Can you imagine someone saying, “I am going to join the Football Hall of Fame?” Or, “I think I will join the President’s cabinet?” The church is not a social or civic club. One must be added to the church by the Lord and only He can do this.
Note a few passages.
- “And they that gladly received his word were baptized, and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:41).
- “Praising God and having favor with all the people, and the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:47).
- “And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women” (Acts 5:14).
- “And he was a good man and full of the Holy Spirit and full of faith; and many people were added unto the Lord” (Acts 11:24).
Reading these verses in their context, we see that those who receive God’s word, repent of their sins and are baptized for the forgiveness of sins are added by the Lord to His church. Jesus promises, “I will build my church” (Matt.16:18).
The blessings of being added to the church are numerous. For example, the church is the group of the saved (Eph.5:23), wherein the members have been “cleansed by the washing of the water by the word” and are now walking in the Lord (Eph.5:26; 5:1-2). The church is the temple of the Lord (Eph.2:21), wherein true and spiritual worship is accomplished. The church is the household of God (Eph.2:19), wherein members encourage each other to be faithful. The church is the body of Christ (Eph.1:22,23), wherein members work in unison to carry out the Lord’s purpose of saving souls. The church is the army of the Lord (Eph.6:10-18), wherein members are set for the defense of the gospel (Phil.1:16). On and on one can go into scripture and see the eternal benefits of the church. Unto God be the glory in the church by Christ Jesus, throughout all the ages, world without end (Eph.3:20,21).