You can be a member of all sorts of organizations today. You can join a gym, join a sports team, join a community service organization, join a political group, or join a new company. But becoming part of a church is an entirely different matter because the church is not just another organization in our world. The church is a spiritual reality, the Body and Bride of Christ. Membership in the church is a serious and sacred matter.
WHEN YOU JOIN A CHURCH
YOU JOIN A COMMUNITY
As we see at the end of Acts 2, the early church was no ordinary group of people. They were devoted to biblical truth and to one another. They prayed together, ate together, worshiped together, gave their possessions together, served their community together, were thankful together. And most amazing of all, it was God who added to their number. In an attempt to better explain this mysterious community, the New Testament uses several analogies:
The church is a family, and Jesus is the Elder Brother.
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:12-13; cf. Rom. 8:29; Gal. 6:10; Eph. 2:19)
The church is a flock, and Jesus is the Good Shepherd.
I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. (John 10:14-15; cf. Acts 20:28-29; 1 Pet. 5:2-4)
The church is a temple, and Jesus is the Cornerstone.
…the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.(Ephesians 2:19-22; cf. 1 Cor. 3:16; 1 Pet. 2:4-5)
The church is a body, and Jesus is the Head.
And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.(Ephesians 1:22-23; cf. Rom. 12:4-5; 1 Cor. 12:12-31; Col. 1:18, 2:18-19)