You might have heard this one yourself, it is so common, both from outsiders and from fallen brothers. In fact, you might have heard a specific sin listed, usually hypocrisy. My first reaction to the above statement though is, "Well, duh—." Just like AA is full of alcoholics, the church is full of sinners.
Let me say quickly that I have a little beef with that notion myself. Yes, we have all sinned (Rom 3:23) and we all need saving. Yes, we are all in the process of reformation. Just like AA is full of reforming alcoholics who sometimes still slip, so the church is full of reforming sinners who still on occasion slip and fall, sometimes rather ignominiously. But we should also have a healthy sense of our transformation. "Such were some of you," Paul says after a particularly heinous list of sins, "but you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified…" (1 Cor 6:11). He regularly calls us "saints." So let's quit demeaning ourselves with this humility so-called by beating on our breasts and moaning, "I am such a sinner." Let's stop giving ourselves an easy excuse. But that's another lesson for another day.
To the point being made by this accusation, none of us is perfect, but tell me of a group of any people that is…. I'm waiting…Oh, you can't? No, you cannot find a perfect group of people anywhere, so is this excuse really valid? In fact, can I point you to another group you might have expected perfection from and not gotten it?
Among the twelve Jesus himself chose we had Peter the Denier, Judas the Thief and Betrayer, Thomas the Doubter, James and John the Sons of Thunder who also had an ambitious streak in them, Matthew the former publican who might still have had an occasional temptation to covet, and Simon the Zealot whose former intimates participated in outright rebellion, including assassinations. Did any of them leave the Lord because of their fellows' past or current faults or weaknesses? They understood who they followed and why they followed him, and did not use another's mistakes to try and excuse their own.
And then, after the Lord set up his kingdom here on earth, the one that was to endure forever (Dan 2:44), suddenly we read of Ananias and Sapphira, liars and cheats. Divisions arose about bias in the benevolence process. A large argument that went on for years came between some of the Jewish and Gentile converts, and public squabbles arose between prominent people (Acts 15:36-40; Phil 4:2,3). And it doesn't end there. Hymenaeus, Philetus, and Diotrophes don't even round out the ones who caused trouble. But did Paul use that as an excuse to leave the Lord? Did Timothy? Did Barnabas or Titus or John or Jude or—well, you get the point, I am sure.
No, the people in the church are not perfect. That group is made up of flawed people, people who know they need the Lord and the salvation he offers, people who know their weaknesses and battle them constantly, but never give up. People who would never purposefully leave his kingdom in the hands of the wicked by walking away, disappointed that not everyone is as wonderful as they seem to think they are. As long as there are people who would not know humility if it bit them on the nose, or who cannot take responsibility for their own issues, you will hear this as an excuse for leaving the Lord. Get used to it. It may be a sign that you are in the right place after all.
For there must be also factions among you, that they that are approved may be made manifest among you (1Cor 11:19).