What We Believe
Who are we?
Calvary Chapel Kelowna exists to glorify God. We continually strive to lead others into an ever-deepening, life-changing relationship with Jesus Christ. Our ministry is founded on the Great Commandment and the Great Commission. Matthew 22:37-39. Matthew 28:18-20.
Calvary Chapel is a non-denominational affiliation of over 1500 churches, worldwide. We place a very high priority on the practice of expository Bible teaching. (For more information, read Calvary Chapel Distinctives, and watch A Venture in Faith, by Pastor Chuck Smith)
Statement of Faith
There is One God, eternally existing as three fully divine Persons; the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each member of the Trinity has the same nature and is equal in status. Each Person has distinct but complementary roles, operating in perfect unity for the redemption of man. Genesis 1:26, Matthew 3:16-`7,2 Corinthians 13:14.
All sixty-six books of the Bible, Old Testament and New Testament, are God’s full self-disclosure to mankind. Under the influence of the Holy Spirit, 40 different men, with their unique personalities and writing styles, were supernaturally inspired to record God’s word. The Bible is without error in it’s original writings. Therefore, those who devote themselves to study the whole counsel of the Bible, can accurately learn and grow in understanding of God’s Word. Scripture is fully reliable as God’s final and sufficient authority to all humans. 2 Peter 1:21, 2 Timothy 3:15-17.
God the Father, through His Son, Jesus Christ, and by the power of the Holy Spirit, created the Universe. Psalm 33:6, Col. 1:16, Exodus 31:17, Genesis
1. Job 26:13
Satan is real, and he opposes the church. He is the arch-enemy of God. Therefore, Satan is the adversary of every Christian. He continually tempts, accuses, and tries to deceive the whole world and mislead those who follow Jesus. His ultimate destiny is sealed. He will spend eternity in the lake of fire. Isaiah 14:12-15, 2 Corinthians 4:4, Revelation 12:7, Revelation 20:10.
On the 6th day of creation, God made a man and a woman. He made them in His own image. Through the very breath of God, every human has life. God gave humanity free will for the purpose of glorifying Him, and to enjoy fellowship with Him. Genesis 1:26, Genesis 2:7, 1 Corinthians 1:9.
The first woman (Eve) was tempted by Satan. She convinced her husband, Adam, they should exercise their free will by disobeying God. Through their actions sin entered the world. Since then, all men and women have sinned. All fall short of the perfect standard, the holiness of God. We are born sinners. The just consequence for our sin is death and condemnation to Hell, alienated from God. Genesis 3:1 18, Psalm 51:5, Romans 6:23.
Incarnation of Christ
God took on the flesh of humanity in the form of a baby. Jesus was born to a young virgin girl in Bethlehem, just as was prophesied. He was fully man. He grew up. He got tired and thirsty. He had human emotions. He was tempted in every way known to mankind. He died a human death. He was fully man but fully God. John 1:14, Isaiah 7:14, Luke 2:40, John 4:6, John 12:7, Hebrews 4:15, Luke 23:44-46.
God demonstrated his love for the world in that while we were still sinners He sent His son Jesus Christ to earth. Through His death on the cross, Jesus became the sole, substitutionary, complete payment for our sin. There is no other way in which one can be saved, but through Jesus Christ. Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23, Romans 5:8, Acts 4:12.
Every living person has the free will to make choices that will affect their eternal destination. Those who acknowledge their sin, repent, turn from sin, and believe in their hearts that Jesus is LORD and trust in Him alone, will be saved for eternity. No one can come to the Father except through Jesus. He is the only way to receive eternal life. Acts 16:31, 1 Thess. 5:9, Romans
10:9, Acts 3:19, Romans 5:1, Romans 8:38-39, Ephesians 1:13-14, John 14:6.
It is impossible for us to fully understand God’s sovereignty. Scripture is clear, we are given free will. However, God knows the future and has total sovereign control over all things. Psalm 139:1-4, Colossians 1:16-17.
Resurrection of Christ
The resurrection of Christ from the dead is a historical fact. After His death, Jesus appeared to many giving them indisputable proof that He had risen from the grave. The resurrection of Jesus after His death is testimony to the power of God and His sovereignty over death. Christianity stands apart from all other religions because God took the punishment for our sins, died on the cross, and then rose from the grave. Matthew 28:1-20, John 20:1-21, Acts 1:1-11.
The promise to all true followers of Christ is that they will, likewise, be raised from death to eternal life. John 11:25-26, Luke 20:35-36, 1 Corinthians 15:35-58.
God’s love is a perfecting love. As a result, we are saved from our sins. Through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we are set apart for God’s purposes. We are in a life-long process of being purified. Growing in love for God, becoming obedient to His commandments, selflessly loving others, and bearing fruit, all for the glory of God. Ephesians 2:1-10. 2 Corinthians 7:1, John 14:15, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 1 Peter 2:9, John 15:8.
Scripture commands that everyone who comes to faith in Jesus Christ is to be baptized, once. This is an important choice of obedience in the life of a Christian. A declaration of a believer’s salvation through Jesus Christ is confessed and the believer is fully immersed in water. As an outward demonstration of an inward reality, we identify with Jesus in His death, burial, and resurrection. Acts 2:41, Romans 6:3-5.
During what is known as the Last Supper – a Passover celebration – Jesus took a loaf of bread, gave thanks to the Father, broke the bread and gave a piece to each of His disciples. Symbolically, this represented how Jesus’ body would be broken. Afterward, Jesus poured wine into a cup and passed it to each of His disciples to drink, symbolizing His blood poured out for all humanity. Matthew 26:26-29.
As commanded in the Scriptures, believers remember Jesus’ sacrificial act by observing communion together. During this solemn act of worship, believers take time to reflect and consider the impact of what Christ did and how it has transformed our lives. The elements of bread and juice (symbolizing His sacrifice) are served to those who wish to participate. Together, we eat the bread and drink the juice. We are commanded to participate in communion, regularly, until Christ’s return. 1 Corinthians 11:23-29.
The church is the redeemed people of God. Those who have been saved become part of the universal church family (aka: The Body of Christ). Jesus is the head of the church. 1 Peter 2:9, Colossians 1:18
Scripture urges believers to be committed to a regular gathering of the local group of believers. Believers are to devote themselves to worship, to prayer, to the teaching of the Word, to communion, and to fellowship. Church is a place where believers love, encourage, serve, and spur one another on to keep doing good work. Hebrews 10:25, 1 Corinthians 12:14-20, 1 Timothy 4:13, 1 John 4:12, Hebrews 3:1, Hebrews 10:24.
Every believer has unique gifts and abilities, according to the Holy Spirit’s will. These gifts are given to edify the body of Christ, so they can challenge, encourage, strengthen, and support other saints as they mature in Christ.
Spiritual gifts also equip believers for the purpose of evangelizing the world and glorifying God. Ephesians 1:22-23, 1 Corinthians 12:13
The tribulation is an unparalleled outpouring of God’s judgment on the world, which will take place in the future. At that time, God will deal specifically with Israel and He will also deal with all people that have rejected His Son, Jesus Christ. God’s wrath will be poured out over all the earth in a series of judgments. This will take place over a 7 year period. Daniel 12:1, Daniel 9:24-27, Revelation 7-14.
Believers are not appointed to suffer God’s wrath. God will remove His people from the earth before the tribulation period begins. Those raptured will be comprised of all true believers, including those who have previously passed away. At the rapture, every Christian will be caught up in the air with Jesus. We believe in and expect the soon pre-tribulation rapture of the
Church. 1 Thessalonians 5:9, 1 Corinthians 15:51-53, Revelation 3:10.
Thousand Year Reign of Christ
The second coming of Christ will bring an end to the tribulation period. Satan will be temporarily bound. Christ will set up His Kingdom in Jerusalem for 1000 years. Only believers will enter this millennial kingdom. As a result, it will be an unprecedented time of obedience to Christ and there will be true peace and prosperity throughout the world. Revelation 20:2-7, Luke 1:32-33.
Heaven and Hell
There is a literal Heaven and a literal Hell. All those who repent and place their faith, hope, and trust in Jesus Christ will spend eternity in Heaven with the LORD. Those who reject Jesus’ free gift of salvation will spend eternity separated from the LORD, where torment and destruction are everlasting. Psalm 9:17, Matthew 5:3, 5:22, 18:0, 25:31-34, John 3:18, Hebrews 12:23, 1 Peter 1:4, 2 Thess. 1:9.
God created men and women distinct, to complement and to support one another. God instituted monogamous marriage between male and female as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. Jesus reaffirmed marriage in the New Testament. Sex is reserved for the covenant of marriage.
Just as Jesus is the leader of the church, the family unit follows His example: men are responsible to lead their families in a selfless, sacrificial way. Women are to follow their husband’s lead. Children are to obey their parents. Ephesians 5:21-6:4; Colossians 3:18-21; 1 Peter 3:1-7
The nation of Israel is God’s chosen people. In God’s sovereign will, Israel serves as a channel of His blessing to the entire world, for His glory, and His witness to the nations. God’s election of Israel for this unique relationship is irrevocable. Gen. 28:13, Gen. 12:3, Isa. 43:10, Romans 11:28-29
We believe Israel is distinct from the Church and central to God’s plan, past, present, and future. The unfulfilled prophecies given to Israel in the Old Testament will find their literal fulfillment in Israel at a future time. Psalms 105:6-10
Calvary Chapel Kelowna’s Church Governance
The Senior Pastor
Calvary Chapel is committed to a Biblical model of Church governance. The senior pastor is a man who is gifted to lead, teach, and care for the body of believers. He is ultimately accountable to God in bearing the responsibility of guiding and directing the church. He is to give himself wholly to prayer and the study of God’s word.
Likewise, each Elder is a man gifted with vision and equipped to provide spiritual direction for the church. They are to support the Senior Pastor through prayer, encouragement, godly counsel, and accountability. The Senior Pastor and each Elder is to be above reproach, a husband of one wife, holding to a biblical view of marriage and family, not addicted to alcohol, respectable, free from the love of money, temperate, hospitable.
Men in leadership must be seasoned believers, not new converts. Titus 1:6-9
Women in leadership
Calvary Chapel affirms the God-ordained, significant role women play in establishing and equipping the local church. Women have always played a vital role in the growth of the church. Every opportunity is available to women except those excluded in Scripture. We believe men and women are equal before God with unique roles and different abilities. 1 Timothy 2:12. Galatians 3:28, 1 Peter 5:1-4
The Servant Leader team
A group of men and women representing various ministries within Calvary Chapel. They provide operational guidance and support to the Elders and the Senior Pastor in the functioning of the church. They implement the strategic goals of the church in practical ways.
Calvary Chapel Kelowna’s Core Values
Priority is given to expository teaching of the Scripture; chapter by chapter and verse by verse. The Word of God is active and alive. It’s able to cut deep in the soul and expose the innermost thoughts and desires. The word of God is our source for all wisdom in matters of life and godliness. We are prepared to teach the Word in season and out. Hebrews 4:12, Psalm 119, 2 Timothy 4:2.
Prayer is powerful. We are exhorted to pray without ceasing. Every Christian should pray as naturally as they eat, drink, and breathe. In that respect, the command is to always be mindful of and in communion with God’s presence. Prayer puts us in a posture of submission to God’s agenda, His divine purpose in us and through us. Prayer often changes circumstances, but, primarily, prayer changes the believer. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, Hebrews 4:16, Matthew 6:10, Philippians 2:13, John 14:13
A Christian disciple is one who has accepted and assists in the spreading of the Good News of Jesus Christ. Discipleship is a form of spiritual parenting or mentorship. For the new Christian, as they grow, in the deserts of life, and even those who appear to be thriving—all disciples require discipleship. Discipleship happens one-to-one, or in small groups of two, three, or more. It is both our God-given privilege and responsibility to disciple others and be discipled until we all reach the unity of faith in Jesus Christ. Matthew 28:19, Colossians 3:16, Philippians 2:4, Ephesians 4:11-12.
Fellowship is much more than a friendship. True fellowship can only exist within the body of believers because it is dependent on the indwelling Holy Spirit. He binds our hearts to one another in perfect unity. Therefore, we share common beliefs and values. We have one agenda: to glorify God. We are partners with the responsibility of advancing the Kingdom through spreading the Gospel throughout the world.
We are commanded to maintain fellowship in order to help one another fight sin, to comfort one another during difficult circumstances, to provide for the needs of the local body of believers, and to encourage one another – especially as the days get darker. Hebrews 10:25.