A Focus On The Gospel
The Gospel is the good news about what God has done in Christ to save sinners. It is the announcement of His life, death, burial and resurrection, and how those historical facts provide the ground for our reconciliation with God. As we focus on the Gospel, we find unity with one another around that which matters most. Not only are we saved by the gospel, we are also sanctified by it as well. In all of our gatherings, the gospel is central and primary.
Training Disciples To Multiply Disciples
We are passionate about training every disciple so that they can bring others to Christ and then lead these new believers to start obeying Jesus’ commands. This training includes teaching disciples how to tell lost people their story, Jesus’ story, and Biblical stories of hope. They also learn how to disciple new believers to obey the commands of Christ, feed themselves from God’s Word, and to form these new believers into house churches.
The Centrality Of Bible Teaching
We love the Word of God, and are always talking about its truths. It is at the heart of everything we do as a church. In each Sunday gathering there is an in-depth exposition and application of God’s Word. Our gatherings are characterized by seriousness about the Bible.
An Appreciation Of God’s Sovereignty
We reverently and joyfully embrace the truth that God is sovereign over all things. We realize that there is mystery in how God ordains all things that come to pass, and yet man remains a free moral agent, fully responsible for his sinful choices. However, we fully embrace the doctrines of God’s sovereign grace – man’s total depravity, and God’s unconditional election, particular redemption, irresistible grace, and preservation of the saints.
A Missional Mindset
We see ourselves as missionaries (sent ones) to our neighborhoods, families, workplaces, and city. We regularly go out into the community to pray for the needs of the people in our community, and share the gospel with them. When we find people who are open or interested in the gospel, we will begin a bible study with them in their home, with the hope of reaching an entire household for Christ. We then teach them to obey everything Jesus commanded, including the command to make other disciples. Our goal is to start other house churches with new believers we have won to Christ, and link them together with us in a family of churches.
A Valuing Of Church Life Together
Our lives center around God, our families, and our church. Following Christ is all about the Body of Christ and is not to be done individualistically. Our meetings are not just tacked on to our lives, but explain who we are. Being together is worth any sacrifice. To us, there is no such thing as a non-active member. Each person who signs our membership agreement commits to active involvement in the life of the church. When we meet, everyone is present. If a person or family cannot be there because of extenuating circumstances, they keep the rest informed. We are a true body.
A Meaningful Membership
We believe that membership means something in terms of mutual commitment. It opens a door to certain ministry possibilities, to corporate decision-making, to loving accountability, and to a new level of Christian fellowship. Therefore, we encourage people not to visit indefinitely before joining. We don’t believe it is healthy for a true Christian to attend a church indefinitely without making a commitment to it.
The Use Of Homes For Church Gatherings
We do not believe that we are commanded by God to meet in homes, but we do believe that it has huge benefits for our individualistic, isolated culture. These benefits include greater intimacy, accountability, every member ministry, shepherding, stewardship, ease of reproducing, and ability to observe the Lord’s Supper weekly as a meal. Furthermore, the Bible’s “one another commands” are more easily practiced in such a context.
The Purity Of The Church
It is important to us to know that our church is regenerate and that each member is walking in obedience and faith toward God. Church discipline is essential for biblical purity to be maintained. We understand that we are all responsible to restore a brother or sister who strays from the truth. Perseverance in faith is a community project. We all need each other to exhort, encourage, and reprove us when we stray from God and His Word.
Leadership By Men
The men are aware of their unique position in the body as leaders, both in the home and in the church. We are complementarian (men and women are equal before God, but have differing, complementary roles) in our view of the relationship of men and women, not egalitarian (men and women have no differences in roles either in the home or church).
A Commitment To Shepherding Men
The men are mentored by the Pastor(s), so that they might be able to be the loving leaders and shepherds of their families. The Pastor(s) spend time each week with the men of the church in the study of Scriptures. We believe that by developing strong, spiritually mature men, we will have a strong church.
Teaching Our Children The Scriptures
We believe that parents are primarily responsible for the spiritual nurture and instruction of their children. We encourage all parents to spend time teaching their children the truths of God’s Word at home. Children are an integral part of the church meetings, even though they can sometimes be distracting.
A Cautious Approach To Childhood Baptism
In order to maintain a regenerate membership and to avoid giving premature assurance of salvation to children who profess faith in Christ, our Pastor(s) work together with the child and his/her parents until the child’s conversion can be confidently affirmed by the whole congregation. We encourage the child to live out his faith in obvious ways over time so that this might be known. We have not established a specific age for baptism and membership, but in most cases conversion does not become clearly discernable until a child approaches the teenage years and faces the inevitable choices between worldly interests and Christ. Once conversion is evident, baptism will not be delayed.