You have come to this place because you have questions about membership in our church. We are glad that you have come. We want to answer those questions. But in case we don't, feel free to contact the pastor with your specific question or questions about membership.
What does it mean to be a member of the church?
It is the greatest privilege in the world that carries with it the greatest responsibility as well. A person makes a decision to pursue membership in a church because it is the corporate expression of our belonging to Jesus as Lord. We do not join the church as we do some civic club by simply expressing interest in what the club is doing. We desire to join a church because it is the body of Christ and it is in the church and through the church that we live out our lives as faithful followers of Jesus. The Bible teaches that Jesus died on the cross to purchase a people for Himself and that people is the church. When you have been saved by the grace of God and have surrendered your life to Jesus as Lord, you will want to be a part of a local church.
How do I become a member of the church?
We sing a closing song at the end of our worship services every Sunday morning. If you desire to become a member of our church then you simply come to the front of the church where the pastor is standing and express that desire to the pastor. He will pray with you and then present you as a candidate for membership. You will then be contacted by one of our elders who with another elder will want to come and visit with you to celebrate your decision and to talk with you more about your decision. The two elders will make an appointment with you at your convenience. They will want to know about your relationship to Jesus, they will want you to know the basic beliefs of our church and they will want to help you to find your place of ministry in the body of Christ. They will then make a report to the body of elders concerning your membership in the body.
What are the elders looking for?
Seriously, we believe in a regenerate church membership. This simply means that we believe that the church should consist of true believers. We do not think that this reality will ever be completely realized while we are here on earth but we desire to take seriously membership in the body of Christ. Too many churches face too much confusion and conflict that comes from members in the church who do not truly belong to Christ. So, we do want to hear how you came to surrender your life to Jesus as Lord and how He is growing you. We do want you to tell us what God is doing in your life and we do want you to find your place of service in the body of Christ at FBC Waynesboro. And if you are struggling in your relationship with Jesus, we want to help you find His way for your life.
How do I participate as a member of the church?
The elders will include as a part of their visit a presentation on the various ministries of the church so that you can begin to pray through and seek God about your place of service. Our church believes in what is known as "regenerate church membership." We simply mean by that that the church is made up of people who have been saved by the grace of God and show that in part through their active involvement in the church. This involvement begins with the worship of God and the study of His Word on the Lord's Day, but also includes other ministries in which you will want to be involved. It also includes your praying for the church and her leaders as well as your giving of tithes and offerings.
What are the church ordinances?
Our church observes baptism and the Lord's Supper. We observe the supper once a month usually in the Sunday evening service and we baptize by immersion. Baptism symbolizes for the believer the death to an old way of life and the commitment by God's grace to a new way of life. The word for "baptize" in the New Testament means literally "to immerse". So, we practice baptism by immersion for all new believers and for all who come into our church who have not been baptized as believers by immersion.
What is church discipline?
Our church through our Body of Elders does practice church discipline. We do this in two ways. The most important way is through what we call formative discipline. We make the Bible the centerpiece of all that we are and do and we teach it every week both in our worship times and in our Sunday School Classes. It is the Spirit of God through the Word of God that grows us spiritually to be more and more of what God wants us to be. There are times, however, when some member of the family starts to live in ways that bring dishonor to the family name and our elders deal with these matters discreetly but definitively with the goal always being the redemption of the person and his or her restoration to the body.