Bill Maher says the main reason people meet together in church is just to make each other feel good about believing in a nonsensical faith that only exists because they perpetuate it. I imagine Maher’s experience has included churches where the mission of becoming and making disciples has been replaced with a focus on relationships primarily within the church. When this happens, they function less as a church and more like a club; they just use God for the theme of their meetings and community involvement. Like a civic club, the members of a church club are the owners (even though Jesus owns the church). In a church club the longer your membership and/or the more dues you pay, the more power/influence you have over the organization’s direction (even though the Bible teaches that churches are to be led by teams of gifted, mature Christians). Decisions made in club churches come by consensus (versus shared times in prayer and the Word). They depend upon the resources of the members; reason and fear trumps faith. Clubs churches are common; disciple-making churches are not. Churches focused on Christ’s mission of discipleship have to work hard at engaging their community and world. They see past their differences to the lost world around them, pushing past their comfort levels into new levels of faith. This is the life we are called as believers to share. May our fellowship encourage one another to carry out Christ’s mission.

1) As a church family, we are here to love God by obeying him and loving others. We believe Jesus is God and we want his life and teachings to impact every area of our lives. The passage below is the reason why we believe this:

Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”  Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”(Matthew 22:34-40)

2) As a church family, we are here to help others follow Jesus. We do this by loving them in his name and telling them about his story and his faithfulness in our lives. The passage below is the reason why we believe this:

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)

We are convinced these two “commandments” to love God and make disciples should govern everything we do as a church—both when we’re gathered together corporately, and when we’re on our own individually.