New Life in Christ Weekender
A short reminder of events happening this weekend
[Scroll down for a list of events this weekend.]
What does it mean to mean to be part of a Presbyterian Church in American (our denomination, known as the PCA)?
Someone recently emailed me a question, “Does New Life in Christ strictly follow the PCA’s doctrinal stance, or are there areas where it diverges from the congregation at-large?” I thought it would be a great question to answer for our Weekender.
First, we have to establish what the doctrinal statement of the PCA is. The “constitution” of the PCA consists of the Westminster Confession, the Westminster Larger Catechism, the Westminster Shorter Catechism, and the Book of Church Order. While believe that the Bible alone is authoritative, we agree that each of these documents accurately explains and applies the doctrine and practice described in the Bible. Here is a published statement of what we believe about the gospel.
Each of our elders, whether our pastors (“teaching elders) or lay elders (“ruling elders”), promises to uphold the constitution of the PCA. Both Pastor Doug and myself have made that commitment, as well as all of our elders.
As a consequence, New Life in Christ is consistent with historic orthodoxy, building upon the doctrine foundation established by the apostles (Eph 2:20), and articulated in the “Westminster Standards”. In this way, all PCA churches hold similar doctrine and convictional foundation. Still, because of history, size of the church, geography, culture, and personality of the leadership in a congregation, different churches may worship differently or focus on different ways to live out the gospel.
For example, New Life in Christ originally started as a non-denominational church. We were non-denominational from 1975 until 1998 and this still affects our personality. I noticed this when I arrived here in 2005, having come from churches that started in the PCA. Our mission is to “Build the kingdom through training leaders.” We are going to focus on training and discipling leaders who in turn will disciple others wherever God takes them.
Regardless of the different focus of our churches, the doctrinal core is held between all PCA churches. If you have ever been to one of our sister churches in the area, you will see that they have a different focus of ministry. Still, because of our shared doctrinal core, we are able to worship together in a joint services occasionally.
What I’m Reading
- The Gospel and Personal Evangelism by Mark Dever – A very encouraging book that will help you share your faith with greater boldness. I like how it also reminds us of God’s sovereignty in evangelism.
- Same-Sex “Marriage” is Becoming the New Established Religion – Religious liberty is under threat as elements of our culture will use force to compel full acceptance of homosexual behaviors.
- The Fallout of Failed Marriages – the first application of protecting marriage in this culture is submitting your own marriage to the plans and purposes of God.
- 7 PM – Deacon’s Meeting
- 8:30 am – Presbytery at Centralia Presbyterian. Pray for Greg Baughman as he is examined for licensure with the denomination. Pray for Sammie Asirifi-Addo and Robin Wilson as they are examined to becomes ministry candidates.
- 9 AM – NO Women’s Breakfast
- 10:30 AM – Women’s Ministry Training
- 9:00 AM – Adult Sunday School Classes will meet in sanctuary for combined class with Frank Sindler as he brings testimony how God is working in our world. New Sunday School classes begin next week. Find out more about the classes online here.
- 9:00 AM – Children and Youth Sunday School Classes – Junior and Senior High Youth back to normal classes.
- 10:00 AM – AM Worship Service –Pastor Doug Preaching.
- 4:30 PM – Care Group Leaders Meeting
- 4:30 PM – Women’s Ministry Committee Meeting
- 6:00 pm – Evening Service – Greg Baughman Preaching
- 7:00 pm – OASIS – Junior/Senior High Youth Discipleship
- 7:00 pm – Elder-led Prayer Time this week – Dan Deaconson Leading