Making Church Membership Meaningful

We often talk about making church membership meaningful. At our church’s Discovery Class we sometimes, ask the question, “What makes church membership meaningful?” Then we try to answer the question to help new and prospective members.

Last week I read a report in Baptist Press, concerning a church in Kentucky that sought to make church membership meaningful. Their expectations about attendance and giving set off a firestorm of protests and news stories about this “thoughtless and compassionless” church.

What were they trying to do? They were making church membership meaningful!

By doing so, they simply attempted to follow the New Testament. If you want to know whether or not church membership matters, go to the New Testament church. In the churches of the New Testament, you find repeated examples showing the significance of church membership.

Many churches not only don’t emphasize meaningful membership; they don’t even believe in church membership.

Could that have been the case with Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5)? Could there be any stronger message that church membership matters–and that the One to whom it matters most is God Himself?

Paul called on the church at Corinth to exercise church discipline against a man practicing the kind of immorality “not found even among pagans” (1 Corinthians 5:1). Church membership certainly mattered to Paul and his companions.

Church membership should matter to us as well.

Being a church member who practices Godly living and seeks to be a good example to the community matters to God. We must seek our best in pleasing Him.

All of this is written so that you and I can examine ourselves. Am I regular in attendance? Do I give cheerfully and sacrificially? Am I example for Christ in my community?

All of these matter to God. They certainly should matter to us.

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About Waylon

I am the senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Covington, Louisiana, a position that I have held since 1989.

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For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. — Philippians 1:21 (NIV)