Worldliness in the Church

What few Christians seem to realize is that a church may take a strong stand against certain flagrant sins of the world and yet be decidedly worldly. That is a fact worth dwelling upon...

The leaders of a church not infrequently follow the bad example of Jesus' twelve disciples and vie with one another for honor. That, too, is worldliness. 

Again, there are churches which pride themselves on their firm stand against worldliness and yet want to be great as the world counts greatness. They think in terms of costly stone edifices rather than lively stones that are built up a spiritual house (1 Peter 2:5). They strive after statistical rather than spiritual prosperity. That also is worldliness. 

The conclusion is inescapable that the Christian church, in order to maintain its holiness, must indeed discipline those of its members who indulge in the flagrant sins of the world, but that is not enough. It is no less necessary that the church cast out such forms of worldliness as are less obvious but more insidious and not a whit less malignant. 

- R. B. Kuiper "The Glorious Body of Christ" pp 59-60.