Before we think about what a local church membership should mean, we'd be wise to ask the more basic question: What is it that I join when I join with a local church in membership?
A Church IS:
- A regular assembly of God's people who SAY and SHOW they have been saved by God's GRACE alone, for His GLORY alone, through FAITH alone, in CHRIST alone.
"For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2:8-10
- A local, loving collection of redeemed rebels who are committed to JESUS CHRIST and EACH OTHER.
"For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another." Romans 12:4-5
- A multifaceted, diverse group redeemed to display God's WISDOM and GLORY.
"To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things, so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places." Ephesians 3:8-10
- An UNLIKELY family that lives to display Christ through counter-cultural, Christ-like LOVE.
Jesus said, "By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." John 13:35
A Church is NOT:
- A religious club
- A building
- A non-profit organization
- A rehab center