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Joshua Harris’s book, Stop Dating the Church, is a call to commitment to the life and ministry of a local church. In the book, he gives a checklist to a prospective member who is trying to decide about membership in a church. The same list helps those who are considering a move to another church. I found the list helpful in evaluate my ministry and the church I serve.

1. Is this church where God’s Word is faithfully taught? (2 Tim. 3:16)

2. Is this a church where sound doctrine matters? (Acts 2:42; 2 Tim 4:3-4)

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? (Matt. 28:18-20)

5. Is this a church whose leaders are characterized by humility and integrity? (1 Tim. 3)

6. Is this a church where people strive to live by God’s Word? (James 1:22)

7. Is this a church where I can find and cultivate godly relationships?

8. Is this a church where members are challenged to serve? (Eph. 4:12)

9. Is this a church that is willing to kick me out? (1 Cor. 5; 2 Cor. 2)

10. Is this a church I’m willing to join “as is” with enthusiasm and faith in God?

2 Comments

  1. re: Is this a church whose leaders are characterized by humility and integrity? (1 Tim. 3)

    I think that humility is one characteristic that will represent the church in a way that non-believers will gravitate towards us.

    • I love the blog, just came across it.

      Not only should ‘leaders’ be characterised by humility, but they should be characterised by eschewing the word and idea of ‘leadership’. Paul talks about service…ministry and mutuality in the exercise of gifts. Never leadership in the modern sense, or even in the ancient sense (archon). We need to stop adopting the worlds categories as they pollute our community of people filled with and gifted by the Holy Spirit.


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