Membership at Harvest Church
At Harvest Church, we believe that the Christian life is not meant to be lived in isolation. Rather, it is meant to be lived in community (Acts 2:42, Hebrews 10:24-25). In fact, we believe God has placed in every believer a desire to learn, grow, serve, pray, worship, and invest with other believers. That is why we believe church membership is a very important, healthy, and natural response to the Gospel at work in the life of every Christian. When understood properly, church membership is an incredible privilege and a blessing for the follower of Christ, who seeks to grow in the Lord. The regular gathering of believers, committed to one another, for the purpose of worship, teaching, prayer, fellowship, and the sacraments, is a vital part of the discipleship process of every believer. Therefore, membership is a meaningful part of the growth of every Christ-follower, yet it is also an equally meaningful part of the life of a healthy church.
God has gifted every one of us uniquely that we might not only “run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” but also encourage and sharpen one another to remain in Christ, and to live out our calling in Christ, so that together we form one “Body” amidst our diversity, bonded together by Christ. What unites us far outweighs that which might otherwise divide us, and together we are stronger in our common mission of making the Gospel known throughout the Earth! Because of these realities, we commit to one another in a meaningful and sacrificial way, called membership, in which we covenant together to love one another, bear each other’s burdens, pray for one another, serve one another, invest in one another’s lives, and give of ourselves for the growth of one another in Christ.
We believe that when a church has a vibrant, meaningful, and healthy view of membership, its people will operate from humility, in gentleness, with patience, and with “unity of the Spirit in the Bond of peace”, and the result will be a visible expression of the love of Christ and the transforming power of the Gospel. For this reason, we exhort anyone serious about the Gospel to seek membership in a Gospel preaching local church. Everyone has a part to play in the life of the church, and membership at Harvest is our “on ramp” to being a real part of the vibrant expression of the Body of Christ seen in this local church. The first step toward membership at Harvest is attending Discover Harvest.
Requirements for Membership
- Be a baptized follower of Jesus Christ
- Attend Discover Harvest
- Give a credible testimony of faith in Jesus Christ to one of our elders.
Members Meetings (for members only)
Members meetings provide a time for us to briefly discuss what is happening in the life of our church family, including an update on worship, staff, local missions, foreign missions, etc., and to share specific needs and opportunities that have arisen. Also, elders and deacons will be nominated and subsequently voted on at members meetings.
These family meetings are important in keeping the church unified and encouraged in our mission, as we see and hear how the Lord is moving in us and through us for His glory. We have four meetings a year.
Having, as we trust, been brought by divine grace to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and to give up ourselves to Him, we do now, relying on His gracious aid, sincerely and joyfully renew our covenant with each other.
In response to the Gospel, and by God’s grace:
- We will work and pray for the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (Eph.4:1-3)
- We will not forsake the assembling of ourselves together, nor neglect to pray for one another in love. (Heb.10:23-25)
- We will seek to walk together in brotherly love, exercise an affectionate care and watchfulness over each other, and faithfully admonish and entreat one another as occasion may require. (Jn.13:34-35; Eph.4:32; I Pet.1:22; Matt. 7:1-5; Col. 3:13; 1 Thess. 5:11)
- We will endeavor to invest deeply into relationships across this church for the purpose of knowing, loving, and serving one another and being mutually edified in Christ. (Acts 2:42; Rom.12:10)
- We will rejoice in one another’s joy and endeavor with tenderness and compassion to bear one another’s burdens and sorrows. (Rom.12:15)
- We will seek, by Divine aid, to live carefully in the world, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, and pursuing Christ in community with authenticity and transparency. (Rom. 6:1-14; 1 Thess. 4:1; Titus 2:12; 1 Pt. 1:14-16)
- We will be careful to use our words to build up one another and glorify God, and careful to avoid lies, deceit, slander, or gossip, which dishonor God and can serve as divisive in our church family. (Eph. 4:29-31)
- We will endeavor to love our spouse in a God honoring way and to raise our children in the training and instruction of the Lord, and by a pure and loving example to seek the salvation of our family and friends. (Eph 6:4; 1 Pt. 3:1)
- We will endeavor to live on mission together, proclaiming the gospel in our homes, neighborhoods and to the ends of the earth in whatever way the Lord enables us. (Mt. 28:18-20; 2 Cor. 5:16-21)
- We will work together for the continuance of a faithful Gospel witness in this church, as we sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline, and doctrines. We will contribute joyfully, sacrificially, and generously 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. (Mt. 18:15-20; Acts 2:38; 1 Cor. 5:9-13, 11:26; 2 Tim. 4:2)
- We will submit to the authority of the Scriptures as the final word on all matters of life and doctrine. (2 Tim. 3:14-17)
- We will submit to the leadership and wisdom of the elders, knowing that they have been appointed to keep watch over our souls and help us to understand and apply the Scriptures to our lives for God’s glory, our good, and the unity of the Church. Recognizing our need for Godly direction and faithful admonishment, we will give thanks for the leaders God has given us and pray regularly for their faithfulness. (Heb.13:17)
- We will, as members of this church, earnestly endeavor to carry out faithfully those things stated in this covenant in order to build up the Body of Christ at Harvest Church and around the world, for the glory of God and the joy of His people.
- May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen.