Church elders under fire for threatening to expel mom who left husband, started dating woman

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Deuteronomy

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Jun 11, 2018
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#1
CHURCH & MINISTRIES | TUESDAY, APRIL 20, 2021
Church elders under fire for threatening to expel mom who left husband,
started dating woman.

By Leonardo Blair, Christian Post Reporter


Krystal Cox (L) and her girlfriend. | Instagram/Krystal Cox

A team of elders from the Woodstock Church of Christ in Georgia who threatened to expel one of their members after she divorced her husband and made her new lesbian relationship public are now coming under fire online for trying to live according to their religious beliefs.

On Sunday, the church member, Krystal Cox, published a letter on Instagram dated April 1. In the document, Woodstock Church of Christ Elders Rick Reynolds, Gary Kyle, Don Williams and Eric Dotson explain how they have tried to reason with her about going against the church’s teachings on sexuality since last December.

“As we have previously stated, we feel it is crucial to remind you that our Lord considered it vital that no one can be involved in homosexuality and be in a pleasing relationship with God," the letter stated.

“We sent you a letter in the second week of December 2020 that was confirmed by the USPS as delivered on December 10, 2020. A copy of that letter is enclosed. In that letter, the Eldership requested an opportunity to discuss with you this situation and the condition of your soul. We have not received a response to that letter."

Material published on Woodstock Church of Christ’s website notes that: “Our authority in religious matters is found only in the inspired Scriptures. Therefore, we seek to be governed in organization, faith, worship and work by God’s holy Word.”

The nondenominational congregation, which seeks to model itself after the New Testament Church, also takes a minimalist approach to worship with their congregational singing “without the accompaniment of mechanical instruments.”

“This may appear strange to the first-time visitor, but many consider this is the most inspirational part of our worship. This type of singing is used by the New Testament church (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16). We believe that following their example is pleasing to God,” the church explains.

The local congregation selected the four Woodstock Church of Christ elders to serve as pastors or overseers of the church and "teach and exhort the church in sound doctrine and refute those who contradict the truth.”

“Elders are involved in the lives of the members, providing spiritual guidance, prayer and visits in time of sickness, comfort and support in times of bereavement, counseling, and spiritual nourishment as members experience the realities of this life," the church explained on its website, which has since been disabled.

"Elders are to lead by example and will provide instruction for ‘equipping the saints for the work of ministry’ as well as provide the edification needed for healthy relationships within the church (Ephesian 4:11-12). These men are shepherds of this congregation and their primary interest is helping the souls of this congregation reach heaven together."

Since Cox was unresponsive to their appeals, the elders gave her an ultimatum.


Woodstock Church Elders

“If we fail to hear from you by April 30, 2021, we would understand you are not repentant and do not desire to be forgiven of your sinful behavior," the elders wrote. "That being the case, an announcement to that effect will be made to the Woodstock Church of Christ on the following Sunday. We will announce that we have withdrawn fellowship from you following efforts to establish a dialogue to persuade you to repent. Your name will be removed from our membership role [sic] until you decide to make your life right with the Lord."

“It is important that you understand after fellowship has been withdrawn from you, Christians must not interact with you except to encourage you to repent and seek forgiveness (1 Corinthians 5:11-13 and Ephesians 5:11),” the elders added.

Cox, a longtime hairstylist who owns the Hair Bar Salon in Woodstock, told CBS 46 that she was “enraged” after reading the letter from the elders.

“Well, when I opened it, I was kind of enraged. Like, why am I getting picked on and getting called out when everyone has sin?” she asked.

“The fact that they’re going to point it out and release my personal business to the entire congregation of the church and tell them that I can no longer come there, I just don’t feel like that’s right,” Cox added.

“I feel like it’s not wrong. I look at my relationship and how much love I have with her and think, how can people think this is so wrong?”

Cox, who previously celebrated her relationship with her now ex-husband online, now celebrates her relationship with her girlfriend.

She insists that she does not want her former congregation to be attacked for their beliefs.

“I just really don’t want anything bad to come out of this," she said. "Like I want it to be good. I don’t want people to be saying ugly things to them and sending them ugly stuff. I just don’t want that. That was not my intent."

Since Cox publicized the letter, Woodstock Church of Christ has disabled its social media accounts and website. Calls made to the elders and the church by The Christian Post on Tuesday also went unanswered.

LGBTQ advocates are now slamming the church online with negative reviews and have driven down the church's rating on Google to two stars.

“Incredibly judgmental and close-minded," wrote reviewer Alyssa Bowden. "Very rude. God must be very ashamed."

Many reviewers, like David Patterson, gave the church five-star ratings before Cox’s letter was made public.

“Came to Woodstock last October out of a really bad experience. This is truly a family of believers trying to help one another get to heaven," he wrote in a review five years ago. "The church has a wonderful group of elders and the preacher is truly book, chapter, and verse, but makes sure everyone understands the everyday applications of whatever the lesson in our daily lives. There has been an emphasis since we have been there on teaching the lost in the way New Testament did in the first century. If you are looking for a church to call home, COME TEST IT FOR YOURSELF."

Another reviewer, Kristi Busby, wrote on Tuesday that the church is a "loving congregation that adheres to what the Bible says."

"We have many personal friends who worship here,” wrote Busby.

~https://www.christianpost.com/news/...atening-to-expel-mom-relationships-woman.html

~Deut
 

Deuteronomy

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We've had three similar (heterosexual) situations in my church in recent years (where unrepentant, extramarital affairs have ended in separation and divorce). In all three cases, the faithful spouse has remained a member of our church, while the cheating spouse was eventually asked to leave (because they refused to repent), for the benefit of the body, as well for the sake of their own spiritual wellbeing .. cf 1 Timothy 1:18-20.

How does your church handle church discipline scenarios like these? Do you follow the Biblical mandates concerning church discipline (the "tough love" approach I guess you could call it), or do you do something else (and if "something else", what is the "something else" that your church chooses to do instead, and why) :unsure:

Thanks :)

~Deut

Matthew 18
15 If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother.
16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY FACT MAY BE CONFIRMED.
17 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.
 
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Roughsoul1991

Senior Member
Sep 17, 2016
6,482
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#3
We've had three similar (heterosexual) situations in my church in recent years (where unrepentant, extramarital affairs have ended in separation and divorce). In all three cases, the faithful spouse has remained a member of our church, while the cheating spouse was eventually asked to leave (because they refused to repent), for the benefit of the body, as well for the sake of their own spiritual wellbeing .. cf 1 Timothy 1:18-20.

How does your church handle church discipline scenarios like these? Do you follow the Biblical mandates concerning church discipline (the "tough love" approach I guess you could call it), or do you do something else (and if "something else", what is the "something else" that your church chooses to do instead, and why) :unsure:

Thanks :)

~Deut

Matthew 18
15 If your brother sins, go and show him his fault in private; if he listens to you, you have won your brother.
16 But if he does not listen to you, take one or two more with you, so that BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY FACT MAY BE CONFIRMED.
17 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.
We have had lesbian couples come to our church and decide to break up to follow God. We let sinners in the door but outspoken, proud, or sin that comes to light will prevent membership/serving the church. They can still sit in service but will be hearing God's Word as in what is sin and how to live just as the divorced or adulterer is forced to hear if they choose to stay.
 

Genipher

Well-known member
Jan 6, 2019
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#4
I didn't realize churches had star ratings. :unsure:

And I've never understood churches that think it's wrong to worship with musical instruments. What's that about, anyway? We're told in Psalms to worship with lutes, and harps, and stringed instruments.

Honestly, I'm not sure how my church handles people who willfully live in sin. Though I attended a homechurch once where the brothers were in the second stage of Biblically correcting a person who was willfully sinning. I heard later that he repented after the "two or three witnesses" came to talk with him.

At any rate, I'm glad this church stuck with their convictions. As the world gets worse, more and more of us are going to look like hateful bigots and, just like they hated Christ, they will hate us.
 

Runningman

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#5
So the secular world is paying attention to their church right now over perceived social justice issues. Sounds like an opening to give them the gospel of Christ.
 

Deuteronomy

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We have had lesbian couples come to our church and decide to break up to follow God. We let sinners in the door but outspoken, proud, or sin that comes to light will prevent membership/serving the church. They can still sit in service but will be hearing God's Word as in what is sin and how to live just as the divorced or adulterer is forced to hear if they choose to stay.
Hi Roughsoul, we do the same as ~all~ are welcome to listen and learn (and hopefully come to saving faith), as long as they do not publicly promote a sinful lifestyle while they are among us (either by word or by deed, whether heterosexual or homosexual .. if their sin is of a sexual nature, that is).

On the other hand, unrepentant "members" (which means that they have previously testified that they are born again/justified/Christians, and who are already under the spiritual discipline of the church) are not allowed to return as members or as guests (in most cases) as long as they remain impenitent, for their sake, as well for the sake of the body as a whole.

~Deut
 

Deuteronomy

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#7
I didn't realize churches had star ratings. :unsure:
Hi Genipher, I believe that the star ratings are unofficial, but they came to be part of the modern church when we started using certain social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, as well when we began to keep a public presence on the Internet via our church websites.

And I've never understood churches that think it's wrong to worship with musical instruments. What's that about, anyway? We're told in Psalms to worship with lutes, and harps, and stringed instruments.
Certain non-instrumental (usually southern) Churches of Christ believe that God never intended for instruments to be used during worship (and they claim that their use in Revelation is for the age to come only). Like you, I don't agree with them, but I think that is what is primarily behind their decision to exclude instruments from their worship services.

At any rate, I'm glad this church stuck with their convictions. As the world gets worse, more and more of us are going to look like hateful bigots and, just like they hated Christ, they will hate us.
I agree, about the convictions of the Woodstock Church elders (y)(y), and about the fact that the world will continue to persecute us, and that in an ever-increasing manner, as the Day of the Lord draws nigh .. e.g. Matthew 5:14-16; 1 Corinthians 15:58; 2 Timothy 3:12, 4:3-4.

~Deut
p.s. - I was also happy about having the opportunity to use "nigh" in a sentence again :LOL:
 

p_rehbein

Senior Member
Sep 4, 2013
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#8
They should expel her.

I assure you that according to the 1st Chapter of Romans, IF she engages in living the lesbian lifestyle, God will expel her from His House.

She better not be counting on OSAS to save her, cause she will be condemned by her own actions.
 

BigSky2021

Active member
Apr 23, 2021
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#9
As the world gets worse, more and more of us are going to look like hateful bigots and, just like they hated Christ, they will hate us.
Yes, hateful, bigots, and "conspiracy therorists" is one of the new labels. If we don't buy into the COVID hysteria and vaxx agenda
 

Platosgal

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Mar 17, 2020
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#10
So the secular world is paying attention to their church right now over perceived social justice issues. Sounds like an opening to give them the gospel of Christ.
Its more like the female wanted attention and to play the victim
She is disgusting for her self grandiose pagent of
News getting behavior
Her 15 min of fame will turn in to
an eternity if pain
 

Magenta

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Jul 3, 2015
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#11
The nondenominational congregation, which seeks to model itself after the New Testament Church, also takes a minimalist approach to worship with their congregational singing “without the accompaniment of mechanical instruments.”

“This may appear strange to the first-time visitor, but many consider this is the most inspirational part of our worship. This type of singing is used by the New Testament church (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16). We believe that following their example is pleasing to God,” the church explains.
Neither of those verses say no instruments at all are involved.

Cox, a longtime hairstylist who owns the Hair Bar Salon in Woodstock, told
CBS 46
that she was “enraged” after reading the letter from the elders.
Interesting that she acts like she did not know the church's stance on this issue :oops::unsure::rolleyes:
 

Deuteronomy

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#12
Neither of those verses say no instruments at all are involved.
That's true, though I believe their "no instruments" in worship thing comes more from the fact that worship with instruments is not mentioned from the end of the OT until Revelation (which they claim is strictly about life in the age to come).

Interesting that she acts like she did not know the church's stance on this issue.
Yes it is :confused:

I found this little blurb of hers interesting as well.

She insists that she does not want her former congregation to be attacked for their beliefs.

I just really don’t want anything bad to come out of this," she said. "Like I want it to be good. I don’t want people to be saying ugly things to them and sending them ugly stuff. I just don’t want that. That was not my intent."
And yet, that's exactly what happened when 1. she made sure that everyone, everywhere knew what the elder's decision was, and then 2. she told everyone who they were and where they could be found.

So it seems clear that what she "actually" wanted is completely different than what she "claimed" that she wanted (no matter what the cost will end up being for her family, particularly for her children, and her friends).

~Deut
 

Deuteronomy

Well-known member
Jun 11, 2018
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#13
Its more like the female wanted attention and to play the victim
She is disgusting for her self grandiose pagent of
News getting behavior
Her 15 min of fame will turn in to
an eternity if pain
Sadly, for everyone involved, I agree :(
 

ResidentAlien

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Apr 21, 2021
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#14
And I've never understood churches that think it's wrong to worship with musical instruments. What's that about, anyway? We're told in Psalms to worship with lutes, and harps, and stringed instruments.
Hi Genipher.

In the Church of Christ they follow a strict policy of "where the scriptures (i.e., the New Testament) speak, we speak; where they're silent, we're silent."

Since there's no mention in the NT of musical instruments accompanying worship, they reason God must not have wanted us to use them. They go by Ephesians 5:19: "addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart." They reason that the voice and heart are the only musical instruments God authorized for worship.

While I applaud there intention to follow scripture rigorously, some of their ideas seem pretty legalistic to me. I've read papers by Church of Christ representatives that debate the use of a pitch pipe!

Not all Churches of Christ forbid musical instruments however.
 

Lanolin

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Dec 15, 2018
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#15
weird

I recall when a church member turned lesbian and her husband split up and also the husband had an affair with the wife of another couple in the church and all of them left.
The one who was innocent moved to a different church while the adulterous ones stopped going and the one that turned lesbian also left.

I dont know if the elders told them to go or not, that part wasnt publically announced in front of everyone except for when one of the married couples husband whos wife was comitting adultery said they were separating.

Another church member told me about it. They all had children, so the children were all split up too. It was my neighbours daughter and our family had gone to their wedding, It was a bit shocking for all of us. But as far as I know the daughter hadnt repented. The children just regard the new boyfriend as their 'uncle'

stuff like this happens in churches. Divorces happen, people leave. It didnt have anything to do with what is taught in church its just peoples own failings. I recall the husband being super active in all ministries espicially in youth and the other couple on the worship team as musicians trying super hard to seem like a normal couple and family, but it did seem they were always hogging the stage 'spotlight' as it was when musicians start talking about how they like this song and that in a service.

Church carried on without them though a new youth minister was appointed. I wouldnt expect a big newspaper article about it all though. people in church didnt like to talk about it as most didnt really know what was going on. It did raise questions though.

this lady going on instagram just seems rather foolish. why would you parade your sin in front of everyone, but this is what people engaged in sexual immorality like to do because they are actually proud of it and dont care because they love their sin too much to think of the eternal consequences.
 
M

MoonCresta

Guest
#16
Hi Genipher.

In the Church of Christ they follow a strict policy of "where the scriptures (i.e., the New Testament) speak, we speak; where they're silent, we're silent."

Since there's no mention in the NT of musical instruments accompanying worship, they reason God must not have wanted us to use them. They go by Ephesians 5:19: "addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart." They reason that the voice and heart are the only musical instruments God authorized for worship.

While I applaud there intention to follow scripture rigorously, some of their ideas seem pretty legalistic to me. I've read papers by Church of Christ representatives that debate the use of a pitch pipe!

Not all Churches of Christ forbid musical instruments however.
I had the pleasure of visiting a Mennonite Church in the Shenandoah Valley once. The singing was without instruments and was glorious! I've always considered the human voice to be the best instrument out there, anyway.

But there is certainly nothing wrong with instruments. I play the guitar myself!