Pastoral 2016

Church Membership A Commitment to Serve the Lord in His Church

Written by Rev (Dr) Prabhudas Koshy Sunday, 25 September 2016

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Today, 25 adults and 6 young children will be received into Gethsemane’s membership. This is one of the largest intakes that we have in Gethsemane. As we witness this joyful event of 31 new additions to our church, it is most appropriate and necessary that we remember that church membership is a commitment which we make in response to the biblical instruction that believers be joined to a local church as her responsible members.

Believers are exhorted to function like the members of the same body. Each believer ought to be a member of a local congregation and be committed to serving one another. In Romans 12 and 1 Corinthians 12, the apostle Paul gives specific and practical instructions to the church that all members should minister to one another, just as the members of one’s body would function. It is to equip believers for mutual service that God has given each and every believer certain spiritual gifts.

Romans 12:5-8 exhorts us, “5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; 7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; 8 Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.”

In the light of the above Scriptural teaching, every Gethsemanean is asked during the pledge of commitment by the new members: “Will you promise to be regular in reading the Bible and in prayer, in the worship service and in the support of this church through your service and giving?” Dear members, have you been sincerely and faithfully fulfilling the pledge you have made before the Lord and this church? If you are a new member, please be sincerely resolved to serve the Lord and His people as God has taught His people in His Word.

Though in our church there are plenty of people serving on Sundays and throughout the week, every member must humbly and prayerfully offer himself or herself to areas where he or she can best exercise his or her God-given abilities. As our church grows in number, there will be more spiritual and physical needs of our members and worshippers to be met. There will be more young believers to be nurtured, more hurting ones to be comforted, weak ones to be strengthened, sick ones to be visited and attended to. If our church would run like a “well-oiled machine”, it is important that each and every member of the church be involved in serving one another.

The very purpose for which God has brought us together as a church – the body of Christ – is “that there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it. Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular” (1 Corinthians 12:25-27). If there is even one member of the church who is not giving himself or herself to the care and service of the church, the church will be less than what God has designed her to be.

Brethren, let us be committed to fulfil the biblical mandate to serve one another. Being a formal member of our church, let every one of you be resolved in your heart and vow before the Lord – “I will love the people the Lord has added to this church. I will do whatever the Lord will enable me to do for the care and edification of my fellow Gethsemaneans.” Let love and care flow to one another on a daily basis. It is our special privilege as Christians to serve the Lord Jesus Christ by serving His body. Even a small service, such as giving a drink to a thirsty brother, is regarded by the Lord Jesus Christ as a service to Him and will be rewarded by the Lord Himself (cf. Matthew 10:42; 25:40). What a wonderful thought that whenever we serve the members of His church, we are serving the King Himself! ■

Baptism & Transfer of Membership

Infant Baptism:

1. Seth Ong Yi Kai s/0 Mr & Mrs Ong Wai Meng, Aron
2. Lim En Zhe, Phineas s/o Mr & Mrs Lim Tiong Nam, Marcus
3. George Lijoy, Johan s/o Mr & Mrs Kunnathu George, Lijoy
4. George Lijoy, Hannah d/o Mr & Mrs Kunnathu George, Lijoy

Baptism:
1. Chan Hor Ying Cathrine; 2. Lim Wan Hoe

Transfer of Membership:

1. Chee Yiu Fatt, George 14. Jonathon Lim Yong Zhong
2. Chan Lay Cheng, Alice 15. Liu Junxiong Timotheous
3. Chee Wei Heng, Marcus 16. Lee Shing Shyan
4. Hendrick Foo 17. Siew Xiangyou, Elvin
5. Tan Ee Huang, Laura 18. Debra Lau Yi Koon
6. Kunnathu George, Lijoy 19. Rayson Tan Junrong
7. Paul, Simmi 20. Rossellini Tan Yeling
8. Joish Paul 21. Lee Jong Lee
9. Neethu Joish 22. Lim Chai Geok, Mary
10. Jeff Joish 23. Lee Zhao Ming, Gideon
11. Jiah Joish 24. Tan Kim Teck Robert
12. Kay Boon Khai, Jordy 25. Seet To-Mei
13. Khong Wei Dong Jonathan  

 

Gethsemane Defenders’ Ministry

Battle for the Bible

Next month, Gethsemane Defenders’ Ministry will be holding two lectures (23 & 30 October) in conjunction with this year’s Reformation Sunday.

Reformed and Presbyterian churches traditionally observe Reformation Sunday on the last Sunday of October, marking Martin Luther’s nailing of his 95 theses on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. The 16th century Reformation was indeed a battle for the Bible, and one of its battle cries was “Sola Scriptura” (Scripture Alone).

Knowing the history of the church will enable us to be informed and better equipped Christians for the spiritual battles of our time. So please plan to attend.

23rd October (1.30pm – 3.30pm) “16th Century Battle for the Bible” by Andrew Koh

30th October (1.30pm – 3.30pm) “21st Century Battle for the Bible” by Prabhudas Koshy