Help, I was Hurt in Church!
I’ve Got Issues: Our Mess, God’s Message
1 Corinthians 1:10 (NLT)
10 I appeal to you, dear brothers and sisters, by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, to live in harmony with each other. Let there be no divisions in the church. Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.
11 For some members of Chloe’s household have told me about your quarrels, my dear brothers and sisters. 12 Some of you are saying, “I am a follower of Paul.” Others are saying, “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Peter,” or “I follow only Christ.”
13 Has Christ been divided into factions? Was I, Paul, crucified for you? …17 For Christ didn’t send me to baptize, but to preach the Good News—and not with clever speech, for fear that the cross of Christ would lose its power.
Conflict in the church is nothing new. Remember, The church is an imperfect place because it’s full of imperfect people.
Paul gives us wisdom for dealing with messy church and how to guard against hurt
- When a church loses harmony it it hurts more than ears
“I appeal to you…live in harmony with each other” (vs 10)
“Church-hurt” is the pain that someone feels because of their interaction(s) with a church or its members.
It can originate from:
- Judgemental attitudes
- Being excluded from the club
- Feeling abandoned in a time of need
- Blatant hypocrisy
- Legalistic mindsets
- Betrayal of trust
- Failing to address issues
A deadly tactic of the enemy is to use the ones you love the most to speak over you what you fear the most
- Feel alone or disconnected
- Distrust leadership
- Critical spirit
- Spiritual numbness
- Seperation and Isolation
Matthew 18:6–7 (NKJV)
6 “Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea. 7 Woe to the world because of offenses! For offenses must come, but woe to that man by whom the offense comes!
Two Warnings From Jesus
- You are going to experience offense
- You do not want to be a source of offense
- When a church becomes divided it no longer can disciple
“I appeal to you… Let there be no divisions in the church” (vs 10)
Proverbs 18:19 (NLT)An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.
“For offenses must come” (Matt 18:7)
“offense” – a snare, a trap, an enticement to sin
Pauls knew the danger of offense
- Galatians 2:11 (NLT)
- Acts 13:13
- Acts 15:37–39 (NLT)
The 4 Snares of Offense
- Unrealistic Expectations
- Unmet needs
- Unclear communication
- Unhealed conflict
- When a church is finally whole it can fully heal
I appeal to you… Rather, be of one mind, united in thought and purpose.
Paul restored his relationship with John Mark
9 Do your best to come to me soon. 10 For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia. 11 Luke alone is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is very useful to me for ministry.
2 Timothy 4:9–11 (ESV)
John Mark, who gives us the Gospel of Mark, is a reminder that even the difficult people to deal with in the body of Christ have key roles to play in the Body of Christ!
Never mistake the dealings of God with the dealing with men!!!
Steps to Restore
- Recognize – call it for what it is!
- Receive Grace and Repent where needed