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When a Church is no longer part of The Body of Christ

 
A church, any church, any gathering of people who claim to be 'a church and part of the body of Christ' is defined by what Christ and The Holy Spirit taught through the writings of the prophets and apostles.  In their own way, they are united by what Jesus Christ stood for and stood against.  When one church no longer stands with Christ on critical issues; they are no longer part of the body of Christ by definition.

Granted some issues in scripture are a 'agree to disagree' issue; like those in Romans 14:1-5, 15:7.  Free for the church to decided for itself. 

But when an issue is explicitly addressed, it is not a matter of opinion of each church body but a defining factor of the body of Christ as a whole.  The issue is made clear by God himself for his people to be obedient to him and set apart from those who are not his.
Explicit issues that prevent people from entering the kingdom of God is made clear in 8 areas of scripture. 
  1. Mark 7:21-22
  2. Romans 1:24-31
  3. Romans 13:13
  4. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10
  5. Galatians 5:19-21
  6. Colossians 3:5-9
  7. 1 Timothy 1:9-10
  8. Revelations 21:8
One of these explicit issues that is infecting the church in our modern time and is listed in each of the 8 areas is the issue of Sexual Immorality.

What is the sin of sexual immorality?

Jesus makes it even more clear that it doesn't even have to be physical.  Lusting with your mind and heart is sexual immoral (Matt 5:28).  Something that is offensive to God is immoral.  Something sexual outside of the covenantal marriage between a Man and a Woman is then deemed sexual immoral according God.  But we need to understand what a covenantal Godly marriage is as well.

Covenantal Godly Marriage:

It is not defined by a government document or law.  There was Godly marriage before governments.  A ceremony of some sort varying between cultures is acceptable to God as Jesus showed his approval and attended one (John 2).  Some even say that God himself was the first officiator of the first wedding ceremony between Adam and Even when God "brought her to the Man" (Gen 2:22).  Sexual intercourse before any sort of ceremony or legal contract does not define marriage either (1 Cor 7:2). 

We can then say that any sort of  public ceremony (varies between cultures) that is not done in contrary to any part of scripture, that unites a single man and a single woman to then become "one flesh" makes a covenant of marriage before God, before the world, and between the two individuals for God's ultimate glory. Therefore, any thing sexual of the mind or body outside of that, is sexually immoral.

Now this is where we run into the Church falling topic.  What happens when a church decides on its own accord to accept sexual immorality in what it allows as acceptable behavior in its assembly and body?  More specifically, Homosexuality.

Homosexuality:

Homosexuality is explicit in scripture.  There is no getting around it; just read a few of those verses listed above.  It is a condemnable condition of the body and heart and Christ offers freedom from.  But what happens when the Church encourages it?  Encourages the condition as acceptable and no need to resist it?

Not only is that church oppressing that person who is enslaved in it but they then allow other areas of the church to become corrupted as well; marriage.  Ultimately they corrupt The Gospel of Jesus Christ; here's how:

A Different Gospel:

The Gospel declares that we are sinners.  That we are dead in our sins and in need of a savior.  Now what if the church then says, that sexual immorality (ie Homosexuality), isn't a sin, and that we don't need to be saved and redeemed from it.  That anyone's homosexuality does not need a savior.  It has no cost and therefore Christ didn't pay for it on the cross.  That line of logic continues and continues to slowly corrupt all aspects of The Gospel message.  How then do they condemn Polygamy as a sin?  How then do they say any sexual immorality is a sin without exposing their hypocrisy?  How then do they see sin and desire the savior because of it?

In the end, that church puts their 'constitution' above scripture.  They allow sexual immorality to become their idol and ultimately that church worships themselves and their bodies instead of the true God.  They willingly remove themselves from the true Body of Christ and commit apostasy; all while trying to keep the 'image' of 'the church'.  They just become a wolf in sheep's clothing as they blindly encourage others in an enslaving and condemned life.  Their fruit is the worship of their ideals and their sexual immorality (Matt 7).  And their only hope is seeing the sin they deny and believing that Jesus paid for it on the cross.  Until then, the gospel they preach is corrupted and distorted. 

When is a Church no longer part of the Body of Christ?

Its simple, when it no longer holds to sound doctrine (Titus 1:9) and the gospel of Jesus Christ (Gal 1:6, 2 Cor 11:4).  When that church teaches a different doctrine and a different gospel; it is no longer part of The Body of Christ by their own choice- even if they claim to be part of the body. 

Homosexuality and all other sexual immoralities are why Christ went to the Cross and died- for sin.  They are offensive to God and so Christ Jesus went and paid for them on the Cross with his life; so that those who live those lifestyles may be freed from them.  And those who have been freed from them may have life eternal.  That is the gospel of Jesus Christ for those who live enslaved to their sexual life style.  They can be free from their lustful identity and addictions and be given a new heart free to focus on God and not themselves.  But it all begins with seeing the sin, being convicted of the sin, and genuinely desiring repentance and restoration from the sin of sexual immorality. That is good news! freedom in Christ. 

Romans 1:24-32

"Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen 26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.  28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them."

*Our response to the PCUSA*

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