The requirements for membership at the Village Church are no higher and no lower than the requirements for being a Christian. And there are two main requirements for that: faith and repentance.
In the New Testament faith is critical. Faith means trusting or believing. Faith is our response to Jesus Christ, and it’s through faith in him that people like us are justified. J. I. Packer, the theologian, says, faith is a whole-souled response to Jesus. Faith involves the mind, the heart, the will, and the affections. A Christian receives Jesus and relies on Jesus.
Repentance means changing your mind - changing your views and your values – so that the direction of your life is different. Repentance is an inward and an outward change. In the New Testament repentance is critical: John the Baptist preached repentance, Jesus preached repentance, the Twelve preached repentance, and so did the apostle Paul.
And faith and repentance go together. You can’t have one without the other. Faith is about Jesus being your Saviour, and repentance is about Jesus being your Lord. Membership is about the church affirming and accepting people who live lives of faith and repentance.
And about baptism… our position at the Village Church is credobaptist, and our practice will be believer’s baptism by immersion (all being well – when we find the right sized paddling pool) But we’re going to operate an open membership policy, which means we’re not going to insist that people are baptised as adults. We will accept into membership people who are convinced by the paedobaptist position. For the sake of unity, Christians who have been baptised as infants - provided that their parents and the church where they were baptised are able to agree with our Statement of Faith – we will affirm and accept them into membership.