Time to Change Churches

When should someone consider leaving the Church they are attending and going elsewhere?

This is a difficult question that has many layers. Personal conflicts cloud the issue. Personal preferences can be confused with God’s leading.

My general answer is that people should stay in one place and mature over a lifetime. Every believer needs to put down roots and connect with people meaningfully; that does not happen if you change churches every few years. The community of faith we call home can be the most supportive group in your walk of faith if you allow yourself to know others and be known by them. 

Occasionally I do suggest that people leave their Church and find another one. There are three reasons I recommend this:

1. When the Church rejects the authority of Scripture. When this happens, the door is open for all kinds of heresy and false teaching. When you step onto this slippery slope, it always leads to a slide into destruction.

2. When the Church embraces sin. This can be when the Church is teaching something contrary to what the Bible teaches, or this can also be when the Church is willing to ignore the public sin of its leaders. Once again, this is a place where evil can get a foothold and destroy people’s lives.

3. When distance permits connection. There may be a Church you love that is an hour away, but if you cannot be connected deeply in relationships, then you are opening yourself up for trouble. Driving long distances to be a part of a particular group of people sounds fine until you mature in your faith. Then you will need people close to you and people you can be close to.

I am sure there may be some other valid reasons, like doctrinal differences, but for the most part, we need to stay put and grow with a community for a lifetime. We need to learn from each other and bless those around us. But occasionally, when the red flags pop up, it is time to run to a new place where God’s word is taught as the authority, sin is handled graciously and not ignored, and where you can live in authentic relationships with people. 


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