Doctrine And Mission

The authoritative Biblical truths that we believe in, and the practical mission strategy that we pursue locally and globally.

Doctrine

  • In one Triune God, Creator of all things, infinitely perfect and eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The will of the Father is seen through the person of Jesus the Son and empowered through the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19; John 17:3; Revelation 4:11)
  • Mankind was created in the image of God, both male and female.  We are not equal with God, yet we are similar to Him in that we carry the fundamental characteristics of his person.  In mind, will, emotion, and spirit, we are like God and can experience deep personal relationship with Him and other people.  God’s image is also represented in Biblical marriage by the joining together in covenant and exclusive relationship of one male and one female. (Genesis 1:27; 2:22-24; Matthew 19:4-5)
  • At the Fall, sin and death entered the world resulting in all people being born into a state of sin as enemies of God.  Yet, each person is eternally condemned for their personal choice to sin against God. (Genesis 3:1-19; Romans 1:18-3:20, 3:23, 5:6)
  • God, by His grace and because of His love for humanity, provided a means to reconcile each person to himself through the shedding of Jesus Christ’s blood on the cross. Without complete forgiveness, people are guilty of sin and remain separated from God. (Ephesians 2:8-9; John 3:16; Psalm 51:5; Hebrews 9:7-13)
  • Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man, conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He died on the cross as a sacrifice for all sin according to the Scriptures. Furthermore, he arose in bodily form from the dead, ascended into heaven where He is currently at the right hand of God the Father and is the High Priest and Advocate for all believers.  He is the only passageway to the Father. (John 1:1; Hebrews 1:8; I Corinthians 15:3‑4; Matthew 1:18; Hebrews 1:3; Hebrews 9:24; John 14:6)
  • When a person believes person and work of Jesus Christ, he is reconciled to God through faith and saved from eternal death. (Colossians 1:21, Romans 10:9)
  • Christ baptizes every believer with the Holy Spirit at the point of salvation. The Holy Spirit regenerates the sinner and imputes Jesus’ righteousness to the sinner, thus, making him forever acceptable to God. (Romans 4:23-24; Ephesians 1:13-14; Titus 3:5-7, 2 Corinthians 5:21)
  • Every believer is baptized by the Holy Spirit and is a new creation and heir to the kingdom of God.  This single baptism by the Holy Spirit places the believer into Christ and His Body, which is the Church. (John 1:32-33; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Galatians 3:26-27; John 3:3-5, 1 Corinthians 12:13)
  • Each believer will stand before the judgment seat of Jesus Christ to give an account for the life lived on this Earth.  Faithful believers will be rewarded an inheritance in proportion to their faithful choices to live for Jesus and His mission.  This judgment will determine the believer’s role of service in the eternal kingdom of God and is a motivator for the choices made in the here and now. (1 Corinthians 3:10-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 5:9-10, 20:4)
  • The Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, are the inspired Word of God without error in the original manuscripts.  They are the complete revelation of His will for the salvation of men and the divine and final authority for all Christian faith and life. (II Timothy 3:16‑17; II Peter 1:19‑21)
  • As believers seek Christ through prayer, reading the Word of God and genuine Christian community, they are transformed more and more into His likeness. (1 Corinthians 15:49; 2 Corinthians 3:18)
  • For unhindered fellowship with Christ, the believer must confess and repent of his sins. (1 John 1:7-9; John 13:6-13)
  • The Holy Spirit teaches the believer all things.  (John 14:26; 1 John 2:27)
  • The Holy Spirit gives each believer at least one spiritual gift to be used for the common good of the church.  (1 Corinthians 1:6-7, 12:7, Ephesians 4:7-13)
  • Jesus Christ is Head of the Church and the Church is the Body of Christ on Earth, here to be His ambassadors and to carry out His will.  It is the responsibility of each believer to carry out the Great Commission.  (Acts 2:42-47, 2 Corinthians 5:20; Ephesians 1:22-23; Matthew 28:19-20; 1 Peter 3:15)
  • There is a time when Jesus Christ will be revealed to all mankind in His glory at which point all believers, both those who had died and those who are living, will be transformed completely into the likeness of Christ.  The believer will fully recognize the spiritual blessings that he received at the point of salvation and will receive the remaining inheritance currently awaiting him, including eternal life. (1 Corinthians 15:42-54, 1 Corinthians 13:9-12, Ephesians 1:13-14)

Mission

It is our belief and motivating conviction that God's mission for His people has never changed.  From the Garden of Eden described in Genesis 1-2 to the Eternal Kingdom described in Revelation 21-22, God outlines His desire for planet earth to be filled with His image-bearers as they live in perfect familial relationship together with Him as their Father and serve Him in fruitful labor.  Certainly this mission has changed at different points in human history; initially as He worked through the Jews as His chosen nation of people, and later through His new multi-racial Church comprised of Jews and Gentiles who would be relationally restored through faith in the representative death of Jesus on the cross.  In spite of these variations in God's strategy, the core mission remained the same - to redeem  and restore all of His image bearers to their original intended purpose.  Whether it was through Israel in the Old Testament, or through the Church in the New Testament, God's people were called to take up His mission, working with and for Him to restore His lost image bearers.  According to Acts 1:8, God's mission has two practical contexts for us to engage in: local ("Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria") and global ("the end of the earth").

Local
We have chosen to develop simple strategies for engaging in the mission of God in both of these contexts, the first being regionally.  To this end, we desire to equip our church to pursue the mission of making disciples in our local region.  This is primarily accomplished through the forming and equipping of small groups of believers who can grow together as they pursue God's mission of making disciples of His lost image bearers.  We call these communities "Missional Communities".  These communities of believers that are formed around God's mission are the heartbeat of our church and are the exclusive focus of how (means) and where (context) we pursue God's mission.

Global
We also desire to be used of God to extend His mission to the ends of the earth.  This global challenge has a different set of challenges as we seek to engage in it, but we are committed to do so.  Our commitment to this global mission is informed by God's directive to "go into all the world and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:18-20).  Because of this directive, we have set the requirement for all of our global mission initiatives to be clearly confined to God's missional call of "making disciples" through the ministry of the local church.  Although there are many good things done in the name of Jesus throughout the world, disciplemaking through the local church is the heart of God's directive, and we will only commit to efforts that consistent with that principle.  Presently we are engaging in the global mission of God by forming strategic partnerships with other local churches who are engaged in disciplemaking, and we are also moving forward with plans to equip, send, and support our own global disciplemakers.

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