The Great Story We Live In
As a church, we acknowledge the inspiration and authority of both old and new covenant Scriptures. We consider Jesus Christ the Lord as the central figure of Scripture and the authoritative interpreter of Scripture. All of Scripture is either flowing to or from Christ.
We do not conceive of Scripture as a law code, a legal constitution for the church. Scripture itself resists the notion of Scripture as a legal code. When we look at Genesis through Revelation, we see the entire scope of Scripture and the unfolding within this great story the great themes of creation, judgment and liberation.
We view all of Scripture through the lens of the story’s hero, Jesus Christ, who constitutes the defining redemptive act of the story. We see this story as one of “liberation with a price” from beginning to end. The Great Drama unfolds as follows:
Act 1: God creates – Genesis 1-2.
Act 2: Trouble ensues – Genesis 3-11.
Act 3: Israel is called – Genesis 12.
Act 4: Jesus redeems and is the one through whom God will ultimately consummate all of his creation in a new creation – The Four Gospels.
Act 5: The Spirit creates the end-times church – Acts 1-2.
Act 6: The Lord returns to resurrect the dead, properly judge the world, and create anew the entire planet – the Book of Revelation.
The end-times church is now in Act 5, and we are moving toward the coming of the Lord. The previous acts of the play and the coming sixth act of the play make sense of the story we find ourselves in today.
- Living in the fifth act, we find ourselves in an unfinished story, awaiting the Lord’s coming.
- Reading the first four acts tells us what God is doing now.
- We tell all six acts of the Great Story today to mobilize the church for her mission, to clarify her identity, and call her to claim the story as her own.
The story the Bible tells and the story we find ourselves in begins in Genesis 1 and ends with Revelation 22. Surprisingly enough, the imagery of Genesis 1 and 2 appears again in the visions of Revelation 21 and 22. But more importantly the dilemma of Genesis 3 is resolved in Revelation 21 and 22.
This sprawling story has a theater, director, script, plot, actors, and one storyline. It is a grand “covenant love story inside an enduring friendship.”
Living In The Great Story
Because Christ has died for all of us and set us all of us free when we were hopelessly oppressed, we renounce a Pharisaism that sees heterosexual sin as less serious than homosexual sin. We are compelled to come together in the middle of the church, those who struggle with heterosexual and/or homosexual sin, as one church of broken saints on the way to wholeness crying out to the Lord, “God be merciful to me a sinner.”
Because the Spirit is gifting women as well as men with his Presence and his ministry gifts, we are compelled to release women to do what the Lord is calling and gifting them to do — whatever it might be. The hour is short. There is much to be done, and the Lord wants everybody “in the game” and doing whatever they are gifted to do to advance his kingdom. This includes all of us doing everything from shepherding and preaching to washing feet and toilet bowls.