What are our Core Values?

The gospel changes everything. It is the “power of God” (Rom 1:16) not only for unbelievers, but for believers as well. It transforms not only individuals, but also churches, societies, and culture at large. We will proclaim the gospel not just as a gate we pass through one time, but as a path of ongoing renewal and repentance that we are to walk each day of our lives. The theme of gospel-centered renewal will permeate everything we do.

Mantra: “Death is necessary for life.”

Evangelism is not an event or a duty, but an ethos. We will build an evangelistic culture in three ways. First, we will actively cultivate authentic, redemptive relationships with nonbelievers, inviting them into the community of faith. Second, all of our ministries will have an “outward face” welcoming skeptic and seekers into our midst. Third, we will adopt a process-oriented communication style, inviting questions and engaging in dialogue about what we believe and why.

Mantra: “Thermostat’s not thermometers.”

Though every church is both organism and organization, bureaucracy easily crowds out spiritual vitality. As Erwin McManus says, “Structure must always submit to Spirit.” Our leadership will be communal rather than controlling, and we will relentlessly pursue the health and life of the church as an organism. Healthy churches will grow naturally; unhealthy ones never will.

Mantra: “Healthy organisms thrive.”

The kingdom of God is always advancing, never static. God’s people are not called to seek comfort, but rather to align their purposes radically with His. BHI will not be a “haven for the holy.” Instead, we will emphasize leadership development and empowerment to release God’s people into kingdom-advancing ministry. We will partner with other churches and ministries to see the gospel spread throughout Lincoln and beyond. And we will plant other churches with the same gospel-based values across our region and around the world.

Mantra: “Everything that has life reproduces itself.”

God is jealous for His own glory (Isaiah 48:11). And the deepest longings of the human soul can only be satisfied when we delight in God’s supremacy and rest in His sovereign grace (Romans 8:28-39). We will purposefully, intentionally make God primary in all things, joyfully savoring His greatness in all we do.

Mantra: “God is the source of all life.”

The gospel changes everything. It is the “power of God” (Rom 1:16) not only for unbelievers, but for believers as well. It transforms not only individuals, but also churches, societies, and culture at large. We will proclaim the gospel not just as a gate we pass through one time, but as a path of ongoing renewal and repentance that we are to walk each day of our lives. The theme of gospel-centered renewal will permeate everything we do.

Mantra: “Death is necessary for life.”

Evangelism is not an event or a duty, but an ethos. We will build an evangelistic culture in three ways. First, we will actively cultivate authentic, redemptive relationships with nonbelievers, inviting them into the community of faith. Second, all of our ministries will have an “outward face” welcoming skeptic and seekers into our midst. Third, we will adopt a process-oriented communication style, inviting questions and engaging in dialogue about what we believe and why.

Mantra: “Thermostat’s not thermometers.”

Though every church is both organism and organization, bureaucracy easily crowds out spiritual vitality. As Erwin McManus says, “Structure must always submit to Spirit.” Our leadership will be communal rather than controlling, and we will relentlessly pursue the health and life of the church as an organism. Healthy churches will grow naturally; unhealthy ones never will.

Mantra: “Healthy organisms thrive.”

The kingdom of God is always advancing, never static. God’s people are not called to seek comfort, but rather to align their purposes radically with His. BHI will not be a “haven for the holy.” Instead, we will emphasize leadership development and empowerment to release God’s people into kingdom-advancing ministry. We will partner with other churches and ministries to see the gospel spread throughout Lincoln and beyond. And we will plant other churches with the same gospel-based values across our region and around the world.

Mantra: “Everything that has life reproduces itself.”

Our Unique Styles

We emphasize the oldness of the church, not its newness. Our preaching will be rooted in historic Protestant/Pentecostal theology. Our worship will gladly incorporate creeds, confessions, hymns, and liturgies into a current worship style that will be both broadly attractive and deeply spiritual. Our small groups and discipleship endeavors will teach people to hear the voice of God through Scripture, communal life, and contemplative prayer. We will unashamedly stand in the rich stream of historic Protestant/Pentecostal orthodoxy and allow it to soak into everything we do.

Mantra: “Life in the present comes from life in the past.”

This speaks to us being a REFLECTIVE worshipping community.

Historically informed, God-centered, and communal-driven. We combine the best of church history with the best of modern worship art.  Our worship is also Prophetic. During our worship experience we listen for the heartbeat of God and release the sound of heaven in the earth.  What we hear and we see, we say as an affirmation of the prayer Jesus taught us to pray: “as in heaven, so on earth.”

Cell/Celebration model (small groups + corporate worship). In most living organisms, smaller, simple structures are organized together into a larger, more complex structure. Neither is “more important;” there is a symbiotic relationship between the smaller units and the larger organism. A healthy church should manifest the same dynamic. Our corporate worship service on Sunday mornings (the church gathered) will nurture the smaller units, providing worship, teaching, corporate prayer, the administration of sacraments, and vision casting. Our small groups (the church extended) will nurture the larger unit by facilitating shepherding, prayer, outreach, and service. Small groups will intentionally reflect our core values: they will be outposts of transformation and mission rather than stagnant pools of mere information and “fellowship.”

Front door/Side door combination. We will leverage our strengths in preaching and worship to draw unbelievers into community through “front door” strategies. We expect to become known in the community for the strength of our teaching and the excellence of our worship. But front door outreach strategies only work if God’s people have meaningful relationships with unbelievers. So every church member is encouraged and resourced to minister within his/her sphere of influence and engage in gospel dialogue. Through personal relationships, open small groups, and effective marketplace ministry, we hope to provide plentiful “side door” entry points for unchurched people of Atlanta.

Team-based and organic. Our goal is a church-wide culture of unity by pursuing deep unity at the leadership level. Pastors and elders resolve conflict, make decisions as a team, serve each other, and share responsibility. Lay leaders are empowered to build teams and to discern and unleash the giftedness of those in their care. Our church is driven by sound purposes, motivated by compelling vision, and led through authentic relationships.

Historically informed, God-centered, and communal-driven. We combine the best of church history with the best of modern worship art.  Our worship is also Prophetic. During our worship experience we listen for the heartbeat of God and release the sound of heaven in the earth.  What we hear and we see, we say as an affirmation of the prayer Jesus taught us to pray: “as in heaven, so on earth.”

Cell/Celebration model (small groups + corporate worship). In most living organisms, smaller, simple structures are organized together into a larger, more complex structure. Neither is “more important;” there is a symbiotic relationship between the smaller units and the larger organism. A healthy church should manifest the same dynamic. Our corporate worship service on Sunday mornings (the church gathered) will nurture the smaller units, providing worship, teaching, corporate prayer, the administration of sacraments, and vision casting. Our small groups (the church extended) will nurture the larger unit by facilitating shepherding, prayer, outreach, and service. Small groups will intentionally reflect our core values: they will be outposts of transformation and mission rather than stagnant pools of mere information and “fellowship.”

Front door/Side door combination. We will leverage our strengths in preaching and worship to draw unbelievers into community through “front door” strategies. We expect to become known in the community for the strength of our teaching and the excellence of our worship. But front door outreach strategies only work if God’s people have meaningful relationships with unbelievers. So every church member is encouraged and resourced to minister within his/her sphere of influence and engage in gospel dialogue. Through personal relationships, open small groups, and effective marketplace ministry, we hope to provide plentiful “side door” entry points for unchurched people of Atlanta.

Team-based and organic. Our goal is a church-wide culture of unity by pursuing deep unity at the leadership level. Pastors and elders resolve conflict, make decisions as a team, serve each other, and share responsibility. Lay leaders are empowered to build teams and to discern and unleash the giftedness of those in their care. Our church is driven by sound purposes, motivated by compelling vision, and led through authentic relationships.

Bethesda House International Church is a Non-Denominational  Church. Our   worship experience is blended, meaning it is a reflection of various Christian denominations. If you grew up in a Christian church, there is a chance that you might experience a component of the worship experience from your prior experience. Our worship is most reflective of pentecostal, methodist and Baptists experiences.