The idea of church membership is fading. Many churches are doing away with it altogether. Many people see it as nothing more than a bureaucratic tool for keeping track of people’s attendance and giving. In our culture spirituality has become an individual rather than community pursuit. And even “churched people” often attend more than one church at a time, depending on the speaker, the music, the setting, the programs. We’ve become consumers of spiritual goods and services.
The New Testament paints a different picture. Is there scriptural evidence for why anyone should become a member of a local church? The big idea is this: Local Church membership is the life of committed relationships and responsibilities to which every Christian is called. We are called to identify with and belong to a local church; to follow local church leaders, and to want and engage in local church mutuality and accountability.
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 1:1-2; Romans 16:3-5; Hebrew 13:17; 1 Peter 5:5; Matthew 18:15-18, 16:18; 1 Corinthians 5