The acronym G.R.O.W., Gather, Receive, Offer, Work, is a word that serves as both a compass and like gauges on a dashboard. The Lord has impressed on our hearts that health comes in Christian Community when we focus on the seed and the soil, and not trying through our own efforts to produce the fruit. The fruit is what God does. He gives the increase. We plant and we water. We nurture. We also weed because weeds grow abundantly in fertile soil too. Weeds can hamper healthy growth. We believe that as we commit ourselves to the things outlined in G.R.O.W., the seed and the soil, the byproduct will be a healthy church culture made up of healthy individuals and healthy families all bearing fruit unto the Lord.
Article 1 – The Trinity It is the testimony of both the Old and New Testaments and of the Christian Church that God is both One and Triune. The biblical revelation testifies that there is only one God and that He is eternally existent in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. A.God the Father God the Father is the creator and sustainer of all things, and He created the universe in love. He created man in His own image for fellowship and called man back to Himself through Christ after the rebellion and fall of man. B.The Son Jesus Christ is eternally God. He was together with the Father and the Holy Spirit from the beginning, and through Him all things were made. For man’s redemption, He left heaven and became incarnate by the Holy Spirit through the virgin Mary; henceforth, He is forever one Christ with two natures—God and man—in one person. C.The Holy Spirit The Holy Spirit is God, the Lord and giver of life, who was active in the Old Testament and given to the Church in fullness at Pentecost. He empowers the saints for service and witness, cleanses man from the old nature and conforms us to the image of Christ. The baptism in the Holy Spirit, subsequent to conversion, releases the fullness of the Spirit and is evidenced by the fruits and gifts of the Holy Spirit. Article 2 – The Scripture We affirm that the Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments, is alone the only infallible, inspired Word of God, and that its authority is ultimate, final, and eternal. It cannot be added to, subtracted from, or superseded in any regard. The Bible is the source of all doctrine, instruction, correction, and reproof. It contains all that is needed for guidance in godliness and practical Christian conduct. Article 3 – The Atonement Christ’s vicarious death on the cross paid the penalty for the sins of the whole world, but its benefits are only applicable to those who receive Jesus as their personal Savior. Healing—body, soul, and spirit—and all of God’s provisions for His saints, are provided for in the atonement, but these must be appropriated. Article 4 – Salvation The Word of God declares clearly that salvation is a free gift of God, based on the merits of the death of His Son, and is appropriated by faith. Salvation is affected by personal repentance, belief in the Lord Jesus (justification) and personal acceptance of Him into one’s life as Lord and Savior (regeneration). The new life in Christ includes the privileges of adoption and inheritance in the kingdom of God’s beloved Son. Salvation is an act of free will in response to God’s personal love for mankind. It is predestined only in the sense that God, through His omniscience, foreknew those who would choose Him. It is secure in the eternal, unchanging commitment of God who does not lie and is forever the same. Salvation should produce an active lifestyle of loving obedience and service to Jesus Christ our Savior. Article 5 – The Christian Life We believe that the Scriptures portray the life of the saint in this world to be one of balance between what is imputed to us as Christians and what is imparted to us according to our faith and maturity. Hence, God’s provision for His children is total, and the promises are final and forever. The shortcomings of the individual and of the Church are because of the still progressing sanctification of the saints. The Christian life is filled with trials, tests, and warfare against a spiritual enemy. For those abiding in Christ until their deaths or His return, the promises of eternal blessing in the presence of God are assured. To remain faithful through all circumstances of life requires dependence upon the Holy Spirit and a willingness to die to personal desires and passions. Article 6 – The Church The goal of the Church is to make disciples of all nations and to present the saints complete in Christ. The five-fold ministry of Ephesians 4 governs the Church, the offices of elder and deacon, as well as other offices mentioned in scripture. Church policy is a balance between congregation and eldership authority, emphasizing the final authority of the Church leadership. It is essential to the life of the Church that scriptural patterns of discipline are practiced and that oversight for Church discipline, individual and corporate, is exercised by the leadership of the Church. Article 7 – Baptism & the Lord's Supper The Word of God enjoins on the Church two perpetual ordinances of the Lord Jesus Christ. The first, baptism, is the outward sign of what God has already done in the individual’s life and is a testimony to all that the person now belongs to Jesus. It is identification with Jesus and is affected in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Lord’s Supper is a commemoration of the death of the Lord and is done in remembrance of Him until He comes again; it is a sign of our participation in Him. Both institutions are restricted to those who are believers. Article 8 – Eschatology We affirm the bodily, personal, second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, the resurrection of the saints, the millennium, and the final judgment. The final judgment will determine the eternal status of both the saints and the unbelievers, determined by their relationship to Jesus Christ. We affirm with the Bible the final state of the new heavens and the new earth.
1. LOVE Christian love, called “agape”, means unmerited favor. Christians experience this type of love through Jesus Christ. Because of God’s unmerited favor and grace, He offers all of mankind eternal life through Jesus Christ. This is true love that comes FROM God. As followers of Jesus, we value God’s love and desire to share this Godly love of unmerited favor with others. Love is the centerpiece of ALL Core Values and it requires being intentional to live out of that place in our heart. Jude: 20-21 (NASB) 20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. Love is our inspiration. 1 John 4:19-21 (NASB) 19 We love, because He first loved us. 20 If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also. Love is our motivation. 1 Thessalonians 2:8 (NASB) 8 Having so fond an affection for you, we were well-pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become very dear to us. Love is our demonstration. Colossians 3:14 (NASB) 14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. 2. HONOR Honor in the Bible means “esteem, value, or great respect”. To honor someone is to value them highly or to bestow great value. The bible tells us to give honor to whom honor in due. Honor is a great restrainer for personal emotions which can often be subjective and bias. Honor is a powerful Kingdom principle and is critical for a thriving and peaceful Redemptive Community. Mark 6:4-6 (NASB) 4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and among his own relatives and in his own household.” 5 And He could do no miracle there except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. 6 And He wondered at their unbelief. Romans 12:10 (NASB) 10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor. Romans 13:7 (NASB) 7 Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor. “True honor is an outflow from the heart that fears God” John Bevere 3. HUMILITY Humility is an essential core Christian value. It’s also critical to how Christians relate to one another. It's the very foundation for a healthy church life. It reflects our deepest understanding of what God has done for us. Being humble means losing our obsession with our own feelings, needs and desires and shifting our focus on to other people. It doesn't mean that what's going on in our own minds and hearts isn't important, but we don't have the starring roles in our own lives. Humble people don't mind if they lose an argument or have a vote go against them in a meeting, because they're secure in the love of God. The sign of an insecure person is that they have to be right. They're bolstered by other people's approval or agreement. It worries and hurts them when they don't get it. But humble people don't need other people's approval. Humility is a mindset, not in spite of circumstances, but with a full consideration of them. Philippians 2:3-8 (NASB) 3 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. “Humility, the place of entire dependence on God, is the first duty and the highest virtue of the creature, and the root of every virtue. And so, pride, or the loss of this humility, is the root of every sin and evil.” Andrew Murray