our vision and Mission

FBC exists to see the lost found, the dead made alive in Christ

and to help each person become a fully devoted follower of Christ.

 

We seek to fulfill THE GREAT COMMANDMENT and THE GREAT COMMISSION of Jesus Christ by,

"LOVING GOD, LOVING OTHERS, AND CHANGING THE WORLD"

The Great Commandment

& The Great CommisSion

THE GREAT COMMANDMENT

Matthew 22:34-40 (NLT): But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees with his reply, they met together to question him again. 35 One of them, an expert in religious law, tried to trap him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?” 37 Jesus replied, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” 


THE GREAT COMMISSION

Matthew 28:18-20 (NLT): Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. 19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” 

Our PURPOSE

Have you ever wondered what God’s purpose in creating us was?


Isaiah 43:7 (NLT): Bring all who claim me as their God, for I have made them for my glory. It was I who created them.


God created us so that we would know Him and glorify Him. So how do we do that? 


By Living Out Our Purpose. 

Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 2:4 (NLT): For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. 


Our Purpose is to Please God, Not People.

He alone examines the motives of our hearts. Our purpose is to live a life that pleases God and not people. We glorify God by living out our purpose through accomplishing His mission for our lives individually and as the church.


So how does a follower of Christ accomplish this? By, “LOVING GOD, LOVING OTHERS and CHANGING THE WORLD!” 


Loving Others

So our mission is, “LOVING GOD, LOVING OTHERS, CHANGING THE WORLD!” At FBC, we believe Jesus calls his followers to love God with reckless abandon. 


John 14:15 (NLT):“If you love me, obey my commandments.” 


The second half of the “Great Commandment,” gives us the second part of our mission. Jesus wants us to love others because we all struggle with hurts and hang ups, with insecurities and uncertainties, and we long to be loved and cared for by others. Jesus makes it clear that God is interested in both our love for Him (Vertical Relationship) and our love for each other (Horizontal Relationships). What did Jesus mean when he said to, “Love your neighbor as yourself?”


I. Loving Others means caring for the poor (9-10) 

Leviticus 19:9-10: When you harvest the crops of your land, do not harvest the grain along the edges of your fields, and do not pick up what the harvesters drop. It is the same with your grape crop—do not strip every last bunch of grapes from the vines, and do not pick up the grapes that fall to the ground. Leave them for the poor and the foreigners living among you. I am the Lord your God. 


II. Loving Others means not stealing from them, cheating them or making promises to them you can’t keep (11-12) 

Leviticus 19:11-12: Do not steal. Do not deceive or cheat one another. Do not bring shame on the name of your God by using it to swear falsely. I am the Lord. 


III. Loving Others means being respectful of others (13-14) 

Leviticus 19:13-14: Do not defraud or rob your neighbor. Do not make your hired workers wait until the next day to receive their pay. Do not insult the deaf or cause the blind to stumble. You must fear your God; I am the Lord.


IV. Loving Others means being impartial (15) 

Leviticus 19:15: Do not twist justice in legal matters by favoring the poor or being partial to the rich and powerful. Always judge people fairly. 


V. Loving others means doing the right thing in relationships. (16-18) 

Leviticus 19:16-18: Do not spread slanderous gossip among your people. Do not stand idly by when your neighbor’s life is threatened. I am the Lord. Do not nurse hatred in your heart for any of your relatives. Confront people directly so you will not be held guilty for their sin. Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against a fellow Israelite, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord. 


These verses give us four ways to do the right thing in relationships. (This is not exhaustive.)

  1. Don’t gossip! If you are not a part of the problem or part of the solution, then you should not be talking about it or listen to it.
  2. Protect your neighbors.
  3. Don’t hate in your heart, especially against relatives.
  4. Confront people directly

Matthew ends his Gospel with specific instructions from Jesus to His disciples and to us, His modern day disciples about how we are to go out and change the world.


I. Jesus gives us the authority to change the world. The resurrected Christ, who conquered Satan, sin, and death has been given all authority by God the Father and Jesus now gives us the power to operate in that same authority, through the power of the Holy Spirit, which all believers are sealed with when they are born again (2 Cor. 1:22). And that authority is not be used for anything else accept changing the world!


II. Jesus gives us the process, strategy and magnitude for changing the world. The ultimate goal of the mission is to make disciples. Jesus made it clear to Nicodemus in John 3, that before you can become a disciple, “You must be born again.” Once a person is born again, then he or she embarks on the path of discipleship. So there is always an evangelistic component that paves the way for disciple-making, however, evangelism is not a part of the Great Commission. Jesus gives us the strategy that is part of the process of making disciples:


  1. Go –you must go to people who are not disciples and tell them about Jesus. You might wonder where is it that Jesus wants us to go to make disciples. The answer is go out into the world you live in and tell people the message of the Gospel. Invite them to follow Christ. Acts 1:6-11 Disciples are called to go to the ends of the earth to make disciples. 
  2. Baptize –notice someone must have begun the path of discipleship and then they are a candidate for baptism. This is the reason Southern Baptists practice “Believer’s Baptism.” You must be born again and becoming a disciple to be a candidate for baptism. Romans 6:4 3.
  3. Teach –We make disciples by going, by baptizing and by teaching. What do we teach new disciples? We teach them all that the Bible says about God, about us and about how we are to live for God. Disciples should never stop learning and growing deeper in their relationship with Christ.


III. Jesus gives us security while changing the world. Jesus promises that wherever we go to make disciples, He will be with us. He doesn’t say disciple making will be easy or instantaneous, He simply says that in the midst of your disciple-making, wherever you are on the planet, I will be with you.

Changing the World

Paul gives a description of how those who are a part of a church are to behave when they come together.


Colossians3:12-17 (NLT): Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 13 Make allowance for each others faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 14 Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. 16 Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. 17 And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.


This kind of behavior happens in the church when we are connected through community. The mission God has for us never happens if you and I are not connected to a community of believers who are committed to accomplishing the mission of loving God, loving others and changing the world. When everyone who is a part of the body of Christ is connected through community, then NOBODY STANDS ALONE.


How does a person get connected through Community?


I. Connecting through community by weekly committing to be a part of a Large Group.


At FBC, we encourage you to get up on Sunday Morning and be a part of a large group known as the FBC Worship Service.


Hebrews 10:24-25 (NLT): Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.


We come together as a large group so we can do two things:

  1. Motivate one another to acts of love and good works.
  2. Encourage one another.


II. Connecting through Community by weekly gathering with a small group.

Jesus was actually a part of a small group. He had his own small group of disciples that he met with for approximately three years. The N.T. has a number of passages that speak of disciples gathering in small groups. In these groups they prayed for one another, encouraged one another, rebuked one another, served one another, helped one another and taught one another. In these groups they celebrated together, they shared meals together, they grew to love each other deeply. We see the genesis of small groups in the early Christian church in Acts 2:42-47.


III. Connecting through community by serving with others in the community of faith.

Paul writes in Galatians 5:1 that it was for freedom that Christ has set us free.


What does a follower of Christ do with this freedom Christ has given them?


Galatians 5:13 (NLT): For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love.

Jesus set us free to live for Him, and has given us this great privilege of serving him by serving one another. There are lots of different ways to serve Christ, however, you will be most effective in your service when you are using your spiritual gifts. Peter teaches us that:


1 Peter 4:10 (NLT): God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another.


If you are a born-again follower of Christ, you have a least one spiritual gift, given to you by God, to serve the body of Christ. If you are not using your gift(s) that God has given to you, you are wasting a gift from God. Use your gift in the church to serve God and others and bring glory to God. When every believer, in the church is serving the body of Christ by using their gift(s) then we (the Church) will be able to accomplish the mission God has for us. The gift(s) you have been given should be used in the body of Christ until your dying breath.


John 17:14-19 (NLT): I have given them your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. 15 I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. 16 They do not belong to this world any more than I do. 17 Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth. 18 Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world. 19 And I give myself as a holy sacrifice for them so they can be made holy by your truth.


Jesus makes it clear that his disciples, as well as himself, no longer belong to the world. He also is not asking the Father to take them out of the world. He simply asks the Father to: Keep His disciples safe from the evil one To make his disciples holy by teaching them the truth for the Word Then He prays that just as He was sent by the father, he is now sending out His disciples into the world. Jesus keeps us in the world because his plan 2000 years ago is the same today. That plan is to send out his disciples into the world with a task to connect to the community.


What is the task we are to accomplish through connecting to the community?


The task according to 2 Corinthians 5:17-21:


2 Corinthians 5:17-21 (NLT): This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 18And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And God has given us this task of reconciling people to him. 19 For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation. 20 So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” 21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.


God, as a result of Jesus death on the cross for our sins, and His victory over death and the grave, has commissioned us and sent us out to given us this task of reconciling people back to Him. We are called his ambassadors and He has chosen to make His Gospel appeal through us. We have the wonderful ministry of reconciliation for people who are lost and eternally damned to Hell without Jesus Christ in their lives. God has called the Church to accomplish the task of reconciling sinners to Christ.


How does the church accomplish this task?


According to Dr. Jeff Iorg, President of Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary,  "We must deploy believers through a strategy known as infiltration.”


According to Dr. Iorg: North American churches today largely focus on attraction and engagement strategies to communicate the gospel.

  • An attraction strategy is a Christian event or program designed to accommodate unbelievers and introduce them to Jesus Christ.
  • An engagement strategy is an event or program designed to involve unbelievers and introduce them to Jesus Christ.

Both of these types of strategies have their place and should not be abandoned. But they are inadequate for gospel-penetration of a post-Christian or never-Christian culture across North America.

  • An infiltration strategy must be developed through and celebrated by local churches.

An INFILTRATION STRATEGY is the deployment of believers throughout the culture to introduce unbelievers to Jesus Christ in their context. Our main strategy at First Baptist Church is one of INFILTRATION. The only way we will ever connect to the community is to get out there and infiltrate the community and do what Jesus said in Matthew 5:15: “Don’t hide your light, let it shine for all…”