OUR VISION: A Gospel-centered family

To better express the vision of The Mountain Church we hope to define the phrase, “A gospel-centered family.”  


GOSPEL


The Mountain Church is founded and sustained on the gospel of Jesus Christ. We teach the gospel, share the gospel, cherish the gospel, and fight for the gospel. At our church, you will hear the word gospel repeatedly because it is the most important truth that we can know and experience. If you are unfamiliar with the Christian faith however, the gospel might be an alien term. The word gospel simply means “good news.” The gospel is the good news that God has rescued us. The gospel is cosmic, yet personal. It is simple, yet complex.


From a cosmic and universal perspective, the gospel is the message of the Bible that God is redeeming His fallen creation through the coming of His kingdom in the person and work of Jesus Christ. We describe creation as “fallen” because we believe this world is not as it should be. Although God created the earth as a good, peaceful place where life flourished fully, we live in a world filled with suffering, poverty, racism, disasters, war, aging, and death. The world is in need of restoration and renewal. To put things right and restore our fallen broken world, God sent His son Jesus to inaugurate the kingdom of God, which is in essence, His redemptive reign. Jesus demonstrated His redemptive reign and rule over all things through his life and ministry. He healed the sick, cured diseases, gave sight to the blind, raised the dead, fed the poor, and calmed the storms showing signs of the kingdom and giving us a picture of the world that is to come. Jesus deployed and advanced his kingdom in starting and sending the church. The church displays the kingdom in reconciliation, care for the poor and hungry, love and relationships, and equality in race and culture. Although with Jesus the kingdom has arrived, it has not been fully realized. Since Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, there is still evil, pain, and suffering. The world is still broken. This world however, is not all that will be. Suffering, poverty, sickness, disease, racism, disaster, war, aging, and death will be no more when the kingdom of God is finally and fully realized in the second coming of Jesus. When Jesus returns, the world that is will be renewed and restored to how it was intended to function, in perfect harmony. 


From an individualistic and particular perspective, the gospel is the message that individuals are rescued from peril through the person and work of Jesus by grace through faith. God created humanity to find ultimate happiness, satisfaction, purpose, value, and identity in Him. All humanity however, has turned from God to self or other created things for enjoyment, purpose, value, identity, etc. This turning from God or self-centeredness is what the Bible refers to as sin. Sin manifests itself in acts such as injustice, greed, lust, selfishness, and all kinds of evil. Sin is ultimately destructive. It does not lead toward human flourishing. Since God loves His people so much, He has great anger at what is destructive in their lives. This what the Bible refers to as wrath - opposition and hatred of sin. God will not tolerate anything or anyone who is responsible for the destruction of His creation and people.


The failure of humanity to find ultimate satisfaction in God causes humanity to be alienated from Him. This separation corrupts every aspect of human beings (mentally, socially, physically, emotionally, and spiritually). Humans experience depression, shame, fear, anxiety, and other mental illness. Socially, they are prone to use others or be used by others in relationships. Physically they experience sickness, pain, aging, and death. Spiritually, alienation from God blinds humanity from seeing Him as He truly is. Apart from God’s gracious intervention, humanity would be alienated from God forever. All humanity is in need of renewal and reconciliation to God.


In love, God sent His only Son, Jesus, to rescue, redeem, and reconcile humanity to Himself. Jesus did this by entering into humanity, becoming a man, and living a sinless life in perfect obedience to God the Father. As our representative, Jesus lived the life we all should have lived, and died the death that we all deserved to die. Jesus humbly went to the cross to suffer and die as our substitute. On the cross Jesus bore the wrath of God and penalty for sin. By His perfect obedience and sacrifice, He satisfied the just demands of God on our behalf. Jesus experienced separation from God so that we may be reconciled to right relationship with Him. On the cross Jesus not only offers redemption, but justification. His perfection and right standing with God the Father is credited to those who trust in Him. Besides justifying and redeeming, Jesus also adopts individuals into the very family of God as sons and daughters. In adoption, Jesus gives His status, approval, privileges, and rights to all those who believe. After dying on the cross, Jesus rose from the dead conquering the power of sin, death, and hell. His resurrection secures everlasting life and demonstrates that His people will rise from their own graves to live with Him forever.


By the person and work of Jesus, salvation is offered to all as a free gift. Jesus, our Redeemer, offers us a restored relationship with God by grace. This is why we refer to the message of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection as good news. It has already been accomplished. Salvation is not found in ourself, or our efforts and works, but in the person and work of Jesus. Redemption, justification, adoption, and final eternal destiny have been secured and finished in Jesus. Salvation is by grace alone through faith alone.  


This gospel is the most important truth you can know or experience. The gospel changes everything. It has the power to change your life, transform communities, and renew societies when its implications are thought and felt out. The gospel provides hope for whole world in renewal and restoration.


We desire that all people understand and believe the gospel. If you have questions related to the gospel and your relationship with God, contact us.



CENTERED


We believe the person and work of Jesus is at the center of the Bible and that all of Scripture points to Jesus and His redemption of mankind on the cross. With this in mind, we strive to keep the gospel central in the life of our church. The gospel is not only received and communicated, but is that by which we stand. We believe that the the gospel is not merely a truth that saves (once received and believed), but the very power of God to transform.


The gospel affects and shapes everything we do as a local community of faith. We explore the depths of the gospel and examine its comprehensive claims and implications on our lives. We incorporate the gospel into our mission, strategy, decisions, and practice. We cherish the gospel and fight to believe that Jesus is more fulfilling and satisfying than anything else in the world. In our Sunday gatherings, we proclaim the gospel through preaching, songs, communion, and baptism. In community, we demonstrate and apply the gospel in relationships. We demonstrate the gospel in community, because the gospel changes the way in which we relate to one another. In fact, we believe the gospel creates a new kind of community because it changes our hearts and identities. It transforms our pursuit of self to a pursuit of others. We are now no longer defined by our careers, economical status, gender, race, or appearance because our identity is in Christ. We no longer have to worry about proving ourselves or hiding our mistakes to look better in front of others to maintain a certain image. We can conduct ourselves with far more transparency, authenticity, honesty, and love in community. In community the gospel demonstrates its power to change.    


The gospel is also central to the life of The Mountain Church because it is in the gospel that we grow as disciples of Jesus. The gospel is not something that a believer moves on from once trusting in its message for salvation. The gospel must be kept central to fight against the tendency towards a religious and legalistic perspective. This legalistic perspective believes growth, maturity, and Christ-likeness is found in obeying rules, following principles, or becoming a better person. Rather, it is in believing, understanding, applying, and practicing the gospel more and more deeply that believers can overcome sin and grow into Christ-likeness. Because of our sinful nature we are prone to look away from Christ for our identity, purpose, satisfaction, and value. Other things or people become our functional saviors. By staying centered on the gospel we aim to bring the gospel to bear on all of life. Continually fighting to apply the gospel and striving for a deeper knowledge and experience of God’s grace is how we change our sinful behavior. This is our desire in our focus and vision of “gospel-centered.” 



FAMILY


The Mountain Church desires to be a family of God who is centered and saturated in the gospel of Jesus Christ. One of the most common analogies found in the Scriptures to describe the church is that of family. The New Testament describes the church as the household of God, children of God, and heirs with Christ. Jesus taught his disciples that his true brothers and sisters were those who did the will of his Father in heaven.


Sadly, many have and/or come from dysfunctional, abusive, or broken families. The language of family does not bring pleasant memories to mind. This also rings true of fathers. Instead of having a father looking to serve, lead, protect, and love the family, many have grown up without fathers, emotionally distant fathers, or abusive fathers that have destroyed the family. Sin has tainted and distorted family and the roles of its members. Fathers and families no longer function in the way they were intended. In the gospel however, God redeems and reconciles all things to himself. In the coming of His Kingdom, God through the person and work of Jesus is restoring humanity to how it was intended to be.


Although we were once former orphans alienated from God, He adopted us into His redeemed family by the work of Jesus. This redeemed family of former orphans is called church. The church is our new, far greater family. Although members of the church family may not be related by flesh and bone, they are all related by Jesus' blood that purchased their redemption. In the church we recognize our true brothers and sisters. It is in the church we know and call out to our true Father. We cling to and revere God as a loving, personable, accessible Father, not as a distant, inaccessible, or uninterested deity. Our heavenly Father will never abuse, disappoint, leave, or forsake us. His love, acceptance, and delight for us is perfect because it is the love, delight, and acceptance He has for His own Son, Jesus. The redeemed family of the church is where our true familial allegiance stands and priority lies.   



This is why we refer to ourselves as a gospel-centered family. We cherish the truth that we are kids of grace. We strive to demonstrate and be the community God intended when He created family. We spend time with one another. We eat, laugh, cry, and fight sin together. Ultimately we love our Father and seek to magnify His name, worth, value, and supremacy together. The Mountain Church is simply one expression of a local family of God who cherish and proclaim the gospel.


For more information about our vision contact us. Learn more about our core values.