Beliefs are not worth much unless they are translated into actions. Based on what the Bible teaches, we feel that when implemented into your life the following practices will help move you toward spiritual maturity.
Bible as Sole Authority
The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and make us realize what is wrong in our lives; it straightens us out and helps us to do what is right.
(2 Tim. 3:15)
Since God’s Word is the only completely reliable and truthful authority, we accept the Bible as our manual for living. Our first question when faced with a decision is “What does the Bible say?” We practice daily Bible reading, Bible study, and Bible memorization. The Bible is the basis for all we believe. Since we believe in the authority of scripture we believe the principles set forth in scripture are the foundation for our guidelines on business, church life, policies and ministries as articulated in this document.
Priesthood of Every Believer
Christ loves us, and by His death He has freed us from our sins and made us a kingdom of priests to serve God…” (Rev. 1:6 (GN)). “You are…the King’s priests…God’s own people, chosen to proclaim the wonderful acts of God.
(1 Pet. 2:9 (GN))
The Bible teaches that every Christian is called to “full time” Christian service, regardless of his or her vocation. We practice the truth that every believer is a minister by encouraging every member to find a place of service and ministry. The Bible teaches that faith without works is dead. Our faith is not a passive system of intellectual belief but is an active force in our lives expressed in action. Every believer has direct access to God through prayer and Bible reading to help determine their ministry and giftings for the church.
(Acts 26:20; James 2:14-16; Ephesians 2:8-10)
A tithe of everything you produce belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.
At Tri Lakes, we practice tithing for the support of Christ’s body, the church, as God commands. We recognize that giving 10% of our income is the Biblical standard of giving. As every member supports the local body we are able to minster to those who come seeking to know God. We will share of our material goods with those in need and will minister to them to the best of our abilities, whatever the need.
(Prov. 25:21; Is. 58:10; Gal. 6:10; 1 Tim. 6:18-19; Heb. 13:16; Matt. 23:23)
For when you were baptized, you were buried with Christ, and in baptism you were also raised with Christ…
(Col. 2:12 (GN)
We practice baptism by immersion under water — the way Jesus was baptized. We desire to follow his example to help demonstrate that we are a believer (1 John 2:3). We encourage baptism to follow salvation as soon as possible (Acts 2:41; Acts 8:35-38).
Jesus said, “I am the Vine, you are the branches. If you abide in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; but apart from me you can do nothing.”
We believe the only way possible to live the Christian life is by God’s power within us. So we seek to practice a daily dependence on God’s Spirit to enable us to do what is right. Keeping in step with the Holy Spirit and having our mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace.
(Romans 8:6; Galatians 5:25; Eph. 5:18; Phil. 2:13)
Telling Others About Christ
Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.
(1 Peter 3:15)
It is the responsibility of every Christian to share the Good News with those God brings us into contact. We practice personal sharing about Christ and inviting friends to church. We are committed to loving people into the Kingdom of God in Holy Spirit led ways as we walk through life.
We believe that making disciples is a command given by Jesus that must have a high priority in our lives. Therefore, we are intentional about helping each other move from one place of growth to the next in our daily walk with the Lord. We encourage all to be mature disciples of Jesus who produce fruit in keeping with God’s call on our life. Transformation occurs through the Word of God and the power of the Holy Spirit, the denying of the old nature, salvation through grace not works, and the promise of the resurrection.
(Luke 9:23-25; John 3:16; 10:27-29; Rom. 3:25; 12:1-2; Gal. 2:20; 5:24; Eph. 2:1-8; 2:13-16; 1 Thess. 3:13; 1 Peter 1:13-19)
Marriage and Families
We believe that God intends human life to begin in families and to be blessed through families. We believe that marriage is an earthly copy of the relationship between God and his people, and was established by God to be the union of one man and one woman for life. We believe that Christians are to marry only in the Lord. We believe singles are called to chastity and married persons to loving faithfulness to their spouse and that all sexual relationships outside of marriage are forbidden by God. We believe that sexual relationships between persons of the same sex are unnatural and unacceptable to God.
(Gen. 1:27-28; 2:20-24; Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Matt. 19:3-6; Rom. 1:24-28; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 7:1-8, 39; Eph. 5:21-6:4)
We believe marriage was intended by God to be an indissoluble union between a man and a woman. However, because of the fallenness of human nature, the Scriptures permit divorce in some cases, as an accommodation to human sin for the protection of the innocent party. These include divorce in the case of immorality, with the understanding that the innocent spouse is not obligated to maintain or reinstate the marriage. It also includes divorce in the case of desertion, defined as behavior equivalent to the abandonment of the marriage relationship. In both cases, the innocent spouse is not bound. He or she is free to remarry in the Lord, though the seeking of repentance and reconciliation should always be the first recourse.
It is God’s desire to bring deliverance to his people (Job 5:19, Psalms 91:3; 2 Timothy 4:13; Hebrews 2:15; 2 Peter 2:9). We have been granted the authority in the name of Jesus to bring deliverance to others (Mark 16:17, John 14:12; 2 Cor. 12:8-11). We must understand that our warfare is with the forces of evil (Eph. 6:12), our weapon is the Word of God, our authority and power is from Jesus himself (Mark 16:17, Acts 1:8), and that the battlefield is first of all in the spiritual realms (Eph. 6:10-18, 2 Cor. 10:3-5, Rom. 8:9, Gal. 5:22-23).
Ten Values We Affirm and Live By
- Worshiping God is our lifestyle and brings honor and glory to Him.
- Hearing and Responding to God’s Word produces obedient lives.
- Conversing with God in prayer keeps our focus on His desires.
- Being in the presence of God brings healing, restoration, and freedom through the work of the Holy Spirit.
- Becoming like Christ helps us reflect Him relevantly in our culture.
- Caring for one another reveals the Father’s love and unity in a safe environment.
- Managing faithfully, everything God has given us, enables us to live fruitful lives.
- Reaching People, locally and globally, demonstrates God’s heart.
- Growing continually challenges us to create and embrace opportunities for equipping and sending.
- Fulfilling our God-given purpose through serving reaches our generation for Christ.