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We affirm doctrinal alignment with the Baptist Faith and Message. (View on sbc.net)
Journey Church is a Southern Baptist Church participating in and cooperating with the Lee County Association and the Mississippi Baptist Convention. Following are the statements of faith and practice of Journey Church:
We hold to the Bible, God’s Word, as the first, full, and final authority in all matters of faith and practice.
We believe the Bible is the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God. Our leadership studies diligently in order that we might correctly interpret and practically proclaim a well balanced diet of the Word of God. (II Timothy 2:15, II Timothy 4:1-5, II Timothy 3:16-17).
Journey Church is a local church that Jesus has promised to build as we follow Him.
The church that the Lord Jesus Christ is building is distinct in that “… the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). The word picture Jesus paints here in His promise is that of His church advancing the gospel of His kingdom against all that hell can do to hold it back. In order for the church to do this it must function in the power of the Holy Spirit. For the church to function in the power of the Holy Spirit, the church must be composed of people who are inhabited by and submitted to the Holy Spirit. This means that only to the extent that the church membership is regenerate will it be a local New Testament church that Jesus (the Head of the church) is building. Therefore, Journey Church is resolved to help people who desire to be considered as candidates for membership to examine themselves according to the biblical birthmarks of the believer to be confident that they are indeed new creations in Christ, who are committed to denying self, taking up their cross daily and following the Lord Jesus. ( Romans 8:9, 14, II Corinthians 13:5, I John, II Corinthians 5:17, John 10:27, Matthew 7:21-23, Ephesians 2:8-10)
Journey Church believes in and practices Christ honoring, life transforming, worship and praise.
John 4:24 says that God is Spirit and those who worship Him must do so in spirit and truth. Therefore, whether we are offering worship to God through song, testimony, giving of tithes and offerings, preaching or other acts of obedience we seek to ensure that our worship of God is offered from a human will and spirit that is submitted to the Holy Spirit of God based on truth revealed in the Word of God in order to bring glory to God (Ephesians 5:18-21, Matthew 5:14-16).
Journey Church believes in and practices Christian fellowship (community).
Christian fellowship is experienced and enjoyed among believers as the personal relationship we have with God the Father through God the Son spills over into our relationships with one another (I John 1:1-4). Journey Church encourages such fellowship through the small group experience we call Journey Groups, which meet regularly in homes and other venues away from the church building (Acts 2:41-47). In the relational environment of Journey Groups (with 6-12 people per group) fellowship (community) fosters accountability, mutual submission among believers, and meaningful gospel focused ministry through which evangelistic discipleship takes place.
Journey Church believes in and practices evangelistic discipleship.
When we consider what Jesus said to His disciples in His five post-resurrection appearances we discover that evangelism is the very heartbeat of disciple making.
The Lord Jesus’ first post resurrection appearance to His disciples took place on the day of His resurrection. John 20:21 records the words of Jesus on this occasion: “As the Father has sent Me, I also send you." Just as Jesus was sent by the Father with the mission of revealing God to the world, so we are sent as ambassadors of Christ to declare and demonstrate the gospel to the world. (II Corinthians 5:17-20). Though we are not God, He does live in and through us in the person of the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 6:19). Therefore, the lost world about us should be able to see Christ in us, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). Also, just as Jesus was sent by the Father with the mission of redeeming and reconciling a lost world to God, so we are given the ministry and message of reconciliation to share with the lost (II Corinthians 5:17-21).
The second post resurrection appearance of our Lord and Savior took place in the upper room. There Jesus spoke to His disciples the words recorded in Mark 16:15 "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” Some believers are called to preach (kerruso in the greek) as heralds in a formal setting where people have gathered to hear the gospel. We call these “preachers.” But actually every believer is called to preach (laleo in the greek), which means to speak in a conversational manner the gospel of the Lord Jesus to others.
The third post resurrection appearance of the Lord Jesus took place on a mountain in Galilee, where over five hundred people were gathered. Matthew records the words of our Savior on this occasion in chapter 28:18-20 Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. Making disciples begins with, “…baptizing them (those who believe the gospel we preach) in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” Biblical baptism is by immersion. Therefore, only those believers who submit to baptism by immersion will be received as members of Journey Church. A person doesn’t submit to baptism in order to be saved. Rather, a person submits to baptism because he has been saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone.
Making disciples continues with, “… teaching them to observe all things that Jesus has commanded us.” The difference between just teaching someone and teaching someone to observe is accountability and submission. One of the results of being “filled” (controlled) by the Holy Spirit is mutual submission (among believers). Unless a church is composed of regenerate believers who are individually submitted to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and corporately submitted to one another under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, that church will be dysfunctional. A dysfunctional church is unable to effectively carry out the mission of Christ. Journey Church purposes to be a functional church, faithfully and fervently carrying out the mission of Christ.
The fourth post resurrection appearance of the Lord is recorded in Luke 24:46-48, where Jesus emphasized the necessity of repentance in the gospel message. We fear that many unregenerate people profess to be Christians because they have responded to a false gospel that did not call for biblical repentance. Therefore, we will preach the gospel according to Jesus, which explains biblical repentance and faith (Luke 13:3,5; Acts 3:19, II Corinthians 7:10, Romans 2:4).
The fifth post resurrection appearance of the Lord Jesus is recorded in Acts 1:8 where Jesus says, “… you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." The regenerate church member is empowered by the Holy Spirit to bear witness of Jesus to others.
Journey Church believes in and practices a congregational form of church government that is elder led, small group leader served, and congregation involved.
After Paul and Barnabas returned to the churches they planted during their first missionary journey, Acts 14:30 says “… they appointed elders for them in every church.” In Acts 20:17 Paul sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church. Believing that there is a clear biblical basis for a plurality of elders, Journey Church will seek to ordain biblically qualified elders to lead the church. We are convinced that there is wisdom in having elders who are volunteer as well as vocational. Small group leaders will also work alongside the elders to lead and serve the pastoral needs of Journey Church. The congregation will be involved in the work of the ministry, along with the elders and small group leaders (I Timothy 3:1-13, Titus 1 and 2, Acts 6).
Journey Church believes in and practices redemptive church discipline.
God predestined that believers be conformed to the image of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29). Unlike man, who often fails to complete what he starts, God continues and completes the work He commences in His children (Romans 8:30, Philippians 1:6, Hebrews 7:25). Justification takes place when a person repents of sin and receives Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Justification is the act whereby God declares the believer righteous in Christ. Sanctification is the process through which God transforms the believer’s character and conduct into the likeness of Christ. Glorification is the instantaneous consummation of the believer’s transformation into the likeness of Christ. Glorification will take place when the believer’s faith turns to sight (I John 3:1-3). God uses the Spirit of God, the Word of God, and the people of God to transform us into the likeness of His Son, the Lord Jesus. (II Corinthians 3:18, John 17:17, Matthew 18:15-18, Ephesians 5:18, 20). Since the church is the body of Christ, providing a physical and tangible expression of the Spirit of God to a world that is spiritually dead, and since the body of Christ (the church) is composed of many different members (believers), we have not only a right, but indeed a responsibility to concern ourselves with each other’s sanctification. In the interest of the sanctification of individual believers and the body of believers as a whole, Journey Church will compassionately practice redemptive church discipline as prescribed in the Word of God (Matthew 18:15-18, Galatians 6:1-2, I Corinthians 5:1-13, Titus 3:10, I Timothy 5:19-20).