"2.You choose a church solely on emotional connections. As a pastor since 1984, I have seen more people leave a church because their friends left than because they genuinely heard from God. Consequently, people are led by their emotions more than by the Holy Spirit when it comes to this all-important matter regarding their church family. That being said, it is normal for a person to come to Christ and attend a church because a friend invited them. However, once they mature in the faith, God expects them to go from carnal reasoning to a spiritually informed process regarding the choice of a church, among other things. A mature believer will choose a church based on the will of God, where they are growing spiritually and who God has placed in their life to be their spiritual parent (1 Cor. 4:15)." - Joseph Mattera
Once again, we see the trappings of charismaniacal beliefs seeping into Mattera's logic. To be clear, the only reason why we should join a church is if they preach the uncompromised gospel of Jesus Christ. Everything else is secondary. Mattera is right about the emotional angle. I know many people who have stayed in abusive churches and wildly false teaching churches just because their friends are there. Leaving my Christian friends I had grown with for ten years was the most difficult part of leaving my church once it went apostate. It did reveal however that a great many of those relationships were paper thin and based solely on the fact that we attended the same church building, not that we were both in the body of Christ. The gospel must be more important though. Mattera's three reasons are only one third accurate. We should only attend where we are growing spiritually. There is nothing however in scripture about "spiritual parents" and following the "will of God" is too nebulous. Stick to the gospel being preached. These NAR trappings Mattera traffics in should be avoided.
"3. You choose a mate solely on mutual attraction. Based on my pastoral observation, I have seen countless numbers of Christians marry a person merely because of an emotional or physical attraction. Although God can work through any marital situation, deciding this is no different than an atheist who will also choose a mate merely on emotional and physical attraction (Rom. 8:28). I believe God uses the way He has wired us emotionally, physically and spiritually (I would never counsel a person to marry a person they were not physically attracted to). At the end of the day, God has a specific spouse that matches your calling and destiny, which comes from being led by the Spirit and hearing from God. (To be fair, I have seen many married couples come to Christ whom God brought together even though they were not believers, but after they are saved, much more is required regarding decision making.)" - Joseph Mattera
Ok, this is presented very muddily. The bottom line here is a believer should not be unequally yoked with an unbeliever, period full stop. Why? Because when things in the marriage come to confrontation or times of hardship, you will want to go to God and they will not. Your very core beliefs of who you are will be utter foolishness to them. Do not delude yourself into thinking you will change them because there is an equal chance that they will change you. If you married an unbeliever who was eventually saved then praise God but realize that the opposite outcome is usually the end result. Where we see the charismaniacal teaching here is this notion that God has someone specific for you that matches your destiny and calling. That is of course untrue and if you embark on that quest to hear from God you will convince yourself you have heard for less than spiritual means. Start with shared faith and work from there beloved. Do not seek the one sole person theory or it may be a very long search. Just as a reminder, Mattera accuses anyone who disagrees here with actually not believing in God!
"4.You have no consistent communion with God. Any believer who does not seek the Lord regularly, aiming to be in continual communion with Him, is living like a functional atheist. Moses said to the Lord, "If your presence doesn't go with us, then don't send us" (Ex. 33:15). Being in communion with the Spirit and being led by Him continually is a staple of normal Christianity (Rom. 8:14; Eph. 5:15-18). Believers who constantly fill their lives with activities bereft of seeking Him, behave like functional atheists." - Joseph Mattera
It must be great to be spiritually perfect like Joseph Mattera. Back here on earth however, it is simply not possible to live in constant communion, seeking Him always. If I am considering going to Panera for lunch I do not need to seek the Lord first. If I want to take my family to a Mets game, even though it may be bereft of seeking Him to do so, it does not make me a functional atheist. God is God all by himself. He does not need me reminding Him of my itinerary. During regular prayer we should seek that He lead people to us and that He give us the words to share the gospel, regardless of the activities we are engaged in. This over-spiritualization has left so many people with shipwrecked faith because it is a silly standard that none can live up to. Now, if there is some moral concern about a proposed activity, we should seek the Lord but that is not what Mattera is offering here.
"5.Scripture does not inform your worldview. Every election season, it amazes me the unbiblical policies and candidates some believers support. Obviously, they are primarily informed by secular humanism, and don't understand how to integrate their personal faith with public policy. Those who are not informed by Scripture regarding their world and life view are functional atheists in this area." - Joseph Mattera
What absolute garbage and one of the primary reasons why good, solid believers leave the church every year. First of all, the term worldview is code-speak for the NAR dominionist that means we have to vote Republican. There are ungodly, evil people and policies on both sides. The very best you can hope for is the lesser of two evils but then do not lose sight that you end up advocating for evil anyway! The second problem with his flawed thinking is we do not vote for policies. We vote for people who promise us the world and then often do nothing or the opposite once in office. Stop placing your hope in man and stop calling people atheists if they do not support the same liar that you support.