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A Community of People Loving Jesus and Making Him Known in the Northland of New Zealand

What We Believe

We believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven & earth, of all things visible & invisible. We believe in one Lord believe-headerJesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him all things were made. For us men & for our salvation he came down from heaven, & by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, & became man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered death & was buried, & rose again on the 3rd day in accordance with the Scriptures. He ascended into heaven & is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living & the dead & his kingdom will have no end. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father & the Son, who with the Father & the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one, holy, universal Christian Church. We confess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins & we look forward to the resurrection of the dead & the life of the world to come. Amen.

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JESUS CHRIST is the foundation and cornerstone of the church. He came to restore man’s broken relationship with God. His finished work on the cross made that possible. Because of His love demonstrated on the cross by dying for our sins, we now have reason to fellowship with one another and proclaim salvation through His life, death, and resurrection.
(1 Corinthians 3:11, Ephesians 2:20, Romans 5:6-10)

THE BIBLE is the inspired, infallible word of God and is relevant and applicable to man today. Therefore we place great emphasis upon teaching it in public, studying it in private, and using it as a guide for our daily lives. (1 Timothy 4:13, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, 1 Thessalonians 2:13)

WORSHIP – We believe God is worthy of all praise, reverence, and love. We take special time to worship Him in church through song. It is our goal to worship Him with our whole lives as well; at home, at work, and at play. (John 15:5, Romans 8:29, Ephesians 4:15)

CHRISTIAN GROWTH – Our supreme desire is to know Jesus and to be conformed to His image, likeness, and example by the power of the Holy Spirit. We encourage this by abiding in Jesus Christ through His Word, prayer, fellowship, and by yielding our lives to the Holy Spirit.
(John 4:23 Colossians 3:16, 1 Thessalonians 2:13)

LOVE is the greatest virtue and demonstration of the reality of Christ Jesus. We endeavor to show a Christ-like love to all men. Love should be exhibited in our lives by our words as well as our actions. (John 13:34-35, 1 Corinthians 13:13, Philippians 2:3-5)

CHRISTIAN SERVICE is a part of the Christian life and is the responsibility of all believers. Our goal is to develop the ministry of every member to the benefit of all. (Ephesians 4:11-13, 1 Corinthians 12:4-7)

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WE BELIEVE the only true basis of Christian fellowship if Christ’s (Agape) love, which is greater than any differences we possess, and without which we have no right to claim ourselves Christians.

WE BELIEVE worship of God should be spiritual. Therefore, we remain flexible and yielded to the leading of the Holy Spirit to direct our worship.

WE BELIEVE worship of God should be inspirational. Therefore, we give a place to music in our worship.

WE BELIEVE worship of God should be intelligent. Therefore, our services are designed with great emphasis upon the teaching of the Word of God that He might instruct us how He should be worshipped.

WE BELIEVE worship of God should be fruitful. Therefore, we look for His love in our lives as the supreme manifestation that we have been truly worshipping Him.

WE BELIEVE in all the fundamental doctrines of orthodox evangelical Christianity.

WE BELIEVE in the inerrancy of Scripture, that the Bible, Old and New Testaments is the inspired, infallible Word of God.

WE BELIEVE that God is eternally existent in three separate persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

WE BELIEVE that God the Father is the personal, transcendent, and sovereign Creator of all things.

WE BELIEVE that Jesus Christ is fully God and fully human, that He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, provided for the atonement of our sins by His vicarious death on the Cross, was bodily resurrected by the power of the Holy Spirit, ascended back to the right hand of God the Father, and ever lives to make intercession for us.

After Jesus ascended to heaven, He poured out His Holy Spirit on the believers in Jerusalem, enabling them to fulfil His command to preach the Gospel to the entire world, an obligation shared by all believers today.

WE BELIEVE that all people are by nature separated from God and responsible for their own sin, but that salvation, redemption, and forgiveness are freely offered to all by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. When a person repents of sin and accepts Jesus Christ as personal Saviour and Lord, trusting Him to save, that person is immediately born again and sealed by the Holy Spirit, all his/her sins are forgiven, and that person becomes a child of God, destined to spend eternity with the Lord.

WE BELIEVE in the gifts of the Holy Spirit mentioned in the Scriptures, and that they are valid for today if they are exercised within the Scriptural guidelines. We as believers are to covet the best gifts, seeking to exercise them in love that the whole Body of Christ might be edified.

WE BELIEVE that love is more important than the most spectacular gifts, and without this love all exercise of spiritual gifts is worthless.

WE BELIEVE that church government should be simplistic rather than a complex bureaucracy, and we depend on the Holy Spirit to lead, rather than on fleshly promotion.

WE AWAIT the pre-tribulation rapture of the church, and

WE BELIEVE that the second coming of Christ with His saints to rule on earth will be personal, pre-millennial, and visible. This motivates us to holy living, heartfelt worship, committed service, diligent study of God’s Word, regular fellowship, and participation in baptism and Communion.

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WE REJECT: (1) “5-point Calvinism” (i.e., a fatalistic Calvinistic view that leaves no room for free will; specifically, we reject the belief that Jesus’ atonement was limited, instead we believe that He died for all people, and we reject the assertion that God’s wooing grace cannot be resisted or that He has elected some people to go to hell; instead we believe that anyone who wills to come to Christ may do so); (2) “positive confession” (the faith movement belief that God can be commanded to heal or work miracles according to man’s will), (3) human prophecy that supersedes the Scripture, (4) the incorporation of humanistic and secular psychology and philosophy into Biblical teaching (5) the over-emphasis of spiritual gifts, experiential signs and wonders to the exclusion of Biblical teaching, (6) the “prosperity gospel” that manipulates & pressures the “fleecing of the flock”. We believe in free will giving. We do not pass an offering plate and we do allow people the freedom to be led by the LORD to give. We do not coerce anyone and niether strategize to build or maintain the church, as we believe the church is God’s and it is up to HIM to build and maintain HIS church. Therefore we are faithful to him in trust & obedience and live with the joy of the LORD as our strength. We are confident that HE will complete what HE began here in Whangarei – unto completion! (7) Replacement theology; those whome believe that the church has replaced Israel. They are two different entities. God is faithful to HIS Word & Promises.

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WE SEEK to teach the word of God in such a way that its message can be applied to an individual’s life, leading that person to greater maturity in Christ.

IN OUR SERVICES, we focus on a personal relationship with God through worship, prayer, communion and the teaching of the Word of God. We teach mostly through exposition, but also topically at camps, holidays and special worship services. We do not allow speaking in tongues loudly during services, nor prophecy while a Bible study is in progress because we do not believe that the Holy Spirit would interrupt Himself. We may have specific “after-glow services” and believer’s meetings when these gifts of the Spirit may be exercised.

The Mission Statement & Purpose of Calvary Chapel Outreach Fellowships is:

Fulfill the Great Commission (Mt 28)
Building up the fellowships in the Word of God
Reaching those that do not know Jesus as their Saviour and those in need that can be served as a means to know HIM
Worship in Spirit & Truth
If you desire a greater depth re: what we are about at Calvary Chapel, you can read more on our philosophy of ministry and doctrine through ”Calvary Chapel Distinctives”. Calvary Chapel also offers an online Bible study resource in: http://www.blueletterbible.org/

Philosophy of Ministry

We believe that the book of Acts of the Apostles, as well as the epistles of the New Testament give us the principles by which the church is to function.

We place great importance on the exposition of the Scriptures. And a specific emphasis on verse-by-verse, chapter-by-chapter teaching through the entire Bible.

We rely strongly upon the ministry of the Holy Spirit and seek to remain flexible to His leading. We believe that the Holy Spirit’s leading will always be consistent with the clear teaching of the Scripture.

We are convinced that, where God guides, He provides. Therefore we trust the Lord to provide for and to build His church.

We seek to worship and serve the Lord within the context of our culture, yet we recognize that the culture must conform to the Scriptures, not the Scriptures to the culture.

Leadership & Morality

The Scriptures place a high moral standard on those who would be ministers of the Gospel. Therefore we expect spiritual, moral and ethical integrity among those with whom we have in leadership.

We are not highly critical or analytical in our approach to church leadership. Some of our greatest characteristics are Humility, Grace & Freedom in Christ. We are a multiethnic people and agape Love is certainly present in our fellowship. We are a new church, only officially established in April of 2010.

Church Government

In a broad general sense, Calvary Chapel is the middle ground between fundamentalism and Pentecostalism in modern Protestant theology. In fact, we believe that this is at least part of the reason why God has raised up this ministry. Fundamentalism is that portion of Protestantism which holds to the literal interpretation of the Scriptures, believing that they are divinely inspired and inerrant. Hence, the “fundamentals” of the faith are emphasized.

Although the modern news media and the liberal church scorn fundamentalists as backwards and stupid, the truth is that fundamentalism has preserved the integrity of God’s Word and held on to the essential doctrines of the orthodox faith.

Over the years, however, fundamentalism, while it clung to the integrity of God’s Word, tended to become rigid, legalistic, and unaccepting of spiritual gifts.

Similarly, Pentecostalism became enthusiastic and emotional: at the expense of the teaching of God’s Word.

Calvary Chapel is the balance between the two. At Calvary Chapel we believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit mentioned in the Bible, and we encourage their exercise, but always decently and in order, and with the primary emphasis on the Word of God which we look to as our primary rule of faith (Luke 4).

We believe in the gifts of the Holy Spirit mentioned in the Scriptures, and that they are valid for today if they are exercised within the Scriptural guidelines. We as believers are to covet the best gifts, seeking to exercise them in love that the whole Body of Christ might be edified. We believe that love is more important than the most spectacular gifts, and without this love all exercise of spiritual gifts is worthless. Because of this balance, Calvary Chapel services are designed to be centered around the verse by verse teaching of God’s Word, and midweek Bible Studies are provided, where the gifts of the Holy Spirit can operate freely under the leadership of mature Christians.

Many Pentecostals think Calvary Chapel is not emotional enough, and many fundamentalists think Calvary Chapel is too emotional. That balance is an indication that we are right where God wants us to be.

Calvary Chapel also differs from most mainline churches in its style of church government. Most denominational churches maintain either a congregational form of church government, a Presbyterian form, or an Episcopal form of running their churches.

These three terms should not be confused with the denominations that bear the same names; because other churches of different names share the same styles of government. The congregational form of church government is an American invention and appeals to our American sense of democracy. Basically, the congregation as a whole makes all decisions in these churches by voting on matters of importance and appointing committees from its ranks to run the daily operation of the church. Most Congregational, Baptist, Pentecostal, Brethren, and non-denominational churches are organized in this fashion. The congregation votes on hiring a pastor, votes on how to spend the money, and on anything else of importance. Although democratic people like the idea, congregational forms of church government often wind up at best causing the pastor to be directed by the sheep he is supposed to lead, and at worst reducing the pastor to a hireling.

The Episcopal form of church government, used by Episcopalian, Anglican, Catholic, Orthodox, and Methodist churches (to name a few) is controlled by a church hierarchy which may have differing names. Basically, there is a bishop, or someone of similar stature if called by a different name, who oversees the churches, appoints pastors to pulpits, sets policy, and guides the vision of the local congregations. Unfortunately, this style of government, which grew out of European monarchies, leaves little freedom for the local pastor or congregation to follow the leading of the Spirit.

The Presbyterian form of church government, which is typical in Presbyterian and Reformed churches, puts the decisions of church polity in the hands of a select group of elders (the “presbytery”) who are appointed in various different ways, depending on the church. These elders are over the pastor, who in turn is over the congregation. The problem here too is that this system puts the God-appointed leader, the pastor, under some of those he is supposed to lead. Calvary Chapels are organized differently.

Church government at Calvary Chapel is very simple, not a complex bureaucracy, committees and sub-committees are essentially nonexistent. Basically, at Calvary Chapel we believe that the pastor is responsible for leading the church, responsible to hear from God, and responsible to feed and love His people faithfully. Elders are appointed to help the pastor care for the spiritual needs of the congregation, as are deacons to help the pastor care for the material needs of the church. In addition, our churches have advisory boards as required by most states which vary in size depending on the size of the church, and which usually are made up of mature Christian businessmen who can advise the pastor with respect to the business operations and decisions of the church such as property management and investments.

At Calvary Chapel, church organization is de-emphasized, and only the organization that is needed to run the church is instituted. The pastor guides the church as he is lead by the Holy Spirit & in turn is accountable to God; The pastor is also accountable to Calvary Chapel pastors, the local church’s leadership, the congregation & the community he serves. We trust God to put pastors where He wants them to be.

Women in Ministry

Men & women are equally valued in God’s sight and plan. God assigns different roles to men & women in the church & the home because that is how He designed us to function. A difference in role does not signify a difference in value, quality or status. Although this is a hot topic today, it is not to be seen as an issue of men vs. women. The Bible teaches that there is no inferiority in ethnicity, gender or social class. This is not an issue of chauvinism or discrimination. It is an issue of biblical interpretation.

Let’s rightly divide a few passages:

Gal. 3:28 “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

In this passage, God exhorts us in the great truth of salvation by Grace through faith. In Gal. 3 God exhorts us to find our ID as heirs in the promise of salvation, not roles in the church. This passage instructs us that salvation is given freely to all; w/out respect to our earthly status, ethnicity or gender. This Passage is often taken out of context & applied to gender roles in the church.

1 Tim. 2:11-12 “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent”.

God has created us us differently & hence, assigns different roles to men & women in the church. Scripture explains the situation more in depth by referring to the way sin entered the world (1 Tim. 2:13-14). In this passage, God restricts women from serving in roles of having spiritual authority over men. First Timothy & other Pastoral Epistles present the authority structure for the church. Many try to use OT exceptions such as Deborah leading the nation as an example for women taking such authority in the church, but the NT instructions for govt. in the church does not involve the history & the nation of Israel or any other OT entity. One other argument is made using Priscilla & Phoebe in the NT. In Acts 18, Priscilla & Aquila are presented as faithful ministers for Christ. Their ministry was not in contradiction to 1 Tim. 2:11-14. In Romans 16:1; Phoebe is considered a “servant,” but this does not indicate that Phoebe was a teacher or have received a recognized office of deacon in the church. The Greek word for deacon & servant are used interchangeably throughout the whole NT. Rom. 16:1 refers to Phoebe with the same word Paul uses in 1 Tim. 3:12 (servant). It is clear that Paul is saying Phoebe is a servant of the LORD. In the early church, women were influential & instruments of God, just as much as men, but all according to the roles God had created & designed them to serve. They instructed women & children (Tit. 2:3-5), cared for the sick, imprisoned & more. Phoebe may not have had the official designation of “deacon” but Paul thought enough of her to entrust her with the tremendous responsibility of delivering the epistle to the Romans to the church in Rome (Rom. 16:1-2). Clearly he saw her not as inferior or less capable, but as a trusted and valued member of the body of Christ.

One may ask, “Why should women not teach or have authority over men?” Scripture explains this for us. It is because “Adam was created first, then Eve”. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived.(1 Tim. 2:14)” God created Adam first & then created Eve to be a “helper” for Adam. This order of creation has universal application in the family (Eph. 5:22-33; 1 Pet. 3:7) & the church. The fact that Eve was deceived is also given as a reason in Scripture, for women not serving as pastors or having spiritual authority over men. This does NOT mean that women are more easily deceived. That concept is unscriptural. Women are exhorted to teach children & other women & this also requires much wisdom & Spiritual fruit. God has given men the primary teaching authority in the church.

Many women excel in gifts of hospitality, mercy, teaching, evangelism, and helps. Much of the ministry of the local church depends on women. Women in the church are not restricted from public praying or prophesying (1 Cor. 11:5), only from having spiritual teaching authority over men. The Bible nowhere restricts women from exercising the gifts of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 12). Women, just as much as men, are called to minister to others, to demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23), & to proclaim the gospel to the lost (Mat. 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; 1 Peter 3:15). Women are given a ministry focused more in agreement with God’s plan & His gifting of them.

The Bible nowhere restricts women from sharing the gospel. The exhortation to evangelize is directed towards all followers of Jesus Christ. The restriction in 1 Tim. 2:11-12 is in regards to church-shepherding (teaching; exercising authority) roles over men. It does not apply to evangelism. No woman should ever feel biblically restricted from sharing the gospel with a man. Further, the Bible describes women serving in many roles that are crucial in missionary work. Women are encouraged to teach other women (Tit. 2:3-5). Women are to be dedicated to prayer (1 Cor. 11:5), exercising the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23) & the gifts of the Spirit (1 Cor. 12). The vast majority of missionary work is undeniably open to women. The question arises, though, as to whether there is any missionary role in which women should not serve. God has ordained that only men are to serve in positions of spiritual authority in the church. This is not because men are necessarily better teachers, or because women are inferior or less intelligent (which is not the case). It is simply the way God designed the church to function. Men are to set the example in spiritual leadership—in their lives and through their words & Christ-like Love.

Scripture is completely clear in saying that deacons are to be “men worthy of respect” (1 Tim. 3:1-8) & the qualification “the husband of but one wife” (1 Tim. 3:12) disqualify women from the office of deacons. The phrase “husband of one wife” indicates that the office of elder & deacon is intended to be fulfilled by men (Tit. 1:5-9).
Men are NOT superior to women. Rather, God restricts the office of elder to men. This is how He has structured the church to function. Godly men are to serve in leadership, with women serving in the crucially important supporting roles. There are simply gender distinctions when it comes to functional roles the church & home.

1 Cor. 11:3-16 “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.” The order is: God (Father), God (Son), husband & wife. The covering on the head of a wife signified her being under the authority of her husband, in submission to God.

v. 10: “For this reason the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.” 1 Pet. 1:12 teaches that angels watch & learn from believers. Holy angels expect our submission to God’s order. This covering not only means a cloth but also can refer to a woman’s hair length. “Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering” (1 Cor. 11:14-15). The wearing of a “covering” by the woman was an outward indication of a heart attitude of submission to God & to His established authority (2 Cor. 6:17). In God’s order there is no inequality or inferiority implied. This is not a passage that teaches the woman is inferior to man or that she should be submissive to every man. It is teaching God’s order and spiritual headship in the marriage relationship, not legalistic uniform or costume rules!

The real issue here is the heart attitude of obedience to God’s authority and submission to His established order “as to the LORD” (Eph. 5:22). God is far more concerned with an inward attitude of submission than an outward display of submission via a head covering. 1 Tim. 2:9-10; “I also want women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God.”

The Pastor’s Wife

The main area of responsibility for any wife is to support & be submissive to her husband (Eph. 5:22-24). The Greek word for: “bishop”, “overseer”, “elder” or “superintendent” are all used interchangeably. In verse 4: “one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence.” “Rules well” is an idiom for being a biblical husband with a submissive (supportive) wife & children that love and respect (admire) him. The pastor who is the head of his home will be more successful as a leader in the church. His wife is his helper in the ministry of the home as well as the church. The ministry is a partnership in all areas of life and not just in the home life. The pastor’s wife is called to support her husband. The goal of her marriage & role in the church is to bring glory to God in all things. Each pastor’s wife has unique gifts & she needs to trust God to use them accordingly to each specific & unique situation.

Giving / Tithing & Offerings

Many Christians struggle with the issue of tithing. In some churches tithing is over-emphasized. At the same time, many Christians refuse to submit to the biblical exhortations about making offerings to the Lord. Tithing/giving is intended to be a joy and a blessing. Sadly, that is sometimes not the case in the church today.

Tithing is an OT concept. The tithe was a requirement of the Law in which all Israelites were to give 10% of everything they earned and grew to the Tabernacle/Temple (Lev. 27:30; Num. 18:26; Deut. 14:24; 2 Chron. 31:5). The OT Law required multiple tithes which would have pushed the total to around 23%. Some understand the OT tithe as a method of taxation to provide for the needs of the priests and Levites in the sacrificial system. The NT nowhere commands, or even recommends, that Christians submit to a legalistic tithe system. Paul states that believers should set aside a portion of their income in order to support the church (1 Cor. 16:1-2).

The NT nowhere designates a percentage of income a person should set aside, but only says it is to be “in keeping with income” (1 Cor. 16:2). Some in the Christian church have taken the 10% figure from the Old Testament tithe and applied it as a “recommended minimum” for Christians in their giving.

The NT talks about the importance and benefits of giving. We are to give as we are able. Sometimes that means giving more than 10%; sometimes that may mean giving less Every Christian should diligently pray and seek God’s wisdom in the matter of how much to give (James 1:5). Above all, all tithes and offerings should be given with pure motives and an attitude of worship to God and service to the body of Christ. “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor. 9:7).

The Bible simply tells us to give to the Lord (1 Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:7). We should be giving to the church we attend, serve at, and worship in! The Bible instructs believers in Christ to give freely, generously, cheerfully, and regularly. There is no biblical formula for how to give other than these four principles (freely, generosity, regularly, joyfully). The NT local church member should be setting aside money each week to give unto the LORD where the LORD is blessing them.

Scripture teaches for us to give regularly. We need to understand what “regularly” means without falling to one extreme. Many statistics show that in churches where ministers are faithful in teaching The Word; only 10% of the congregation is supporting the minister’s work! And in churches where the OT tithing principle is constantly being preached at the people, many are in bondage; giving out of fear instead of freewill & joy!

1Cor 16:1-2 Now concerning the collection for the saints: as I directed the churches of Galatia, so you also are to do. On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come.

1 Tim 5:17 Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”

Some have thought that because Christians are commanded to help the poor, especially Christians in need, that this is more important than supporting ministers of the gospel. But Paul, in 1 Timothy 5, speaks of the responsibility of considering ministers of the gospel worthy of double honor. So, while Christians have a responsibility to help the poor, it does not come before the responsibility to support ministers of the gospel, especially where you are being served.

King David once said that he would never give to the LORD what cost him nothing. Unfortunately, many people give to the church their leftovers. Making your giving a priority in your finances shows where your financial priorities reside! Obedience should never be emotionally led, but consistently pursued. This is a sign of maturity!

Why come to our church? How do we know we are worshipping in Spirit & Truth?

Rev. 2 & 3 explain the state of each church. There are 7 churches and only two qualify. The other five are lacking either love or service or doctrine. It is quite simple to be a faithful church, yet history has proven that the most simple rules to follow have yet been found to be so complex! Acts 2:42 explains the formula for worship (Teaching, prayer, communion, fellowship). Luke 4 explains God’s culture in The teaching of the Scriptures as the main part of our meeting. Rev 2 & 3 explain the three characteristics of a faithful church. The 1st characteristic is Love (Agape). And that this Love is evident in the congregation expressed through our faith in the Grace of God, our source for salvation. The 2nd characteristic is evangelism & missions (“open door”). We should be reaching those in need & those lost in this world. The 3rd characteristic is solid Biblical teaching. Many churches use the Bible & teach from the Bible, but few churches teach The Bible. Teaching the whole counsel of God is essential. Essential teaching includes verse by verse, book by book & practical applications (2 Tim 3:16).

Bible Translation

When the Bible is translated for the 1st time into a new language today, it is translated into the modern language as it was when first translated. Our loyalties are to the original manuscripts of the Old and New Testaments, written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. Only the original languages are the Word of God as He inspired it. A translation is only an attempt to take what is said in one language and communicate it in another. None of the modern translations are perfect. Our loyalty should be to the inspired, inerrant Word of God that is communicated by the Holy Spirit through the translations (2 Tim. 3:16-17). There are two approaches to translation. One is “thought for thought” & the other is an attempt to translate “word for word”. Although we use & prefer the “literal” versions; we are not legalistic or dogmatic in advocating one “right” translation. There are approximately 7,000 languages in the world & the Bible still needs to be translated in many languages. Languages vary in their quantity & quality of vocabulary. Many languages only possess 50% of the vocabulary of their neighbors. This is proof that translations will differ in words. We need to be assured that the message of Christ does not depend on men, but on God!