Responsibilities of a Church Member
When you join a church you should …
- Be faithful – Hebrews 10:25; Acts 17:11
- Pray for others – Eph.6:18
- Be involved in ministry – Romans 12:6-8
- Witness to others – Acts 1:8
- Support financially – I Corinthians 16:1-2
- Maintain good testimony
Illustration: If you take a burning coal out of a fireplace, it will soon become cold and dead. A person out of church will also soon become cold towards God and Christians. It is important for all the family to attend church. In church Christians can learn more about serving God.
Churches – Officers – Leaders
“And he gave some, apostles…prophets…evangelists…pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry” (Eph. 4:11-12; I Cor. 12:27-28).
All Christians can be used of the Lord, but some are used in different abilities and gift. (Eph.4:12,13).
- Pastor is appointed as a shepherd to the sheep (I Cor. 12:20-28). He is called or appointed by the Lord to serve as a pastor to local churches. The Bible give requirements for the position of a pastor (1 Tim. 3:1-7).
- Deacon is a helper in the church to do busy work so the pastor can be free for spiritual priorities (Acts 6:3,4). A deacon is called by the church to serve in their church. The Bible give requirements for a deacon (1 Timothy 3:8-13).
- Teacher is a Sunday school teacher or teacher is someone who teaches the Word of God and teaches Christians into maturity for service (I Corinthians 12:27,28). A teacher does not need to study how to become a teacher because it is a gift of God. He just needs to use his gift and the Lord will be his teacher.
- Missionary is a person who is sent from a local church to preach or teach the Gospel in other places. His mission also includes helping to establish a church for those who are saved (Acts 14:21-23). A missionary can serve as a pastor, evangelist or teacher.
- Evangelist is a person who evangelizes churches, cities and nations with the Gospel. He does not remain in one church the same as a pastor but travels to many churches and areas as the Lord leads (Acts 8:5-8).
The History of the Church – The church was established by the Lord Jesus Christ. His Word, the Bible, is the authority and power of the church. The Christians are the church and one day the Lord will return for His church (those in Christ) (I Thessalonians 4:13-16).
What is Baptism? It is important for the Christian to understand the true meaning of baptism. When should a Christian be baptized? Why should a Christian be baptized? Some teach that baptism in the water will wash away sin. This is false. Some teach babies should be baptized or sprinkled. This is false and unscriptural. Baptism was commanded by the Lord. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matt.28:19). The word “baptism,” (Greek/Baptizo)) means to “immerse” or go down under the water. It means “to bury.” The disciples were commanded to baptize new believers as a public act of obedience and testimony to others that they had become Christians. Baptism testifies of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Death: “in the likeness of his death… ” (Rom.6:5). Burial: “Buried with him by baptism into death” (Rom.6:4). Resurrection: “Like as Christ was raised up from the dead” (Rom. 6:4).
First Step After Saved – After you are saved the first step in following the Lord is baptism. Baptism is an outward testimony to others of your inward possession of Christ. Baptism says, “I am now a Christian. I believe in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.” The early church baptized all believers. “They that gladly received his word were baptized” (Acts 2:41). New Christians were baptized by Philip immediately after salvation (Acts 8:38-39). It is wrong to baptize or sprinkle infants or babies because a baby cannot understand the meaning of baptism. Baptism is a one-time event for the Christian. If a person was baptized and later saved, he should be baptized again. Baptism of an unsaved person is not a picture of following Christ. Jesus was baptized, “And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water” (Matt.3:16}. God was pleased and said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matt. 3:17).
Why Should a Christian Be Baptized? Baptism was commanded by the Lord as an act of obedience and testimony to others. The Lord gave two ordinances: 1. Baptism 2. Lord’s Supper. Baptism is practiced only once but the Lord’s Supper is to be practiced until He comes. Neglect of baptism is disobedience to God (Romans 6:17).
The first step after salvation is Baptism.
- The Lord commands baptism (Matthew 28:19,20).
- Baptism gives you a good conscience toward God (I Peter 3:21).
- Baptism testifies to others of the Christian faith (Romans 6:4,5).
- Baptism pleases our Heavenly Father (Matthew 3:17).
- Baptism is the first step and it will help you start right (I Peter 2:21).
- Baptism identifies you with Christ and the Christian life (Romans 6:1-13).
Bible Examples: The Lord (Matthew 3:13-17); 3,000 who were baptized in the early church (Acts 2:41); Cornelius (Acts 10:44-48); the Jailer (Acts 16:30-34) and many men and women (Acts 8:12). If you have not been baptized after you were saved ask the pastor to baptize you. You need to make your first step in obedience after you are saved. Baptism Illustration: A ring on a finger is an ID to show you are married. Baptism is an ID showing outwardly to others what has taken place inwardly in your life. Baptism identifies you as a Christian.