Churches Cooperating in Discipline
Yes, autonomous local churches really can cooperate in church discipline. No, they typically don't. But, yes, they should! The first step my own church takes to cooperate with other churches in discipline is to ask everyone joining the church, have you ever been disciplined from a local church? If the person answers ?yes,? more questions will follow, and possibly the pastors will reach out to the former church.
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Jonathan Leeman, a member of Capitol Hill Baptist Church, is the editorial director for 9Marks and the author of Church Membership: How the World Knows Who Represents Jesus and Church Discipline: How the Church Protects the Name of Jesus (both Crossway, April 2012).