We believe that there is one living and true God, an eternal community of divine persons (Father, Son, and Spirit), who are equal in every way, operating in distinct and complementary ways throughout the history of creation, fall, redemption, and new creation.
God is the initiator of Salvation and Jesus is the Hero. God doesn’t respond to us – we respond to God’s initiative and calling. He saves and secures us for salvation and we respond only because of and by his grace. Jesus’ life, death, resurrection, ascension and sending of the Spirit are the center and fulfillment of our faith. It is through him, because of him and in him that we come to be God’s people, are transformed and have hope for final restoration.(1 Corinthians 15:1-11, Colossians 3:23, Galatians 1:6-8, Corinthians 2:1-2, 1Tim 2:4-6, Isaiah 53:2-12, 2 Peter 1:3-9, Mark 10:45, Romans 5:8, John 3:16-17, Romans 3:23-25, 2Corinthians 5:21, 1Timothy 1:15, 1 Peter 2;24-25, 1 Peter 3:18, Luke 19:10)
We believe the Holy Spirit is alive and active in regeneration, empowerment and ongoing filling for the purposes of God in this world. We believe all of the gifts of the Holy Spirit are still available today and necessary for the gospel to be displayed and declared to all people, but not one of them in particular is required to give evidence of the baptism or filling of the Spirit. We desire to live a life that is naturally supernatural . (1 Corinthians 12-14, John 14-16, Acts 1:8, Romans 13)
We believe that Scripture is the authoritative and life giving word of God Himself. We affirm the divine inspiration, truthfulness and authority of both Old and New Testament Scriptures in their entirety as the only written word of God, without error in all that it affirms, and the only infallible rule of faith and practice. We believe the story of Scripture centers upon the redemption of Jesus Christ, and His work in humanity. We also believe that it is the work of the Spirit as He illuminates our minds and hearts to perceive truth in His word.(2nd Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:20-21, Hebrews 4:12, 2 Peter 3:15-17, Matthew 5:17-19, Psalm 19:7, 1Thess 2:13, Luke 24:44-45, John 10:34-35, 2 Cor. 4:2, 2 Tim. 4:2-4, Nehemiah 8:1-9, Ezra 7:9-10, Acts 17:11)
The church is the redeemed family of God. Those who have placed their faith and trust in the Good News of Jesus Christ. The church is God’s vehicle for gospel renewal and proclamation in all things. (1 Timothy 3:15, Ephesians 1:22, Ephesians 3:10, Matthew 16:18)
We believe in the personal and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to earth and the renewal of all things. We believe in the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the eternal joy of the redeemed, and the eternal condemnation of the wicked.
We believe the Kingdom of God was inaugurated in Jesus’ first coming and will be consummated in his second coming. We live in the in-between where we can experience the reign of Jesus while longing for its completion as we also experience the reality that things are not yet fully as they will be within the new heaven and new earth. We acknowledge the variety of views within inaugurated eschatology and allow for this variety within our family.
We believe the church is the family of God sent by the Spirit to make disciples of Jesus to all nations throughout the world. We are saved by God’s power for God’s purposes to bring him glory in all things wherever we are. The church is always being sent by God to accomplish his mission.(Genesis 2:27-28, Matthew 28:18-20, 2 Timothy 2:2, Acts 1:8, Mark 16:15, Romans 10:14-15, Ephesians 4:11-12, Titus 2:1-8, Titus 1:5, John 15:16, Genesis 12:1-3, Genesis 35:10-12, Isaiah 49:6, Revelation 7:9-12, 1 Corinthians 4:15)
The church is not like family; it is family.
We are God’s chosen people – His family – set apart to live in such a way that the world would know what he is like. Through faith in Jesus we believe we are Children of God and brothers and sisters with each other. As God’s family we see it as our obligation to personally care for the needs of one another – both physically and spiritually. We disciple, nurture and hold each other accountable to Gospel life together. We
do this through regularly gathering together for celebration, consistent involvement in a discipleship group and loving others in the path of our life like the Father loved us. (Genesis 12:1-3; John 1:12-13; Romans 12:10-16) This is all rooted in Who God Is. We see that in the Trinity God is a family within Himself(see Matthew 3:17;John 17). It is because it is who God is, that Jesus prays that the church would be one family as He, The Spirit, and the Father are one(see John 17). If you look throughout Scripture you will see that a common theme is the dysfunction of families. Scripture doesn’t hide the raw truth that sin has destroyed the concept of family in humanity. However, it is through the power of the Gospel, that through adoption(Ephesians 1/Romans 8), we who come from dysfunction are adopted into the holy family of God, and our identity now is as God’s children a part of His family, which He is restoring and renewing, and not in our dysfunctional families. We have a better identity as a part of God’s family.
Jesus first served us and we are sent as servants
Fully God–fully human, Jesus took on the posture of a servant. He gave his life, even unto death, so that others could experience salvation, peace and restoration. Jesus said, “I am among you as one who serves…” All those who follow Jesus are called to serve in the same humility. For us this means joyfully submitting to Jesus as Lord, to the leaders he has placed over us and to each other as we also serve whomever God brings into our lives. We do whatever He leads us to do, whenever He tells us and wherever He wants us to do it. Another theme throughout Scripture is the failure of God’s leaders to serve His people. Even the greatest leaders in Israel’s history abused their power to take from, rather than serve for God’s people(see Ezekiel 34). However, through the good news of the Gospel, Jesus is God’s ultimate leader, the Savior King who instead of taking all from us, left all that He had, to give us all that He has won and has authority over. We are empowered through this Gospel to be servants to Jesus our King to the culture around us, blessing and renewing, instead of abusing and using. (Matthew 20:25-28; 25:31-46; John 13:1-17; Philippians 2:5-11; 1 Peter 2:16)
The Spirit sends us and empowers us
“More than half of churchgoers have not heard of the Great Commission. Additionally, even when presented with a list of passages, 37 percent don’t recognize which well-known passage typically goes by this name.”(Barna Research Group) This statistic may surprise you, but it reflects the slow decline in the American church’s influence on culture and society around us. Missions isn’t something we do overseas, mission is something Jesus calls every single disciple to when they are baptized into His name(see Matthew 28). However, when we say the word “missionary” most of us have a picture of an individual who leaves everything behind to go to some foreign country to preach the gospel. This doesn’t accurately reflect the teachings of Jesus as to what mission actually is. Jesus has given all of us the great commission. He told His disciples “as you go into all the world make disciples”. This means that as you and I go about our day whether at work, at school, in our neighborhood, in cafes, restaurants, and pubs, we are to be about Jesus’ mission. That means there isn’t a single disciple of Jesus who isn’t called to live life as a missionary. God sent Jesus to Earth to take on human form and live within the culture. He worked, ate and interacted among the people; living in such a way that those around him could see and experience what God was truly like. Jesus came so that all people, places and things could be restored to a right relationship with God. In the same way, we believe we are missionaries sent by God’s Spirit into our culture to restore all things to God through Jesus. We live this out through involvement in a missional community. God does not call certain people to be missionaries, but all of us.( John 1:14; 20:21; Colossians 1:19; 2 Corinthians 5:16-21)