I have often heard it said that “wimpy theology leads to wimpy Christians.” This is true and we don’t need to look very far for us to see the reality of this statement. We need only to look at church membership. This word alone is misleading, membership. Think about it, what sort of organizations have memberships? Clubs. The church is not a club.
The church is an outpost. It is an embassy. It is the gathering place of citizens of the true King. The churches of the world are pockets of light scattered on a dark map. It is the place where His subjects gather to be trained to represent Him. It is not a club and it is not a choice. Think about citizenship. I am an American citizen, when I go to a foreign land I am still an American citizen. If I need help I go to an American embassy because it is there that my nation is represented and its authority is upheld. You see this all the time on the television and in film. Whenever someone is in trouble in a foreign land they yell, “American! American! American!”.
Before we are citizens of any one nation we are citizens of heaven. We cannot be divorced from the church in this respect because the church is the embassy of Christ’s Kingdom, and we are his representatives. Public profession of our faith and public affirmation of joining a particular body of Christians is our declaration to the world that we are representatives of the Sovereign King.
Church membership is not merely a Sunday obligation, but it is a life change. Being a member of the body of Christ is robustly theological, not wimpy, act like it.
Too often church membership is easy-in and easy-out. We all too often fail to realize the importance of the church membership process and the proclamation of our faith. Joining the church is not an easy-in, it cost God His Son. Church membership is not easy-out. We have been bought by blood and have been given authority from the King (Matthew 16:16-19, Matthew 18:15-20).
Let this quote settle upon you,
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Jesus, and he gave his church the authority to march on the nations. His church will therefore advance like an army that cannot be stopped. The boundary lines of the nations won’t stop it. The executive orders of presidents and prime ministers won’t stop it. Not even the gates of hell itself will slow it down.
Jesus has imperium.” (Church Membership, Jonathan Leeman, page 21).