January 22, 2015
I AM A CHURCH MEMBER
By; Thom S. Rainer
Discovering the Attitude that Makes the Difference
I will be a functioning church member; With "Membership" comes perks, privileges, others serving me, pleasing me, and making sure that I am "happy" sitting in "my" seat. Membership means that the Pastor must preach on only the things you want him to, the choir must sing only the songs you want to sing, you
pay your "dues" right?
Okay, you get the picture. Those unfortunately typical comments come from members of churches who have an unbiblical view of membership. This wrongful view of membership sees the tithes and offerings as membership "dues" that entitle members to a never-ending list of privileges and expectations, instead of an unconditional cheerful gift to God.
SO, what does the Bible say about church membership? I'm glad you asked.
Membership means we are all necessary parts of the whole; In 1Corinthians 12 to 14, Paul explains the metaphor of the church being a body with many members , he established love as the central attitude and action all members should have. He returns to the messed-up church at Corinth that has the concept of membership all wrong.
In 1Corinthians 12:27-28 the Bible explains "members or membership". The apostle Paul would carry the body metaphor further and explain that members are individual parts of the body. Some are eyes; others are ears. Some are feet; still others are hands. That is why he concludes: "For as the body is one and has many parts, and all the parts of that body, though many are one body - so also is Christ" (1Cor. 12:12.)
There is a beautiful diversity in the midst of unity in church membership. The Bible makes it clear that if one part does not do its job, the whole body does not function well. "So if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it" (1Cor 12:26)
Next Week I will share more of I Am A Church Member ~