Church Membership in the Bible
Church membership is an office, too. It’s a job that comes with authority and responsibility.
If you’re looking for the words “thou shalt be a church member” in Scripture, you won’t find them. But if that troubles you, let me encourage you to think a little differently about how to arrive at biblical conclusions.
As a professor of mine used to say, “there’s nothing wrong with a prooftext… as long as the text proves what you say it does.”
Sadly, individualism, consumerism, easy-believism, and unbiblical church polities have left many church members intentionally or unintentionally sidelined.
Church membership isn’t just a useful tool in the pastoral tool belt; it’s the tool belt itself.
Membership around the World
If we want to see the gospel advance in Russia, then our churches must return to meaningful and biblical church membership—embracing the heritage left to us by Scripture and faithful Russian churches in previous generations.
I’ve often been asked, in a setting like Sweden, whether church membership is even wise. Won’t it simply turn people away?
We should exercise biblical membership to correct my people’s growing misunderstanding of love, authority, and commitment.
Jesus Christ is committed to his church and publicly identifies with her. So should Christians in the Middle East—and every other part of the world.
Churches in Africa needs to teach and practice biblical church membership because it helps address the false sense of community, nominal Christianity, and the subtle relativism.
If church membership runs against the grain of our natural and national inclinations, then we need to be wise as to how we promote it.
The normal life for a Christian—even one outside their home country—is committed to a particular group of fellow brothers and sisters
Pastors in rural areas must take into account certain challenges while leading Christ’s bride to experience the joy of meaningful membership.
Size shouldn’t be an excuse for neglecting membership.
How should we talk about membership on the West Coast? Let me offer three ways that have proven helpful within our body over the past few years.
Membership Best Practices
But Christ intends the local church to be a comfort and grace to all believers— even those who, like me, have been victims of church abuse.
Pastors committed to the importance of church membership need to be cautious. In our righteous zeal to address deficient views of the church, we may be tempted to an unrighteous zeal.
Keeping small groups from becoming mini-churches often takes intentionality and pastoral effort.
Your membership process—whether shorter or longer—is a tool for discipleship, usually one of the first ones people come in contact with.
The two-pronged goal of an interview is to (1) disciple the person, and (2) discern whether their profession of faith in Jesus is credible. You want to disciple and discern.
So what do you do about people who either are members or want to join, and are willing to attend regularly, but are not able?
What do we do when someone takes exception to our church’s statement of faith?
We asked three pastors to share a story of restoration—that is, someone who had been restored to membership after being disciplined for unrepentant sin.
A church should not baptize young people apart from church membership. To do so is unbiblical, unhelpful, and unloving.
In this episode of Pastors’ Talk, Jonathan chats with Mark about our new Journal—Church Membership: Following the Lord Together.