Purpose & Mission Statement:
Finishing the Great Commission in the Finisterre Mountains of Papua New Guinea
Church of Christ
1. The Holy Scriptures We believe the Scriptures - both the Old and New Testaments - to be the verbally inspired Word of God, written by men under God's control, inerrant and infallible in the original manuscripts and the final authority in faith and life. We accept the grammatical-historical system of interpretation of the Scriptures, and accept the historical record of the Bible as accurate. 2. The Godhead We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - who are identical in essence, equal in power and glory, and possess precisely the same attributes and perfection. 3. The Person and Work of Christ We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man without ceasing to be God; that He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin in order that He might redeem sinful man. He accomplished this redemption by voluntarily giving Himself as a sinless substitutionary sacrifice on the cross thereby satisfying God's righteous judgment against the sin of the elect. He gave proof that He accomplished that redemption by His bodily resurrection from the grave. He then ascended to the right hand of His Father where He intercedes on behalf of His people. 4. The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit We believe that the Holy Spirit is the Divine Person who convicts the world of sin; that He alone brings new life to those who are spiritually dead; that He places all believers into the one true church, which is the Body of Christ, that He indwells them permanently, seals them unto the day of redemption, and bestows spiritual gifts upon them. 5. The Condition of Man We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, in innocence and without sin. But in Adam's sin the race fell, inherited the guilt of his sin, a sinful nature, becoming spiritually dead and alienated from God so that man is a sinner both by nature and choice. Man, of himself, is incapable of remedying his lost and depraved condition. 6. Salvation We believe that salvation is the gift of God's grace given to all whom God has elected to salvation. It includes all that God does in saving the elect from the penalty, power and presence of sin and in restoring them to a right relationship with God. As such, it is solely the work of God from initiation to completion. The regenerating work of the Holy Spirit is the cause, not the result of the believer's saving faith. It cannot be gained by good works, but is a free gift for all who put their trust in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross. All who trust in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord are forgiven and saved from their sins and made righteous before God and are born into the family of God. God's purpose for saving His elect is so that they bring glory to Him by their lives. 7. Security, Assurance and Responsibility We believe that all the saved - those in whom God has accomplished His transforming work of grace - are kept by His power and thus, are secure in Christ forever. This assurance, however, is not the occasion for sin, for God in His holiness cannot tolerate persistent sin in His children, and in infinite love He corrects them. True faith in Christ is expressed by a fruitful, God-pleasing life that endures until death. 8. Sanctification We believe that God, in the Scriptures, has given us everything pertaining to life and godliness. This includes the salvation from the penalty of sin and just as surely the provision of sanctification (separation) from sin. Sanctification from sin affects both the positional and practical aspects. Positional sanctification as a work of the Holy Spirit is complete and absolute; however, practical sanctification is a result of the continuing work of the Spirit using the Word of God to provide nourishment for growth into maturity in Christ. While the process of practical sanctification is assured by the Word and the Spirit, it is yet imperfect in this life. There is some element of corruption in every part of the fallen nature which is the source for the war between the flesh and the Spirit. Spiritual growth occurs as believers feed on the Word and are in fellowship with other believers for encouragement and service. 9. The Church We believe the true Church, called in Scripture the Body of Christ, is a spiritual organism. Every person who has trusted Jesus Christ for salvation is a part of the church. The local church, as established in Scripture, is made up of redeemed individuals who have joined together for worship, instruction, fellowship and service. 10. Ordinances We believe that our Lord Jesus Christ, instituted two ordinances to be observed by all believers as a matter of obedience, not as a condition for salvation - water baptism subsequent to the believer's profession of faith, and the Lord's supper. 11. The Eternal State We believe that at death the souls of those who have trusted Christ for salvation pass immediately into His presence and remain there in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at Christ's coming for the Church, when soul and body will be reunited. We then shall be with Him forever in glory. We also believe that at death the souls of unbelievers remain in conscious misery until the final judgment when the soul and body will be reunited and cast into the lake of fire - not to be annihilated, but to be separated from God forever in conscious punishment. 12. Eschatology We believe, according to His promise, that Jesus will physically return for His people. This truth has been revealed to provide the believer comfort and encouragement in this life.
Spiritually qualified We value spiritually qualified workers
Interdependence We value working w/ other organizations
Local Churches We value the authority of each partnering church
Sending churches We value high involvement from sending churches
Vision We value a clear understanding of the big picture
Strategy We value having a written strategy with time frames for completion
Long Term/One Way
Training Required for Service:
We are looking for men and women who are qualified according to the guidelines found in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1. A person does not need to be qualified to begin training with us. Prior to going to New Guinea, we ask that the Pastors/Elders of your church would confirm your spiritual readiness.
Training Provided by Organization:
We train missionaries to be ready for church planting in PNG. Our training covers 4 main categories: Strategy The Big Picture - the vision for reaching 250,000 people in PNG Orientation - the first 6 months in PNG Surveys - 100 people groups! Which one, Lord? Pre-evangelism ministry - how to build interest in the Gospel before you know how to talk Handling outside influences - shepherding the church in a world opposed to the Gospel Literacy - developing an alphabet, teaching it, and passing on the vision of literacy Planting the church - introducing an unreached people to the God of the universe The maturing church - Passing the vision of discipleship onto those you lead Phase out - The exit strategy for the foreign missionary Family & Team Dynamics Schooling of Missionary Kids - what are the options for educating our kids in PNG? Team Formation - getting ready to serve on a team Working Alone - preparation for those seasons where you are away from your American team Health and Wellness - basics of what you need to know about staying healthy in the tropics Partnership Development - the importance of the sending team House building - the basics of simple house construction Missionary technology - how to use an off-grid solar electric system Ministry Abilities Time Management - setting ministry goals and accomplishing them in a timely manner Teaching to change lives - Glorifying God by training obedient disciples How to teach the Gospel in PNG - telling the Gospel story from start to finish Discipleship - teaching faithful followers to pass the message on Translation - how to translate into a language that doesn’t yet have the New Testament Training leaders - teaching New Guineans how to serve others Learning Language Culture and Language Acquisition - how to learn an unwritten language in 2 years. Phonetics - reducing our foreign accent Finisterre Grammar - common grammar patterns in the Finisterre Mountains
Long-Term Missionary Accountability Practices:
Our director of training also serves as an ongoing consultant to help out with issues related to ministry. Also, we ask that a Pastor/Elder in your church come onto our board of directors to strengthen the relationship between your church and your ministry. We also require missionaries to form a core team that would meet periodically to pray for your ministry, send care packages, help you raise support, help you with house construction, etc.
The first step is to take a 12-hour class called "The Big Picture". We come to you, so it can be done in your living room or in your church. We ask that you would ask at least one Pastor/Elder to attend, and anyone else that might be interested (i.e. someone that would serve on your core team, or someone that is interested in going long term). There is no cost for this class or any other class that we offer. From there, we have another 25 classes. This is about 210 hours of very practical seminars that prepare you specifically for each step of the church planting process, from raising financial support to learning a language to sharing your faith in a foreign context. You can go through this training as fast or as slow as you would like, we'll work with your schedule and specific needs. 2 years is a good estimate from the time you take the big picture to leaving for Papua New Guinea.
Speaking to Past or Present Missionaries:
Yes. All training is done by a former church planter in Papua New Guinea. Interacting with present missionaries is a natural part of the training process.
Characteristics of the Ideal Missionary:
Someone who is unsure about their own readiness, but is convinced that God wants to reach a lost world. Someone interested in long term (about 10 years) of service. Someone who values loyalty.