15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. 18 A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus you will recognize them by their fruits. (Matthew 7:15-20, ESV)

Jesus clearly commands that those who are false teachers and those who commit bad works should be cast out. How does this impact different denominations today and how do they go about doing such a thing?

  • This is a good example of a denomination survey potential answerers please take a look at the meta site to see how answers are expected to be formatted (hint: you need to answer with multiple denominations)
    – Peter Turner
    Oct 12, 2021 at 3:14

1 Answer 1


While this may not be representative of the entire denomination, the Open Brethren church I attend uses Matthew 18:15-20 as the basis of church discipline, including handling people attempting to spread false doctrine, and I believe this is the case for many other churches as well. Verses 15-17,ESV:

"If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 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."

So if someone in the church is out of line (generally someone who is deliberately acting contrary to the teachings of Christianity in a significant way, eg having an affair, dealing drugs - you won't get kicked out because you littered last Wednesday, we are all sinners after all), the person will usually first be contacted by an elder or maybe the pastor for a chat; if they refuse to repent, then that elder/pastor will bring a couple more people with him, usually also elders; if the person still won't budge then the matter will be brought before the congregation, after which the person will be asked to leave and no longer be welcome at that church if they still don't repent.

  • It's worth noting that this would generally not be applied to a non-Christian, eg a seeker, unless they wished to convert or were attempting to corrupt/draw others away from the church. Oct 12, 2021 at 2:26
  • This is a good answer for one Church, but you have to do a little more than that for a question of this site. We've got some criteria on the meta site, You could change your answer to a community wiki or delete it until you go research some other denominations.
    – Peter Turner
    Oct 12, 2021 at 3:12
  • @PeterTurner just had a look and wouldn't multiple denominations be required only of a comparative-christianity tagged question? I can find out if my answer is official Brethren doctrine. Relevant quote: 'I think in practice either have been okay, everyone can answer with as many denominations as they know of that meet the criteria' Oct 12, 2021 at 3:19
  • 1
    I could have sworn someone asked that on meta and we came up with 3 as the magic minimum, but I'm having trouble finding that meta post!
    – Peter Turner
    Oct 12, 2021 at 3:29

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