city Tennessee Kimberly, what's your question for pastor atrial Michael Nabel, the first children. I'm assuming they were the first children and many and linking with exiled out into the world and who is still afraid of hurting Yamhill who was he fearful as there are other people thinking yeah no really great question and I'm glad you SMS you currently preaching to Genesis right now at the church I pastor and we just went over this section of of Scripture with Cain and Abel, and in particular you know were thinking about after God had cursed Cain for murdering his brother and and Kane is upset.

He's afraid the people are going to hurt him are going to harm him. Because of this, this Mark that God had placed on him and the question is will who seek to sleep thinking is going to hurt him, probably his family members, and that is the other children that Adam and Eve would have had verse 17 says Cain knew his wife and she conceived and bore Enoch. Verse 17 of Genesis chapter 4 and he built the city and he called the name of the city after the name of the son Enoch out. Now you in in the very next chapter in Genesis chapter 5 verse four it says the days of Adam after he fathered Seth were 800 years and he had other sons and daughters that is to say that you know what we have missed some of the characters given to us here, but there are other sons and daughters were born. I think Cain's concern is data. So my family members and I want vengeance on babies other sons and daughters if you will because of what I've done is so so that's that's the answer to your question in and initiate the call to bless you your listing to core Christianity with pastor atrial Sanchez by the way, we have a group of people that we really appreciate here at this program is called the inner core. We are not supported by a particular church or denomination.

So we rely on people just like you to keep us on the air in one of the ways you can do that is by joining what we call the inner core.

Yeah, we are his, as Bill just said they are so grateful for the members of the inner core and just been such a blessing to to receive your support both your prayers and in your gifts. The inner core. For every donation of $25 or more every month to be a part of the inner core and we have also to the exclusive resources that we sent to our inner core members devotional resources just fun fun things were working on here as a team and I want to encourage you, even as you encourage us and so if you've been blessed by core Christianity.

If you're encouraged by the broadcast would you consider joining the inner core will also send you a copy of the book by Dr. Michael Horton, which is core Christianity the book. This program was founded on. To learn more, go to core Christianity.com/inner core that's core Christianity.com/inner core, or you can call us for information on that at 833. The core let's go to Nicole in, try to say your name, the name of your town.

Nicole must good Illinois did I get that right Mike for taking my call.

I have a two-part question for you guys so I grew up in an apostolic church, and I am now in my late 30s and are now out of bear to a more so Bible centered preaching charge and the first question I have is that concerning what I have been a bit concerned that for most of my life. Most of the elders dinner and most of the church members in the church. They focused so much on the gift, that I didn't really realize that they lack a bunch of the other fruit that Jesus Jesus spoke about in the Gospels in the Bible that you know that we will open back there and I don't know how much of their true I've really seen apart from the jumping and eternal talk in the second part of my question. Is it normal to leave.

Like spiritual warfare.

As you transition out of the denomination that get Pentecostal admin having highly trained and kind of think that is really trying to figure out where it's coming from, really glad you called us, and thank you for sharing some of your story. One of the things I want us to do is pray for you and so will definitely pray for you and I'm really glad to hear that that you're growing in your understanding of God's word sometimes and you're not the only one whose experience is seen as we continue to study the Bible, we can find contradictions in what our church experiences and what the Bible teaches, and that can be a really difficult place to be, especially if you've if you've been raised a certain way and you've been taught a certain way and you've heard these things over and over and over again and it is as God opens your eyes more and more through the Scriptures, you begin to see things that they don't necessarily lineup and if you transition out of that right.

You people can get upset and there can be spiritual warfare. I think that there is and we know that were in a spiritual battle.

Nicole and one of the things that Satan wants to do on the spirit of the antichrist that the goal of the spirit of antichrist in the world today. First John talks about this is to take our eyes off of Jesus is to confuse us about the gospel what it is that God's word says that it inhale, it will use anything to do that. I mean it could even be sort of you this hyper sort of charismatic spiritual gifts thing where if our eyes are off of Jesus and his gospel, the evil one is happy and so I don't doubt it all Nicole that as you as you sort of grow in your understanding of God's word and as you seek more and more to follow Jesus to align yourself with the word of God that there is can it be spiritual attack and so that's one of the reasons I want to pray for you and and would just encourage you to continue to immerse yourself in in the word of God.

Remember the exultation that James gives in James chapter 4 verse seven.

Resist the devil and he will flee put on sister the whole armor of God. Ephesians chapter 6 verses 10 through 18, clothe yourself in the promises of the gospel, the breastplate of righteousness, the helmet of salvation that the belt of truth, the shield of faith, the sword of the Spirit that that the boots of the gospel of peace. You need to be clothed in that and so it's really important that is. As you make this transition that that's your your focus and then in terms of the fruit of the for the first part of your question. You know you look at these sort of movements or churches that are out there that maybe focus on one element of the Bible's teaching that you are mentioning spiritual gifts and in particular the gift of tongues but but forget about everything else.

Or at least don't seem to to touch on those other very important doctrines that the big key doctrines of our faith.

Core Christianity like we like, we might say yeah it really is tragic. Note with regard to the gift of tongues in particular churches that say you know you're really filled with the Holy Spirit. If you speak in tongues, but that's not biblical because Paul in first Corinthians chapter 12 towards the end of the chapter says not everyone who is gifted with the spiritual gifts has the gift of tongues doesn't do all prophesy. He says yes is these rhetorical questions at the end of first grade installed wall prophesy do all speak with tongues or all profits, then the answer that he expects is no and then he goes on in chapter 13 to say. Let me show you a more excellent way. And he begins to talk about love and the fruit of the Holy Spirit. The true fruit of the Holy Spirit, love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self-control. Those are. I would say the real marks of the spirit of God at work in our lives is not that we perform miracles or prophesy or speak in tongues them and announcing that God can't do miraculous things is just we know that the spirit is working because the fruit of the spirit is being produced and that happens through solid understanding of the Scriptures to growing in God's word, and so we have to focus on God's word on that. The teaching of Scripture on the apostles doctrine when when Luke records with the early churches were doing and he describes the fellowship of the early churches as they were committed to the apostles teaching to the breaking of the bread to the fellowship, to the prayers. That's where the church should focus and it sounds to me like you're really beginning to understand that and so as you as you as you focus on that on the apostles teaching on the word of God and as you seek to honor the Lord with your life growing in in the grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.

May God be with you and and bless you and in the last thing I'll say sometimes you know we can come out of churches.

You know you mentioned the apostolic church that you've been a part of for a long time and we can have a really bitter attitude and it doesn't sound to me like you have that I would say you know still be charitable. It is you look back and you think, man. There were so many things that I miss there one of the questions you want to ask yourself and you want to pray about his Lord help me to encourage my friends and family members who are still there to fix their eyes on Jesus, to have a deeper understanding of what the word of God actually teaches so that they might experience the grace, the joy that I've experienced as I'm understanding the word of God more and more, and so may the Lord use you Nicole in this transition may he continue to build you up and use. You also to encourage others were still there, a part of a part of the church that you were brought up in and so the let's take a moment right now to to pray for Nicole Emily father, thank you that you are at work in our lives. Thank you God that your work in Nicole's life right now and that God you've been drawing her closer and closer to yourself. I pray that as she continues to study your word, by the grace of your Holy Spirit that you would open her eyes more and more that that those those things that maybe she once embraced or believed that maybe aren't totally in line with what your word teaches that that she would be able to part ways with those things in particular and grow more and more in a true understanding of what the Scriptures teach and that she does Lord that she would be filled with the fruit of your Holy Spirit. With love, with joy, with peace, with patience, Lord with all of those fruits that that your word describes, and I also pray for her Lord in this transition that you would protect her from the evil one protector from slander protect her from being discouraged. Give her grace to continue to love and encourage the people.

The new put around her in her life, and in particular her friends and her family members from from the church that she's she's leaving what we know that the most important thing is walking with you faithfully and understanding your word and embracing your gospel and I pray that if she does that. Lord, that you would continue to bless her and be with her and even now, Lord, would you fill it with your peace. I pray in Jesus name, amen. Nicole would love to send you a copy of our book core Christianity by Dr. Michael Horton.

So hang on the line will get your address and will send that to you. You're listening to core Christianity with pastor Israel Sanchez, one of the ways you can ask the question is by calling our phone line and leaving a voicemail. You can do that 24 hours a day at 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673. Here's a voicemail received this week.

Hello my name is Jan a question about the days of mercy, meaning that we have an entire lifetime for God's mercy correct in understanding that that is the duration of our life is that the mercy is ongoing and once were dead. We no longer have that choice because we are now facing the judgment. Thank you very much. Yeah, this is a good question and it's is complex and some voices out about want to say yes as long as you have breath in your lungs can turn to Lord God commands all people everywhere to repent and trust in his son Jesus Christ. He's extending his mercy to us all day long and eyes is like a father with outstretched arms aligned to gather us together as a hen gathers her chicks calling us to himself and that's a wonderful promise me think of of of even the thief on the cross after a life of rebellion immediate committed a crime that was worthy of capital punishment and and even you know that the most heinous kind of capital punishment and yet even there in the last moments of his life got extended mercy to him. Jesus said today you will be with me in paradise.

And so we have this great hope. But here's might my concern. There are many people who live their lives thinking I'm in a live for myself to do my own thing and indulge in all the pleasures and in things that I want to indulge in and then when it looks like you know I'm done. I've had my fill my mom on death's doorstep.

II can't do those things anymore then I'm going to call on God's name and it'll be good and I got to look for myself and then at the very end.

I guy you know Ascot into my life and he he allows me to have an in and bam yeah I did it.

III cheated the system that kind of a thing.

That's a very foolish way of living, and it doesn't take into account the reality of the fact that there is nothing better than knowing and walking with God. We think that the pleasures of this world are better, but no that's not that's not true. There there is nothing better than walking with Jesus than knowing him and experiencing his grace and his love, not just for the last few moments of our lives, but for our entire life. I think what the other. The Hebrew set authored to the Hebrews said this in Hebrews chapter 3, beginning in verse seven is a warning that he gives to these Christians because some of them are our thinking. We can abandon the faith work in it were to leave the church were to do our own thing and he says therefore as the Holy Spirit says, today if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion. On the day of testing in the wilderness where your fathers put me to the test. They saw my works for 40 years.

Therefore, I was provoked with that generation, and said they always go astray in their heart they have not known my ways as I swore in my wrath, they shall not enter my rest. Take care brothers, lest there be any of you on evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God.

But exhort one another every day as long as it is called today. None of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. Friends today is the day of salvation. If you hear the voice of God's spirit tugging on your heart saying turn to me turn to Jesus, receive the forgiveness of sins. Don't silence that voice say yes because when we silence that voice. Our hearts grow harder and harder and we don't know what tomorrow holds today's the day God's grace. Thanks for listening to core Christianity request your copy of today's special offer. Visit us at core, Christianity.com and click on offers and the menu or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833 when you contact us. Please let us know how you been encouraged by this program and be sure to join us next time.

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