Community Bible Church
Statement Concerning Values, Purpose, and Function of the Church
- What is the purpose of the church?
Christ has designed and destined His church to be the instrument through which He would build His kingdom here on the earth. To that end, the church strives to exalt His great name through corporate worship, preaching of His word, ongoing training and discipleship, giving mutual encouragement, care, and protection, and communicating clearly and boldly the Good News of Christ’s redemptive and reconciliatory work on the cross for humankind. (Psalm 99:5, 9; Colossians 1:28-28; Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8)
- Why is it important for the church to gather in person?
The bible is clear that gathering together is a non-negotiable reality for those who seek to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, one that we should never forsake doing. The spiritual community finds a place for expression in worship, reading of scripture, teaching, exercise of Holy Spirit giftedness, mutual edification and encouragement, and strength to journey through difficult and challenging times.
Christ’s church is comprised of broken and hurting people who are redeemed in Christ and called to excel in love and grace toward and with one another. The New Testament cites close to 60 passages that stress the mutual and reciprocal nature of life together in spiritual community. Endeavoring to realize these Holy Spirit-inspired directives requires intimate relationships made possible only through frequent personal interactions. (2 Corinthians 8:7; 2 Peter 3:18; Colossians 3:16; Romans 12:9-18; Hebrews 10:24-25).
- What is the church’s relationship with the Government?
God has established the family, government, and the church as governing authorities, each with their respective sphere of responsibility. We believe that civil authorities are designed to bring structure and discipline to society for restraining evil and promoting good. As such, we are instructed to live in subjection to these authorities and give them our support, in obedience to God and for conscience sake. However, in those instances where human authorities are in conflict with God’s word and compromise the true nature of the church, we unequivocally declare our first and highest allegiance to Christ and determine to seek first the Kingdom of God. (Romans 13:1-7; Matthew 22:17-21; Matthew 6:33; Acts 4:18-21).
- How do we view religious freedom?
We understand that the Founding Fathers of this country sought to ensure that they, and future generations after them, had the opportunity and privilege to worship without interference from government and civil authorities. We believe these rights were ordained and gifted by God Himself, not by human governments, but nonetheless enshrined and guarded constitutionally under the First Amendment of our nation’s Constitution. Each generation, therefore, has the responsibility to:
- Recognize the effort it takes to sustain such liberties;
- Guard against those actions which potentially erodes the foundation of religious liberty;
- Consider the repercussions of surrendering those liberties; and
- Stand against government actions which defy the First Amendment and seek to dictate when churches are open/closed, what content they are allowed to preach, how they interact in and within local communities, and etc.
- What is our view of medical science in relationship to church gatherings?
Knowledge and wisdom from God should and must govern the individual as well as corporate decision-making. Contemporary sciences most often substantiate truths found in Scripture. However, unlike the inerrant Word of God, human scientific knowledge is fallible, subject to endless revision, improvement, and/or clarification which requires discernment on the part of church leadership and individual members, in the consideration, adoption, and application of any body of scientific work. (Proverbs 2:6; James 1:5-6, 3:17). CBC leadership endeavors to encourage and support:
- “Primary-source” information for accuracy and reliability of any scientific statement or position;
- Evaluate any scientific work against the inerrant Word of God;
- Recognize and refute (in grace and truth) unbiblical assertions from the scientific community that is opposed to or undermines the Christian mission and the authentic reality of the Creator God;
- Willingly speak/stand against the hypocrisy of leadership which limits human activity/interaction with “rules for living” while simultaneously endorsing, supporting, and/or promoting the destruction of unborn life.
- How do we ensure the safety of those who attend CBC?
We place a high commitment to an individual’s right to seek and secure appropriate health and medical care for themselves and family members, and to maintain the right of personal oversight. The Bible is clear that each person should operate by a conscience that is well informed by the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 8:9-9:14—emphasis on 9:12). Free will of the individual is a core tenet of Scripture, of our nations’ Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution. CBC also recognizes our mutual obligation to care for one another, placing the needs of those around us above and before our own (Philippians 2:1-11). Our commitment to creating a healthy and safe environment for our members and the visiting community is to:
- Safeguard and protect those who are vulnerable and at risk;
- Promote and model healthy, loving relationships, marriages, and families. To that end we oppose and openly stand against all forms of abuse, intimidation, manipulation, and violence to any individual;
- Remain true to the Gospel of Christ by addressing misuse of the Scriptures and drawing upon them to help make our families and societies whole;
- Choose to recommend but not require personal protective measures;
- Provide and maintain sanitizing stations, ensure facility cleanliness, and avoid exposure to harmful chemicals/substances.
The Elders of Community Bible take seriously their role to instruct in sound doctrine those on the journey to spiritual maturity (Titus 1:5-13; Colossians 1:28-29), protect from error and deceit every individual/family under their care (Acts 20:28-31; 1 Peter 5:1-3), guard and entrust the veracity of Gospel Truth (2 Timothy 1:13-2:2), and model what it means to be a whole-hearted follower Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 4:16; Philippians 3:17, 4:9). Please feel free to contact any of them regarding questions, concerns, or issues that may arise in your journey.