By saying what “we are not” helps to define who we are. This document is not – in any way – to put down those who would disagree or hold to other theological distinctives, but it is meant to help the reader to determine what we stand for and what we do not stand for.
Some helpful links of theological distinctives that we DO hold to are:
- Total Depravity
- Unconditional Election
- Limited Atonement
- Irresistible Grace
- Perseverance of the Saints
We also LOVE the 5 Solas of the Reformation🙂
- Scripture Alone
- For the Glory of God Alone
- By Christ’s Work Alone
- Salvation by Grace Alone
- Justification by Faith Alone
In stating what we are not, we do not seek to attack those who disagree with us, but rather distinguish ourselves so that those considering joining our church family are aware of who we are, as well as who we are not.
- We are not liberals who embrace culture without discernment and compromise the distinctives of the gospel, but rather Christians who believe the truths of the Bible are eternal and therefore fitting for every time, place, and people.
- We are not fundamentalists who retreat from cultural involvement and transformation, but rather missionaries faithful both to the content of Scripture and context of ministry.
- We are not isolationists and we seek to partner with like-minded Christians from various churches, denominations and organizations in reaching the Bay area.
- We are not cessationists and believe the Holy Spirit is alive and active in regeneration, empowerment, and ongoing filling for the purposes of God in this world. We believe all of the gifts of the Holy Spirit are still available today, but not one of them in particular is required to give evidence of the baptism or filling of the Spirit. We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life.
- We are not egalitarians, nor are we hierarchical, we are complimentarian believing that men should head their homes and male elders should lead their churches with masculine love like Jesus Christ. Men and women are equal but uniquely designed by God. We look to Scripture to determine qualifications for leadership positions. We do not universally prohibit women from serving in leadership capacities.
- We are not hyper-Calvinists who get mired down in secondary matters, but rather pray, evangelize, and do good works because we believe that the sovereign plan of God is accomplished through us, his people.
- We are not Open Theists and therefore we believe in the sovereignty and foreknowledge of God in all things.
- We are not religious pluralists and therefore we believe there is no salvation apart from faith in Jesus Christ alone.
- We are not moralists seeking to help people live good lives; instead we are gospel oriented and are pursuing freedom and redemption promised by Jesus in the gospel.
- We are not relativists and do gladly embrace Scripture as our highest authority above such things as culture, experience, philosophy, and other forms of revelation.
- We are not Universalists and we do believe that many people will spend eternity in the torments of hell as the Bible teaches.
- We are not naturalists and we do believe that Satan and demons are real enemies at work in this world though they are completely subject to God.
- We are not rationalists and we do believe that not everything can be known but that God calls us to live by faith and in tension with partial knowledge regarding many things.
- We are not evangelical feminists and we do believe that God reveals himself as a Father and is to be honored by the names he reveals to us without apology.
- We are not embarrassed by the bloody death of Jesus Christ and do believe he died as a substitute for the sins of his people in selfless love.
- We are not ashamed and do proclaim a loving gospel of grace which sounds like foolishness and offensiveness to the unrepentant while it saves multitudes with ears to hear good news.
- We are not dead. We love life and we love all that life has to offer. We believe in applying wisdom to situations and not drawing arbitrary moral lines. The freedom God has given us is a true freedom, and we enjoy it to His glory.
- We are not morose. We actually have a sense of humor and we love life.
- We are not perfect. We are sinners that strongly believe that we can make our city a better place through the power of the Gospel.