Had the privilege of discussing the topic of membership on a Moody Radio Network program called “Up For Debate” yesterday. I took the less formalized approach to the subject, believing as I do that evangelicals tend to make our walk of faith programmatic, complete with benchmarks to prove we’ve arrived. We do that with salvation when we tell folks that having peace with God is a matter of believing in a few key doctrines, and de-emphasizing Lordship. We also risk that same kind of thing when we say membership is achieved by going through a process–a bible study; membership class; adherence to a creedal statement; an interview and ceremony. Such things MIGHT lead to the most important test of membership, that is a deep, abiding and transparent relationship among brethren, but often they don’t. Often they are practiced as a series of benchmarks that qualify people to be in an organization, part of the group.
Anyway, if you’re interested in the discussion the link to Up For Debate on Moody Radio is here.