Membership in a local church is for everyone who is a disciple of Jesus Christ.
Membership in a local church is for everyone who is a disciple of Jesus Christ. We are called to be the church, not go to church. Two of the primary metaphors in the Bible for normal Christian life are the body and the temple. We are members of the body of Christ with Christ being the head, and we are living stones that are joined together for the building up of God's holy temple with Christ being the cornerstone. Thus, being united to Christ is part and parcel with being united to other believers through the local church.
Church membership makes the Gospel visible in the life of the church, displaying the unity in diversity of the body of Christ. It expresses how Christ has saved us and brought us into the community of God’s people. The essence of membership is connectedness through a mutual relationship of covenant and love. The local church becomes the place where we put into practice the fruit of the Spirit within real relationships. This is why we need the church to grow as Christians. Through discipling one another in the local church, we gain assurance of our own salvation. We disciple one another by helping one another grow in Christ through teaching, encouraging, and correcting.
A good shepherd numbers and knows his sheep, and the elders of a local church will need to give an account to the Chief Shepherd, Jesus, for how they fed and tended to His flock. Membership delineates the crowd from the disciples for whom the elders will one day need to give an account and upon whose shoulders rests the responsibility for the work of the mission of God in the church.
At One Light Church, our membership process includes attending an orientation process where we share our mission, vision, values, and beliefs and where we get to know each other. Membership also requires the member having been baptized into Christ through a believer's baptism by full immersion and participating in an exchange of covenants with the elders publicly in front of the other members of the church.