Our Vision – What We Aim For
In Matthew 13, Jesus told the Parable of the Sower, and related what happened to the seeds in various circumstances. This parable, and the explanation that Jesus provides in verses 18-23 gives an insight into what a healthy church looks like, and gives rise to the church’s Vision Statement:
Southern River Church of Christ strives to be a Deep Church – committed to Deep Truth, possessing Deep Passion, and experiencing and exerting a Deep Impact.
In developing this vision of what our church, based on a healthy New Testament model, should look like, we acknowledge that:
- Depth does not always equal rapid growth or joyous reception. Growing deep roots in deep soil takes time and effort. We want to avoid being shallow or superficial.
- Depth is revealed through tribulation and persecution. There may be no visible difference between seeds growing in deep soil and shallow soil until trouble appears. We want to be a church that will develop and reveal true strength and commitment when trials come.
- Depth enables fruitfulness and endurance. Good seed given deep soil will produce fruit if it can endure. Embracing depth will result in the church being fruitful if we endure.
What would Southern River Church of Christ look like as a Deep Church?
We want to be a church that has deep truth, a place that consistently proclaims Biblical, Gospel-based preaching and teaching. That doesn’t mean that everyone in the church needs to be a Biblical scholar, but rather that everyone is encouraged to reflect deeply on the truths revealed through the Word. We want to champion:
- a big view of God – recognise His holiness, glory, majesty, goodness, power, greatness and sovereignty in all situations and circumstances;
- a strong view of Scripture – recognise that it is not just a book written by men, but was inspired and directed by the Holy Spirit. It is the Word of God written using the words of men. We want to use the Bible to discover what God is saying, not to spend time making or discussing opinions about what people say about it, and acknowledge the authority, truthfulness and trustworthiness of the entire Bible, both the Old and New Testaments.
- a clear view of the Gospel – on matters of sin, faith, grace and on what Jesus accomplished at the cross. We want to be a people who cherish salvation of grace alone, through Christ alone, and by faith alone. The message of the Gospel should infuse regular teaching and inspire people to share and relate these truths to others.
We want to be a church that has deep passion, a place where deep truth gives birth to deep spiritual passions. Good theology should give rise to a passionate spiritual experience that should affect our praise and worship. We want to:
- think deeply about God and feel intensely the leading of His Spirit:
- worship God with all of our heart as well as all of our mind and strength;
- be open to experiencing the manifest presence of God;
- be aware of His supernatural power; and
- accept his ability and willingness to act today – not just in history – through both divine miracles and the present reality of spiritual gifts among believers in the church.
We want to be a church that experiences and exerts a deep impact, that flows out of having a deep truth that produces deep passion. We want to be a community that bears an influence in:
- word – there is a Gospel message to be proclaimed, and we must speak it. Just as Jesus taught His disciples and others, we must proclaim the truth, reality and uniqueness of Jesus and what He accomplished at the cross.
- deed – through actions of kindness, mercy, justice and compassion. Just as Jesus fed crowds who came to hear Him speak, we want to offer and provide practical assistance to accompany spiritual truths.
- signs – supernatural revelations of the power of God always accompany His kingdom breaking into new places. Just as Jesus healed and restored people who came to Him, we want to see manifestations of the Holy Spirit’s power in and through the lives of His people.
We want to have a missional outreach at all levels, to see people saved, churches planted, and communities transformed. We want to see this impact occur:
- locally – within the communities around our church in Southern River and the City of Gosnells (our Jerusalem).
- regionally – within the wider areas of Perth and Western Australia (our Judea and Samaria)
- globally – around the entire world (to the ends of the earth)