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Which church should I attend? Should it be a Bible believing church? I have been warned against attending a charismatic church. Does it matter?
Thank you so much for your honest spiritual enquiry about church attendance.
Firstly, you need to decide if the church you are currently attending is teaching the truth of God's Word and if it presenting the true Gospel. If in fact it has moved away from the Scriptures as God’s infallible Word, and is blurring key tenets such as the virgin birth; the Atonement and the Resurrection, as well as other foundational truths, then you have cause to be concerned. The apostle Paul uses very strong language to warn against such false teaching saying:
For this is not another; but there are some who trouble you and would pervert the Gospel of Christ. But should we, or an angel from Heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again: If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that which ye have received, let him be accursed! (Galatians 1:7-9)
Sadly, it is true of many churches, that they have moved away from Biblical truth.
In this case, you would be wise to seek out another church that is teaching from the whole Bible, or to try and influence the current church to become more Bible centred. I know many people who stick at a liberal Church for years to be a good witness there. However this should only be the case it you are convinced that God has called you to be there for the long term as it can be hard to stay.
Regarding whether to seek out a church of a specific denomination, there are many good churches within all denominations but again, the absolute pre-requisite would be to take your time to investigate which ones are teaching from the whole of God's Word and not compromising on any of the foundational truths.
If you have done some thorough investigation and have two good churches to choose from, then it really comes down to your personal preference, as there is a difference in the styles of service and worship within every church. For example, some churches may be livelier in worship and prayer; so if you are used to a more sedate form of worship, this may take some getting used to, but the most important thing to ask is if you did attend, would it aid you and your family to grow spiritually?
As to being warned by people from attending charismatic churches, I would suspect the warnings have come for two possible reasons:
Firstly, warnings may have come from people who do not believe the charismatic gifts are for today, specifically, speaking in tongues and prophecy. However, there are many who have searched the Scriptures and cannot hold to the teaching that these gifts have ceased. The apostle Paul in his narrative on tongues and prophesy ends by saying:
Therefore, brethren, desire earnestly to prophesy, and do not forbid to speak with tongues. Let all things be done decently and in order (1 Corinthians 14:39). You will need to search the Scriptures for yourself to decide whether these things are correct, as did the Bereans of Acts 17:11: these were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
Having said that, there are also many good Bible believing Christians who do believe the so called ‘miraculous gifts’ and the five-fold ministry (Ephesians 4:11-16) have ceased for this time in which we live.
Search the Scriptures and decide for yourself.
Secondly, you may have been warned against charismatic churches, due to the unfortunate, what some might call ‘excesses’, which have marked some denominations over the years. The bible tells us that we should not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world (1 John 4:1).
In summary, if you are concerned of what you are hearing and experiencing in any church, ask God for wisdom and discernment through His Spirit, and search the Scriptures to see if their teaching and practices line up with His Word.
Here are some more Bible Verses for your further consideration:
- Galatians 1:8
- Hebrews 2:4
- 1 Corinthians 13:8-13
I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video
I encourage you to attend a local Bible believing church and speak to the leader about your question. If you want to find a local church, our Church Finder may help you: Find a Church
Please feel free to submit a question to us or to read our answer database: Ask a Question
*All Scripture references are taken From The New King James Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise
*If anything in this answers affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline
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