Membership Covenant Revision
Last Sunday we began a 9-week series of messages in which we are considering a revised membership covenant that all current members will, Lord willing, affirm at the end of the series and then re-commit to. I said in the sermon that I would post the covenant online for those who did not receive a paper copy. It is below:
Joy Community Fellowship Membership Covenant**
Having been brought by God’s grace to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, we do now, relying on His grace, solemnly and joyfully establish this covenant with each other as one Body in Christ.
We will pray and labor to be faithful disciples of Jesus Christ, devoted to the glory of God in all things, resting in the gospel of His Son, and dependent on the aid and empowerment of the Holy Spirit to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives. (Luke 14:25-33, 1 Corinthians 10:31, 15:10, Titus 2:11-14, Philippians 2:12-13)
We will feed our souls regularly on and live our lives according to the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, having submitted ourselves to God’s Word and embraced this church’s statement of faith as a trustworthy summary of biblical teaching. (Psalm 119, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Jude 3)
We will not forsake assembling together, but will faithfully participate in our corporate worship. We will defend and maintain an evangelical ministry by upholding and attending to the preaching of the whole counsel of God’s Word, the faithful observance of baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and the loving exercise of church discipline. (Hebrews 10:23-25, 2 Timothy 4:1-2, Acts 2:38, 1 Corinthians 11:26, Matthew 18:15-18)
We will diligently strive to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, walking together in brotherly love, as becomes the members of a local church: we will pray for and serve one another, exercise an affectionate and watchful care for each other, and reject all opportunities to speak or hear gossip or slander. We will instead seek to encourage, admonish and build one another up to maturity in Christ, while forgiving one another as God has forgiven us in Christ. (Ephesians 4:1-3, 11-16, 29-32, Hebrews 3:13, 12:15, Colossians 3:12-17, James 5:16)
We will earnestly seek the salvation of our family, friends, neighbors and all peoples, by making the most of every opportunity to proclaim and adorn the gospel of Christ, by faithfully transferring the gospel to future generations, and by partnering with those who take the gospel to the ends of the earth. (Colossians 4:5-6, 1 Peter 2:9-12, 3:15-16, Titus 2:10, Ephesians 6:4, Deuteronomy 6:5-7, Acts 1:8)
We will contribute cheerfully and generously to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and the advancement of the gospel locally and globally. (2 Corinthians 9:7, Matthew 28:19, Galatians 2:10, 1 Corinthians 9:13-14)
We will respect those appointed as leaders over us, and highly esteem them in love because of their work, as they keep a close watch on their lives and doctrine in exercising oversight of our souls. (Acts 20:28, 1 Thessalonians 5:12, 1 Timothy 4:16, Hebrews 13:17)
We will, upon moving from this place, unite as soon as possible with a church where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God’s Word.
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen.
I have read and understood this covenant, the church’s constitution and statement of faith. I affirm these documents and I wholly and willingly submit myself to them. If for any reason I believe I can no longer fulfill the commitments described in this covenant, I will submit my resignation from the church’s membership in writing to the elders of the church. I also understand that the church has the authority to refuse my resignation, either for the purpose of proceeding with the process of church discipline or for any other biblical reason.
Signed: _________________________________ Date: ________
Printed name: _______________________________
Elder Approval: _______________________________ Date: ________
** This covenant has its origins in a covenant written in New Hampshire in 1833, and has been amended and adopted over the years by various churches seeking to maintain its spirit. Our church covenant is a statement of how we pledge, with God's help, to live out the Christian faith together.