SOVEREIGN GRACE CHURCH MEMBERSHIP:
IS CHURCH MEMBERSHIP BIBLICAL?
“When an individual is saved, he becomes a member of the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13). Because he is united to Christ and the other members of the body in this way, he is therefore qualified to become member of a local expression of that body.
To become a member of a church is to formally commit oneself to an identifiable, local body of believers who have joined together for specific, divinely ordained purposes. These purposes include receiving instruction from God’s Word (1 Tim. 4:13; 2 Tim. 4:2), serving and edifying one another through the proper use of spiritual gifts (Rom. 12:3-8; 1 Cor. 12:4-31; 1 Pet. 4:10-11), participating in the ordinances (Luke 22:19; Acts 2:38-42), and proclaiming the gospel to those who are lost (Matt. 28:18- 20). In addition, when one becomes a member of a church, he submits himself to the care and the authority of the biblically qualified elders that God has placed in that assembly.” John MacArthur
You can download more from one of our elders here.
THE LORD’S SUPPER:
COMMUNION EVERY SUNDAY?
“For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes” (1 Cor 11:26). From this verse, as well as from the gospel accounts, we have the foundations of the observance of the Lord’s supper, which is celebrated by Christians all over the world. One question that arises from this text is how often we should celebrate communion. For many churches, the Lord’s Supper is celebrated on a quarterly or monthly basis. For us at SGC, we choose to celebrate the Lord’s Supper on a weekly basis for the following three reasons.
1) The Lord’s Supper helps us to look back to the redemptive work on the cross. We eat of the bread and drink of the cup, meditating on the crushed body of Christ for our sins and the spilled blood of Christ to usher in the New Covenant. The communion meal reminds us that our sin has been payed for and our salvation has been secured by the death and resurrection of our Lord and that we stand before God as holy and blameless because of the work of Christ on Calvary. Because we need to constantly guard ourselves from seeking our own righteousness apart from Christ or forgetting the incomparable love God has shone toward us on the cross, we partake of the meal joyfully remembering the the work of our salvation has been finished by Christ on the cross.
2) The Lord’s Supper helps us to look presently at our lives, examining ourselves to see if we are living in light of the realities of Christ’s completed work. The work of Christ in redeeming us from our sins 2000 years ago calls us to repent from our sins today. Because we are constantly tempted by the things of this world–the lust of the flesh and of the eyes and the pride of life–and we need a constant call to repentance from sin and faith in God, we partake of the meal solemnly, seeking out the sin that is in our lives and laying it before God that we may walk in a manner worthy of our calling.
3) Finally, the Lord’s Supper helps us to look forward to our hope that is in heaven. When Jesus institutes the Lord’s Supper, he says to his disciples, “I will not eat of the fruit of the vine from now until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom” (Matt 26:29). As we celebrate the Lord’s Supper, we do so in anticipation that one day we take of the bread and cup in the presence of Jesus. Because we need to be reminded that this world is, that the pleasures of sin are fleeting, and that one day God will wipe away every tear from our eyes, we partake of the meal longingly waiting the return of Christ when the Bride will finally wed her Groom, we will be completely rid of all of our sin and sorrow, and we will worship with the saints our God and King.