Hope Chapel del Rey Membership Statement
The following paragraphs summarize the series of teachings given at Hope Chapel which answered the question, “What does it mean to be a member of a local church?”
1. Membership is a commitment to the people of a local church.
Membership recognizes that God sovereignly places each believer in a family of believers to accomplish his purpose in their lives and the lives they touch around them.
1 Corinthians 12:12-27, Ephesians 4:11-16, Hebrews 10:24-25, Acts 2:42-47, 4:32-35
2. Membership is a commitment to serve the other members in the church with the gifts, talents, and abilities God has given them.
God has given every believer gifts, skills and talents to be used to serve and build up the body of Christ. When they are used in this way both the giver and the receiver are blessed. These gifts are best “discovered” by volunteering to serve in any of the many ways needed for a church to function well. In doing so, the believer finds the place of service where he is most fruitful and beneficial to others.
Romans 12:1-8, I Corinthians 12-14, Ephesians 4:11-15, 2 Timothy 1:6, Peter 5:10
3. Membership means honoring and obeying the leadership God has placed in the church.
God appoints pastoral leaders to govern and lead the local church. These leaders must be biblically qualified to earn the trust and obedience of those they lead. They must rule willingly, not for sordid gain, with humility being examples to the flock. They are not to Lord it over people but are to be ready in season and out of season, to encourage, rebuke, exhort and admonish as needed. They govern the church, so it operates biblically and promotes the kingdom of God. When the members of the church obey and submit to their biblical leadership they are assured that it is “good for their souls”. Therefore, they will grow and mature in their faith and the church will prosper.
Matthew 18:15-20, Acts 2:42 and 4:37, 6:1-4, Ephesians 4:11-12, 1 Timothy 3:1-13, 2 Timothy 4:1-2, Hebrews 13:17, 1 Peter 5:1-3
4. Membership means contributing financially to the support of the church.
The bible teaches that God supplies for the ministry of the local church through the financial giving of its members. The Scripture teaches four reasons why its members are to contribute to the church: The work of the ministry depends upon it, the laborers are worthy of it, the givers are blessed by it and it’s an act of obedience to a faithful God. The bible teaches that each member should give sacrificially from their “first fruits” and according to their ability. The Bible teaches that we are to give cheerfully as an act of worship to God.
Exodus 3:21-22, Exodus 25:1-9, Acts 4:32-37, Acts 4:32-37, 1 Cor. 9:1-14, Philippians 4:15-19, Luke 6:38, Proverbs 3:9-10, 2 Cor. 8:3,115.
5. Membership in a local church means understanding and agreeing with the doctrines taught by the church. Amos 3:3 says, “Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?” The following statements have been simplified for brevity’s sake. Any questions about these statements should be directed to our church leadership by emailing them to firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT WE BELIEVE
The Bible is the source of all the doctrines we teach. We believe and teach that the Bible is God-inspired, without error and authoritative regarding what it teaches about God, man, and the reality of the world we live in. We claim that all the doctrines we teach are taught in Scripture and are to be followed as such. Without the Bible we would have no doctrines to teach.
2 Timothy 3:16-17, Hebrews 4:12, 2 Peter 1:20-21
JESUS IS THE SOLUTION TO MAN’S PROBLEM (John 3:16)
We teach that even while we were hostile to God, Jesus took our punishment on Himself, providing a pardon and reconciliation with God to all who would trust in Him.
GOD’S GIFT (Ephesians 2:8-9) (2 Corinthians 7:10; 1 John 1:9)
We teach that it is impossible to do anything to earn or merit God’s priceless love; instead, forgiveness comes to us as a gift from God. We teach that by wholeheartedly repenting of unbelief and, by faith, turning to Jesus, we are reconciled to God, forgiven of our sins and have the assurance of eternal life.
THE NEW BIRTH (John 1:12, 3:3)
We teach that the change which takes place in the heart, and the life of any person who turns to Christ is real, miraculous and lasting.
WATER BAPTISM (Matthew 28:19)
We teach that believers are to be baptized by immersion in water in obedience to Christ’s command. We teach that baptism is our symbolic identification with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection and is a public declaration that we are followers of Christ and members of his Church universal.
GIVING (2 Corinthians 8:3,12: 9:6-10)
We teach that every Christian is to honor God with joyful financial giving that is proportional and sacrificial according to how God has prospered them.
THE BAPTISM AND FILLING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. (Acts 1:4-5, 8; 1Corinthians 12:13, Acts 2:4; Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:18)
We teach that the Holy Spirit actually takes up residence inside the believer to enable him or her to live a powerful Christian life. We also believe that the Spirit indwells the believer today in the same way He did in the New Testament times. We teach that it is God’s will that we live our daily lives dependent on the Spirit, and as we do, we will give evidence of God’s life in us.
THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT (1 Corinthians 12: 1-11, 28; Ephesians 4:7-11; Romans 12: 6-8)
We teach that the Holy Spirit gives spiritual gifts to the Christian and that all the gifts in the New Testament are still available to the church today.
DIVINE HEALING (Hebrews 13:8; James 5: 14-16)
We teach that Jesus still heals the sick in response to the prayer given in faith.
THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST (Matthew 24: 30-31; 1Thessolonians 4: 16-17; 5: 1-2)
We teach that Jesus will return to this earth with power and will be visible to all and that His return may be at any time.
CHURCH RELATIONSHIP (Acts 16:5; Hebrews 10:25, Also see sections 1-5 above)
We teach that it is a joy and responsibility to identify ourselves with other Christians by gathering together with them in a local church.
HEAVEN (1 Corinthians 2:9; Revelation 21: 1-4; 22: 3-5)
We teach that heaven is the glorious eternal home of all those who have their sins forgiven in Christ Jesus.
HELL (Revelation 20:10-15)
We teach that Hell is a place of everlasting torment away from the loving presence of God; and that it awaits all who reject God’s forgiveness in Christ.
GENDER (Genesis 1:26-27, 2:18-25, Mark 10:6-9, Romans 1:24-25)
We teach that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as either male or female. Together, these two distinct, complementary genders reflect the image and nature of God. We believe that rejection of one’s biological gender is a rejection of the will of God and is sinful.
MARRIAGE (Genesis 2:18-25; Mark 10:6-9; 1 Corinthians 6:18-20)
We teach that the term “marriage” has only one meaning and that meaning is a marriage sanctioned by God, which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union. We teach that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to one another. We teach that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity take place outside of the covenant of marriage between one man and one woman.
SEXUALITY (Exodus 20:14; 22:19; Romans 1:24-32; 1 Corithians 5:1-13; Colossians 3:5)
We teach that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography, pedophilia, attempting to change one’s biological sex or otherwise acting upon any disagreement with one’s biological sex) is sexual sin and is offensive to God.
CHURCH DISCIPLINE (Matthew 18:15-18; 1 Corinthians 5: 1-13)
We teach that the appointed pastoral leadership of Hope Chapel has the biblical obligation to shepherd and protect the congregation and it has the responsibility to adopt biblical policies of church discipline for the health and welfare of the body.