Acts 17:13, KJV:
But when the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached of Paul at Berea, they came thither also, and stirred up the people.
Lee Freeman's (now deleted) thread about congregations sending around \"letters of disfellowship\" made me think of incidents like that in Paul's life, as recorded in Acts.
Also made me think of some points we ought to discuss around that concept.
Maybe he did well to delete the letters, I dunno since I did not read them. But that angle on the idea of withdrawal of fellowship -- how and when and why and should congregations tell other congregations a blessed thing about what happens \"at home\"? -- that could give us some interesting discussion.
I'm not so much wondering what y'all think about a formal \"disfellowshipping\" -- I know y'all have seen it done in an informal way, and in a formal way; and I know y'all have seen it mishandled -- who hasn't, if you've been in the church for very long? -- and I hope, if it had to happen in a church you were part of, I hope it was handled well.
What I want to ask about is a little narrower:
What would have to happen before you would think it a good
thing that the churches in your region spread the word about a brother/sister who had to be put out?
Are you not able to think of an imaginary scenario where you'd think it ever good to spread the story?
When you have seen this done -- I mean when there have been actual \"official\" letters sent out from a church to areas churches -- was it well-done when you saw it? Or was it a waste of ink and a tossing around of dirt unnecessarily?
Was it as blessing to the ones so informed or was it an attempt by a church leadership to work up some sort of playground/bully following among the other congregations?
Can you recall a time where you wish
folks had spread some word of a brother's troubles, where it would maybe have done the brother some good not to have an innocent flock to go chew on? (Not to mention the benefit for the sheep to have been forewarned.)
If you hold a particular position, have you any specific Scripture you stand upon, on the matter?
Or can you only come up with \"common sense\" and \"wise as serpents\" as defense? Is that enough, if so?[/color]