THE GREAT COMMANDMENT: Matthew 22:36-40 "Jesus said, 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the law and prophets hang on these two commandments.'" THE GREAT COMMISSION: Matthew 28:19-20 "Jesus said, 'Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.'" Our Five Purposes are drawn from these two passages: • Love God with all your heart - WORSHIP • Love your neighbor as yourself - MINISTRY • Go and make disciples - EVANGELISM • Baptize - FELLOWSHIP • Teach them all things - DISCIPLESHIP STATEMENT OF FAITH: THE BIBLE IS OUR SOLE AUTHORITY Timothy 3:16 "All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness." At New Hope, the Bible is our final authority. Not a denominational statement, but God's Holy Word. It can be trusted. Whenever a question arises, we will go to the Bible and allow the Holy Spirit to illuminate it's meaning to our hearts. AUTONOMY OF THE LOCAL CHURCH Jesus Christ is the head of the church. Not the pastors or deacons or lay ministers. We are the body of and we work together. He is the source of our life. This church will make it's own decisions about land and property. No denominational control from outside can tell us what to do with land or tell the Pastor to move to another church. This church will make their own decisions We are autonomous. PRIESTHOOD OF EVERY BELIEVER Revelation 1:5,6 "Jesus Christ, Who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the Kings on earth. To Him Who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve His God and Father - to Him be the glory and power forever and ever." We as Christians are all priests before God. We don't need anyone standing between us and God anymore. Jesus Christ did that when He died on the cross and rose again. He gave us equal access to God the Father. I've had people come up to me and ask for special prayer like I have a better phone line to God than they do. The truth is, we all have the unique privilege of access to God through His Son, Jesus Christ. TITHING The word tithing simply means ten percent. This is the way we will finance this church. We don't finance it through bingo or raffles or any other gimmicks. We finance this church through the members giving ten percent of what they earn back to God through the church. Malachi 3:8 says, "Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, 'How do we rob You?' In tithes and offerings... Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this 'says the Lord Almighty' and see if I will not throw open the flood gates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it." You see, what God says and I believe it's an act of obedience between you and God. It is the member's responsibility to give and support the work of the local church. IMMERSION Romans 6:4 "We were buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may have a new life." There's nothing magical about baptism. It sure won't effect your salvation one way or the other. It's simply an outward sign of your internal change that happened at the point of salvation. It's also a symbol to others of Jesus dying being buried and rising again to offer all people His free gift of salvation. SPIRIT-LED LIVING John 15:5 Jesus said, "I am the vine, you are the branches. If any man remains in Me and I in him, he will bear much fruit, apart from Me, you can do nothing." Jesus is our source of life, not just for salvation, but everyday. We can't live life and go through our daily trials without Him. We need His guidance every moment of every day, to give us strength, to give us wisdom, and to give us patience. He is our power source in life. TELLING OTHERS ABOUT CHRIST I Peter 3:15 "Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have." It is our responsibility and privilege as believers to tell someone else about Christ. You don't have to know the whole Bible or have a witnessing plan memorized. All you need to do is tell what God did in your life, and how your life is different because of Jesus Christ. LIFE DEVELOPMENT PROCESS: Our objective is to keep people moving in their spiritual lives by encouraging personal spiritual commitments.
Class 101 - THE MEMBERSHIP COVENANT is a commitment to Christ and the New Hope family.
Class 201 - THE MATURITY COVENANT is a commitment to the habits necessary for spiritual growth.
Class 301 - THE MINISTRY COVENANT is a commitment to discovering and using you God-given gifts and
abilities to serve God and others.
Class 401 - THE MISSIONS COVENANT is the commitment to share the good news with others.
CONSTITUTION: ARTICLE I. NAME The name of this church shall be New Hope Community Church, New Kent, VA. ARTICLE II. LIFESTYLE STATEMENT Bible as our Sole Authority."All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness."II Timothy 3:16 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. Autonomy of each Local Church "Christ is the head of His body, the church. He is the source of the body's life…" Colossians 1:18 Christ is the recognized head of our church, not any person, group or religious organization. While recognizing the value of associating and cooperating with other groups of Christians, we believe every local church should be self- governing and independent from any denominational control. Priesthood of every believer "You are a chosen people, royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him Who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light." I Peter 2:9 Every believer has personal access to God through Jesus. And every believer, being part of the royal priesthood, is a minister to others. Tithing "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse." Malachi 3:10 At New Hope, 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. Immersion "We were buried with Him through baptism into death in order that just as Jesus was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may have a new life." Romans 6:4 We practice baptism by immersion under water-the way Jesus was baptized, and the way the Bible commands. 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." John 15:5 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. 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." I Peter 3:15 It is the responsibility of every Christian to share the Good News with those God brings us into contact with. We practice personal sharing about Christ and inviting friends to church. ARTICLE III. PURPOSE STATEMENT We believe in a great commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great commission will grow a great church. The Great Commandment: "Jesus said, "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and soul and mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself, all the law and prophets hang on these two commandments." Matthew 22:37-40 The Great Commission: "Jesus said, 'Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you." Matthew 28:19-20 New Hope's Five Purposes:
Worship-Love God with all your heart
Ministry-Love your neighbor as yourself
Evangelism-Go and make disciples
Discipleship-Teaching them all things
ARTICLE IV. MEMBERSHIP COVENANT "Having received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, and being in agreement with New Hope's statements, strategy and structure, I now feel led by the Holy Spirit to unite with the New Hope church family. In doing so, I commit myself to God and to the other members to do the following 1. I will protect the unity of my church
By acting in love toward other members
By refusing to gossip
By following the leaders
"May the God Who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus." Romans 15:5 "You have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart." I Peter 1:22 "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.," Ephesians 4:29 "Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you." Heb. 13:17 2. I will share the responsibility of my church
By praying for it's growth
By inviting the un-churched to attend
By warmly welcoming those who visit
To the church-"We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers." I Thessalonians 1:2 Jesus said, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few… send out workers into His harvest field." Mt. 9:37-38 "Accept one another, then, just as Jesus accepted you in order to bring praises to God." Romans 15:7 3. I will serve the ministry of my church.
By discovering my gifts and abilities
By being equipped to serve my pastors
By developing a servant heart
"Each one of you should look not only to your own interest, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus, taking on the very nature of a servant." Philippians 2:4,5,7 4. I will support the testimony of my church.
By attending faithfully
By living a Godly life
By giving regularly
"Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another and all the more as you see the day approaching." Hebrews 10:25 Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ." Philippians 1:27 "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this says the Lord Almighty and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it." Malachi 3:10 ARTICLE V. MEMBERSHIP 1. Qualifications Anyone who is committed to attendance, who desires to unite with New Hope must take Class 101 "Discovering Membership". At the conclusion of Class 101, they must sign the membership covenant. 2. Duties Members are to abide by the Membership Covenant (see Article IV). Every member is a minister. 3. Rights Members may vote, by 2/3 majority of members present, on the annual budget (which will be adopted prior to the beginning of our fiscal year-Jan. 1), legal trustees, the purchase of land and building, calling the senior pastor, and needed changes to the church constitution if we change the way we operated, by law, in Virginia. 4. Discipline of Members New Hope is a family, so we need to conduct ourselves as family. I Timothy 5:1-2 We are to follow Matthew 18:15-20 when we have been wronged. ARTICLE VI. STRUCTURE New Hope is a body, not a business. We ar a living organism, not an organization. This is why we function through the use of spiritual gifts, not elected offices. Our church is built on Ephesians 4:11-12, "God gave some to be pastors and teachers to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up." New Hope's structure is found in two sentences:
The people are the ministers.
The pastors are the administrators.
The people's responsibility is to use their spiritual gifts and talents, given to them by God, to minister to others only in the way they're equipped. The Pastor's responsibility is to keep the church committed to our five purposes, our vision, our values and Biblical standards. New Hope is not a democracy, it is a theocracy. God is the head of our body and He is in control of everything we do at New Hope. I Corinthians 12:4,5,27 ARTICLE VII. MISSIONS New Hope will support missions with a minimum of 10% of the general fund (non- designated giving) each month. This money will be used for local and worldwide missions. ARTICLE VIII. CLASSIFICATION This fellowship will operate under the I.R.S. code 501 (c) (3). Voted on and adopted by the chartering members of New Hope Community Church during the Chartering Service on January 26, 2001. NEW HOPE CHURCH IS A PURPOSE DRIVEN CHURCH
Creatively Communicating Christ from New Kent, VA
New Hope Church
We believe a Great Commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission, will grow a Great Church.