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What is your opinion on the Church disfellowshipping a member because of pregnancy outside of marriage?

From a personal standpoint, all of us have sinned and come short of the glory of God and to disfellowship a member because of pregnancy is throwing them back into the world instead of loving them and encouraging them in their spiritual life and recommitting themselves back to the Lord. Don't take me wrong, I am not encouraging the sin!!!

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Procedures for Church Discipline

The scriptural procedure is clear and specific steps are prescribed as follows:


If you see the offense or you have accurate knowledge of the sin(s), please note these cautions:
• Be sure it is an offense which calls for discipline and not merely one of our pet peeves. Again, the Word must be our criterion.
• Remember how we too have sinned in the past and heed the warnings of Galatians 6:1.
• Bring the matter before the Lord in prayer before the confrontation takes place (1 Sam. 8:6).
• Don’t procrastinate. The longer the delay, the more difficult the condition can become. Remember the consequences listed above.
• Don’t gossip or even talk to others about it in the sense of Matthew 18:16 until you have talked to the sin-ning believer privately. We must guard and protect the person and the flock from rumors and a slanderous tongue (Prov. 6:19b; 10:19; 11:13; 18:8, 21; 20:19).

First Step

First, seek private correction and/or reconciliation with the offender (Matt. 18:15). In Matthew 18:15 many manuscripts have “and if your brother sins against you, go and reprove him in private.”

There has been no little debate as to whether the words “against you” are part of the original manuscripts. The words “against me” in verse 21 may have led a scribe or copyist to personalize the matter in verse 15. Or, one could argue the omission was deliberate in order to generalize the passage. While some important manuscript tradition lacks the words “against you,” many feel there is good evidence for their originality. First, the words, “reprove him in private,” and second, the question of Peter in verse 21 about forgiving a brother who sins “against me” sug-gests their inclusion.

Whether the words “against you” were in the original text or not, Galatians 6:1 teaches that believers have a responsibility to confront sin in general in the life of other believers and not just when it is an offense against one’s person. It would seem, then that there is a two-fold application:

(1) When the problem involves one believer sinning against another, there are two problems that need to be taken care of: reconciliation and restoration (Matt. 5:23-24).
(2) When the problem involves a believer overcome in or by some sin, as was the case in Galatians 6:1, the need is restoration.

Matthew 18:16-17 should not be limited to the problem of one believer sinning against another in view of Galatians 6:1. So, the one offended or who recognizes the offense or sin is to go privately and try to rectify the prob-lem.

Please note these guidelines:

(1) Begin by expressing your genuine appreciation for the person and their good qualities to show you are genuinely concerned about their welfare. Then and only then bring up the matter which is of concern.

(2) In some situations the sin is apparent and there is no question, but we must allow for the possibility that we have misjudged or have wrong information. We must listen to the other person’s side of the story and seek the facts in the interest of truth and fairness.

(3) If the person fails to respond, warn them that, accord¬ing to the instructions of Scripture (Matt. 18:16), you will have to get others as witnesses and return with them to deal with the problem.

Second Step

If the first step fails, take witnesses to strengthen the effect of the discipline, preferably spiritual leaders, so that if it has to be brought before the whole church it can be firmly proven and established (Matt. 18:16-17; 1 Tim. 5:19). The aid of church leadership should be sought if the problem involves an offense that is against the whole body or if it is a threat to the unity of the body.

These initial contacts, private and with witnesses, provide opportunity for loving admonition, correction, and forgiveness. On the other hand, if these first steps do not produce results, it constitutes a warning that further action will be taken and provides occasion for serious rebuke (2 Tim. 4:2; 1 Thess. 5:12-13; Titus 2:15; 3:10).

Third Step

If the second step fails, seek reconciliation and restoration through the whole body. If further action is nec-essary, it is to be taken before the whole church (2 Thess. 3:14-15; Matt. 18:17; 1 Tim. 5:20).

This action appears to fall into two stages when we combine 2 Thessalonians 3:14 and 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 with Matthew 18:17.

(1) The body is to exercise group disapproval by way of social ostracism (refusal to have intimate fellowship).
(2) If this doesn’t work, the local body of believers is to exercise excommunication: removal from church membership, loss of voting privileges, and continuation of the loss of intimate fellowship. This must be approved of and done by the entire congregation (2 Cor. 2:6).

This is, in essence, the Lord carrying out discipline through the action of the entire body under the leadership of the elders or the spiritually mature (1 Cor. 5:4). Similar heavenly authority is seen in the ratification of this disciplinary action as spelled out in Matthew 18:18-19.
With the above-posted important things to remember or note, let me therefore perhaps say that:

Let me begin my piece by defining what desfellowshipping or excommunication is.

Disfellowshipping or excommunication is the formal removal of an individual from church membership and the informal separation from that individual (in short, the highest form of church discipline.


Matthew 18:15-20 gives the procedure and authority for a church to do this. It instructs us that one individual (usually the offended party) is to go to the offending individual. If he/she does not repent, then two or three go to confirm the situation and the refusal to repent. If there is still no repentance, it is taken before the church. This process is never “desirable,” just as a father never delights in having to discipline his children. Often, though, it is necessary. The purpose is not to be mean-spirited or to display a “holier than thou” attitude. Rather, the goal is the restoration of the individual to full fellowship with both God and other believers. It is to be done in love toward the individual, in obedience and honor to God, and in godly fear for the sake of others in the church.

The Bible gives an example of the necessity of excommunication in a local church—the church at the city of Corinth (1 Corinthians 5:1-13). In this passage, the apostle Paul also gives some purposes behind the biblical use of excommunication. One reason (not directly found in the passage) is for the sake of the testimony of Christ Jesus (and His church) before unbelievers. When David sinned with Bathsheba, one of the consequences of his sin was that the name of the one true God was blasphemed by God's enemies (2 Samuel 12:14). A second reason is that sin is like a cancer; if allowed to exist, it spreads to those nearby in the same way that “a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough” (1 Corinthians 5:6-7). Also, Paul explains that Jesus saved us so that we might be set apart from sin, that we might be “unleavened” or free from that which causes spiritual decay (1 Corinthians 5:7-8). Christ's desire for His bride, the church, is that she might be pure and undefiled (Ephesians 5:25-27).

Excommunication is also for the long-term welfare of the one being disciplined by the church. Paul, in 1 Corinthians 5:5, states that excommunication is a way of delivering the unrepentant sinner “over to Satan, so that the sinful nature may be destroyed and his spirit saved on the day of the Lord.” This means that excommunication can somehow involve God’s using Satan (or one of his demons) as a disciplinary tool to work in the sinner's life physically to bring about true repentance in his/her heart.

Hopefully the disciplinary action of the church is successful in bringing about godly sorrow and true repentance. When this occurs, the individual can be restored to fellowship. The man involved in the 1 Corinthians 5 passage repented, and Paul encouraged the church to restore him to fellowship with the church (2 Corinthians 2:5-8). Unfortunately, disciplinary action, even when done in love and in the correct manner, is not always successful in bringing about such restoration. But even when church discipline fails to achieve its goal of bringing repentance, it is still needed to accomplish the other good purposes mentioned above.

We have all likely witnessed the behavior of a young boy who has been allowed to do as he pleases with no consistent discipline. It is not a pretty sight. Nor is such parenting loving, for it dooms the child to a dismal future. Such behavior will keep the child from forming meaningful relationships and performing well in any kind of setting. Similarly, discipline in the church, while never enjoyable or easy, is not only necessary, but loving as well. Moreover, it is commanded by God.

So, the same is true with pregnancy outside of marriage.
similar thing happened in one of the SDA pioneers in the Philippines but the case was not pregnancy. twas called "coupling" that time or "live in" or living together without the blessing of marriage. the pioneer was disfellowed and he felt bad about it. so what he did was he formed another sect or religion and twisted the SDA teachings. now, millions of followers attending that church...and it's too sad.

to your question, it is OK to discipline a church member. but it is her choice if she would end up like the above example, chose to go on his way and submitted not himself and his sin to God.

we don't judge the person, but discipline should be done. anyway. she knows it would happen if she'll have sex without marriage. painful to be disciplined, yes, but the pain is just the result of the inequity that has been made.
to be cleared, discipline and dis-fellowship are not the same. i don't agree that we should dis-fellow the pregnant sister but she should be disciplined and advised by pastors or elders of our church.
I understand and agree with what you are saying Mercedez. If we started disciplining sin ... there would not be many of us left around to do any more disciplining. :)

Praise God ... this is a pretty old fashioned way of dealing with sin. It's not done often anymore but each each decides on their own. So, if you have a church full of conservatives ... it may be done.
Discipline is a joke unless you do it equitably. IOWs ... you can't discipline some people and not others. You can't discipline some sins and not others. Ahhh just forget it. You can't discipline because you are not God and your vision in regards to sins is VERY clouded. It is almost clouded over. You without sin can cast the first stone.
amen. who are we to judge? we are all the same sinners.
slow down ! slow down ! are we not to judge at all then?? if we are not to judge unrightous behaviour then is it that everything is ok then ? the elders the members are free to act irresponsible or even sinful and it is ok fo r after all . WHO AM I TO JUDGE??

YOU better rethink that statement lorie and N HIM for if u are in CHRIST then we have to be responsible in judgement . IS their sin that is confessed and sincerely br repented of this isto be forgiven but sin that is not confessed and repented of is to be judged accordingly so that sin does not reign in our churches .
Correct me if Ibe wrong here;;;;; but I sure would not be a member of a church where sin was not pointed out and dealt with according to the instructions left to us by Christ. their are right ways to deal or judge sin and sinners that is fully acceptable is their not>> ?/ DISFELLOWSHIP SHOULD BE THE LAST RESORT TACTIC WHEN A Member refuses to yeild his or her heart to reason .
we are discussing what is already voted?decided?five seconds before you get baptizing you must to answer if you will accept future dis-fellowship if you sin in some ways!everybody had accepted it!if you say :i am not not agree,you not come in water!which kind the question is this?some rebellion against what you preview agreed before? be careful! discussions means just about what is not clear or voted!warning about the enchanted soil from Satan!
Antonio ... Baptism by no means allows one to be disfellowshipped. Scripture in no way states this. I would ask you for references for your belief ... but past experience demonstrates that you will not. But hey ... your opinions are just as valid as anyone elses. It's just that what you say cannot be back up when put to scripture and the teachings of our church.
Hi bro. Antonio, I've been away for some time. Let me first start by saying that this was not a question based on my personal circumstances. It was a general question that I threw out based on practices in my church. Let me note that the bible also states those of you without sin, cast the first stone....Are you without sin?? I have since my post became pregnant and borne a beautiful girl which I love dearly. Yes, I have been disfellowshipped and have no intention of being rebaptized. Some of the members have been harsh, some quite embracing (not the sin), but I lived thru it and still attend church. One of the terms given to enter into God's Kingdom is being baptized and that I have already done. I've taken up my sin with God. I don't think I need to be a member of the SDA church to enter into God's Kingdom. I, nevertheless, still love my church. My daughter is the result of sin, but you know what, she is God's masterpiece. The bible states "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb".  If he didn't want her to be here, she wouldn't have been. Together with his help, I will raise her to be the person he would want her to be. I am glad she is a part of my life.
It is truly horrible what the church did to you. Just think, had God been as unforgiving as they, both david and bethsheba would have died. I wonder, if the books were to be opened how many of those who condemned you would appear as scarlet. Disfellowship is something that should be reserved for the most serious public sins. It is always better to encouraged the fallen brothers and sisters, rather then judge them.


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