The difference between “attendees” and “members” can be summed up in one word: Commitment!

At SVBC, we recognize the need for a formal membership.  We ask people to commit to membership for 4 reasons:

1. A Biblical Reason:  Christ is committed to the church.
“…Christ loved the church, and he gave his life for it.”  Ephesians 5:25

2. A Cultural Reason:  It is an antidote to our society.
We live in an age where very few want to be committed to anything… a job… a marriage… our country.  This attitude has even produced a generation of “church shoppers and hoppers.”  Membership swims against the current of America’s “consumer religion.”  It is an unselfish decision.  Commitment always builds character.

3. A Practical Reason:  It defines who can be counted on.
Every team must have a roster.  Every school must have an enrollment.  Every business has a payroll.  Every army has an enlistment.  Even our country takes a census and requires voter registration.  Membership identifies our family.

4. A Personal Reason:  It produces spiritual growth.
The New Testament places a major emphasis on the need for Christians to be accountable to each other for spiritual growth.  You cannot be accountable when you’re not committed to any specific church family.

SVBC Membership Covenant

"Having received Christ as my Lord and Savior and been baptized, and being in agreement with SVBC statements, strategy, and structure, I now feel led by the Holy Spirit to unite with the SVBC church 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
…by refusing to gossip
…by following the leaders
“…be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus.”  Romans 15:5
“…see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently.”  I Peter 1:22
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs…”  Ephesians 4:29
“Obey your leaders and submit to their authority.  They keep watch over you as men who must give an account.  Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be no advantage to you.”  Hebrews 13:17

2.  I will share the responsibility of my church…
…by praying for its growth
…by inviting the un-churched to attend
…by warmly welcoming those who visit
“To the church… we always thank God for you and pray for you constantly.”  I Thessalonians 1:2
“Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.”  Luke 14:23
“Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God.”  Romans 15:7

3.  I will serve the ministry of my church…
…by discovering my gifts and talents
…by being equipped to serve by my pastors
…by developing a servant’s heart
“As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same to one another…” I Peter 4:10
“God gave…some to be pastors and teachers to prepare God’s people for works of ministry, so that the body of Christ may be built up…”  Ephesians 4:11-12
“…but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.  Look not every man on his own things, but… also on the things of others.  But made for himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant.”  Philippians 2:3-4, 7

4.)  I will support the testimony of the church…
…by attending faithfully
…by living a godly life
…by giving regularly
“Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together …but exhorting one another…”  Hebrews 10:25
“Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ…with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel.”  Philippians 1:27
“Each one of you, on the first day of each week, should set aside a specific sum of money in proportion to what you have earned and use it for the offering.”  I Corinthians 16:2