1. Devotion to God
The primary purpose of the Church is to know the love of God and serve and glorify Him through our individual and corporate lives. We demonstrate our love for God:-
1.1 Through Prayer There is power in the prayers of the righteous (James 5:16) and we are instructed to bring our requests before God (Phil 4:6). Jesus taught his disciples to pray for God’s kingdom to come and His will to be done on the earth (Mat 6:10). Part of our devotion to God is to be committed to prayerfully lifting needs to God and seeking His direction and gifting for ourselves.
1.2 Through Worship Man was created to worship God (Rev 4:11). Our worship is expressed through the giving of our lives as a living sacrifice to God (Rom 12:1). We believe that regular time and focus should be given to expressing our worship through praise and intimacy with God, both corporately and privately. Times of worship create an atmosphere for the presence of God to move, where we can be transformed into God’s likeness (James 4:8).
1.3 Through Studying God’s Word The Bible is the inspired and inerrant Word of God (2 Tim 3:16) made alive to us through revelation by the Holy Spirit (Eph 1:17). Like the early Church believers we are to devote ourselves to the teachings of Jesus and of the apostles (Acts 2:42). Teaching of God’s word is essential to the life and growth of the Church. God’s word has the power to radically change our thinking and is an essential tool in our pursuit of God. All doctrine must be tested against Scripture (1 John 4:1) and all Christian beliefs and structures that are not founded on Scripture alone should be treated as Church tradition, while they may be used and respected they must never become dogma or grounds for disunity.
2. Devotion to God’s Bride
The Bible refers to the Church as the bride of Christ (Eph 5:22-33). As God’s beloved, the Church should love and value herself as she is loved and valued by God.
2.1 Through Unity There is only one Church (Eph 4:4) made up of all true believers in Jesus Christ (Mark 16:16). The Church is called to maintain the unity of the Spirit (Eph 4:1-6) that God has given to his Church. Christ prayed that the church might be one as He and the Father are one that the world might see Him (John 17:20-21). To this end we seek to work across denominational and structural barriers wherever possible, working together with other Church groups.
2.2 Through Local gathering It is vital for all Christians to be in fellowship with other believers, making Church gatherings a priority in their lives (Heb 10:25). We are to be accountable to godly leadership. Scripture lays out a strong plural structure for church leadership and while we recognise differences in gifting among our leaders we see no difference in position. Christians are to live in fellowship and love for one another, sharing what they have for the common good. The Church is to be a family where no one lacks what they need. (Acts 2:42-45). The Church is a body in which every member has a part to play. We encourage every member to be involved in ministry both within and outside the Church. We believe that the Holy Spirit is our guide in all that we do as the Church and we seek that each member of the Church to be released in the spiritual gifts that God has for them.
3. Devotion to our Mission
The Church has been given a very clear mandate to take the gospel into all the world loving the lost and making disciples of all nations (Mark 16:15 and Matt 28:19)
3.1 Through Local Mission The local Church is called to be like a lampstand in its area giving light in darkness and willing and able to give an account of what we believe (1 Pet 3:15). The members of the Church are to be ready to support and participate in Church initiatives to reach our local area. We are to seek and take opportunities to share the gospel with our friends, family and neighbours through our words and acts of kindness.
3.2 Through Global Mission Jesus’s commission was to take the gospel into all the world. The Church is to support the advancement of the gospel and to go wherever He calls.
3.3 Through caring for the Poor Alongside our mission to reach the lost with the gospel is the call to God’s Church to care for the poor and to seek justice. We are to serve those in need both spiritually and physically, giving of ourselves not for an earthly reward or recognition but as service to Christ (Mat 25:31-46).