5 Things That Will DESTROY Your Church

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Mark Driscoll: There are few things more tragic than a church divided.

There are few things more tragic than a church divided.

Jesus said, “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35). Yet, too often, the church is known by its bickering and dividing among itself, rather than its love for one another.

When a church is divided, it’s easy to fall into the temptation of placing blame on others, but the reality is that if your church is divided, you, not the person who has “all sorts of problems and issues,” may be the cause of the division.

Many don’t set out to be divisive in the church.

The seeds of division are small, but they can grow into a large problem. As Christians, it’s important that we prayerfully examine ourselves to see whether or not we are the cause of division.

Here are five signs to consider.

Read them. Pray about them. And if you find yourself as the cause of division, then repent and make restitution with those you have offended.

1. Pride.

Pride is an ugly sin, and proud people are ugly. Pride in the life of the church ultimately leads to division.

If you think highly of yourself, delight in providing your opinions, expect to be consulted about your opinions, and get angry when they’re not obeyed, then you probably struggle with pride.

2. Heresy.

“Heresy” is quite the buzzword in the church. Many times, Christians label other Christians as heretics because they disagree with them on some minute, nonessential detail. That’s not heresy. That’s disagreement.

A heretic is someone who believes the opposite of orthodox Christian doctrine. A heretic is someone who doesn’t believe that there is one God in three persons, that Jesus is God’s Son, and that Jesus lived without sin, died on the cross in our place, and rose as our Savior. These, among a few others, are essential beliefs that must be adhered to if you call yourself a Christian.

The allowance of heresy will divide, and even destroy, the church.

3. Legalism.

Legalists love to act like God by making rules. Not only do they make rules, but they also wield rules as weapons to divide the church body into separate parts.

Instead of honoring Jesus in their personal convictions, legalists despise and even pass judgment on those who are not like them (Rom. 14:1–12).

Pastor Mark Driscoll is the Preaching and Speaking pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle. He is one of the world’s most downloaded and quoted pastors. His audience—fans and critics alike—spans the theological and cultural left and right. Follow his updates at twitter.com/pastorMark.

More from Mark Driscoll or visit Mark at http://www.marshillchurch.org/

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  • http://www.turnaroundpastor.com/ Bud Brown

    How about creating unity around mission?

  • burkanuck

    So “legalism” and “traditionalism” will destroy the church but “liberalism” is nowhere to be found in this article? Sorry Mr. Driscoll but if you don’t see how liberalism is decimating the Christian church in the US then your opinion is utterly worthless.
    I’m not defending either legalism or traditionalism, they both present dangers to the church, but liberalism is a far greater danger in the contemporary church than either of them.

    • Peter Mahoney


      I agree with you… but I’m wondering if Mark would put “liberalism” under the heresy category. I am fairly confident that most “liberal” views would and could be labeled accordingly. I know I would.

    • Just Thinkin’

      Utterly worthless? Because he left out an item you think is important. Go read paragraph one again…

      • ts

        or the second one also for that matter
        thank you

    • ts

      heresy was listed

      liberalism isn’t heresy?
      liberalism is a heresy wolf in sheeps clothing at its best

      so Burke did not list sub categories he did give a correct outline

      many prideful ministers would not consider themselves prideful but Burke did not have time to elaborate

      he gave the basics and did well in it

      • ts

        I’m sorry I should have said Driscoll

  • Tim

    Mark D has no biblical understanding on what a church he he often states in pastor meeting that church is for the unsaved and not the saved. To that I say read John 17.

  • samkiruba gnanasudhan

    the Antichrist in the mask of liberal entered into the church and destroying the everything. So please add this also in your point. next TRADITIONALISM by which there was fear , but now dogs and donkeys are entering even occupying the pulpit. the curse is on liberalism because in this whatever a humanbeing thnk comes as theology.


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He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? —Romans 8:32