Membership & Church Covenant
Why is church membership important?
At New Union Baptist Church, the basis for church membership is scripture. The following gives a summary
form of the basis for why and how membership works at New Union.
- Church membership is a biblical idea. Throughout the New Testament, the Bible refers to members, leaders, and the purpose of the church as it relates to each local body of Christ. The members of the church are the final say in matters of doctrine, accountability, and choosing leaders.
- The Bible points out that there are members of the church. As people are saved their names are recorded, they are cared for, and they are known by others as a faith family. (Acts 2:37-47, Romans 16:1-16)
- The Bible points out that there are leaders in the church. These leaders are referred to as pastors, elders, and overseers. These terms are used interchangeably in the New Testament. The pastors of the church are responsible for the spiritual care of the church, equipping and training members for ministry, and preaching. (Hebrews 13:17, 1 Timothy 5:17, Ephesians 4:11-13)
- The purpose of the church is the glory of God. The church has been commissioned (Matthew 28:18-20) by God to take the gospel message to all people, and when someone is saved, he or she glorifies God with the life they live. The church is also called to live in a
manner that is pleasing to God. This is called holiness in scripture. The church prays together, studies scripture together, and encourages one another to live faithful to the Lord and repent of sin. (1 Corinthians 5:1-12, Matthew 18, Hebrews 10)
- God gives the church deacons who serve and care for the church. The deacon ministry is essential to the health of the church as leaders in caring for the needs of the members. (1 Timothy 3:8-13, Acts 6:1-7)
- Follow Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, first through obedience in baptism and then through a life of holiness and obedience to God’s will and ways.
- Be committed to participating and growing the ministries and influence of New Union Baptist Church for the glory of God in Rhea County and beyond.
- Participate in missions throughout the year by praying, giving, and going.
Acts 1:8 Missions Strategy
- Jerusalem = Rhea County
- Judea = Tennessee
- Samaria = North America
- Ends of the Earth = The World
- Give of your time, your prayers, and your resources for the sake of the work of Christ at New Union Baptist Church.
- Pursue personal holiness and devotion to Christ through scripture reading, prayer, accountability relationships, and lifestyle.
The church covenant is a voluntary agreement by members of the church whereby they promise to conduct their lives in such a way as to glorify God and promote the ongoing of His church. Every member should study it carefully, refer to it often, and seek to live by it. It
clearly outlines the obligations of church membership.
- Committing To One Another
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior, and on the profession of faith having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now in the presence of God, angels, and this
assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.
- Committing To The Church
We engage, therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love; to strive for the advancement of this church, in knowledge, holiness, and peace; to promote its spirituality and fruitfulness; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline, and doctrines. To contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor, and
the spread of the gospel through all nations.
- Committing To Live Out The Gospel
We also engage to maintain family and personal devotion; to educate our children in the Christian Faith; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances. To walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements, and
exemplary in our deportment; to avoid all tattling, backbiting, and excessive anger; to seek God’s help in abstaining from all drugs, food, drink, and practices which bring unwarranted harm to the body or jeopardize our own or another’s faith, and to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior.
- Committing To Love And Unity
We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and courtesy in speech; to be slow to take offense, but always ready for
reconciliation, and mindful of the rules of our Savior, to secure it without delay.
- Committing To Continue
We moreover engage that when we remove from this place, we will as soon as possible unite with some other church where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God’s Word.
The Process for Joining
You can join the church in one of three different ways:
- If you come to know Christ and are baptized as a believer here at New Union, you become a part of our church family at your baptism. Baptism is the personal testimony of the person’s salvation, the church’s affirmation of their salvation, and entrance into the church body for membership.
- If you are coming from another Baptist church, you may join by what is called a transfer of letter. In Baptist church life, your membership moves from one church to another as an accountability and affirmation process through the sending of a letter from the pastor and church to a new church.
- You can join by statement of faith if you have been baptized as a believer from another denomination or church.
Each person and/or family is encouraged to schedule a meeting with one of our pastors to talk through your personal testimony and understanding of these membership expectations and church covenant prior to joining. The full covenant and our statement of faith are available on the church website.