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Acts 9:26-30. Coming in and going out What is church membership?

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Presentation on theme: "Acts 9:26-30. Coming in and going out What is church membership?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Acts 9:26-30

2 Coming in and going out What is church membership?

3 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Coming in and going out – Acts 9:28 Not primarily description of church membership – Acts 1:21-22; cp. 1:1-6 Jesus went in and out among the disciples Included all He did among them [1:1], as well as being assembled together [1:4, 6]

4 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Coming in and going out – Acts 9:28 Not primarily description of church membership – Acts 1:21-22; cp. 1:1-6 God to preserve the going out and coming in Included all He did among them; see Leviticus 26:3, 9-13 – Psalm 121:1-8

5 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Coming in and going out – Acts 9:28 Not primarily description of church membership – Acts 1:21-22; Psalm 121:1-8 Perhaps based on OT leadership terminology; cp. Num. 27:15-21; 2 Sa. 5:1-3; 1 Kings 3:5-9 Included all He did among them [John 10:4] – John 10:9; cp. 10:1-4, 7-15

6 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Coming in and going out – Acts 9:28 Not primarily description of church membership Is primarily a description of relationship – Acts 1:21-22; Psalm 121:1-8; John 10:9 – among; in the midst of; being assembled – does not refer to being here when door open; rather to being there for others! [Phil. 2:1-7]

7 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Saul tried to join the disciples – Acts 9:26 A deliberate seeking of fellowship, togetherness – Matt. 18:20 presupposes togetherness – Evidence indicates this was common practice context [v ] indicates smaller group; certainly Jesus didnt mean tell WHOLE church Rom. 16:3-5 (1 Cor. 16:19), 14-15; Acts 20:7-8 God commands this practice of meeting [Heb. 10:24-25; cp. Deut. 16:16] The command, unlike Israels, demands smaller, more regular meetings

8 Coming in and going out What is church membership? But…they were all afraid of him – Acts 9:26 Mere seeking of fellowship does not guarantee it – There needed to be acceptance by the group – At some point a decision has to be made on the local level whether to accept Barnabas was able to convince apostles and the rest of the disciples to accept Saul [9:27] 3 John 9-10; Diotrephes was able to convince the local congregation NOT to accept John! There must be recognition by both the individual and group [cp. 1 Co. 5:1-5]

9 Coming in and going out What is church membership? spoke boldly in the name of the Lord [9:29] Paul involved himself in work of the local group – cp. Acts 11:25-26; 13:1-5 The work is primarily local in scope: Rom. 12:3-8 (1 Co. 12); individual local service Gal. 6:1-2, 6, 10; individual local service There are exceptions: 2 Cor. 8:16-24 individual service [cp. 1 Cor. 16:1-2], but a greater than local need Eph. 4:11-16; Col. 3:16; individual local service

10 Coming in and going out What is church membership? they brought him down to Caesarea [9:30] Paul received the blessing of local congregation – cp. Gal. 6:1-2; Rom. 12:15; James 5:16 Psalm 118:7; God put us together for a reason

11 Coming in and going out What is church membership? So, what is church membership? So far, relationship of people with other people – live in same place/time (1 Cor. 1:2; Phil. 1:1) All of these things alone might be used to describe a commune, a service organization, or social club – but there is yet the major unifying factor to discuss! – deliberately choose to meet together in a recognized mutual association (Acts 2:44-46) – work together for common good of group; (cp. Acts 4:34-35; Eph. 4:16)

12 Coming in and going out What is church membership? So, what is church membership? So far, relationship of people with other people – Lord adds the saved (Ac. 2:41, 47; 11:19-24) – This is the universal church (Heb. 12:22-24) Begins as a relationship of people with GOD Meets as local church (1 Cor. 1:2 – of God; Acts 11:26 – assembled…Christians) At this level, we might errantly accept one God has not added or reject one that He has added – a need for caution! cp. Acts 20:29-30; 3 John 9-10

13 Coming in and going out What is church membership? So, what is church membership? So far, relationship of people with other people – It is the flock…of God which He purchased with His own blood – Acts 20:28 – It was established on Pentecost, 33 A.D., when people began to obey the gospel – Acts 2 Begins as a relationship of people with GOD The church is not a man-made institution – Its members are all who repent and are baptized for remission of sins, without regard to time/place – Acts 2:21, 36-39

14 Coming in and going out What is church membership? So, what is church membership? So far, relationship of people with other people – This congregation NOT established on Pent. Begins as a relationship of people with GOD The church is not a man-made institution Local church is where we place membership Membership TERMS established on Pent.! In order truly to be a member here, must first be a member of the Lords body [cp. Eph. 1:22-23; 4:4; 5:23]

15 Coming in and going out What is church membership? Are YOU looking for a church to join? Have you become a member of the Lords church? It wont matter WHERE you are a member, if you are not united with Christ! It does matter WITH WHOM you worship, if you are already united with Christ! Wont YOU decide TODAY?!


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