Church Membership

Yesterday we, as a session, spent the afternoon conducting a membership interview at Reformed Presbyterian Church. It is one of my favorite tasks as an elder to hear people share the means by which the Holy Spirit brought them to faith in Christ, to hear of their living faith in Christ today, and to hear them take their membership vows to the Lord and to His church. Coming from a Southern Baptist background makes me really appreciate the seriousness with which Presbyterians (at least in the Presbyterian Church in America) take church membership. The vows taken to God are a constant reminder of our commitment to Him, and the need for His grace as we live our lives for His glory. Our Book of Church Order requires the following vows to be taken for church membership:

(All of) you being here present to make a public profession of faith, are to assent to the following declarations and promises, by which you enter into a solemn covenant with God and His Church.

1. Do you acknowledge yourselves to be sinners in the sight of God, justly deserving His displeasure, and without hope save in His sovereign mercy?

2. Do you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God, and Savior of sinners, and do you receive and rest upon Him alone for salvation as He is offered in the Gospel?

3. Do you now resolve and promise, in humble reliance upon the grace of the Holy Spirit, that you will endeavor to live as becomes the followers of Christ?

4. Do you promise to support the Church in its worship and work to the best of your ability?

5. Do you submit yourselves to the government and discipline of the Church, and promise to study its purity and peace?

May Christ continue to grow His church for His eternal glory and His people’s eternal good.

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