At base camp, we take time to honestly assess the mission before us—like a good mountain climber. What mindset shall we embrace? What are the foundational principles that will guide us? These are the kinds of questions we need to be asking as we contemplate our walk with Christ and our journey to the summit. Indeed, our goal is as John Owen described, " … the universal renovation of our natures by the Holy Spirit into the image of God, through Jesus Christ.” The essence of discipleship is to know God and make him known; we are called to be progressively conformed to the image of Christ (Rom. 8:29; 2 Cor. 3:18).
The following values will serve us well as we make our ascent to the summit. These values undergird everything we do and believe. These values inspire commitment. Indeed, they are the biblical impetus for action.
1. The Glory of God as Our Highest Value
(Isa. 48:9–11; 1 Cor. 10:31)
The reason for our existence is to draw attention to God in all his majesty and greatness. John Piper rightly says, "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him." So strive to seek ways in which his Word and works can be visibly seen in our lives and the lives of his people. Worship, then, is a 24 hour reality. Whatever we do, we do to the glory of God (1 Cor. 10:31). To that end, Christ Fellowship will be deliberately God-centered in all we do. Our worship, preaching, teaching, and our personal lives will testify to the greatness of God as we daily strive to honor him in thought, word and deed.
2. The Centrality of the Gospel
(Rom. 1:16; Col. 1:28; 1 Cor. 15:3-4)
We love the gospel. This gospel tells us that Christ died for our sins, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day (1 Cor. 15:3-4). Our task is to proclaim this gospel, what J.I. Packer refers to as "a proclamation of divine sovereignty in mercy and judgment; a summons to bow down and worship the mighty Lord on whom man depends for all good." Such a gift is undeserved and continually amazes us and impresses upon us the magnitude of God’s love. We believe the people of Christ Fellowship must have a clear understanding of the gospel and must live that gospel out in the daily grind of life. We believe our love of the gospel will reveal itself in lives marked by radical hospitality, passionate worship, intentional personal growth, risk-taking ministry and extravagant generosity. This gospel reminds us that King Jesus will one day return and establish his kingdom in glory.
3. Deliberately Establish Future Generations in the Gospel
(Deut. 6:4-9; Ps. 48:13-14)
We, at Christ Fellowship, take seriously the commands and warnings by God to be diligent and active in passing on to our children a complete and compelling witness of the transforming grace of God in the hopes of firmly establishing the next generation in the sure foundation of Jesus Christ. We believe that the foundation begins in the home as children observe, on a daily basis, the gospel fleshed out in practical ways.
4. Whole-Hearted Love for God
(Deut. 6:4; Matt. 22:37)
Since we have received God’s grace through the Gospel, we eagerly strive to obey the first and greatest commandment – to love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, strength and mind. Such love is a supernatural result and joyful response to experiencing God’s gracious forgiveness because the one who has been forgiven much has been loved much. We at Christ Fellowship recognize and are humbled by the reality that each of us has been forgiven much.
5. Grace-Motivated Personal Growth Toward Christ-likeness
(2 Cor. 3:18)
We are saved by faith alone but recognize that faith is never alone. Saving faith results in good works to the glory of God. The Holy Spirit graciously sanctifies each one of God's elect. The grace of God miraculously transforms our lives and produces spiritual fruit. Therefore, we take sanctification seriously for we recognize that God expects his people to pursue holiness, "without which no one will see the Lord" (Heb. 12:14).
6. The Purpose & Pleasure of Sound Doctrine
(1 Tim. 4:16)
At Christ Fellowship, we strive to be people of the Bible. Scripture is our highest authority. As such, all of our thinking and behavior must be shaped by the precepts of Scripture. We maintain our commitment to sound doctrine by carefully scrutinizing our lives and doctrine and standing firm in our quest for godliness and sound doctrine.
7. The Active Presence & Ministry of the Holy Spirit
(Gal. 5:22-23, 25; 1 Pet. 4:10)
At Christ Fellowship, we earnestly and humbly pursue the dynamic ministry of the Holy Spirit in our midst. The Spirit counsels us, comforts us and convicts us of sin. He guides us into all truth and ignites our minds to understand that truth as revealed in Scripture. He opens our eyes to the significance of the cross. He helps us to pray. He gives us power to overcome temptation and he produces spiritual fruit in our lives. He graciously and generously gives gifts to people for the good of the church. He empowers us for service and witness. He gives evidence of God’s presence among us. At Christ Fellowship, we long for the fullness of the Spirit’s presence and ministry in the life of our church.
8. Initiating and Growing Relationship with the Local Church
We are deeply committed to the ministry of the local church as the primary place where God is working out his purpose in the world and in the lives of people. We believe that active participation in a local church is not just beneficial but essential for the spiritual growth of individual Christians. We have been joined together by the Spirit into one body, and understand our participation in the church primarily as purposeful involvement in each other’s lives. At Christ Fellowship, we are committed to serving and caring for one another. We realize that such a life is not hassle-free, but in obedience to God we’re determined to work at developing honest and vibrant relationships as we follow Jesus together. True biblical fellowship can only be enjoyed with the context of committed relationships.
9. Passion to Effectively & Faithfully Pass the Gospel on to Others
(2 Tim. 2:2; Acts 9:26-31)
We are committed to cultural engagement, namely – we love our community and we have a passion for penetrating the unreached people groups of the world. "The goal of missions" writes John Piper, "is the gladness of the peoples in the greatness of God." We at Christ Fellowship deliberately strive to find ways in which we can openly display the love of Jesus with the intent to call everyone we come in contact with to repent and trust in Jesus’ work on the cross for the forgiveness of sin.