Church Membership: Why Bother?

"Perhaps the most potent passage I sometimes take people to when discussing the need for church membership is Hebrews 13:17 which reads: Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls..." - Ref21

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Bert Perry's picture

First, what I like about the article; it emphasizes that the authority of elders stops where the authority of Scripture stops.  I've regrettably had the experience a few times of "pastors" who had very little restraint in where they thought their authority was valid.

What I associate with; the differences in attitudes towards church membership between the Bible Belt and other parts of the country.  Sometimes in the Bible Belt, church membership almost appears to be a hereditary thing, and the business of "knowing Christ" seems to be an afterthought. 

What perplexes me; the notion that the most potent argument for church membership ought to be the authority of the elders.  I'd have stated the community of believers, a shared goal of bringing Christ to the nations, and that sort of thing.  Not that I'm against leadership authority, me it sort of seems like saying that the best part of marriage is the rings.  They're nice and pretty and all, and they've got meaning, sure, but....that's not what I got married for!

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Joeb's picture

Bert the church I was going to precovid never really mentioned Membership.  At a mega church I went to upon moving to PA it was so big you got lost in it although I did make a few friends in a Mens Bible Study.  So membership at this point seems foreign to me.  I maybe looking for a new church now.  My church was more Trumpy then I thought.  I'll have to see what happens.  

Just starting to get my sea legs and my daughter is facing a very serious operation in the middle of August which breaks my heart.  My Daughter has suffered greatly with health problems and it breaks my heart.  So please pray for my family and I have to find out if I have prostate cancer to so between COVID and my daughters situation it's been rough sledding.  

Although I had a great day Sunday Night eating outside at a brewery which had a outdoor set up right on the Schuykill River.  Good food good beer and got to spend time with my granddaughter Daughter and Son in Law.  Bert you would have loved it.  Dogs and younger couples with kids. Lots of fun and little relief for my daughter.  

M. Osborne's picture

Seems that "potent" in this context means that if you want a single, tight verse to take someone to when that person rejects the idea of church membership, this is it. When you ask the person, "Who are the leaders that you are submitting to, and which leaders are going to give account for you?" if the person mumbles and looks around, the follow-up question is, "Then how exactly are you obeying this verse?" I actually took someone to this verse within the last week, a person who hasn't physically attended church in a long, long time, and opts for online preaching from a church a timezone away instead.

JoeB: Manayunk Brewing?

Michael Osborne
Philadelphia, PA