Faith Presbyterian Church, PCA

4100 Ronnaki Road

Anniston, AL 36207

CONTACT 

T: 256-238-8721

E: faithpcaanniston@gmail.com

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Our Presuppositions

Influencing the way the ministry of Faith Presbyterian Church is carried out are certain presuppositions.  Presuppositions are understood assumptions of fact, which affect our approach to ministry and the expression and style of our ministry to people in our church and community.  There are six fundamental presuppositions:

  • Bible and Theology​​

    • Nature of the Bible​

      • Scripture (the Old and New Testaments of the Bible) is absolutely and verbally inspired by God and thus inerrant and infallible in all that it asserts to be true.  It is our only rule of faith and practice.  Not only what we teach but also what we do and why and how we do it should be firmly based upon the scriptures.​

      • We carry out our teaching and ministry from a specific theological perspective, sometimes referred to as the Reformed faith, a helpful summary of which is to be found in the documents known as The Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms.  We hold to these not because we wish to follow a tradition for its own sake, but because we believe that they express in a systematic form the teachings of Scripture, which alone are infallible and ultimately authoritative.

    • Content of the Bible​ - The whole Bible is about Jesus Christ, because Jesus, the Son of God, is the eternal Word.  According to God’s self-revelation, Jesus is Yahweh in the flesh (Phil. 2).  Looking to Jesus, therefore we learn:

      • Yahweh is eternally humble.

      • Yahweh is eternally community, because God was, is, and always will be multi-personal.  The divine community of the Trinity is one of perfect, humble, other-centered love.

      • Yahweh is good.

      • Yahweh is faithful.  He is a covenant-keeping God. 

      • The Word takes on flesh to rescue His people from present evil age and to renew us for life in glorious age to come. To this end He justifies us (declares us to be righteous, good like God) and sanctifies us (lives out His life of goodness, humility and love in and through us).

  • The Church

    • Inasmuch as the Great Commission has been given to God’s Church and not to any other agency or institution, it is the responsibility of the Church to do the work of ministry.

    • The process of ministry to individuals should and must involve their assimilation into the visible body of the Church as expressed in the local church, in which they

      • Are built up by the proclamation of the Gospel and​

      • See modeling of progress in terms of the goals of our ministry.

  • God's Work

    • God is at work accomplishing His purpose in this world and He cannot be thwarted by anyone or anything in the accomplishment of that purpose.

    • Because God is at work, the Church is progressing through the processes of evangelism and edification.

    • God is working primarily by the power of the Holy Spirit and His Word.

    • This is true regardless of how things appear to us.

    • There is a real spiritual battle occurring in which we are carrying out warfare with Satan and His forces.

    • We do not think that the effectiveness of the ministry or the accomplishment of our goals is directly dependent upon our strength, gifts, abilities, or wisdom.  God uses us in our weakness, and he accomplishes the goals.  We must faithfully, prayerfully, and obediently act with dependence upon the Holy Spirit, pointing people to God’s Word.

  • The Individual

    • There is unity among individuals as members of the Body of Christ, and therefore believers share many common characteristics (cf. Eph 4:4-6).  However, there is great diversity among individuals, in both officers and congregants, with respect to gifts, ability, personality, spiritual states, problems, etc.

    • With respect to materials, methods, and strategy, we are flexible and use many different types, taking into account the individual characteristics of both those doing the ministering (officers, staff and members) and those to whom they are ministering.  We meet people where they are and do not force on them standardized, “assembly line” programs.  Our methods, strategy, and materials are tailored to the individuals’ needs and the personality and abilities of the officer or member doing ministry.

  • Learning Process

    • We have a certain understanding of the learning process, including what learning is, its implications for the nature of saving faith, the elements of the process, how it is implemented, and the implications of these things for the operation of  the church, the roles of those involved with it, and the functions of the various avenues of ministry (large group, small groups, one-to-one).

    • A correct understanding of this learning process is vital to implementation of strategies and methods most conducive to its occurrence, as well as avoidance of certain misconceptions and pitfalls common to ministry, including the impartation of false assurance, lack of integrity between the doctrine and lifestyle of the groups, ineffective teaching methods, “dead” orthodoxy, etc.

    • We are not satisfied in ministry to people when they exhibit mere “head knowledge” or the ability verbally to articulate certain concepts.  In assessing whether ministry goals are being realized, we must look for indications of commitment to such concepts.  Our goal is transformed lives, not simply increased knowledge.

    • The materials and methods we employ are carefully devised both to expect and to promote commitment to the truth as well as knowledge of the truth.  Effort should be made not only to present ideas, but also to cause individuals to wrestle with those ideas themselves so that they come to an understanding using their own reasoning abilities.  In short, we should encourage people to think, not simply tell them what to think.

    • We are patient with people as they wrestle with deep truths, acknowledging that we had to wrestle with those same truths for varying amounts of time.

  • Demographics

    • Our ability to minister is affected by demographic factors including the personality of the community, the types of people who make up the community, and the gifts and characteristics of the officers and staff.  These affect what can be done and the style of ministry and methods employed.

    • We resist the tendency to become motivated purely by a desire to produce certain numbers of people or to assess the effectiveness or success of a given church in terms of what is happening in another church.

    • We focus on being faithful in what God has called us to do in terms of the goals of the ministry, not on artificially conceived goals or expectations.

    • We minister to the people who God brings to us and to whom He creates the opportunity to minister, rather than seek out a certain preconceived (or favorite) type of church member.