WHO WE ARE
We are a congregation of baptized believers in the Lord Jesus Christ with a God-given passion to prize and proclaim the excellencies of our crucified and risen Savior, the One through whom the God of all grace chose us, sought us, saved us, and called us out of darkness and into His marvelous light (1 Pet. 2:9).
WHY WE EXIST
As a hell-deserving people saved by the grace of God (Eph. 2:8), from the wrath of God (Rom. 5:9), and for the glory of God (Eph. 1:12), we exist to joyfully extol and magnify the true and living God, to faithfully proclaim the Christ-centered word, to build each other up by speaking the truth in love, and to bring the good news of the gospel to our city and world, so that the Lamb who was slain may receive the full reward for His sufferings.
The five elements of our purpose statement are explained below.
I. TO JOYFULLY EXTOL AND MAGNIFY THE TRUE AND LIVING GOD
The chief end and ultimate purpose of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever (1 Cor. 10:31; Rev. 4:11). This life, this world, and the universe in which we live is not about us. It’s about the glory of God being revealed and rejoiced in (Psa. 19:1; Rom. 5:2). In the Spirit’s work of regeneration, God removes our spiritual blindness and gives us new hearts to see and savor His glory as it appears most splendidly in the face of His Son, Jesus Christ (Eze. 36:26; 2 Cor. 4:4-6). The new birth is what enables us to joyfully and genuinely extol and magnify the God we once despised and hated (Rom. 1:30). Out of all creation, God has chosen to display His manifold wisdom through us, the church (Eph. 3:10). Thus, our ultimate purpose as a church is to magnify God and exalt His name together (Psa. 34:3).
II. TO FAITHFULLY PROCLAIM THE CHRIST-CENTERED WORD
The means of extolling and magnifying God together is by faithfully proclaiming, from the Old and New Testaments, what God has accomplished through the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of His Son. We are a people united under the authority of God’s word, assembling ourselves, not above or alongside of it, but underneath it. As John Calvin said, “When the Bible speaks, God speaks.” As the church, we are “the pillar and buttress of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15), and we desire to live up to this honorable title, which is why the proclamation of His truth in a world lost in lies and delusions is of paramount importance (Rom. 1:25; 2 Thess. 2:11). The word of God is sufficient to save, sanctify, safeguard, and satisfy His people for time and eternity, which is why we’re committed to faithfully proclaiming “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27). The Bible is not only “God-breathed” in its nature, but “Christ-centered” in its message. Jesus taught that He was the central focus of Scripture’s storyline (John 5:39; Luke 24:27, 44-47), and because of what Scripture is – the inerrant, infallible, inspired, authoritative word of the living God in the language of men – the most honorable and responsible thing we can do as a church is to proclaim the Scriptures in an expositional manner, which is why the leadership of this church is committed to expository preaching. Thus our aim is to preach Christ and Him crucified in all of Scripture for the glory of God and the joy of all peoples.
III. TO BUILD EACH OTHER UP BY SPEAKING THE TRUTH IN LOVE
When Christ saves His people, He makes them citizens of His kingdom and members of His household (Col. 1:13; Eph. 2:19). We exist, therefore, not simply to build up ourselves (Jude 20), but to build up one another (1 Thess. 5:11). We live in a day when secular and religious individualism is prized and celebrated, so while we acknowledge our ethnic and cultural differences, we also acknowledge the more important reality: as the church, we are all “one in Christ Jesus” and “individually members one of another" (Gal. 3:28; Rom. 12:5). Thus, each of us is called to “strive to excel in building up the church” (1 Cor. 14:12). We intend to fulfill this high calling by not neglecting to meet together as is the habit of some (Heb. 10:26), by counting one another more significant than ourselves (Phil. 2:3), by bearing one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2), by teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom (Col. 3:16), by stirring up one another to love and good works (Heb. 10:24), by showing hospitality to one another (1 Pet. 4:9), and by using our God-given gifts to serve one another for the glory of God (1 Pet. 4:10), so that every Christian may be presented mature in Christ (Col. 1:28). By speaking the truth to one another in the context of loving fellowship, we, by the grace of God, will grow up in every way into Him who is the head of the church, Jesus Christ (Eph. 4:15).
IV. TO BRING THE GOOD NEWS OF THE GOSPEL TO OUR CITY AND WORLD
While the previous point emphasizes our God-given mandate as it relates to the church, our calling as it relates to the world is to “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 [Christ has] commanded [us]” (Matt. 28:19-20). This threefold commission – to make disciples by proclaiming the gospel, to mark every repentant believer by baptism, and to see to it that every disciple among us matures into an individual who hears and heeds, trusts and treasures, loves and obeys the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Pet. 1:8) – is the task our Savior has set before us. We also believe that carrying out the great commission involves planting sound, healthy, Christ-proclaiming churches across our land and supporting faithful missionaries laboring abroad.
V. SO THAT THE LAMB WHO WAS SLAIN MAY RECEIVE THE FULL REWARD FOR HIS SUFFERINGS
While the previous statements speak to our purpose and calling, this final point speaks to our motivation and drive. In a sense, we circle back to the very first point regarding the exaltation of the triune God and affirm that one of the chief purposes of Christ’s agonizing death for His people was that He might be “crowned with glory and honor” (Heb. 2:9) and receive all that the Father promised Him: a purified people, washed white in His blood, to be His eternally treasured possession (Tit. 2:14; Isa. 53:10-12; John 6:39-40, 17:2). Thus, our ultimate motivation for all of ministry, isn't merely that the lost would found or that the saved would be sanctified, but that the Lamb who was slain may receive all that the Father promised Him, which can be summed up in the short but infinitely weighty word glory (Luke 24:26; John 17:24; Eph. 1:12; 2 Pet. 3:18).