Welcome! We’re thrilled to have you consider joining with us as we seek to honor God by helping as many people as possible become fully devoted followrs of Jesus Christ.
Becoming a member of Hope Community Church is a commitment to the work of the gospel and the common good of the Hope family. We are one body, and in a healthy body, every member must function (Romans 12:4). Members also benefit from primary care from church leadership, as the Bible prescribes (Galatians 6:10).
Why does Hope Community have covenant members?
Hope Community is a church, and the Bible uses the metaphor of a body to describe the church: “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ” (1 Cor. 12:12). It’s a beautiul illustration of how we’re each created to serve different functions, we need everyone to function in order to be a health body, and all of us as separate parts find purpose and unity under Jesus, “the head of the body, the church” (Col. 1:18). Members are the church (Eph. 2:19-22).
What’s the difference between a covenant member and somebody who just goes to Hope every week?
At Hope Community, we believe that to be a follower of Christ means to also pursue community through the local church. Rather than just attending weekly as a consumer, this involves being a part of our church family and participating in the life of the church: sacrificing time, talents, and treasure; committing to the care and community of others; and submitting to the authority God has established to lead our congregation. In short, it means using your gifts and talents to help build up the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11-16) We believe that being an active member of Hope is the fullest expression of this. It means you are committing yourself to the mission of Hope, and placing yourself under the protection, accountability, and care that comes with being a covenant member of the church.
What does it mean to be “on mission”?
To be on mission means that you’re a Christian, that you’re identity is founded in Jesus, and that you embody the Hope Community vision through living a life of worship to Jesus, a life of fellowship with other Christians, and a life of mission to non-Christians (Matt. 28:18-20). These expressions are only possible with an identity established in Jesus.
Why should I become a covenant member?
The church of Hope Community is a family, adopted by God (Gal. 4:6-7; Eph. 1:5). We care for each other, pray for each other, and serve together. If you’re already a Christian, if you’re already in some form of community of Hope, if you’re already giving of your finances and your time, then you’re already fulfilling some functions of a member. Without making an official commitment, however, we cannot provide the same level of pastoral care and community support, in part because we may not know who you are, and in part because the Bible requires that we take care of our family first (Eph. 2:19 cf. Gal. 6:10).
If you’re not a Christian, don’t worry about membership until you’ve been reconciled to God though Jesus. If you are a Christian who has spent a lot of time at Hope Community, however, search your heart and identify your hesitation. There may be valid reasons to abstain from Hope Community membership. But we’re rebels by our cursed nature; if you bristle at the very idea of becoming a member, ask yourself why–and don’t hesitate to speak with a pastor.
What are the benefits of being a covenant member?
Scripture calls us a body, a family, a household–being a Christian is not a solo effort. Jesus works through the church (Eph. 2:10), the church is Jesus’ body (1 Cor. 12:27), and apart from Jesus, you can do nothing (John 15).
This isn’t Blockbuster, it isn’t a country club, and it isn’t 24-Hour Fitness. Again, members are the church. “In love [God] predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ…So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God” (Eph. 1:4-5; 2:19).
You don’t join for the perks – though there are benefits! The benefit is that we get to worship Jesus together, serve in His kingdom, and be children of God! We enjoy the guidance that his Word provides, and, when sin comes between us, we enjoy the reconciliation Jesus’ blood provides.
What is a member covenant?
A covenant is a promise by which we obligate ourselves to one another in such a way that the obligation of one party is not dependent on the faithfulness of the other (Ezek. 20:44; 36:22; Ps. 76:11; Hos. 2:19-20; 3:1; 2 Tim. 2:13). A covenant is what we would use to describe the vows between a husband and his wife, and between God and his people. We ask our members to sign a covenant so that we know that prospective members understand what it means to be a part of the church. The member covenant is not a legal document or some sort of cultic rite. It is an affirmation, an agreement, and a source of accountability for both the church and its individual members.
Do covenant members have to be baptized?
Since Jesus commands that all of his disciples be baptized, baptism is a requirement for all Hope Community covenantal members (Matt. 28:19; Acts 2:38; 10:48; 1 Peter 3:21). If you’ve already been baptized since you became a Christian, you don’t need to get re-baptized. Hope Community performs believer baptism by immersion. If you have more questions about baptism specifically, please speak with a pastor.