I’ve been studying up a little bit on Jonathan Edwards, and although I haven’t read his article “The Distinguishing Marks of a Work of the Spirit of God,” I did learn that he was very concerned that church membership was afforded liberally to people regardless of their demonstration or exhibition of the work of the Spirit of God in their lives. I read that he was concerned that membership to the church was offered to everyone. Obviously, he was in favor of church attendance for everyone, but he thought that actual membership with the church should be limited to those that demonstrated the presence of Christ in their life. I know that there are some churches that definitely hold to what Edwards was passionate about, however, my assumption is that most churches nowadays are very liberal with their membership as well.
Independently, I met with a friend of mine who is still a member of a mega church. He shared with me a concern that he has that a large number of the congregation that were members of the church are not actually believers. It was very troubling to him.
So, my question to you: is your thought process regarding church membership aligned with Edwards’. I’m curious to know your mind on the subject of church membership, and what you might be able to tell me about what the Bible says on this matter.