Pastoral Perspectives


Pastor/Elder Persectives

Recognizing that the Bible is the very word of the Living God to man, and understanding the priority of knowing and obeying its truths, the leaders at Grace Covenant Community Church are deeply committed to studying and teaching Scripture with diligence and authority. Thus, the central ministry of Grace Covenant Community Church is the continuous imparting of biblical truth to the people of God that they may know God and serve Him in worship and ministry. This perspectives and positions presents my convictions regarding a major theological truth of the Bible, built on years of study and teaching. These are primary doctrines of the Christian faith, and reflects the heart of the teaching here at Grace Covenant Community Church. The aim of our Doctrinal confessions and perspectives are to preserve the unity of the church through sound doctrine and a committment to biblical truth. Other multiperspctival principles would include:

1. We do not believe that all things in our affirmation of faith (or our perspectives) are of equal weight, some being more essential, some less. We do not believe that every part of our affirmation must be believed in order for one to be saved.

2. Our aim is not to discover how little can be believed, but rather to embrace and teach “the whole counsel of God.<1> Our aim is to encourage a hearty adherence to the Bible, the fullness of its truth,<2> and the glory of its Author. We believe Biblical doctrine stabilizes saints in the winds of confusion<3> and strengthens the church in her mission to meet the great systems of false religion and secularism. We believe that the supreme virtue of love is nourished by the strong meat of God-centered doctrine.<4> And we believe that a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples through Jesus Christ is sustained in an atmosphere of deep and joyful knowledge of God and His wonderful works.<5>

3. We believe that the cause of unity in the church<6> is best served, not by finding the lowest common denominator of doctrine, around which all can gather, but by elevating the value of truth, stating the doctrinal parameters of church or school or mission or ministry, seeking the unity that comes from the truth, and then demonstrating to the world how Christians can love each other<7> across boundaries rather than by removing boundaries. In this way, the importance of truth is served by the existence of doctrinal borders, and unity is served by the way we love others across those borders.

4. We do not claim infallibility for this affirmation and are open to refinement and correction from Scripture.<8> Yet we do hold firmly to these truths as we see them and call on others to search the Scriptures to see if these things are so.<9> As conversation and debate take place, it may be that we will learn from each other, and the boundaries will be adjusted, even possibly folding formerly disagreeing groups into closer fellowship.

Notes:

1 For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27).

2 Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness (Titus 1:1); If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing. He has an unhealthy craving for controversy and for quarrels about words, which produce envy, dissension, slander, evil suspicions, and constant friction among people who are depraved in mind and deprived of the truth, imagining that godliness is a means of gain (1 Timothy 6:3-5). Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons (1 Timothy 4:1).

 

3 [We minister for the building up the body of Christ] until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes (Ephesians 4:13-14).

4 The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith (1 Timothy 1:5).

5 And those who know your name put their trust in you (Psalm 9:10).

6 There is one body and one Spirit- just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call- one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all (Ephesians 4:4-6).

7 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another (John 13:34-35).

8 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known (1 Corinthians 13:12). But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity Amen (2 Peter 3:18).

9 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so (Acts 17:11).