Jesus taught discipleship. Jesus commanded discipleship.
Therefore, GCC’s mission, vision, and understanding of what God values are all about discipleship.
To Make Disciples
A good mission statement explains what is to be accomplished. There is no need to overcomplicate matters. Discipleship is what Jesus modeled and discipleship is what Jesus commanded. Discipleship is our focus.
Father-Willed, Christ-Compelled, Spirit-Led
A good vision statement explains what we strive to become. We must become what God wants us to become so we can reduplicate that in others. This vision importantly emphasizes both the triune nature of God and the way God wants us to live in obedience to him (Matthew 28:18-20).
God is keen to ensure sound doctrine and godly living
(1 Timothy 4:16).
The values of GCC must reflect what God finds important.
These values detail what is central to discipleship. The wording of the values places an emphasis on personal responsibility and on a personal relationship with God. The first three values (knowledge, worship, service) correspond to the three aspects of transformation (knowledge of the gospel, worship that flows from acceptance of the gospel, and loving obedience in service of the gospel).
The fourth value (generosity) is not just about money. Rather, it is all about an outward-lived life. A generous life is lived for others. The final three values (family, membership, invitation) indicate the three spheres of influence each of us has. We influence transformation at home and within the congregation, and we support participation in God’s kingdom locally and globally.
The use of the pattern “God Values My __________” stresses personal accountability. Each value must become a personal commitment for genuine discipleship to occur. It is not good enough that someone else has knowledge, worship, service, generosity, family concern, membership in the church, or invites others to meet Jesus. All believers must focus on these areas precisely because the Father wills them, Christ’s love compels them, and the Spirit leads us in them.
Come follow me—Invitation: All of us were at one point invited to be disciples of Jesus. People are invited to become disciples by God’s presence, by God’s word, or by God’s people. As Jesus’ disciples, we invite other people to be Jesus’ disciples. The more Christlike we become, the more effective we will be in issuing the invitation to others.
I will make you into—Transformation: Once the invitation is accepted, the process of transformation begins. God transforms us by his presence, by his word, and by his people. Transformation affects our head (beliefs), our hearts (trust), and our hands (loving obedience). We are transformed in our knowledge, our worship, and our service.
Fishers of people—Reduplication: We are not merely being transformed, but God uses us to help transforms others. Reduplication is the process of pouring into others, helping to transform them into mature disciples. We reduplicate our transformation by sharing our beliefs, our behaviors, and our lives with others. We seek to set good examples for others to follow as we pour ourselves into their lives and as we follow Christ (1 Corinthians 11:1).
Jesus didn’t merely disciple people. He commanded the process of discipleship (invitation, transformation, and reduplication) carry on by declaring, “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).
Glendale Christian Church is in partnership with God to build a church of great commandment and a people of great commission (Matthew 22:36-40, Matthew 28:18-20). We are an independent, non-denominational fellowship of believers who seek to follow Christ and wear only His name. We are not the only Christians, but we earnestly strive to be Christians only. We are committed to maintain unity in essentials, allow freedom in matters of opinion, and demonstrate love in all things.
The sole basis for our belief is the sixty-six books of the Bible, which are uniquely God-inspired, without error, and our final authority on all matters of faith and practice (2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 4:12; 2 Peter 1:20-21).
We believe and teach that there is one true and living God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 45:5-7; 1 Corinthians 8:4), perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14) – and deserving of our worship and our obedience. In the beginning, from nothing, God created the universe, manifesting the glory of His power, wisdom and goodness (Genesis 1:1-2, John 1:1). By His sovereign power, He continues to sustain His creation. By His providence, He is operating throughout history to fulfill His plan of redemption.
We believe and teach that Jesus Christ – the second Person of the Trinity – though being equal with God (John 10:30; Philippians 2:5-8), surrendered His prerogatives of deity and came to earth to pay the debt for our sin.
He was born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23-25) and lived a totally sinless life. Because He was free from sin, He was qualified to pay for our sins by dying on the cross as our substitute (John 10:15; Romans 3:24-25; 1 Peter 2:24). He literally and physically rose from the dead and ascended to the right hand of the Father in Heaven, where He now mediates as our Advocate and High Priest (Matthew 28:6; Luke 24:38-39; Acts 2:30-31; Romans 4:25; Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:25; 1 John 2:1).
We believe and teach that Jesus will return to earth personally and visibly to judge all mankind according to the eternal plan of God (John 5:22-23; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 2 Corinthians 5:10).
We believe and teach that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, co-equal with the Father and the Son in all attributes (Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 12:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14). He enlightens the minds of sinners and awakens in them recognition of their need for a Savior. At the point of salvation, He indwells every believer and equips him or her for personal growth and service to the church (John 16:7-9; Acts 2:38; 1 Corinthians 12:13; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 2:22). The indwelling of the Spirit is a divine guarantee that seals the Christian unto the day of redemption (Romans 8:9; Ephesians 1:13-14).
Salvation Through Faith In Christ: Man’s Greatest Need
The central purpose of God’s revelation in Scripture is to call all people into fellowship. God originally created mankind to have fellowship with Him and to glorify Himself (Isaiah 43:7; Colossians 1:16), but because God was defied by all who sinfully chose to go his or her own way, mankind suffered alienation from Him (Psalms 51:5; Romans 3:23; Ephesians 2:1-4). Our salvation through the blood of Jesus is a work of God’s grace, not the result of human works or goodness. This salvation, as a free gift from God, is made available through obedient faith in Jesus Christ and Him only (John 1:12; John 10:18-27; Acts 4:12; Ephesians 1:7; Ephesians 2:8-9; 1 Peter 1:18-19).
We believe and teach obedient faith in Christ expresses itself through belief in the person and work of Christ (Romans 3:22, Romans 10:9), repentance of sin (Acts 2:38, Acts 3:19), confession of Christ as Savior and Lord (Romans 10:9), a believer’s baptism by immersion (Mark 16:16), and by living a lifestyle that continually seeks to honor Christ (Hebrews 10:26, James 2:14-24).
We believe and teach that baptism is commanded by our Lord and His apostles (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38), and that all believers professing faith in Christ must be baptized. We believe and teach that baptism should occur upon confession of faith in Christ, as modeled for us in the book of Acts (Acts 2:38-41, Acts 8:35-39; Acts 16:31-33). Baptism by full immersion is taught in Scripture and portrays the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, as well as a cleansing from sin. Baptism is a demonstration of our willingness to live obediently under the lordship of Christ, and is also a sign of fellowship and identification with the church, which is the visible body of Christ (Acts 2:41-42).
We believe and teach that all who demonstrate obedient faith in Jesus Christ are immediately placed by the Holy Spirit into one, united, spiritual body, the church (1 Corinthians 12:12-13), the bride of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2), of which Christ is the head (Ephesians 1:22; Colossians 1:18). The Scripture commands believers to gather together to devote themselves in worship, prayer, teaching of the Word, observance of the ordinances, fellowship, service to the body and outreach to the world (Acts 1:8; Acts 2:38-42; Ephesians 4:12).
Wherever God’s people meet regularly in obedience to this command, there is the local expression of the church (Galatians 1:2; Hebrews 10:25). Under the protection and oversight of elders (Acts 20:17; Acts 20:28), its members are to work together in love and unity, intent on the ultimate purpose of glorifying Christ to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20; Ephesians 3:21). Membership in a local congregation is more than just having your name on a church roll; it means active participation in the body of Christ.
The Lord’s Supper
We believe and teach that the Lord’s Supper is the commemoration and proclamation of His death until He comes, and should always be preceded by solemn, self-examination (1 Corinthians 11:23-32). The Lord’s Supper is an actual communion with the risen Christ, who is present in a unique way, in fellowship with His people (1 Corinthians 10:16). In the pattern of the early church, we offer the Lord’s Supper weekly (Acts 20:7; Acts 2:42).
We believe and teach that death seals the eternal destiny of each person (Hebrews 9:27), and that Jesus Christ will one day return, at which time He will pronounce the eternal fate of each individual – both living and dead – to eternal life in heaven for the saved (John 6:39; Romans 8:10-11, 19-23; 2 Corinthians 4:14), and the unsaved to eternal separation from God in hell (John 5:28-29; Daniel 12:2; 2 Corinthians 4:14).