The relationship between a follower of Christ and His Church is that of a family where there is deep love for each other. The Scriptures say that God sets the solitary into a “family” (Psalm 68:6). Families are held together by love, not rules, constitutions, or contracts. The Church is described in Scripture as a family “household” with “members” (Eph. 2:19) in the same way that any family has ‘members’. Families are places of love and commitment which cultivate trust. And it’s the same in a local church. Believers belong because they are placed together by God (1Cor. 12:24). Just as in any family household, God places authority within that household. Usually in a natural family that is the role of the parents. In a church it is its leadership comprised of pastors and elders, a management board, team and department leaders, and home-group leaders.
THE ROLE OF THE PASTORS
A Pastor’s relationship to the congregation God has placed them is not one of being an employee (a “hireling” – condemned by Christ in John 10:12-13) but one of a loving shepherd where they are not “employed” by the church but they are rather supported by the church. In this sense the Pastor lays down his life as shepherd does to guard his sheep for the sake of his congregation by:
- example, and a
- commitment to developing maturity both within his own life and his local church.
A pastor’s first call is to minister to the Lord (Acts 13:2), then minister the Word of God gently, lovingly, and consistently to the congregation (2Tim. 2:24-26).
A Pastor is a gift from God to a local church (Eph. 4:8). The Pastor is called by God (not merely appointed by men) and given authority from Him to lead and oversee the local church. The authority which God places in a person called to this position is amazing when you consider that the Scriptures instruct the church to honour their God-given leader (Heb. 13:17). This requires cooperation, just as in any family. But this cooperation is made delightful because the Pastor loves those God has placed under his charge, and those in the church return that love as well. Again, just as in a family.
To reduce the church to a religious political society where decisions are made based on who gets the most votes is completely counter to the Biblical description of the church. To think that the relationship of the believer to their church is about democratic voting privileges is at best: unbiblical, and at worst: ungodly. But the idea that God calls believers together to partner with each other is thoroughly Biblical.
Partnership more naturally reflects love and trust, which is the most important ingredient in any church.
WHO CAN PARTNER WITH LEGANA CHRISTIAN CHURCH?
To become a Partner with Legana Christian Church you need –
- to have been a regular attender for at least 3 months
- to be a committed follower of Christ as your Saviour and Lord
- to have demonstrated your commitment to Christ by having been baptised by full immersion in water as a believer
- to complete this online (or hard copy of the) Partnership Course and complete the Partnership Application
EVERYONE NEEDS A SPIRITUAL HOME
This Partnership Course is designed to introduce you to Legana Christian Church as your spiritual family and home.
Psalm 84 stresses that God provides His people with a spiritual home. Psalm 68:6 describes of the blessing of belonging to a spiritual home. So does Psalm 84. Belonging to a church is fantastic. We have a dream of Legana becoming a significant church where people find purpose, direction, joy, eternal life, meaning, passion, and hope. We have a dream of a church that captures the attention of our community by demonstrating how Christ changes lives.
Becoming a partner of Legana means you officially become a part of a spiritual family. Partners come under the anointing and covering of the church. We join together to support church planters and missionaries beyond our community. Together we undertake local outreach initiatives and support the Kingdom initiatives of other local churches in our Valley. Partners join a community of believers where they can exercise their spiritual gifts, and receive the benefit of drawing on the ministries, gifts and God-given abilities, of others in their church family.
To become a partner –
- you must be born again (John 3:3),
- be water baptised (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:37),
- agree with the Vision – Mission – Values of the church (as presented in this course),
- be prepared to pool your God given talents, time and treasure to achieve and uphold them (the Vision – Mission – Values), and
- have a teachable (Prov. 12:1; 13:18; 15:32), servant’s heart (Matt.20:26-28; 23:11; Romans 12:11; Gal. 5:13; Eph. 6:7; Phil. 2:5).
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!
Ecclesiastes 4:9–10 (NIV)
Can one man build a church? Answer: no. We’re not looking for people who will work for us. We’re keen to welcome more people who will work with us, as partners. Together Everyone Achieves More (T.E.A.M.).
In Larry Stockstill’s book, The Cell Church, he lists five benefits for a church being made up of partners. He mentions that Andrew, James and John were business partners with Peter (Luke 5:10). Being partners meant that they could catch more fish—since a net will always catch more than a hook. Larry Stockstill mentions-
- Partners serve each other
- Partners encourage each other
- Partnership increases productivity
- Partners protect each other
- Partners pray for each other.