2Th 3:14 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.
This article is long overdue. There are enough verses in the New Testament, especially the epistles, that this subject fits into doctrinal import. In other words we ought to know what the Bible says on this subject.
Most Churches shy away from one of their most important duties. That of self cleansing. God gives us a story in First Corinthians chapter 5. He tells of a church member who is physically involved with his father's wife. The Lord spoke very harshly about the practice, but his greatest displeasure was with the Church who was "puffed up." They were simply ignoring the problem. Paul warned the church of dire consequences if they did not remove the sinner from their midst. 1 Co 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.
Other scriptures expect similar response to any disparaging or disobedient behaviour of church members. Words such as "avoid" "withdraw" are used. Christians are responsible to avoid and withdraw from fellow Christians whose testimony is being marred by ungodly acts or attitude.
Churches are weakened and find themselves without the power of God when they cannot discern the ungodly behaviour of fellow believers.
If a professing Christian who is a member of your Church is known by a filthy mouth, testified to by his or her neighbors, should the active membership pretend that there is no problem with that? If a professing wife or husband is being unfaithful to their spouse, should the Church look the other way or should the members excuse the behaviour and look the other way?
In many Church splits, a good number of the membership will take sides with a rebellious individual or clique even if they are aware that the offenders are not being faithful to the Lord or His Word.
Sometimes we think that if we will be super nice to a rebellious member that he or she will repent of their rebellious way. This is not troe and it is the reason there are ample scripture telling us to avoid and withdraw. Most lost people won't get saved until they realize they are on their way to hell and most rebellious Christians will not repent until they are truly faced with the wickedness of their sin.
One of the main reasons we will not confront a rebellious member, is that we sympathize with their rebellion or we feel equally guilty. "I am just as bad as he is."
The answer here is not to sympathize, but to repent and require the offender to also repent.
God will not bless a Church that is not willing to cleanse itself of offensive members.
God will not bless a Church that turns a deaf ear to a truly repentant sinner.
We must make sure the unrepentant member knows why we are withdrawing or avoiding him or her.
We must give the offender any opportunity or occasion to turn from their wicked way and accept forgiveness from God and the offended church.