To be identified with the visible Church is the blessed privilege and sacred duty of all who are saved from their sins and are seeking completeness in Christ Jesus. It is required of all who desire to unite with the Church of the Nazarene, and thus to walk in fellowship with us, that they shall show evidence of salvation from their sins by a godly walk and vital piety; and that they shall be, or earnestly desire to be, cleansed from all indwelling sin. They shall evidence their commitment to God—
Section: The Covenant of Christian Character
FIRST. By doing that which is enjoined in the Word of God, which is our rule of both faith and practice, including:
- Loving God with all the heart, soul, mind, and strength, and one’s neighbor as oneself (Exodus 20:3–6; Leviticus 19:17–18; Deuteronomy 5:7–10; 6:4–5; Mark 12:28–31; Romans 13:8–10).
- Pressing upon the attention of the unsaved the claims of the gospel, inviting them to the house of the Lord, and trying to compass their salvation (Matthew 28:19–20; Acts 1:8; Romans 1:14–16; 2 Corinthians 5:18–20).
- Being courteous to all people (Ephesians 4:32; Titus 3:2; 1 Peter 2:17; 1 John 3:18).
- Being helpful to those who are also of the faith, in love forbearing one another (Romans 12:13; Galatians 6:2, 10; Colossians 3:12–14).
- Seeking to do good to the bodies and souls of people; feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting the sick and imprisoned, and ministering to the needy, as opportunity and ability are given (Matthew 25:35–36; 2 Corinthians 9:8–10; Galatians 2:10; James 2:15–16; 1 John 3:17–18).
- Contributing to the support of the ministry and the church and its work in tithes and offerings (Malachi 3:10; Luke 6:38; 1 Corinthians 9:14; 16:2; 2 Corinthians 9:6–10; Philippians 4:15–19).
- Attending faithfully all the ordinances of God, and the means of grace, including the public worship of God (Hebrews 10:25), the ministry of the Word (Acts 2:42), the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 11:23–30); searching the Scriptures and meditating thereon (Acts 17:11; 2 Timothy 2:15; 3:14–16); family and private devotions (Deuteronomy 6:6–7; Matthew 6:6).
SECOND. By avoiding evil of every kind, including:
- Taking the name of God in vain (Exodus 20:7; Leviticus 19:12; James 5:12).
- Profaning of the Lord’s Day by participation in unnecessary secular activities, thereby indulging in practices that deny its sanctity (Exodus 20:8–11; Isaiah 58:13–14; Mark 2:27–28; Acts 20:7; Revelation 1:10).
- Sexual immorality, such as premarital, extramarital, or same-sex relations; perversion in any form or looseness and impropriety of conduct (Genesis 19:4–11; Exodus 20:14; Leviticus 18:22; 20:13; Matthew 5:27–32; Romans 1:26–27; 1 Corinthians 6:9–11; Galatians 5:19; 1 Thessalonians 4:3–7; 1 Timothy 1:10).
- Habits or practices known to be destructive of physical and mental well-being. Christians are to regard themselves as temples of the Holy Spirit (Proverbs 20:1; 23:1–3; 1 Corinthians 6:17–20; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Ephesians 5:18).
- Quarreling, returning evil for evil, gossiping, slandering, spreading surmises injurious to the good names of others (2 Corinthians 12:20; Galatians 5:15; Ephesians 4:30–32; James 3:5–18; 1 Peter 3:9–10).
- Dishonesty, taking advantage in buying and selling, bearing false witness, and like works of darkness (Leviticus 19:10–11; Romans 12:17; 1 Corinthians 6:7–10).
- The indulging of pride in dress or behavior. Our people are to dress with the Christian simplicity and modesty that become holiness (Proverbs 29:23; 1 Timothy 2:8–10; James 4:6; 1 Peter 3:3–4; 1 John 2:15–17).
- Music, literature, and entertainments that dishonor God (1 Corinthians 10:31; 2 Corinthians 6:14–17; James 4:4).
THIRD. By abiding in hearty fellowship with the church, not inveighing against but wholly committed to its doctrines and usages and actively involved in its continuing witness and outreach (Ephesians 2:18–22; 4:1–3, 11–16; Philippians 2:1–8; 1 Peter 2:9–10).