Membership of Connect: Today Albert and Chloe Lee come into membership of Connect Baptist Church (CBC). You may wonder why we do this. You may wonder if it’s biblical. So, here’s the deal. In the New Testament Book of Acts, we see Paul and other apostles travelling through today’s Israel, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Greece, and Italy, sharing the Gospel and planting churches. In each place elders were elected to govern individual churches. All the Christian churches had a common set of beliefs (i.e. Belief in: the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ, Son of God, and Living Word; One true God; the Father, Son and Holy Spirit; conversion by faith alone in Christ’s finished work; water baptism as an outward sign of an inward commitment to die to sin and live for Christ; the Church as the Body of Christ; that Christ died for Jew and Gentile alike; the truth of the Holy Scriptures). Our Baptist ecclesiology also believes in all these things, and CBC belongs to the Baptist Union of churches, NZ.
But also, in the NT, each Christian Church planted, had rules that they abided by: Gentiles were to be accepted into the church along with Jews; Gentiles did not have to practise circumcision, purification laws, or OT sacrifices. Each church also had rules appropriate to their community setting, that kept church life safe.
At Connect, if you wish to become a member you must have been baptised by full immersion, as Baptists believe that is the normal practice of the NT early church. An elder will then meet with you to understand your faith beliefs. They will then recommend you become a member and a notice goes in the newsletter for 2 weeks. Signing the book does not hold you to Connect, but it does declare that you have made this church your church home for now. While anybody can attend Connect and be part of our church life, membership allows you to vote on important issues which may arise. Welcome, Albert and Chloe 😊