As a new church, employing unique and creative methods we often get asked by others what we actually believe as a community of faith. This is obviously an important question and recently, as we begin to launch weekly in January, this has become an even more prominent thought on many peoples minds. In answer to this question we recently crafted our Statement of Faith. I have included an overall explination for our Statement of Faith as well as the topic and description of each area we chose to emphasize in this document.
As you will notice we emphasize the important distinction between the “essential” and “non-essential” areas of the Christian faith. The essential areas are contained in our Statement of Faith while the non-essentials may be the methods we use to communicate these timeless truths.
We believe the body of Christ is a beautiful mosaic made up of unique members each serving a specific part in fulfilling Christ’s greater vision for the church which is to spread His message and give His hope to a world who desperately needs it. I hope you find the information below helpful in clarifying the vision of Centerpoint and for future reference you can view all of this information and more on our web-site at http://www.centerpointlive.com
STATEMENT OF FAITH – At Centerpoint our Statement of Faith captures the essence of what we believe as leadership and what we emphasize and teach our community. Our Statement of Faith is comprised of several key areas we feel make up the cornerstones of the Christian faith. We believe these areas are essential and non-negotiable for individuals and faith based communities seeking to live a truly authentic life that reflects the message of Christ. While we hold true to these essential components of the faith we also recognize that as humans we have limitations when it comes to fully understanding and interpreting the entire Bible with perfect accuracy. We find many things in scripture we would consider non-essential to the faith and in these areas we encourage open thought and discussion among those in our community and amongst our leadership and staff as well. Our views on these various issues of the faith are simple; in the essentials, we require unity; in the non-essentials, we offer freedom; and in all things, we demonstrate love.
The Bible – We believe that the entire Bible is fully inspired by God, and was written by ordinary individuals called by God to do so. We believe its content is entirely trustworthy and is our guide for truth, faith and life. We hold a high view of Scripture and place great significance on its authority in our lives. (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:20, 21; Matthew 5:18; John 16:12, 13; Psalm 19:7-11, 119:105)
God – We believe there is one God who is the loving Creator of the heavens, the earth and all that’s in it. God is eternal and is completely good, knowing all things and having the power to do all things reigning forever in majesty. We believe God exists eternally in a perfectly co-equal community as three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Genesis 1:26-27; Deuteronomy 6:4; Colossians 1:15-17; Hebrews 1:8, 2 Corinthians 13:14)
Jesus – We believe that Jesus was sent by God and born of the Virgin Mary and is mysteriously and wonderfully God in the flesh. He is the perfect reflection of God’s heart, character, beauty and love for people. He lived a sinless life and offered Himself as the only perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on the cross. Through faith in Jesus we have been forgiven and brought into a right relationship with God. Jesus died and then rose again from the dead, ascended to heaven and one day will return to judge the world and bring an end to injustice as He restores all things to God’s original intent. (Matthew 1:18-25; John 1:14, 8:40,58, 11:33; Acts 1:9-11; Romans 5:8-10; Colossians 1:15-17; Hebrews 1:8)
The Holy Spirit – We believe that the Holy Spirit is sent from God to live in all who put faith in Jesus. The Holy Spirit teaches, comforts, convicts and empowers us, giving each person diverse gifts for serving in the church and serving others in the world on the mission of God. We believe that it is through the Holy Spirit that we have the power to change and develop a holy life and Jesus-like character to be lived out to the fullest here on earth. (John 16:8-11; Acts 1:8-9; 2 Corinthians 3:6; I Corinthians 12:12-14; Romans 8:9; Ephesians 5:18)
Salvation – We believe that all people are created with dignity and great value in the image of God and that people were created to live in a thriving relationship with God. However, through our sin (failing to live by God’s guidelines and moral standards), we break our intended relationship with God and we experience the sad consequences of that broken relationship, both spiritually and socially. However, because of God’s love for us, He sent His Son, Jesus, to rescue us from those consequences. Our broken relationship with God is restored through Jesus’ death on the cross, a perfect act of redemption for each of us. Everyone can receive the free gift of forgiveness and be spiritually reborn through repenting (changing our mind and heart) of our sin and placing faith in Jesus alone. (Ephesians 2:8-10; John 1:12; Ephesians 1:7; Romans 3:22-26, 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 15:1-7)
The Church – We believe the church is comprised of any person, anywhere in the world who puts faith in Jesus. The church itself is people who are empowered by God’s Spirit to be part of the mission of God here on earth. The church is one global community, with smaller, local expressions, such as our church community. Each local church expression has a unique personality and we see beauty in this diversity. We believe that the church does not exist for itself, but exists as a community of Christ followers who are here to serve others, as Jesus told us to be His light, love, compassion, kindness and hope to the world around us. (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8, 2:1-47; Ephesians 1:22-23, 4::11-13; 5:25-30; 1 Corinthians 12:27)
The Afterlife – We do believe that life continues after physical death and that there is a heaven and a hell. We feel a relationship and commitment to Christ is the only way to heaven and we believe that Jesus will one day return and bring justice and judgment to all things. There are many metaphors and ancient apocalyptic language used in Scripture about these mysterious topics, and we approach them with great humility and wonder. (Daniel 12: 2; Matthew 24-25; 1 Corinthians 15:1-25; 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18; Revelation 20-22)