Becoming a Participating Member of P1AG

Within our Churches Bylaws there is a quick description of the standards for our membership (See Below).

                   Bylaws - Article Seven – Membership

7.2  Eligibility:  Individuals at this church may become “Active Members” in good standing if they satisfy the following criteria:

(a)   Give evidence of their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ by living a consistent Christian life.

(b)   Consistent attendance of regularly scheduled worship services (new applicants for membership a minimum of 6 months).

(c)   Embrace and support the unifying components of this church, including:

                                -               Statements of Vision, Mission, Purpose, and Values

                                -               Tenets of Faith

                                -               Governance by the Bylaws of this Church.

(d)   Service in a ministry in this church.

(e)   Contribute to the financial support of this church through regular tithes and offerings.

(f)    Attained the age of eighteen years old.

(g)   Determine to live in harmony with the leadership of this church and the church family.

 

Membership carries with it both responsibilities and privileges

Three Responsibilities:

1. Personal Purity – To bring to the church a submitted, Spirit-filled self.

A Christian’s character should be one of the most important things in his/her life.  Character is not the same as reputation.  Reputation is what people see and character is what people don’t see.  It’s who you are when no one is looking.  Personal purity is something that we must strive for.  It is the daily desire to become more like Christ. 

2. Relational Integrity – To pursue honorable and loving relationships in one’s family, among friends, with co-workers, toward our neighbors and within the body.

 

Relationships are incredibly important in the body of Christ.  We are called to care for one another’s needs, provide accountability for one another and support each other.  Jesus’ prayer was that the church would maintain unity and that all disagreements would be resolved (Matthew 18:15-17).  Members strive toward interpersonal maturity or an attitude which seeks to serve more than to be served.

 

OUR POSITION ON DIVORCE

Nowhere else has relational integrity become a greater target than in the home.  Families are disintegrating all around us.  It is important that we emphasize our churches commitment to strengthening families.  We view marriage as a union established by God that is indissoluble and is to be kept inviolate.  However because of the fallen-ness of human nature, the Bible does permit divorce in the following cases as an accommodation to human sin for the protection of the innocent party:

  • Divorce for the cause of immorality.
  • Divorce for desertion or abandonment.

 

If in these instances repentance and possible reconciliation has been explored and exhausted the innocent spouse would be free to remarry in the Lord.  As a church we do not validate or approve of remarriage in the instance when someone is divorcing in order to seek another spouse, when there is no evidence of repentance over the circumstances of the dissolved marriage or when restoration of the original marriage still remains a viable option.  These standards are specifically related to occurrences taking place in one’s post-conversion life. 

The leadership of the church will consider each case of divorce and remarriage on an individual basis from the perspective of God’s inexhaustible capacity to forgive human sin and restore broken lives.

3. Organizational Loyalty – To contribute to the church your time, talents and treasure and to be responsive to the leadership God has established.

 

Members of Paragould First Assembly of God are expected to give of themselves to the purposes, mission and vision of the church.  As a part of the body each member has a significant role to play.  Giving includes all aspects of one’s resources.  God has gifted each of us with specific talents that we are to use for His glory.  We are to invest ourselves to the discovery of our own personal SHAPE (Spiritual Gifts, Heart, Abilities, Personality and Experiences) and how God wants to use our unique SHAPE in the body of Christ.

WHAT IS THE TITHE?

God also requires us to give him Lordship over our finances.  In the Old Testament God’s people in the Old Testament were required to give at least a tenth (tithe) of their income to God’s work (Leviticus 27:30-32, Malachi 3:10) .  However according to the New Testament it is clear that the totality of one’s possessions belongs to God – not just the tithe (Matthew 6:19-34, 19:16-30, 25:14-30, Luke 9:23-25, 12:13-34, 16:1-13, 18:18-30, 21:1-4, Acts 2:44-45, 4:32-37).  The New Testament allows Christians to keep the portion of their income, which is necessary to provide for them and their dependents so that they do not become a burden to society (1 Thessalonians 4:11-12, 1 Timothy 5:8, 6:6-10).  But the balance of their income is to be used for God’s work and for deeds of charity (2 Corinthians 9:6-15, Galatians 6:10, 1 Timothy 6:17-19, James 2:15-16, 1 John 3:16-18). 

We are called in the New Testament Church to give our whole selves to the service of God.  In our finances there is no distinction from that.  Our money is His money.  We are caretakers or stewards over the finances that God has given to us.  The tithe (10% of our income) is the minimum standard that we should give.  This is a matter of personal individual conscience.  Members have the great responsibility of managing the resources God has apportioned to them in a way that is Christ-honoring.

Privileges:

1. Influence in Church Decisions – Membership affords you the right to influence the key decisions of the church, primarily influence in the selection of deacon candidates and their affirmation.  Members are given the right to recommend potential Board candidates prior to every Annual Business Meeting.  A Nomination Committee in turn reviews and edits the recommendations and produces a final list of nominees.  Then the membership votes on the final selection for the Church Board from this list.  Members also vote on some major decisions of the church, including: Senior Pastoral appointment; the purchase or sale of any asset(s), real or personal, , in an amount that exceeds 20% of the approved operating budget, or $25,000, whichever amount is lower for that particular year; amendments to the Bylaws and changes in denomination affiliation.

2. Facility and Staff Priority – Members receive priority for facility usage and staff members’ time (i.e. weddings, funerals, benevolence needs, personal support in your area of ministry, etc.)

3. Greater Connection – Membership is a step closer to becoming connected into the life of the church.  The more committed we are the more involved we become and a greater connection between others is built.  This is a step toward personal maturity.

 

Membership Covenant

Having received Christ as my Lord and Savior and been baptized, and being in agreement with Paragould First Assembly of God’s mission/vision/purpose/values/strategy statement of Loving God, Loving Each Other and Loving the People of Our World , I _________________________, now feel led by the Holy Spirit to unite with the P1AG family.  In doing so, I commit myself to God and to the other members to do the following:

1.  I will protect the unity of my church.

            …by acting in love toward other members (Romans 14:19, 1 Peter 1:22).

            …by refusing to gossip (Ephesians 4:29).

            …by following the leaders (Hebrews 13:17).

2. I will share the responsibility of my church.

             …by praying for its growth (1 Thessalonians 1:1-2).

            …by inviting the unchurched to attend (Luke 14:23.

            …by warmly welcoming those who visit (Romans 15:7).

3. I will serve the ministry of my church.

            …by discovering my gifts and talents (1 Peter 4:10).

            …by being equipped to serve by my pastors (Ephesians 4:11-12).

             …by developing a servants heart (Philippians 2:3-4,7).

4. I will support the testimony of my church.

            …by attending faithfully (Hebrews 10:25).

            …by living a godly life (Philippians 1:27).

            …by giving regularly (Leviticus 27:30).

I am committing myself to the active pursuits of “Loving God, Loving Each Other and Loving the People of My World”.  I am committing myself to involvement in the Sunday Gathering (Worshipping Corporately), Ministry Groups (Serving in my Church), Going (Reaching Out) and Giving (Tithes/Offerings) to support this vision for my church and my life.

 

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