A gracEmail subscriber inquires, “Is it better to be in Church ‘A,’ which has zeal, involvement in each other’s life and a focus on mission — but which also has exclusivistic assumptions that they are the only ‘true’ Christians, or in Church ‘B,’ which is less exclusivistic but which is dead evangelistically and which accepts lukewarmness in general?”
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Is the active, outreaching but exclusivistic church open to the Word? Many of us began with sectarian or legalistic understandings but with hungry hearts and God gently (or roughly!) led us to a different place. If you choose to connect with that church, God will enhance your influence by a loving spirit, kind deeds, a humble manner and a servant heart. You will wish to avoid any attitude of “I’ve got the truth and I’m here to straighten you out!” That kind of spirit is not only wrong, it is also counterproductive among healthy, thinking people.
If the second church you mention is truly cool to the gospel and indifferent to the Word, its spiritual problem is fully as severe as the other group’s and draws Jesus’ specific warning (Rev. 3:14-16). Yet Jesus stands at the door of this church, also, waiting for an invitation to come in and bless (Rev. 3:20). Remember, too, that Christ’s gospel and the Spirit’s presence are more important than any specific name on the sign. Perhaps those two churches are not your only options.
We may rejoice to know that God himself will provide guidance in your specific situation, as you continue to ask him for it and to walk in the light you already have. I encourage you to ask in faith, use wisdom, seek counsel, consider circumstances, listen for God’s voice in any form, and then to proceed with confidence that he will be in charge.