We believe that the entire Bible can be summed up with one theme, the Gospel. The Gospel literally means "good news". This good news is that since the first sin (Genesis 3) to the glorious victory over evil by Jesus (Revelation), God is fulfilling the Gospel by redeeming, saving and restoring his creation.
A. The Individual I. The truth of the Gospel should cause us to practice daily surrender to the Holy Spirit, by his grace, sustained by his grace and living by his grace.
Ephesians 2:4-10 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ-by grace you have been saved- and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
B. The Church I. By surrendering to the Gospel we will live out God's desired plan and role for us as a community.
Philippians 2:1-5 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.
Personal transformation only occurs when we have a relationship with the Triune God and have been brought from death to life by the saving power of Jesus Christ. It is by putting our faith in the Truth of the Gospel that we receive the Holy Spirit as proof of our relationship with God. It is then by the Spirit's counsel, leading and sometimes pushing that we begin to live out the qualities of Christ. Too often we in the Church believe that doing the right things is what transforms us. But, the Bible tells us that we can do nothing that is truly good on our own. It is only when we seek to know God's character and surrender our lives to him that we will see transformation in our lives.
A. Our actions are not what transforms us.
Galatians 2:20-21 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose. Surrendering to Gospel-Centeredness will bring about Gospel-Centered transformation.
Ephesians 1:13-14 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.
Verses for Personal Study Romans 5:1-5, 10:9-10, 13:14; Galatians 3:25-27, 5:22-25; James 2:14-26
We believe that healthy relationships, as well as a healthy church community, can only exist when we understand that we are all on the same playing field. We are all sinners; we have all failed and are all in need of transformation to Christ-likeness. By his grace we are able to humble ourselves to Him and each other, allowing us to grow, hurt, encourage, guide, correct, laugh, succeed and live messy lives with each other for his glory, and to be a healthy reflection of the Gospel in a time in history when the Church does not often have the reputation it should.
A. We have no right to judge because we are all equally sinful.
Romans 3:9-18 What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written: "None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one." "Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive." "The venom of asps is under their lips." "Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness." "Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known." "There is no fear of God before their eyes."
B. Understanding our equally depraved condition will keep us from judging others or ourselves.
James 4:11-12 Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?
Verses for Personal Study Mark 8:35, Acts 19:18; Hebrews 3:13, 10:23-25; James 5:16
Loving the Prodigal
There is so much we need to learn to live as a Church community! Too often we reject each other, cause hurts and allow for rejection of those who have left the church. We believe that it is our role to love those who have left the church like the Father welcomes his lost son in the story of the Prodigal son!
A. We should learn to examine ourselves and ask, "Am I the Father, the younger brother, or the older brother?" Luke 15:11-32
Missional living is understanding that according to the Great Commission, we are to make the Gospel our highest priority in every area of life. Our whole life should be a surrendering and a living out of the Gospel. When this becomes our passion we will see God transform our local communities as well as our church community.
A. Missional living is something that should be done in your local community.
Matthew 28:19-20 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."
B. Reaching your local community does not mean you forsake your church community.
Hebrews 10:24-25 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
Waiting on God
We need to be people who are characterized by seeking God first! When this becomes our practice we will wait for his leading and live lives that are directed, led, and guided by the Holy Spirit!
A. The Individual
We must surrender our pride and seek God first! When we seek his face in all areas of life we will be able to obey the truth that God has already given us and be patient in the times of uncertainty.
Lamentations 3:25-26 The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
Isaiah 40:30-31 Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
B. The Church
This will cause us as a community to be willing to wait on God to provide our needs, programs, and ministries. It is when we as a community choose to wait on God's leading that we become the church that He has called us to be.
Psalm 143:10 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God! Let your good Spirit lead me on level ground!