Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to repent of our sins, receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and having been baptized by immersion in the name of the Father, the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now, in the presence of God, His angels, and this assembly, most solemnly enter into covenant with one another as one body in Christ (Rom 12.3–16; I Cor 12.25; II Cor 3.1–6; Eph. 5.25, 32).
Together, the Congregation
Together, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, we desire to strive for the good of the church in pursuing the whole counsel of God through His Scriptures (II Tim. 3.16–17; II Pet. 1.21), faithfully sustain the worship and prayer life of the church (Acts 2.42–47; Heb. 10.23–25), encourage the pursuit of holiness within the body, to build up the church through the Spiritual gifts God has given us, to support the spread of the Gospel to all peoples, the correct use of the ordinances of Holy Communion and Holy Baptism, growth in knowledge of the Scriptures, establishing a welcoming community, to contribute to the relief of the poor, the expenses of the church, and the discipline of the body.
Together, we desire to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Savior; to devote ourselves and our families to the Scriptures in submission to its teaching, to privately pursue a worshipful lifestyle with constant prayer for our church and families, to seek the salvation of families, friends, and acquaintances; to be faithful in our evangelistic witness, devotion to community with fellow believers, care for the poor and less fortunate; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our commitments, encouraging in our conversation; to avoid all divisiveness, gossip and unrighteous anger; and to abstain from all practices and habits which would bring unwarranted harm to the body or jeopardize our own or another’s faith.
Together, we desire to watch over one another in brotherly love by not forsaking to gather together in at least two of our three primary ministries. To remember one another in prayer; to aid one another in sickness and distress; to cultivate sincere concern for one another’s well being; to be slow to take offense, but always ready for reconciliation and mindful of the commands of our Savior to secure it without delay. We will humbly and gently confront one another and receive correction from one another in accordance with a New Testament understanding of church discipline and restoration. (Matt. 18.15-20; 1 Cor. 5.1–13; Gal. 6.1).
We will submit to the leadership of elders who have been entrusted by God to serve and care for this body by teaching the Word of Christ to us and modeling the character of Christ before us, and we will affirm deacons as leading servants in the church. (Heb. 13.17; Acts. 6.1–7; 20.28–31; 1 Tim. 3.1–13, 5.17–20;1 Pet. 5.1–4).
We moreover engage that when we leave this fellowship, we will, if possible, unite with a church where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God’s word.
Together, the Elders
The Elders of this church recognize that with the help of the Holy Spirit, we covenant to lovingly care for you and seek your growth in Christ (Heb. 13.17; 1 Thess 5.12), to provide teaching, preaching, and counsel from the Scriptures (Gal. 6.6; 1 Tim. 5.17–18) and that this teaching will span the whole counsel of God’s Word (Acts 20.27–28). We commit to helping you in times of need (Acts 2.42–47, 4.32–35; Jas 2.14-17), to pray for you regularly, in sickness and in health (Jas. 5.14), and to help you become equipped to serve Christ (Eph. 4.11–13). We will meet the criteria assigned to us in the Scriptures (1 Tim. 3.1–13, 5.17–22; Tit. 1.5–9; 1 Pet. 5.1–4), and will guard against false teachers (Acts 20.28–31). We commit to exercise church discipline when necessary (Matt. 18.15–20; 1 Cor. 5; Gal. 6.1), to seek God’s will for this church community to the best of our ability as we study the Scriptures and follow the Spirit (Acts 20.28; 1 Pet. 5.1–50), and to set an example and join in fulfilling the duties of church membership (1 Cor. 11.1; Phil. 3.17; 1 Tim. 4.12).
Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the Great Shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip us with everything good that we may do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, conforming us to the image of His Son, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.