Mt. Gilead Baptist Church is affiliated with the American Baptist Churches USA and the National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc. Since we as Baptists are not a “creedal” people, there is no agreed upon summary of doctrines and practices which govern our life together. Nonetheless, we recognize that certain central affirmations exist among us as Baptists. Those tenants and beliefs of our faith are covered in the Baptist Church Covenant.
The voluntary agreement to meet regularly for worship and work is commonly called a “Church Covenant.” This covenant entered into by members of Mt. Gilead Baptist Church make a commitment to conduct their lives in such a way as to glorify God and promote the ongoing of God’s church. The word ‘‘covenant” means agreement. This covenant entered into is the organization of the church. Every member should study it carefully and refer to it often and seek to live up to it, for it clearly outlines the obligations of church membership and what we believe as members of Mt. Gilead Baptist Church. Before we review the Baptist Church Covenant, let’s consider the enormous tasks of the Christian Church.
The church of the Lord Jesus Christ is the greatest institution that the world has ever known. Christ established it during His personal ministry and is its Head (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 5:23; Col. 1:18). To it He gave the commission and the ordinances, and for it He went to the cross (Matt. 28:19-20; 1Cor. ll:23-26; Eph. 5:25). He loved the church and wants His churches to honor and glorify Him as His representatives on the earth (Eph. 5:25-27; Eph. 3:21).
The Lord’s churches have the greatest task ever assigned to any individual or group in the world’s history, the task of carrying the glorious gospel of Christ the Saviour to every nation and tongue.
Membership places upon us inescapable obligations: an obligation to make the church and its work first in our lives; an obligation to use our time and our talents for the glory of God; an obligation to support the work with our presence, our talents, our influence and our means. Churches are never stronger than their membership. We are under obligation to be the very best members possible under the leading of the Lord.
Our Church Covenant
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God, to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Savior; and on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in The name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, we do now in the Presence of God, Angels and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into Covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.
We engage, therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian Love; to strive for the advancement of this church, in knowledge and holiness; to give it a place in our affections; prayers and services above every organization of human origin; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline and doctrines; to contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of a faithful and evangelical ministry among us, the relief of the poor, and the spread of the Gospel throughout the world. In case of difference of opinion in the church, we will strive to avoid a contentious spirit, and if we cannot unanimously agree, we will cheerfully recognize the right of the majority to govern.
We also engage to maintain family and secret devotions; to study diligently the word of God; to religiously educate our children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances; to walk circumspectly in the world; to be kind and just to those in our employ, and faithful in the services we promise others, endeavoring in the purity of heart and good will toward all men to exemplify and commend our holy faith.
We further engage to watch over, to pray for, to exhort and stir up each other unto every good word and work; to guard each others reputation, not needlessly exposing the infirmities of others, to participate in each joy, and with tender sympathy bear one another's burdens and sorrows; to cultivate Christian courtesy; to be slow to give or take offense, but always ready for reconciliation, being mindful of the rules of the Saviour in the eighteen chapel of Matthew, to secure it without delay; and through life, amid evil report, and good report, to seek to live to the glory of God, who hath called us out of darkness into his marvelous light.
When we remove from this place, we engage as soon as possible to unite with some other church where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God's word.
This covenant is located in the beginning of "The New National Baptist Hymnal"