about me

Kevin Bussey (aka k-dawg)
Lead Pastor
Charlotte, NC, USA

Samford University: B.S. Public Administration, 1985
University of Alabama at Birmingham: M.A. Education, 1988

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary: MDivBL, 1995

Married to:
Cassandra (6-25-88)


quote of the week

"Pastor I don't like your plans" Bisagno, "what are your plans." man, "I don't have any." Bisagno, "I like my plans better than yours." .

Dr. John R. Bisagno:

blogs i read

marty duren
joe kennedy
art rogers
stuart delony
wade burleson
kiki cherry
david phillips
dorcas hawker
arkansas rasorbaptist
cb scott
ben cole
tim sweatman
jason sampler
mark mansheim
adam feldman
scott freeman
wes kenny
alan cross
john stickley
bowden mcelroy
c w
jamie wootten
nate goodwin
paul littleton
jeff richard young
J. A. Gillmartin
villa rica
phillips lynn
micah fries
preachin jesus
morris chapman
tim sweetman
kevin lancaster
jeremy roberts
al mohler
ronnie floyd
david rogers
sbc bloggers
greg pouncey
jason burns
howie luvzus
gary lamb
angela davis
neil elmore
jason shepherd
monday morning insight
wayne cordeiro
Southern Baptist Blog Aggregator

favorite links

my parents ministry
starbucks gossip
the ooze
willowcreek association
purpose driven
northpoint community church
springs church
albert pujols
shaun alexander
john maxwell
element 2
dale jarrett
bama magazine
bible gateway
biblical studies foundation

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listening [to]

building 429: rise

chris tomlin: live from austin music hall

various: music inspired by the chronicles of narnia

fusebox: once again

passion: How Great Is Our God

storyside:b : everything and more

delirious?: the mission bell

hillsong united: look to you


Monday, May 29, 2006

Church Discipline?

Does a church have the right to publicly reveal a person's private sins? A Dallas court is being asked to decide whether Watermark Community Church can do exactly that to a man and a woman identified in court records as "John Doe" and "Jane Roe." Church officials say they are only following a process of church discipline outlined in the Gospel of Matthew and written into the church's bylaws. "Basically, we're being sued because we're seeking to love John Doe in accordance with the principles outlined by God's word," said the pastor, the Rev. Todd Wagner. Read the story here. I believe in church discipline. I believe the church went through the appropriate means according to scripture up until the man wanted to leave the church. But Watermark's bylaws say a member
"may not resign from membership in an attempt to avoid such care and correction."
How can a person not resign? Somehow this sounds almost cult-like. You can't force someone to change can you? What do you think? [Update] As usual, the media got a lot of this story wrong. Read this and this.

posted by Kevin Bussey at 5/29/2006 11:40:00 AM


Blogger Dorcas said...

Why does all the weird church stuff seem to happen in the D/FW metroplex?

I would say that the church bylaw seems odd. The goal of church discipline is to deal with sin and restore one to the fellowship. To me it is like protecting the flock from the infiltration of undealt with sin among them. However, if the person is unrepentant and wants to leave, we should surely pray for them where ever their travels take them, and hope that they find repentance. If they move their church letter, I would even think it fair to notify any potential new church of the issue in the right avenue of administration. However, to say ... nope, you're a member here, and you are going to repent if we have to chain you to the pew, seems a bit outside of my understanding of that passage in Matthew.

5/29/2006 01:03:00 PM  
Blogger Micah said...

I don't this church's thoughts but I think I have an idea why the by-laws speak that way. In the 1st century, as you all would know, if one identified with the church you were isolated from the rest of society. Therefore, if the church enacted discipline, with the end possibility being exclusion from the church, one would (hypothetically) "jump" at the opportunity to repent in hopes that they wouldn't be completely ostricized from the entire community. My guess is that this by-law is somewhat of an attempt (albeit a poor one) to re-create this culture.

My take is that we must practice church discipline, but it must be done with the current cultural parameters in mind. For instance, we just had to allow an individual to leave our church without experiencing discipline because once he committed the sin, and it was made public, he left the church. Once he's gone from the church we no longer have "a bargaining position" from which to enact discipline. We wouldn't forward his letter of membership on to another church, though.

It's a sticky row to hoe, I'll admit. I do think it could be handled with a little more sensitivity than it is in this situation.

5/29/2006 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger Wes Kenney said...

Dorcas -

Why? Probably because of all the transplanted Okies living in your midst...

That does seem like an odd bylaw. However, I'm no lawyer, but if they joined understanding those bylaws, didn't they agree to be bound by them, forfeiting any right to sue for being held to them?

5/29/2006 03:42:00 PM  
Blogger art rogers said...

I think Micah is on to something. I think they were trying to keep a person from just skipping out on their church and taking their problem to another church.

I do think that the by-law is beyond Matthew 18, though.

Wes may have a point, but they would have to prove, I think, that the members understood the by-law when they joined. I don't think the church will be able to stand on the by-law's legality as a contract. But who knows?


5/29/2006 04:36:00 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5/29/2006 06:54:00 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

Okay, I spelled a word incorrectly and had to remove it. You can guess the word.

Inquiring minds want to know...

How often do churches hand out their by-laws to members AND how often are a member's sins made public to the church, if at all?

I never knew our church had by-laws until I joined a committee.

5/29/2006 06:58:00 PM  
Blogger CW said...

I read about his case and one part of the church's process of discipline included contacting other Christians from other churches to help decide the matter. I believe it was then that the people decide to withdraw their membership from the church. Discipline is a good thing, but it should be kept within the church and done in a loving manner. If a person chooses to leave the membership, simply warn them that a full acounting will be sent to any church they hope to join.

5/29/2006 07:02:00 PM  
Blogger joe kennedy said...

Mark, I'm sure that your church would make a copy for you if you asked for one. I think, and Kevin probably knows better than me, that our old church handed them out at a business meeting once or twice.

5/29/2006 08:24:00 PM  

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get to know me

article in local paper
i am recovering pharisee
origin of k-dawg

Reading Now

The Cure for the Common Life
by Max Lucado

Recent Reads

The Creative Leader: Unleashing the Power of Your Creative Potential
by Ed Young Jr.

Your Spritual Gifts Can Help Your Church Grow
by C. Peter Wagner

Why Men Hate Going to Church
by David Murrow

Advanced Strategic Planning: A New Model for Church and Ministry Leaders
by Aubrey Malphurs

must reads

The Next Generation Leader: Five Essentials for Those Who Will Shape the Future
by Andy Stanley

Choosing to Cheat : Who Wins When Family and Work Collide?
by Andy Stanley

The Best Question Ever
by Andy Stanley

Radical Reformission, The: Reaching Out without Selling Out
by Mark Driscoll

A New Kind of Christian: A Tale of Two Friends on a Spiritual Journey
by Brian McLaren

The Story We Find Ourselves In: Further Adventures of a New Kind of Christian by Brian McLaren

Too Busy Not to Pray: Slowing Down to Be With God
by Bill Hybels

A Passionate Church
by Mike Breen and Walt Kallenstad

A Passionate Life
by Mike Breen and Walt Kallenstad

Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality
by Donald Miller

Searching for God Knows What
by Donald Miller

Spiritual Leadership: Moving People to God's Agenda
by Henry Blackaby, Richard Blackaby

previous posts

From Samaria back to Jerusalem
Arrived home safely
New Orleans Mission Trip- Final Day
New Orleans Mission Trip- Day 3
New Orleans Mission Trip- Day 2
New Orleans Mission Trip- Day 1
Headed to the Big Easy.........
I don't get it...
There are actually people who don't like Starbucks...

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