Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ten Questions to Ask Before Joining a Church

In talking with others who are considering joining or leaving a church, I often find myself referring people to a set of questions which Josh Harris presents in his book Stop Dating the Church.

I did a search and found, to my surprise, that I had never posted them on the blog. So here they are:

1. Is this a church where God's Word is taught faithfully?
2. Is this a church where sound doctrine matters?
3. Is this a church in which the gospel is cherished and clearly proclaimed?
4. Is this a church committed to reaching non-Christians with the gospel?
5. Is this a church whose leaders are characterized by humility and integrity?
6. Is this a church where people strive to live by God's Word?
7. Is this a church where I can find and cultivate godly relationships?
8. Is this a church where members are challenged to serve?
9. Is this a church that is willing to kick me out?
10. Is this a church I'm willing to join "as is" with enthusiasm and faith in God?

Of course Josh Harris is fallible, but I think these are helpful questions to ponder in assessing a church. One of my most satisfying moments as a pastor was hearing one new member share with our congregation as she was welcomed into membership that she decided to join because as she pondered these questions, she found herself answering 'yes' to them.

If you were to make up such a list, are there any questions that you would add?

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