WM Membership Class


  • If you have not done so yet, you will need to share your testimony with an elder. 
  • Discipleship
    • Discipleship means following Christ, and discipling is the process of helping others and being helped by others to be a disciple.
    • We often want a step-by-step that we can walk through and then repeat, yet Jesus’ strategy of discipleship is to create a new kind of humanity that lives life in such a way that it cannot help but attract either devotion or scorn.
    • The entirety of your life as a Christian is discipleship.
    • Discipling relationships can be peer-to-peer. They need not be exclusively a mentor-student relationship. Yet if two Christians are together without discipleship happening, then they are in sin.
    • Discipling also occurs on a community-level.
      • Discipleship is rooted in the church because Jesus came to build His church, to rescue for Himself a people for His own possession.
      • The communion of saints is an act of discipling. We might even say that it is the act of discipling. It is an act that reorients our affections. The very act of gathering together reminds us that we are not alone but a one member of a people.
  • Missions
  • Read my sermon on Making Disciples here.
  • We believe in the authority and sufficiency of Scripture.
  • Scripture is how we learn to obey all that Christ commanded us.
  • Our devotion must be both personal and collective.
    • Personally, how can we teach someone else to follow Christ if we do not understand His Word?
      • Deuteronomy 6:4-9 | personal discipleship begins with your family
      • 2 Timothy 2:2 “and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also.” | then teach others.
    • Collectively, we gather together to hear the proclaimed Word.
      • This unites us as a collective people.
      • The placement of the Word as the center of our weekly worship also subtly reminds us of the Word’s central place within our lives as well.
  • Read my sermon on Scripture here, as well as a sermon on the authority of the Word.
  • We cannot go into every harvest, but we can pray that God would send laborers into every harvest.
  • How did the apostles spend their time in order to fulfill the Great Commission? They devoted themselves “to prayer and the ministry of the word” (Acts 6:4).
  • Corporately, we learn to pray together.
  • Following a public prayer, we make it our own prayer through the affirmation of Amen.
  • Praying for the church 
    • You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. – 2 Corinthians 1:11
    • Ideas for how to pray for the church: 
      • pray for the service Saturday night as a family
      • pray for other community groups
      • pray for a greater love of God and his love 
  • Read my sermon on Prayer here.
  • Jesus certainly died for individuals, but He also died for His people collective.
    • 1 Peter 2:9–10 | But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
  • Jesus commands us to love one another, which of course implies that we would actually be around each other.
    • John 13:34–35 | A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
  • Community Groups
    • CGs are intended to dive deeper into the text of the sermon by facilitating time to discuss with one another.
  • Practical steps forward
    • View the Lord’s Day gathering and community group as the overall structures for growing into community.
    • Make it a priority.
      • Joe Barnard | they had bought into one of the great myths of our society: that life is a buffet at which you can have whatever you want. This is a lie. Men cannot climb the corporate ladder, coach traveling soccer teams, visit all the national parks, teach Sunday school, get a black belt in jujitsu, and become mature spiritual leaders. Eventually, exhaustion becomes an insurmountable constraint and something gives. Sadly, for a lot of guys what gives is the closeness of their walk with God.
    • Be the kind of community that you’d like to see.
    • Be willing to receive what you did not expect.
    • Read Grimke quote and talk about Psalm 1.
  • Read my sermon on Community here.


While there are only two offices of leadership within the church (elders and deacons), three roles of leadership exist: elders, deacons, and members. In this session, we will discuss briefly the responsibilities and qualifications for each. 

The seven-part sermon series that I preached on this topic can be found here.

The most basic model of church leadership:

    Jesus [shepherd; head; husband]


    church [flock; body; bride]

Elders (aka Pastors or Overseers): Guardians of Doctrine

  • Shepherd, Oversee, Model
  • Ministry of the Word 
  • Prayer
  • God’s Steward

Deacons: Guardians of Unity

  • Servants
  • Ministers
  • Guardians of Unity

Members: Representatives of Christ

  • One Another Commands
    • John 13:34–35 | A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.
  • Doctrinal Fact-Checking
    • Acts 17:11 | Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.
  • The Work of the Ministry
    • Ephesians 4:11–13 | And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,
  • Collective Authority
    • Guarding Membership
      • Matthew 18:15-20 | If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector. Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.
    • Affirming Leadership
    • Other matters


The following beliefs are commonly held by the majority of the membership. While we gladly welcome those with other biblical viewpoints and perspectives into membership, we do expect unity to be maintained by not seeking to shift the church’s stances nor teaching against them.

For non-negotiable doctrines, see our sermon series through The Apostles’ Creed.


  • 4 Views of gender roles
    • Chauvinism
      • Merriam-Webster: an attitude of superiority toward members of the opposite sex
      • Typically views men as superior to women (male chauvinism).
    • Feminism
      • Merriam-Webster: the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes
      • Often views women as superior to men.
      • Taking care to define labels is crucial, especially here. Many people use feminism and egalitarianism as synonyms. Thus, take care to understand what ideas I am placing under the banner of feminism. 
    • Egalitarianism
      • Merriam-Webster: a belief in human equality especially with respect to social, political, and economic affairs
      • Does not see a distinction between the roles of men and women.
    • Complementarianism
      • Views men and women as equal but with distinct and complementary roles.
  • Explaining “hard” and “soft” complementarianism
    • Hard complementarians tend to view a woman speaking at all to the church on Sunday gathering as a sinful violation of 1 Timothy 2:12 (obviously with plenty of degrees and variations). 
    • Soft complementarians view 1 Timothy 2:12 as prohibiting elder-like practices of teaching and authority for women, while anything else is permissible. 

Reformed Theology

  • 4 C’s | Credal, Confessional, Calvinist, Covenantal
  • For an excellent exposition of The 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith, listen to George Higginbotham’s teachings here.
  • Calvinist instead of Arminian
    • Calvinism
      • GotQuestions: The five points of Calvinism can be summarized by the acronym TULIP. T stands for total depravity, U for unconditional election, L for limited atonement, I for irresistible grace, and P for perseverance of the saints.
    • Arminianism
      • The five points of Arminianism are Partial Depravity, Conditional Election, Unlimited Atonement, Resistible Grace, and Conditional Salvation.
    • My 2 Cents
  • Covenantal instead of dispensational
    • Covenant Theology
      • Covenantal theology sees history as a series of covenants, particularly the Covenant of Work and the Covenant of Grace. Other covenants are also emphasized (Edenic, Adamic, Noahic, Abrahamic, Mosaic, Davidic, New). Covenantal theology also emphasizes the unity of God’s people throughout the Bible. 
    • Dispensational Theology
      • Dispensational theology sees history as a series of dispensations of God’s revelation to His people. The seven dispensations are Innocence, Conscience, Human Government, Promise, Law, Grace, and the Millennial Kingdom. This theology emphasizes Israel and the Church as two distinct peoples of God.
    • My 2 Cents
  • Regulative instead of normative
    • Regulative Principle
      • This worship principle forbids anything in worship that is not designated by Scripture.
    • Normative Principle
      • This principle holds that, following the wisdom of the Spirit, anything may be done in worship so long as it is not prohibited by Scripture. 
    • My 2 Cents
      • Guarding the Sunday morning gathering
      • Music style and the value of hymns
      • You can listen to and familiarize yourself with the Western Meadows Song List at YouTube or Spotify.
  • Cessationist instead of continuationist
    • Cessationism
      • Cessationists believe that the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit are no longer active today.
    • Continuationism
      • Continuationists believe that the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit are still active in the church. 
    • My 2 Cents
  • Sabbitarianism
    • Sabbitarianism holds that Sunday is the new Sabbath

Grace Alone

Faith Alone

Christ Alone

Scripture Alone

God’s Glory Alone