Just a quick one. I am reconsidering my ecclesiology. I grew up as an “Evangelical,” my dad is an ordained CBA (Conservative Baptist Assocation) pastor; this denomination, as most “Evangelical churches” prides itself upon the autonomy of the local church. Well, I’m up against a scenario wherein this outlook is being seriously challenged; just from a pragmatic/pastoral standpoint. The congregational model of the church (one that emphasizes autonomy) has some problems relative to leadership accountable. Without sharing the details of the “scenario” I’m referring to, it is clear that this model has some deep rooted problems; it is like a Peter without a Paul (see Gal. 2). If the leadership in this church government model is inept or immature, and faced with a scenario where maturity is called for, and then they act out of their immaturity the laity or congregant can find themselves in a seriously compromised situation. This is what’s going on with a friend of mine. He’s got a problem, the church doesn’t want to hear his side of the problem, instead they have sided with the “other side’s” perspective without even giving an honest hearing to my friend’s side — they are sorely mistaken and unwise in their response and actions.
My point. If the leadership had some accountability, like they would in an Episcopelian church model or Presbyterian, he could appeal; and ask for a third-party objective hearing. But nope, instead my friend has been excommunicated (it’s a “Bible church” non-denominational). This is a problem.