MISSIONS FOR GOD’S GLORY
Great Commission-Minded and God-Exalting
A God-centered approach to the task of global evangelization means exulting in the biblical certainty that the knowledge of the glory of God will cover all the earth as the waters cover the sea.
It also means letting this certainty propel us into the darkest places of lost humanity because the Lamb who was slain is worthy to receive worship from every tribe and tongue and nation.
Only a passion for God’s glory will sustain the long-term and often difficult task of church planting and global mission.
This passion overflows in powerful Christlike love and compassion for the lost, in faithful plodding, and in prayer that cries “Your kingdom come!”
LOCAL CHURCH CENTERED
Biblical Truth, Worship, Community, Prayer, Regenerate Membership, Discipline, and Plurality of Elders
Mission is the task of the local church.
Para-church organizations will continue to play a vital part with their specialized and unique roles, but the primary responsibility of completing the task belongs to the local church—every single member.
Local church leaders and members should be equipped for faithful evangelism that results in church planting. This should be guided by trustworthy leaders who train faithful men who will then in turn train others also.
We believe in the autonomy of local churches, but we also see in the New Testament the principle of “Inside Leadership and Outside Help,” that is, the establishment of elder-led autonomous churches as facilitated by gifted evangelists and leaders from other churches.
These leaders, like a Paul or Apollos, lay a strong foundation for the newborn church, exerting influence while elders are being raised up from within.
Evangelical, Baptistic, Reformed, Complementarian, Spirit-Filled
Mission flows from our theological convictions. It is the truth that sets us, our cities, and the nations free. Downplaying the importance of theology, which is God’s truth, does nothing to equip the church for church planting or global mission.
We are evangelical, meaning that our doctrinal statement proclaims a robust theology that is historical and orthodox, rooted in God’s inspired, inerrant, and authoritative word.
We embrace the absolute centrality of the Good News: the message of a holy creator God and a sinful mankind justly under his wrath, justified only by faith in Jesus Christ, the one who accomplished salvation through his incarnation, sinless life, substitutionary death, resurrection, and ascension.
We are baptistic, meaning that we believe the Scriptures teach the immersion in water of professing believers only, who together constitute God’s redeemed community, the church. Through baptism, the new believer is identifying with the local body of believers.
We believe God is sovereign over salvation, as taught in the Scriptures. This truth guarantees and empowers effective evangelism and church planting in the hardest places.
We are complementarian, meaning that we embrace the radical equality between men and women in Christ and the harmony of diverse God-given roles and male servant-leadership within the church and family.
We are Spirit-filled, meaning that we rejoice in the unique and foundational work of the Spirit in the early Church, and we believe that both miraculous and more natural gifts continue today. Because of this, we want to cultivate a discerning openness to all the gifts that the Spirit gives to the Church, longing to see God’s spiritual gifts operative among us, governed by Scripture and love, and longing for a greater fullness of the Spirit’s presence and work among us.
Gospel Clarity & Boldness, New Testament Example, Spirit-Filled Preaching, Multiethnic Churches, Missional Living
Methodology is lived out. New Testament proclamation was always accompanied by attestation—lives, suffering, methods, and miracles that demonstrated the truth of the gospel.
We recognize a healthy spectrum of giftings and faithful methods, but also recognize the existence of methodological lines which, if crossed, compromise the integrity of the gospel message.
We believe that Scripture should inform and critique methodology and that even seemingly different methods, if biblical, will be vindicated by wisdom and fruit. Methods should embrace both boldness and wisdom, and not shirk back from the often present suffering and even persecution that accompanies successful New Testament ministry.
We seek to encourage wise and biblical contextualization, where the gospel, not culture or method, is the only stumbling block.
However, this contextualization should never become mutant, prioritizing culture over gospel. We reject both the colonial elevation of Western culture over the gospel and the contemporary Insider Movement elevation of indigenous religio-culture over the gospel.
Instead, we espouse the primacy of the gospel and its power to engage, transform, reject, and honor aspects of every culture.
Church Planting, Church Strengthening, Strategic Cities, North America, Unreached People Groups
We will aggressively pursue planting likeminded churches in our city and region, while embracing broader North American church planting and church strengthening as a vital and strategic part of gospel renewal in our country and potential impact on our continent and around the world.
Internationally, we aim to prioritize major cities as a strategy for creating gospel beachheads in unreached and forgotten areas, leading to the evangelization of the surrounding countryside, as exemplified in the biblical account of Paul in Ephesus and as borne out through church history.
We are shaped by a Romans 15:20 passion to proclaim Christ where he is not named; therefore our international church planting efforts must always prioritize the remaining unreached and unengaged people groups of the world.
The giants of Islam and the other false religions will fall before the power of the gospel, and they will fall when the global Church fully embraces the task of church planting among these groups.