Over the past week a situation has come to light in the church where I am attending and wanted to get the views of others.
Several months ago our church was brought some equipment that the church desperately needed and the pastor was told "you can use these until the church can afford to financially purchase their own." Fast forward until this past Tuesday. an individual has chosen to leave the church and let the pastor know that he needed the equipment back that was on loan. It was brought to the pastors attention that this equipment was taken from an employer without there permission. The individual that took the equipment wanted to return it to the employer but the pastor and elders did not agree with how this was to take place. The pastor wanted the individual to return the equipment and confess to the employer that he had taken it without permission. The individual knew that he was wrong and knew that he could be fired if he spoke up so he refused and said that it would be simply returned no questions asked. On Friday the pastor and leadership met with the employer returned the equipment and the employee was terminated.
This puts me in a tough situation on one hand the pastor is my mentor as I am in training to plant a church out of my current church but on the other hand I fundamentally disagree with the pastor and his stance and leadership on the issue especially since he informed the church this morning of the situation in the service with friends and family of this individual present.
I am seeking guidance on this issue as I believe that as clergy it is our position to forgive, and urge people to make the right decision, not to make the decision for them and inform the church of the situation. I believe it is not our position to play God but that people do need to be held accountable for their actions.
Scripture tell us the following
"If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private ; if he listens to you, you have won your brother. 16 "But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY FACT MAY BE CONFIRMED. 17 "If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church ; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
What do you think?