Church membership is a vital part of every Christian’s spiritual development. The church was instituted by Jesus Christ himself (Matt.16:18), equipped by the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8) and will be collected one day by her Saviour (Rev 22:12). Membership of the true Church of Christ can be demonstrated in practice by becoming a member of the local church. This implies commitment, involvement and responsibility to the local body. “God’s plan to redeem the world is to be realised through the church. Therefore, a Christian should become a part of the church to help fulfil God’s purpose” (Whitney). Membership of the local church is an important step and needs to be given prayerful consideration.
We see ourselves as a part of a greater community of redeemed people of God, accomplished by the saving work of Christ. The word church means “the called out ones” or “assembly” founded by Christ. Each member has equal rights and privileges but should also share equally in the responsibilities of the church. The New Testament church of Jesus Christ is a local body of believers who are members together by confession of faith in Jesus Christ, observing the two ordinances of Christ (Baptism and Communion), committed to His teachings, exercising their gifts, rights and privileges given to them by His Word, and seeking to extend the Gospel to the ends of the earth. The New Testament almost always speaks of the local church when referring to the Church.