What to expect when you visit
As a visitor you will not come and go taking with you little more than a few handshakes. No one is forgotten in the back pew. We try our best to follow the model for the Church that Christ established in the first century. God doesn’t change why should His Church? Christ made the pattern. Who are we to change it? The following is a brief explanation of what you can expect when you visit. For a more detailed list of our beliefs please see the What We Believe page.
Through our study of the Bible we see that the early Church met on the first day of the week (Sunday) and worshiped God by singing acappella. In the Old Testament there are a great many examples of instruments being used in worship. This was the way God wished to be worshiped. Then in the New Testament there is a transition from the old system through which God’s people related to Him, the Jewish Law, to the new system, reconciliation though Christ. He established the New Testament Church for Christians to live in this new relationship. An odd thing happens after this transition. God said, through His apostle Paul to sing from the heart. Ephesians 5:17-21
There is some debate whether this means that we should only sing acapella since it does not say not to use instruments. Theology becomes risky when it is based off of one or two verses. We take the Bible altogether and use Scripture to interpret Scripture. In the New Testament Church as described in the Bible there are no examples of anything other than acappella singing as worship. This contrast between the Old Testament and the Church shows us how this passage is meant to be interpreted. Also, we base this interpretation on authority. When God told us how to worship Him (acappella singing) He automatically excluded other categories of worship. For example, when ordering a pepperoni pizza it is not necessary to say “hold the anchovies”.
During our gathering we say a few prayers to God. The prayers are not scripted or repetitive but rather express our heartfelt needs to God.
Jesus taught us what prayer is supposed to be about and then gave us an example in Matthew 6:5-13.
Prayer is not supposed to be a display for others to see our piety. Instead, it is intended to be a petition to God. Jesus talked about prayer as a meaningful request to God. Thou God knows what we need, we are supposed to engage in a praying relationship with Him. Also, see Luke 11.
Lord’s Supper (Communion)
Christ instituted the Lord’s Supper shortly before He went to the cross. His words are recorded in the Bible. Luke 22:14-20
This representative bread and grape juice are emblems of the new covenant relationship that God has with His people. We are commanded to take them and we see in the Bible that the disciples continued to have communion every first day of the week after Christ went to the cross. So, on Sundays we pass around a piece of bread and cups of grape juice.
We devote time each time we meet for studying the Bible. We certainly don’t claim to be perfect. We study the Bible so that we can continue to grow in our understanding and mature as Christians. We certainly need it.
We also preach the message of the Bible to all who will hear it. We are commanded to spread God’s message to all the world. We do this because we love people. We love people because God first loved us! All of this we do with a sense of gentleness and humility. Matthew 28:16-20, 1 John 4:7-21