Our commitment to those who become members of Warrenton Christian is that they and their families will be shepherded by the Elders and Minister.
1. We will embrace you as a member of our family. (I John 4:7-8)
2. We will equip you to mature spiritually. (Ephesians 4:11-16)
*I should note that no Church nor Church leadership is perfect. While this is our commitment, grace should be required because we will not always get it right!
What is the MY part in this PARTNERSHIP? How am I to be committed to the Church?
At Warrenton Christian we never ask our members to do more than the Bible clearly teaches. We only expect our members to do what the Bible expects every Christian to do. We don’t want something from you; we want something for you.
Here is what we ask every member to agree to: “Having accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and having been baptized since becoming a believer, and being in agreement with WCC’s mission, beliefs, and structure, I now feel led by the Holy Spirit to unite with the WCC family and be shepherded. In doing so, I commit myself to God and the other members to do the following”…
1. Exalting The Supremacy Of Christ
*Note: The church is not a radio ministry that “asks for your support in leu of what you gain from them.” The church is a mission that you have partnered with. Your financial support is both a vital part of our continued mission and a part of your worship to the Lord.
2. Experiencing Christ Through One Another
a. To join the family life of the church in a small-group context. (Acts 2:43-47)
3. Engaging In The Work Of Christ
4. Extending The Hope Of Christ
If you are not a Member, Join A Church!
I’m sure many of you know people who claim to be Christians, and yet for one reason or another refuse to commit themselves to a local church. How can we help those people to see the significance of church membership? There are many good points you could make, but let’s concentrate on three.
• First, not joining a church is dangerous. We are sinful people, and therefore we simply cannot trust ourselves. By joining a church, we ask others to hold us accountable to live as Christians and, if necessary, even to discipline us if we are not living as Christians. Proverbs 12:1 is instructive: “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid.”
When we commit to a church by becoming a member, other members can help us guard against our own self-delusion and hold us accountable.
• Second, joining a church brings glory to God. Perhaps you’ve had conversations with Christians who reject the idea that we need to join the church. And perhaps these friends appear to be strong Christians. They are active witnesses for the gospel, they read Scripture regularly, and they pray frequently.
All these things are good, but by refusing to join a church, a person betrays a fundamental misunderstanding of God’s plan for displaying his glory. God displays his glory through the church. God’s plan is not about us as mere individuals. It is far larger and grander than that. God wants people to unite around his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ—people who have many different faults and peculiarities, people who may be very different from you, people who may not always even be your favorite people, but people with whom you have Christ in common. That’s what Paul means in Ephesians 3 where he says that it is through the church that God’s manifold wisdom is made known.
• Finally, joining a church identifies us with Christ. In Acts 9, the risen Jesus appears to Saul as he is heading toward Damascus to persecute Christians. Do you remember what Jesus says to him? He doesn’t say “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting those Christians?” He doesn’t even say “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting the church?” He says, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” Jesus so closely identifies with the church that he refers to the congregation of Christians at Damascus as “me.”
We are the Body of Christ, and Ephesians 5 tells us that Jesus Himself is our HEAD. If Jesus himself so completely identifies with the church, shouldn’t we do the same?
We started this series by asking why anyone should bother with church membership. I hope that by now you have a good understanding of why membership is so important.
We are not called to live the Christian life as isolated individuals, but rather as members of Christ’s body—that is, as members of a local church. That is not just some arbitrary requirement, either. When we commit our lives to one another in the church, we are given the encouragement and accountability we need, and God is glorified by the amazing spectacle of people from utterly different backgrounds uniting solely for the sake of his Son Jesus. Ultimately then, church membership is both for our good and for God’s glory!
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