- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and answers about the Church
- Published on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 15:12
Barnabas wanted the believers in Jerusalem to know three things in order to welcome Saul to the privileges and responsibilities of the assembly (Acts 9:26-29). Barnabas "declared unto them how he had seen the Lord in the way (his conversion), and that he had spoken to him (his doctrine), and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus (his life)" (verse 27). If a person is to be part of "the fellowship" (Acts 2:42), he must share these three things with the other believers: a common life (he must be saved); a common faith (he must be willing to believe "the faith once for all delivered to the saints"); a common standard of behavior (he must have a testimony consistent with Christian truth; this includes baptism). Different individuals present different needs. Someone who has attended other congregations may be questioned more closely about what he believes. A new believer may questioned more fully about his life, perhaps including moral and marital history, financial dealings, substance abuse, or other matters that elders may even prefer not to discuss. This is not a matter of prying, nor should it be confrontational or embarrassing to anyone involved. The assembly must know those who become part of it. In the process of getting to know these people on a warm, personal, social basis, any questions that arise must be settled to the satisfaction of those who guide the assembly and help preserve its integrity.