Our Character & Calling As a Denomination and Church
The Kingdom of God is His eternal possession, and is present in part but not fullness in the world today. By God’s decree, under His direction, and empowered by His grace, the universal Church is responsible for the care and expansion of that Kingdom. Every local church, denomination, and ministry organization is a part of that Kingdom and carries some responsibility in the work of the Kingdom. As a part of that Body of Christ, the Evangelical Free Church of Canada (EFCC) desires to understand and fulfill its particular calling in the work of the Kingdom. The EFCC will seek to live out our calling to be a New Community in Christ, reflecting the fullness of His vision for the Kingdom of God “on earth as it is in heaven.” We will do this by putting aside the prevailing values of our time and replacing them with the radical demands of the gospel of God’s grace.
“In essentials unity; in non-essentials charity; in all things Jesus Christ”
The calling and spirit of the EFCC is summed up well in this famous motto of Rupertus Meldenius. We both define our call and express our aspirations for this 21st Century through this early quote.
In Essentials Unity…
We are called to embody and proclaim the essential truths of Christianity as articulated in the Word of God, expressed through the centuries in the great creeds of the church and defined for us in our Statement of Faith. We continue in the tradition of our EFCC forefathers who said; “Where stands it written?” These truths have led us to Jesus Christ who said “he is truth” and that the “truth would set us free.”
This calling is to a spirit of unity in Jesus Christ, with an affirmation of the priesthood and ministry of all believers, congregational government in the local church where He is Head, meaningful involvement within our fellowship of churches, and cooperation with all who share our call to these essential truths.
In Non-Essentials Charity…
Generosity of Spirit:
We are called to a generosity of spirit that frees us to embrace a wide variety of Christian brothers and sisters -- “simply believers” -- some with whom we will not agree in matters that are outside our Statement of Faith. Our spirit is one of warm welcome to all believers who share our commitment to our Statement of Faith and who seek to follow Jesus’ command to love God and love our neighbor as ourselves.
This generous spirit encourages us to joyfully work with those outside our own denomination, those of “like precious faith” who endeavor to expand the kingdom of heaven.
In All Things Jesus Christ
The Great Command and Great Commission:
We are called to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, who is the Lord God. Through His grace and through His Spirit we seek to fulfill His command to love our neighbors by loving each and every person, especially the poor, the marginalized, and the oppressed. We seek to fulfill His great commission by making followers of Him from all people groups.
From the practice and teachings of Jesus, from the present ministry of the Holy Spirit working within us, and from the pietistic model of our forefathers, has grown a spirit that hungers for a closer relationship with Jesus Christ that will transform our hearts, our heads, our hands, and will reveal itself in a Christ-inspired value system and a holy lifestyle.