Step 1: Membership Class
Step 2: Baptism (if needed)
Step 3: Elder Interview
Step 4: Covenant Affirmation Sunday
Purpose of Membership Class
This is an elder-lead, foundation-laying course designed to provide a platform to learn more about body life at FBC. By walking through our Statement of Faith, we will discuss in detail what we believe as a church. By unpacking our Church Covenant, we will seek to understand and own our relational commitments to one another. There will be time to ask questions and discuss issues related to membership at FBC. This is a sincere attempt to help us be of one mind and one heart as we seek to represent Jesus well as a local church. When membership is done well, Jesus is represented well.
Purpose of Baptism
Baptism is a basic act of obedience whereby the believer tangibly identifies with Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. It is an outward sign of what Jesus has done in an individual’s heart. Yet baptism is more than that. Through baptism we are identified with Jesus and with all those who have been baptized in the same name. In baptism, we declare that we are new creatures who are part of a new family—we are members of Jesus’ universal church. This universal church is made up of local churches. It is our conviction that baptism is for believers and that baptism should precede membership into local churches, of which FBC is one.
Purpose of Elder Interview
- To rejoice with you regarding how God has worked in your life
- To confirm a right understanding of the gospel
- To confirm a right understanding of church membership
- To confirm there are no biblically warranted concerns with your joining FBC as a covenant member
- To answer any questions and/or help you find opportunities to connect and use your gifts at FBC
Purpose of Covenant Affirmation*
“Covenant Affirmation Sunday” refers to the Sunday service when a potential new member publicly pledges to uphold the Membership Covenant by voicing their hearty “I do” as the covenant statements are read (like wedding vows). This affirmation is designed to be solemn, celebratory and instructive. Solemn, in the sense that commitment is serious. Celebratory, in that God has sent more laborers to link arms in the mission he has given to us. Instructive in that through these moments of covenant affirmation, we will be continually reminded of our commitments and, by God’s grace, be stirred afresh to live them out faithfully and sincerely.
*Note: assuming the elders have no reservations concerning the interview, they will recommend the candidate to the existing membership by means of an announcement during Sunday service. During this announcement, the elders will ask that if anyone has concerns about proceeding toward membership that they contact one of the elders as quickly as possible.