What is Covenant Membership?

In an attempt to distinguish church membership from membership within other organizations we describe membership in terms of covenant. A covenant is bigger than a contractual obligation, it's a promise to God to think, believe, and live a particular way...a biblical way. If the Bible is the cornerstone of our church, then covenant membership is the cement that holds us all together. Both Christ and Paul pointed us towards covenant membership for encouragement, spiritual protection, and biblical instruction. South City Church worships and ministers together under a covenant, which is a statement on how we agree to live together as a church. The church covenant is equal parts promise, summary of expectations, ethical statement, and biblical standard. We summarize how we promise to live together in the covenant. It forms the ethics, or the moral principles of our worldview and holds out a biblical standard by which we live. Our acceptance of this multifaceted document follows the practice of believers throughout the centuries who have pledged to God and one another to live out the gospel in community. 



The South City Membership Covenant is birthed out of our love for one another.  Our hope is that ever member will experience the fullness of joy, which is found in the presence of the Lord. The primary purpose of this covenant is to serve as a teaching document with three functions: 


1. To clarify the biblical obligations & expectations for members of South City.

2. To establish teaching and doctrinal parameters for members of South City.

3. To serve as a tool for reflection and growth towards holiness.




Each function of our membership covenant is in accordance with the document’s overall vision to provide an accessible explanation of the Scriptures in hopes that South City Church would grow in the grace and truth of Jesus Christ. 
The South City Membership Covenant is comprised of our statements of belief, a statement on theological distinctives, and the specific obligations of members to South City Church body.  Along with wholeheartedly affirming South City's Statements of Faith and submitting to the leadership of the South City Elders, a member must covenant to the following:

South City Membership Covenant

As those who have experienced the grace of a life changed by the gospel of Jesus Christ, we have the opportunity to reflect the character of Christ through the pursuit of certain attitudes and actions and the rejection of others. The Scriptures refer to this reality as "living by the Spirit" in Romans 8. The requirements of this membership covenant are in no way intended as an addition to the biblical obligations of a believer. Rather, this document functions primarily as an accessible, yet non-exhaustive, explanation of what the Scriptures teach about the obedience that faith produces. For a more in depth look into our church documents you can view our church Constitution and By-Laws.

  • 1. Supremecy of The Scriptures

    To submit to the authority of the Scriptures as the final arbiter on all issues. 

    Psalm 119; 2 Timothy 3:14-17; 2 Peter 1:19-21

  • 2. The PURSUIT of Christ

    To pursue the Lord Jesus Christ through regular Bible reading, prayer, fellowship and practice of spiritual disciplines.

    Luke 18:1; Acts 17:11; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27; Ephesians 5:1-21; 1 Thessalonians 5:12-22

  • 3. Ordinance Participation

    To follow the command and example of Jesus by participating in the ordinances prescribed to His Church:


    By being baptized after my conversion.

    By regularly remembering and celebrating the person and work of Christ through communion.


  • 4. Community Engagement

    To regularly participate in the life of South City Church by attending weekly services, engaging in biblical community and serving those within and outside of this church. 

    Acts 2:42-47; Hebrews 10:23-25; Titus 3:14

  • 5. Stewardship

    To steward the resources God has given me, including time, talents, spiritual gifts and finances. This includes regular financial giving, service and participation in community that is sacrificial, cheerful, and voluntary.

    Matthew 25:14-30; Romans 12:1-2; 2 Corinthians 8-9; 1 Peter 4:10-11

  • 6. A Christ-like walk

    To walk in holiness in all areas of life as an act of worship to Jesus Christ, by God's grace through the power of the Holy Spirit (1 Peter 1:13-16, 4:1-3). Believers should strive to put certain attitudes and actions to death, while stirring and stimulating love and good deeds through the Spirit. Below are a few examples of actions addressed in the Scriptures:


    I will practice complete chastity unless married and, if married, complete fidelity within heterosexual and monogamous marriage. Complete chastity and fidelity means, among other things, that regardless of my marital status, I will pursue purity and abstain from sexually immoral practices such as adultery, premarital sex and pornography.    

    Romans 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 6:15-20, 10:8; Ephesians 5:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; Hebrews 13:4


    I will seek to preserve the gift of marriage and agree to walk through the steps of marriage reconciliation at Living Hope Church before pursuing divorce from my spouse; for the role of the church in the process of divorce, see Paul's concern for the resolution of legal matters within the assembly of the church in

    1 Corinthians 6.   Matthew 19:1-12; Mark 10:1-12; Luke 16:18; 1 Corinthians 7:10-11


    I will refrain from illegal drug use, drunkenness, gossip and other sinful behavior as the Bible dictates.   

    Romans 1:28-32, 13:13; Galatians 5:19-21; Ephesians 5:18; James 3:3-18


  • 7. Christian Freedom

    To take seriously the responsibility of Christian freedom, especially actions or situations that could present a stumbling block to another.  

    1 Corinthians 8:1-13

  • 8. Accountability

    To submit to the discipline of God through His Holy Spirit by:


    Following the biblical procedures for church discipline where sin is evident in another -- the hope of such discipline being repentance and restoration.

    Receiving righteous and loving discipline when approached biblically by fellow believers.

     

    Psalm 141:5; Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Corinthians 5:9-13; Hebrews 12:5-11

  • 9. Killing Sin

    To do the following when I sin:


    Confess my sin to God and to fellow believers.

    Repent and seek help to put my sin to death.

     

    Romans 8:13; Colossians 3:5; James 5:16; 1 John 1:6-10

  • 10. Submitting to Unity

    To submit to the elders and other appointed leaders of the church and diligently strive for unity and peace within the church.

    Ephesians 4:1-3; Hebrews 13:17; 1 Peter 5:5

  • 11. Parting ways

    To do the following should I leave the church for righteous reasons:


    To notify the elders.

    To seek another church with which I can carry out 
my biblical responsibilities as a believer.