Making Christ-like Disciples!
in Williston, Vermont
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.
2 Timothy 1:7
Philosophy of Ministry
Trinity Baptist Church exists to glorify God through Christ-like disciples who make other disciples.
Christ-like Disciple: Be One, Follow One, Lead One, Win One
It is our desire to be a church of fully devoted followers of the Lord Jesus, thus, servants of our beloved Savior.
We will fan the flame of this desire through the proclamation of God’s life-changing Word.
I. Love God Supremely
Our greatest commandment is to LOVE the Lord our God with ALL our heart, soul, and minds (Matthew 22:37-38; Mark 12:28-30). We believe that Christ-like disciples are characterized by an incorruptible love for God (Ephesians 6:24; Exodus 20:3). The ambition driving our worship, our teaching and preaching, our programs and our praise is the pleasure/approval of God (Romans 14:10-12, 23; 2 Corinthians 5:8-10).
In order for us to love God supremely, we must strive to put aside all competitors for our affections, so that the Lord Jesus will truly be preeminent in our daily decisions (Colossians 1:18). It is, therefore, essential that we learn how to stir one another up to love (Hebrews 10:24) and good works. We earnestly pray that our love for God would increase and abound (Philippians 1:9-10).
We will love God supremely by committing ourselves to the following priorities:
A. Excellence In All Our Efforts
It is our desire to glorify God by giving our very best effort in the accomplishment of His purposes. We believe that our efforts to make God’s worth known should be without equal. TBC is committed to seeing God’s people mature in our love for God; our love for one another; our service within the church; and our service to the world. It is our desire to be good stewards of the gifts God has given us as we engage in the work he has commanded us to do (Matt. 25:14-30; Romans 12:9-11; Colossians 3:23-24; 1 Timothy 6:11-14; 1 Peter 4:10-11).
B. Saturating Our Minds With The Word, And Submitting Our Wills To The Word
We believe that it is through the Bible that man comes into an actual knowledge and awareness of the true God. We believe that the Bible is God’s inspired, infallible, and inerrant Word (God’s self-revelation). It is the sole authority for the faith and practice of God’s people (Matthew 5:17-19; Matthew 22:29; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4), therefore we are WORD-centered in all that we do. We are purposefully seeking to build godly hearts for the purpose of godly living (Proverbs 4:23; 6:23) by concentrating on the communication of biblical truth with practical application to every area of daily living (Psalm 119:105, 130; 2 Timothy 3:16; John 17:17). We believe that biblical meditation is essential to this practical application. Meditation requires that we saturate our minds with the Word so that the Spirit may help us think God’s thoughts after Him (Psalm 1:2; 119:15, 23, 48, 78, 97, 99, 148). We believe that a living faith submits to God’s authority (i.e. the Word) by obeying His commands (John 14:15, 23; James 1:21-22).
C. Persisting In Dependent Prayer
We believe that God’s people must be committed to following God’s demand for fervent and persistent prayer (Luke 18:1-8; 1 Timothy 2:1-4). As a loving Father, God delights in answering the prayers of His children (Matthew 6:9-10; 7:7-11). Most importantly, God is glorified by our dependent faith and by His daily mercies/grace in answer to our prayers (Psalm 50:15; James 1:5; Hebrews 4:16). Therefore, we are committed to regular times of corporate prayer (Acts 2:42; 4:23-31; 13:1-3), loving intercession for one another (Philippians 1:9-11), and continual praying for the furtherance of the Gospel (2 Thessalonians 3:1; Romans 10:1). We are committed to praying for open doors to share the gospel and boldness to speak. (Ephesians 6:18-20; Colossians 4:2-6).
II. Love Others Sacrificially
Our love for Christ demands that we love others just as Christ loves us (John 13:34). We believe that sacrificial love for others is essential for credibility before a lost and dying world, and that it is evidence that we are true disciples of Christ (John 13:35). Christ’s love has been poured out into our hearts enabling us to love one another as we are being loved (Romans 5:5). Therefore, we structure ministry opportunities where meaningful relationships and mutual accountability can be developed (Galatians 5:13; 1 Peter 4:10). Growing together demands the development of ministry programs that best serve His people. Programs are not more important than people.
We will love other sacrificially by committing ourselves to the following priorities:
A. Faithfully Assembling Together To Worship The LORD And Encouraging/Exhorting One Another
Christ-like disciples engage in loving relationships with one another. Christ’s love causes us to consider the spiritual well-being of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Our desire to please Jesus compels us to assemble together considering how our presence and interaction with others will help them grow in their love for God and in their devotion to serving Him. (Hebrews 10:24-25; Hebrews 3:13). Christ-like disciples are able to encourage one another with the Word (Romans 15:14). Our loving concern for the spiritual well-being of God’s children compels us to move toward those who are struggling in their walk with an earnest desire to see them restored (Gal 6:1-2).
B. Equipping Believers To Do The Work Of The Ministry
We believe that every member of the local church is responsible and accountable for the work of the ministry. We believe that God has given vocational ministers (pastors) to His church for the purpose of equipping and empowering believers (church members) to be disciple makers (Ephesians 4:11-13). We believe disciple makers will gladly spend themselves for the spiritual well-being of others (Ephesians 4:15-16; 2 Corinthians 12:15). We believe that serving in the work of the ministry is a grace gift to us and it is our desire to be good stewards of those gifts so that God would be glorified by our lives (1 Peter 4:10-11). Therefore, we strive to place the programs of Trinity Baptist Church into the hands of non-vocational ministers.
C. Mentoring Spiritual Leaders
We believe that God calls on His disciples to make other disciples through an intentional process of mentoring. We believe that teachers and spiritual leaders in our church need to set an example worthy of imitation (Luke 6:40; 1 Corinthians 11:1; Phil. 3:17; 2 Timothy 2:1-2; Hebrews 13:7). It is our earnest desire to mentor a new generation of Christ-like leaders who will faithfully lead in God’s church. Building a culture of discipleship at TBC demands intentionality and personal commitment. It is our goal for every disciple to have another Christ-like disciple to follow while helping another disciple to grow.
III. Serve Christ Fervently
We believe that God has entrusted each of His children with spiritual gifts that are to be used in the work of the ministry (Rom. 12:6-8). Faithful stewardship of those gifts requires fervent engagement in disciple making (Romans 12:11). Fervency in serving Christ is compelled by the reality of our accountability. We will all appear before Christ and it ought to be our earnest desire to receive His commendation (Matthew 25:21, 23; 2 Corinthians 5:9-10). As managers of God’s resources, we are accountable for how we invest our lives, abilities, material assets, and even our relationships (1 Corinthians 4:5; Romans 14:12). We will clearly communicate service opportunities and structure ministry to encourage every member to serve.
We believe that Biblical fellowship involves partnering together for the accomplishment of our God-given purposes (i.e. glorifying God as Christ-like disciples who make other disciples). Our fellowship together is a reflection of our fellowship with God; therefore it must be priority and we must pursue it (Acts 2:42; 1 John 1:3-4; 1 John 1:6-7).
We will serve Christ fervently by committing ourselves to the following priorities:
A. Using Our Spritiual Gifts For The Good Of Others
We believe that God has given spiritual gifts to every believer that enables us to be both useful and fruitful in the ministries of the local church (1 Corinthians 12:7; 1 Peter 4:10a). These gifts have been given for the spiritual good of the local church. Every member of Trinity Baptist Church should be eager to serve others with the gifts God has given to them. We believe that the church will grow when the church family faithfully ministers to one another. Serving in the church with the gifts God has given to each of us is a matter of stewardship (1 Corinthians 14:12; 1 Peter 4:10) and we want every member to be a good and faithful steward. We are committed to placing believers into areas of ministry according to their God-given gifts and abilities. We ask every member to join/start a ministry support team where they will Serve Christ Fervently.
B. Allowing The Spirit To Have Free-course In Our Hearts So That We Can Engage In Spirit-motivated Ministry
We believe that God’s children can live in submission to the Holy Spirit. The Spirit enables us to bear spiritual fruit that will make God’s glory known to others (Galatians 5:16, 5:22-25). We believe that the Holy Spirit works in the hearts of God’s people to burden our hearts for ministry with a desire to please God in all that we do (Nehemiah 2:12; 1 Timothy 3:1). God promises to work in the lives of His children to enable us to both desire and do His work (Philippians 2:13; Psalm 37:4). We are eager to see God’s people bearing spiritual fruit, therefore, we seek and encourage every member to participate in the development of our church ministries. We are excited to see new Ministry Support teams established by the gifted members God brings to Trinity.
C. Honoring Servant Leadership
We believe that God has established clear positions of leadership within His church (1 Timothy 3:1; 10; Titus 1:5). Leaders holding these positions must be genuine servants who will seek the benefit and development of the congregation entrusted under their care (Matthew 20:20-28; 1 Peter 5:1-4). We will, therefore, honor Christ-like humility in our leaders. We must protect the unity of our church family by striving for consensus as we carefully apply biblical principles to everyday life and ministry.
D. Pursuing Godliness
Our service for Christ must be fueled by a genuine desire for and delight in godliness (i.e. Christ-likeness (1 Timothy 6:11; 2 Timothy 2:22; Hebrews 12:14). We have been called to FIGHT the GOOD fight of FAITH as we follow Jesus’s exemplary life – living the truth in the presence of a hostile and unbelieving world (1 Timothy 6:12-14). We will not pursue godliness unless we truly believe that it has great value in this present life and the life to come (1 Timothy 4:8). Our pursuit of godliness is a fight against loving this world and a fight for contentment with God and His provisions (1 Timothy 6:6-10). It is our earnest desire to “Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness” (Palm 29:2; 96:9).
IV. Share Christ Fearlessly
One of the heartbeats of the Trinity Baptist Church is replication (i.e. Great Commission living). We are asking the Lord to strengthen us by His matchless grace so we might labor with genuine compassion for the lost and hurting world around us with an unwavering commitment to making God’s glory known. May we fearlessly engage our community with the same heart as our Savior!
We believe that God places every believer into a relational network of people that are to be our primary evangelistic focus. We believe that it is pleasing to the Lord when His redeemed people develop redemptive relationships with the lost (John 10:16; 17:18; 20:21). We are not to be of this world, instead we are to be in the world giving a clear verbal witness about Jesus (Romans 10:9-15; Colossians 4:5-6). We are to live the Christian life in such a way that unbelievers cannot miss the evidence of God’s grace and love (Matthew 5:16). We encourage every believer to have regular contact with the unbelieving world, while avoiding its corruption. We will encourage one another to never be ashamed of the Gospel (Romans 1:16; 2 Timothy 1:8). We will pray earnestly for God to open doors for the gospel and grant us boldness to share His gospel without fear (Colossians 4:2-4; Ephesians 6:18-19).
We will share Christ fearlessly by committing ourselves to the following priorities:
A. Praying Regularly For The Salvation Of People In Our Community
We believe that God has commissioned us to make disciples by fearlessly sharing the His Gospel with others. Great Commission living is our desire and seeing lives changed by the power of God is our delight. We ask every member to develop and maintain an evangelistic prayer list. Each year, we will ask the Lord to give us three or more people in our community for whom we will commitment to pray for their salvation (both individually and corporately). Our Lord is honored by answered prayer (Psalm 50:15) and has promised to answer our prayers when we ask according to His will (1 John 5:14-15). It is God’s will for us to be boldness witnesses and for us to ask Him to send us out as laborers in His harvest field (Matthew 9:37-38).
B. Equipping Believers To Share The Gospel
We are seeking to train every believer to communicate the Gospel and to provide opportunities for unbelievers to be introduced to the fellowship of our church. We will provide training opportunities through our Life-groups and our Discipleship Groups will encourage one another to be bold witnesses to the lost community in which we live and work. Our call to follow Jesus demands that we engage in intentional outreach and such outreach demands intentional equipping.
C. Developing Outreach Into Our Community
Jesus wants us to really believe that the fields (i.e. the community) in which we labor are white unto harvest (John 4:35-38). Knowing that our God is Sovereign and desires for all to be saved, we are certain that God has placed us exactly where we need to be. God has a people for us to reach with His Gospel and promises that He will open spiritually blinded eyes and draw sinners to Himself in saving faith. We are God’s fellow workers (1 Corinthians 3:6-9) in His building program for His church.
We believe that the Lord has provided us three primary avenues of outreach to our community. First, we will prayerfully identify key events that will provide us the greatest opportunities to communicate the gospel clearly to our community. We will not, however, be dependent upon events for evangelism. Our goal is few but excellent events.
We believe that the primary avenue of outreach is the personal redemptive relationships developed by each member with people in this community. So we will pray together and work together to build relationships with lost people in our community.
Finally, we believe that our church should engage our community with the love of Christ and seek to make His goodness known in tangibles ministries of helps. We will look for ways to serve our community (i.e. to be blessing others) that will add credibility to our witness and demonstration of our love.