Downtown Cornerstone Blog
Jun 19

Sneak Peek: Our Next Series

News, Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

I have some exciting news for you!

We are quickly coming to the end of our ten month series in the book of Acts. Starting Sunday, July 8th, we will begin a brand new series (tentatively) titled, Church Membership: What it means to believe, be and belong, that will run for eight consecutive weeks. The content of this series will serve as the primary content of our ongoing membership process. I am genuinely excited to see what God is going to do in, through and among us in this next season.

What Jesus’ Local Church is NOT

Unfortunately, there tends to be much miscommunication, misinformation, and misunderstanding when it comes to church membership. To become a member of a church is not the same as becoming a member of Costco, AAA or a country club. The church is not a club, nor a voluntary association, nor a customer service provider, nor an optional exercise for “really committed Christians”, nor merely a friendly group of religious people that tend to be free most Sunday mornings.

What Jesus’ Local Church IS

Rather, Jesus’ church begins with this simple fact: Jesus Christ is Lord of Lords, King of Kings, Savior and Redeemer. He died to forgive the sins of everyone, everywhere, who trust and follow him. He then brings those who have responded to his call together, within a given local context, and calls them his people, his church, to live underneath his gracious and sovereign reign.

In this way, the local church functions as an outpost of the kingdom of God that serves to affirm our faith in Christ and give shape and direction to our Christian lives.

The Bible uses a host of metaphors to explain the relationship of Jesus to his people, and Jesus’ people to Jesus. For example, the church is called a “flock”, “household”, “body”, “branches”, “living temple” and more. Each of these metaphors is intended to highlight that our relationship to Jesus is not merely individual, but corporate.

In other words, we are saved, in Christ, to be a people. When you choose Jesus, you choose Jesus’ people too. If we’re to love what Jesus loves, we must love the church, which he loved to the point of death on a cross. If we’re to be committed to what Jesus is committed to, we must be committed to the church – not merely in an abstract I’m-part-of-the-invisible-universal-church-sense – but in the sense that I belong to a real, flesh-and-blood, imperfect, local community of fellow believers.

Therefore, we demonstrate our common allegiance to Jesus and his people by becoming covenant members of a local church, thus church membership.

You Might Have Some Questions…

I hope you do! That’s why we’re going to take eight weeks to walk through what it means for a Christian to believe, be and belong to a local expression of Jesus’ people. So, I encourage you to pray and prepare as we go into this new season together as a newly forming church. I’m going to invite everyone who calls Downtown Cornerstone Church their primary church family to commit and covenant together. If you’re not yet a follower of Jesus, this series is for you too. It should help you gain clarity around what Christians actually believe and what it means to follow Jesus.

FIVE steps to becoming a member of Downtown Cornerstone Church.

In order for you to be adequately prepared, I wanted to get the five steps to becoming a member in your “hands” so that you can begin to pray, process and prepare accordingly:

#1 Follow Jesus. This (almost) goes without saying. To become a member of a church is a tangible way of demonstrating that you are a member of the household of God (Eph 2:19), a member of the body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27) and partner in the gospel (Phil 1:5) by faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ. If you’re still peeking over the proverbial fence of Christianity, we love you, but we’ll wait on membership.

#2 Participate. To be a member of Jesus’ church means that you should be participating and known as part of the “household of God” and “body of Christ”. You should be connected in community, serving and giving – all of which are evidences that you understand and embrace your roles and responsibilities within God’s people. Our hope is that everyone that becomes a member is already living as one, prior to being given the title.

#3 Series. A significant aspect of the process is walking through the entire Church Membership series. We understand that it’s summer so you may be out on vacation for a Sunday or two. You’ll be able to listen to the messages via ITunes.

#4 Application. To help guide you through the process we’re currently building-out an application that can be completed online via The City. More details are forthcoming.

#5 Interview. The last step of the process will include an interview with your community leader and a deacon or pastor. Don’t worry! This isn’t a try-out. If you follow Jesus, you’re participating in the life of the church, you’ve listened to the Membership series, and have completed the application, you’ll do well. This is an additional opportunity for us to get to know you and for you to get to know us. I’ve seen Jesus do great things in these interviews. Honestly, it’s one of my favorite parts of the whole process.

So, all that said, we’ll be rolling out more information in the coming weeks. If you have any questions in the meantime, feel free to email us. Together, let’s ask Jesus to do what only He can, as we move into this exciting new season of life together.