We each have our own perspective on church, drawn from our experiences, opinions, assumptions, and beliefs. But what did Jesus say about church?
When Jesus in Matthew 16:18 used the Greek word that we translate as church, the word carried the meaning of a called-out community. Jesus calls us out into a body of believers unified not by heritage, ethnicity, affinities, politics, or socioeconomic status, but by commitment to him. He builds his church, his community, on our confession that he is the Messiah, Son of the Living God.
In Matthew 12:50 and Luke 8:21, Jesus also referred to his called-out community, we who submit to him as Lord and Savior, as a family. God adopts us into his family when we accept that Jesus died and rose to unite us again with his Father. In church, we thus relate to one another as spiritual brothers and sisters in Christ. When you join a church, you become a member of a spiritual family.
Jesus did not directly say much more about the church, although the apostle Paul and other biblical authors did. Paul, for instance, wrote in Ephesians 2:20-22 that Christ is the church’s cornerstone, joining the whole structure together as a dwelling place for God’s Spirit. God’s Spirit resides among us in the church, joining our hearts in worship of the Father and Son.
While Covenant Life has many ministries and seeks earnestly to carry out Christ’s great commission in witness to a weary world, the church above all remains, as Romans 12:5 says, one body in Christ, made of many equal members, having different spiritual gifts with which to build his church. For as Matthew 18:20 records Jesus himself saying, wherever two or three of us gather in his name, he is present among us.
If you are interested in membership, please see Co-Pastors Bob DeVries or Marshall Holtvluwer, Connections Coordinator Nelson Miller, or any other staff member, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The church holds two to three new-members classes each year, when you meet the pastors for them to learn more about you and connect you with the church. Then, we’ll celebrate your membership at a Sunday-morning service.
Thank you for your interest in membership. Join us as the body of Christ, spiritual
brothers and sisters whom the Spirit joins together in Christ’s love.