There is only one God. This God exists and has always existed as three Persons—Father, Son, and Spirit. The Father, Son, and Spirit are not merely three manifestations or roles of one Person, but are three eternally-coexistent and eternally-distinct Persons. Yet each Person shares the same nature, essence, or being; in other words, each is God. Among God’s attributes are complete power, complete knowledge of all things (including knowledge of all future occurrences), and the ability to immediately affect His will at any place.
Genesis 1:1, 26, 27, 3:22; Psalms 90:2; Matthew 28:19; I Peter 1:2; II Corinthians 13:14; Luke 3:21,22; John 1:1-5, Isaiah 46:9,10
- GOD THE FATHER
The Father created and reigns over all that is seen and unseen. He is God. He is spirit, not physical, and therefore does not have a body. He is the Father of all who have faith in Jesus Christ.
Genesis 1:1, 26, 27, 3:22; John 4, Col 1:3-14; Galatians 4:6; John 14:1-17
- GOD THE SON
Jesus Christ is the only and eternal Son of God. All things were created through Him. He is God. He is eternally-begotten of the Father. He is not created, but is co-eternal with the Father and the Spirit. He was born of the Virgin Mary, thereby becoming fully human in both body and soul, while remaining fully God—giving up none of His divine attributes. Thus, He has both a sinless and complete human nature and a complete divine nature, and yet He is one person. Untainted by the sin of Adam, He lived a life without sin. His death on the cross was as a substitution and a payment for the sins of the world. He was buried, and on the third day after His death, He was resurrected in a physical, yet glorified body.
He ascended into Heaven and will return again to judge the living and the dead.
Matthew 1:22, 23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5, 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14, 15; I Corinthians 15:3, 4; Romans 1:3, 4; Acts 1:9-11; I Timothy 6:14, 15; Titus 2:13
- GOD THE SPIRIT
The Holy Spirit is the eternal Spirit of God. He is God. He is not created, but is co-eternal with the Father and the Son. He indwells all who have faith in Jesus Christ. In addition to drawing believers to the faith, He cultivates Christian character in their lives and indwells the Church, bestowing spiritual gifts to believers for the Church’s growth.
II Corinthians 3:17; John 16:7-13, 14:16, 17; Acts 1:8; I Corinthians 2:12, 3:16; Ephesians 1:13, 5:18; Galatians 5:25
The Bible is the self-revelation of God to humankind and is thus the word of God. It was written by human authors under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Both the Old and New Testament point to Jesus Christ and are true without any mixture of error. The canon of protestant scripture is accepted to be the completed Bible.
II Timothy 1:13, 3:16; II Peter 1:20, 21; 3:16; Psalms 119:105, 160, 12:6; Proverbs 30:5; Luke 24:25-27
Humanity is the highest creation of God, the object of His love. God made humanity in His own image, and gave them dominion over creation. Humans were created by God without sin, yet fell into sin because of Adam’s rebellion. As a result of Adam’s sin, humans inherit a nature that is (1) guilty of Adam’s original sin (2) unable and unwilling to come to God, and (3) guilty of personal sins, which are the fruit of this depraved nature. Thus all of fallen humanity is guilty before God. A person’s fallen condition is remedied only by the Holy Spirit’s drawing that person to faith in Jesus Christ. Those who have faith in Jesus Christ are forgiven and adopted as children of God, and will spend eternity with Him.
Genesis 1:27; Psalms 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6; 59:1, 2; Romans 3:23; 5:12-21
Salvation is God’s redemption of a person from sin. It is offered to humankind through Jesus Christ. Salvation is the free gift of God. It is through faith in Jesus Christ (which is a genuine turning from sin and trusting in Christ’s completed work on the cross as the only sufficient payment for sin). Salvation includes (1) the work of the Holy Spirit to draw a person to Jesus Christ, (2) one’s being forgiven and given the positive righteousness of Christ, (3) the lifelong process by which the Holy Spirit transforms one’s character to be like Christ’s, and (4) glorification, which will be brought about when believers are bodily-resurrected to be forever with God. Those who do not receive salvation through faith in Jesus Christ will be eternally separated from God in Hell. Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the believer is secure in his/her salvation for eternity. Salvation cannot be lost. It is maintained by the grace and power of God, not man.
Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8, 9; John 14:6, 1:12; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26; Romans 5:1; John 10:29; II Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 7:25, 10:10, 14; I Peter 1:3-5; John 3:16, 2:25, 5:11-13; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15; 1 Corinthians 15:35-55; Daniel 12:2
The Kingdom of God is the reign of God. It is Jesus Christ, the Lord over all things, in action. Wherever the will of God is being done, that’s where the Kingdom is being manifested. In a very real sense, Jesus is the Kingdom in person.
It is the message Jesus proclaimed (referenced nearly 100 times in Matthew, Mark, and Luke). It is the reality Jesus embodied. His teaching makes it the priority of our prayers, our personal lives, and all our ministry endeavors. We are to “seek first the Kingdom of God.” It is a key to understanding personal and city transformation.
Our charge is to fully utilize all that has been made possible for us by Christ (the new accessibility of the Kingdom) to affect change in ourselves and our society to more explicitly align with the values of God’s Kingdom. We really want His Kingdom to come and His will to be done on earth just as it is being done in heaven right now.
We are disciples of Jesus and are called to make more disciples. This is the focus and primary goal: to advance the Kingdom by making disciples. A Disciple is someone who HEARS & OBEYS everything God has commanded through the leading of the Holy Spirit.
If we’re going to see real transformation in our communities and globally, everybody has to be in the game. Each disciple has gifts and skills that can make a difference when mobilized for the good of others. Their job is their ministry and has the potential to open doors at the local and global level.
Three Rhythms combine to help create a culture of disciple-making that leads to personal and community transformation. These three rhythms: CHRIST, COMMUNITY, CAUSE (Up, In, Out), must be practiced simultaneously for a disciple to have a transforming influence.
Underlying this model is the conviction that through Christ, God is reconciling all things to himself.
Society is composed of groups of people who work within their own areas of expertise or “domains.” These core structures of society do not change. The people working within these domains meet the basic needs of society and keep it functioning. The domains of society become crucial in the transformation of a city. Those who assume leadership in these spheres of influence have the potential to completely reshape their city; its values, priorities, and practices. In directing His people to bless their cities and the nations of the world, God is calling us to engage domains as a way of seeing His Kingdom come to people and cities.
Our DNA as KINGDOM DISCIPLES compels us to engage SOCIETY and then watch God build His CHURCH. The church consists of all true believers in Jesus Christ throughout all time. The Kingdom manifests itself through the church. Thus, experientially, it provides a foretaste of the future reign of God. It exists only because of Jesus Christ and is mandated with extending His mission in the world.