Why a church covenant?
The Bible does not say explicitly, “Thou shalt have a written church covenant,” any more than it says, “Thou shalt have marriage licenses,” or, “Thou shalt have wedding rings.” . . .One way to look at it is that a church without a covenant is like a marriage without vows. Marriage vows are not spelled out in the Bible just like church covenants aren’t. Both follow necessarily from the nature of the relationships. (John Piper)
This covenant is not an addition to Scripture, but rather a simple expression of our commitment to obey the Scriptures together.
Having been brought by God’s grace to repent and believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, we now, depending upon the Holy Spirit, establish this covenant with one another.
By God’s grace:
- In all we do, we will aim to glorify and enjoy the God of our salvation, from whom and through whom and to whom are all things: to Him be all glory forever! (1 Cor. 10:31; Rom. 11:36)
- We will submit to the authority of the Scriptures as the final word on all matters of life and doctrine. (2 Tim. 3:14-17)
- We will regularly assemble together to worship God and mutually build each other up in Christ. (Heb. 10:23-25)
- We will eagerly maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace by walking together in love and in the Spirit and by putting away all bitterness, anger, lies, slander and gossip. (Eph. 4:3; Gal. 5:16, 25; Eph. 4:29, 31)
- We will show Christian love, gentleness, patience, tenderhearted care, and genuine forgiveness toward each other, even as God, for Christ’s sake, has forgiven us. (Jn. 13:34-35; Eph. 4:32; 1 Pt. 1:22; Eph. 4:1-2; Luke 17:3; Col. 3:13; 1 Thess. 5:11)
- We will carry each other’s burdens, rejoicing with those who rejoice and weeping with those who weep. (Gal. 6:2; Rom. 12:15)
- We will train our children in the instruction of the Lord, seeking to walk in a way that adorns the gospel of Christ before our family, friends, and neighbors. (Prov. 22:6; Eph. 6:4; 1 Pet. 3:1)
- We will defend and maintain a Christ-exalting ministry in this church by supporting and treasuring the preaching of the Bible, the faithful observance of believer’s baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and when necessary the exercise of church discipline. (Mt. 18:15-20; Acts 2:38; 1 Cor. 5:9-13, 11:26; 2 Tim. 4:2)
- We will contribute cheerfully, regularly and generously to the expenses of the church, the support of the ministry, the relief of the poor, and the advancement of the gospel both to our neighbors and the nations. (Matt. 28:19; Luke 12:33; 2 Cor. 9:7)
- We will strive to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in this present age, as we wait for the blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. (Gal. 5:22-24; Titus 2:12-13; 1 Pet. 1:14)
- We will, should we move from this place, unite as soon as possible with another local church where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God’s Word.
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen. (2 Cor. 13:14)