We enthusiastically embrace and proclaim the historic doctrines of grace as summarized in the Westminster Confession of Faith (with Proof Texts), the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, the Heidelberg Catechism, the Apostle’s Creed and the Nicene Creed.
In brief, we believe:
All men have sinned against the glory and majesty of God and are by nature “without God and without hope” in the world (Ephesians 2:12), “dead in trespasses and sins" (Ephesians 2:1), and therefore unable to believe the gospel (John 3:1-10; John 8:43) apart from the work of the Holy Spirit.
God has sovereignly chosen His people, without any foresight of faith on their part (Ephesians 1:4-5), entirely because of His amazing grace and unfailing love, to be redeemed by the atoning work of Jesus Christ, His only Son.
All who repent of their sins and call upon the name of the Lord will be saved. There is no salvation apart from Jesus Christ, the mediator between God and man (Acts 4:12).
Sinners who come to Christ are enabled to do so by the quickening, regenerating power of the Holy Spirit and will be preserved to the end at which time they will be presented faultless (Jude 1:24) before the presence of His glory.
Justification is by faith alone (Romans 5:1). By it sinners are declared righteous through the merit of Jesus Christ and equipped for deeds of love and mercy that will bring honor and glory to God.
Salvation is by grace alone (Ephesians 2:8-10).
Sanctification is the work of God’s Spirit in conforming redeemed sinners to the image and likeness of Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29).
Jesus Christ will return to earth, bodily, visibly, and triumphantly, at a time unknown to man, to consummate His kingdom and usher in the new heavens and the new earth (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).
All Scripture is the inspired, inerrant word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and practice (2 Timothy 3:16).
We are organized according to the Stephens Valley Church Polity (SVCP), which bears many similarities to the PCA Book of Church Order. Although we are not affiliated with a denomination, we are governed by a ruling Council consisting of the senior pastor and elders. Our assistant pastors are a vital part of the ministry but do not serve on the Council. Like the senior pastor, elders are also elected by the congregation after an appropriate vetting process.
Elders are divided into two categories: shepherds and stewards. All stewards are shepherds, but not all shepherds are stewards. All Elders have shepherding oversight over a small number of families and individuals within the congregation. Stewards, however, have the additional responsibility of serving on the Council and working closely with the senior pastor to oversee each ministry in the church, formulate the philosophy of ministry and vision, establish budgetary priorities, and implement personnel decisions.
We also have a committee of deacons that reports to the Council. All officers are vetted and trained before the congregational election. Our deacons are not organized as a board but rather serve as a committee of the Council, thus giving them greater communication and leadership opportunities than might be the case if they were a separate board.
To become a member of Stephens Valley Church we ask that you attend the Inquirers' Class. Once the class is completed you will meet with an elder or member of the pastoral staff for a brief interview. After a successful interview the pastor or elder will then recommend you to the Council for membership.
- Do you acknowledge yourself to be a sinner in the sight of God, justly deserving His displeasure, and without hope save in His sovereign mercy?
- Do you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God and Savior of sinners, and do you receive and rest upon Him alone for salvation as He is offered in the gospel?
- Do you promise, in humble reliance upon the grace of the Holy Spirit that you will endeavor to live as becomes the followers of Christ?
- Do you promise to support the worship and work of the church to the best of your ability?
- Do you respect the government and discipline of the church, and promise to promote its purity and peace?