Generally, the church today doesn’t really understand what evil is, what it does, and what can be done about it. Its grossly defective view of evil, when applied to the current problems of the church, leads it too often to decisions and actions that are misguided and ineffectual—things harmful to leadership health.

It’s now common to hear things like:

“Poor old George, the stress at work is causing him to do and say such destructive things!” or,

“It may be true that she is passing false rumors around the church, but you need to understand what she’s going through,” or,

“If we can just get these people educated, we can whip these problems.”

We rush to explain the reasons for bad behavior.

Let’s remember that our view of the problem will invariably determine how we approach it and what remedies we attempt to apply. What we conceive will shape what we perceive. If we don’t understand correctly, we won’t see correctly. A false diagnosis in medicine often has tragic results, even the death of the patient. A false diagnosis of the reality and nature of evil will result in trying to apply useless and even dangerous remedies to the problems within the church. Church discipline is one of those areas most affected by this misdiagnosis.

Unless there is a serious belief in the Bible and a basic grasp of Christian theology, the premises on which solutions for the peace of the church are based will be faulty.

Let’s get it straight, we’re not only damaging the church, we’re hurting the very people who need the help.

Dr. John I. Snyder’s revised and updated book, These Sheep Bite: A Fearless Guide to Church Leadership, is scheduled for release soon.

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