What is Gospel Life about?
Gospel Centrality - Gospel Life Church is passionate about preaching the gospel in every sermon and bible study, because we believe the gospel is central to the message of the Bible (Luke 24:27,44-47) and to the life of the Christian and the church (Romans 12:1-2). The gospel is what drives the way we worship, the way we study the Bible, the way we fellowship with other Christians, and the way we interact with the world. At the same time, we want to teach and be impacted by the whole bible, instead of focusing on just a few key issues. We believe the bible addresses all the issues and problems of mankind, because the gospel is the solution to all these issues and problems present in the world.
Gospel Compassion - Gospel Life Church wants to be a church that shows compassion. That's why we are committed to bringing the gospel message to others (Matthew 28:18-20) and to helping those in need (Galatians 2:10). We believe this is the natural response to Christ's demonstration of compassion for us on the cross. We want to display compassion towards those who are in spiritual and physical need whenever possible. The basis for our compassion toward others is the compassion Christ demonstrated toward us (Matthew 9:35-38).
Gospel Culture - Gospel Life Church aims to have a church culture that is formed by and centered on the gospel. We believe that every church has a culture. There are many factors in creating the culture of a specific group. It could be ethnicity, educational background, life experiences, musical style, age, etc. Some churches tend to focus on one of these worldly factors to create a certain culture within its group. But we believe that the primary factor which forms a healthy church is the gospel. It is not race. It is not socio-economic factors. It is the gospel, because we believe the gospel unites people of all different ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds through Christ's death and resurrection. Socio-economic and cultural barriers are removed and the church takes on a unique culture based on Christ and heaven (Galatians 3:26-29; Ephesians 4:3-6). This is why we are devoted to establishing a heavenly mindset for worshiping God and living out the Gospel (Hebrews 12:22-24). We also believe that churches must be countercultural in some ways if it intends to stand firm to biblical teaching.
Gospel Community - Gospel Life Church aims to be a sacrificially loving and giving community of forgiven and forgiving sinners (Acts 2:42-47). We aim to be a strong knit group while opening our arms toward visitors, the needy, and the poor. We want to demonstrate the impact of Christ's life, death and resurrection to one another in a deep and intimate way (1 Peter 2:9-12). Our church community can be compared to a cozy, friendly private college versus the public state university feel of some big churches. We want to be a church where the pastor knows everybody, and everybody knows the pastor in a friendly, intimate way.
What do we believe?
- Scripture is the Word of God and all of its claims are true.
- God created the world and everything in it in six days.
- The Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit are all distinct persons, but are one God.
- The central message of the bible is that every person is a sinner and deserves the punishment of death, but God chose to save some through the saving work of Jesus Christ.
- Through Adam's sin, we all inherited the sinful nature and the punishment of death.
- Through Christ's perfect obedience and His atoning work on the cross, the elect receive eternal life in heaven.
- Christ will return on the last day to gather all those who put their faith in Him into His heavenly kingdom.
Why do we do what we do?
Jesus Christ is central to who we are and how we live.
The entire bible is about Christ. That's what Christ himself said in Luke 24. He pointed out that all the Scriptures point to His life, suffering, death, and resurrection. This means that every sermon and bible study must point to Christ because every passage in the bible must ultimately be about Christ. There is no deeper way to understand any part of the bible than to see how it points to Christ.
The second reason is that we expect and welcome non-Christians and new Christians to be at each and every worship service. We want to be a church where people can freely learn and examine the ideas of Christianity whether they are long-time churchgoers, new to the Christian faith, or still question the validity of Christian claims. We welcome non-Christians and invite them to learn about God from a friendly, gracious group of people.
The third reason is that Christians continue to sin and their hearts are grieved by their sinfulness. Christians need to be reminded on a regular basis of the gospel - that their sins are forgiven and Christ has paid the penalty for their sins.
We have a heart for starting churches, especially in the city.
The first reason is that God commands it in Genesis 12:1-3 and Matthew 28:18-20 and many other places in the Bible. The Apostle Paul always seemed to start churches in major cities, because they were strategic. The cities influenced the culture and mindset of entire nations and empires.
The second reason is that starting a new church is one of the most effective ways to reach out to non-Christians and people who used to go to church but stopped going for some reason or another. The statistics show that non-Christians and people who stopped going to church are more likely to visit a new church than an old, established church.
The third reason is that we like small churches. When a church gets too big, people can get lost and become anonymous. We like knowing each person who comes to our church so that we can pray for each person by name. Small churches have the intimacy and relationship-building between the pastor and its members that lead to a loving and caring community of believers. The tipping point for when a church becomes too big to know one another is about 150. So we think once a church gets to about 150-250 people, it's time to start a new church. That's our vision.