Connecting Class 4: Roots, Relationships & Rule

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Connecting Class 4: Roots, Relationships & Rule

  1. 1. Welcome! “Every church is different. Every true church is a thing of beauty in its own unique way.”
  2. 2. Class Material Available Online • INSTRUCTIONS: – Go online. Password is “grace4you” – Go to www.christourhopechurch.com – In Search bar, type & enter “connecting” – Click on “Continue Reading” – Each session is listed & downloadable – HINT: At the back of each lesson, there is an Answer Key for all fill-in-blanks.
  3. 3. Overview • #1- Jesus & The Church • #2- The Gospel & The Christian • #3- Beliefs & Doctrinal Distinctives • #4- Roots, Relationshi ps & Rule • #5- Mission & Ministries • #6- Church Membership
  4. 4. Session #4: Roots, Relationships & Rule • CHURCH HISTORY- In which branch of Jesus’ Church did Christ Our Hope originate? • CHURCH AFFILIATION- What denomination and ministries does Christ Our Hope partner with? • CHURCH GOVERNMENT- What are the leadership structures of Christ Our Hope?
  5. 5. Our Church’s Roots The history of The Church is like a mighty river… “There are lots of twists and turns, and at some points, the river appears motionless, but its upstream force is so powerful that the river is merely changing direction or reproducing itself into multiple streams going in various directions. Such is Christ’s Church: it has ebbed and flowed in world history yet continues to prevail. The Church flows in many streams and in many directions, yet its strength comes from the same powerful Source: Jesus Christ and His Spirit.”
  6. 6. Our Past Connections EARLY CHURCH: Jerusalem Council (Acts 15; AD 48) PROTESTANT REFORMATION: Luther, Calvin, Knox (1500s) WESTMINSTER ASSEMBLY (1643-1647) AMERICAN PRESBYTERIANISM (1672-present)
  7. 7. Early Church Roots: The Jerusalem Council (Acts 15) • 1st Ecclesiastical Assembly of Christ’s Church (AD 48/49) • Its purpose was to adjudicate a doctrinal controversy • Participants included both Apostles & Elders • Its decision was binding beyond just those local churches (i.e. in Jerusalem & Galatia)
  8. 8. Reformation Roots (16th Century): Luther, Calvin, Knox • Martin Luther (1483- 1546) rediscovered the Gospel & translated the Bible into German • John Calvin (1509-1564) wrote The Institutes and pioneered Word & Deed ministry in Geneva, Switzerland • John Knox (1514-1572) wrote the Book of Com- mon (Church) Order & founded Presbyterianism in Scotland
  9. 9. Westminster Roots (17th Century): Reformation in England• Assembly met from 1643-1649 • Met 1,163 times, producing the Westminster (Doctrinal) Standards • Was truly Inter- Denominational, in cluding contri- butions from 120 pastor-scholars
  10. 10. Our Theological Heritage: CHRISTIAN PROTESTANT EVANGELICAL REFORMED PRESBYTERIAN PCA
  11. 11. The Identity of the Presbyterian Church in America: • The PCA is EVANGELICAL, REFORMED and… • “PRESBYTERIAN”: – πρεςβύτεροσ (“presbyterios”) = elder or bishop – Simply refers to our understanding of the Bible’s model for New Testament church government – Means we are an elders-led church: The elders lead, guide and shepherd the flock
  12. 12. The PCA’s Mission: The mission of the Presbyterian Church in America is to glorify and enjoy God by equipping and enabling the churches of the PCA to work together to fulfill the Great Commission by making disciples of all nations, so that people will mature as servants of the triune God, will worship God in spirit and truth, and will have a reforming impact on culture.
  13. 13. The PCA’s Motto: The PCA is simply one branch of Christ’s Church that seeks to be:  FAITHFUL to the Scriptures  TRUE to the Reformed Tradition  OBEDIENT to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ (Matthew 28.18-20)
  14. 14. The PCA’s Structure Whereas “Evangelical” identifies our unified stance with the wider worldwide church, and “Reformed” identifies our stance on theology,…  “Presbyterian” refers to our form of church order and structure- our church’s government:  PASTORS & ELDERS share the same office, yet have different emphases “Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching.” (1 Tim 5.17)  CHURCHES ARE CONNECTED for mission and accountability through a regional “presbytery”
  15. 15. Eastern Carolina Presbytery
  16. 16. Understanding Presbyterian Churches: CONGREGATIONAL & Baptist Churches PRESBYTERIAN Churches EPISCOPAL & Roman Catholic Churches Authority Flow “Bottom-Up” “BOTH / AND” “Top-Down” Decision- Makers All Individual Church Members Qualified, Trained & Elected Men from within the church Appointed Bishops from outside the church Connections? NO Official Connections CONNECTED while respecting local church autonomy STRONG HIERARCHICAL Connections (no local autonomy)
  17. 17. Next time: SESSION # 5- Our Mission & Ministries

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