New City Church longs to be a place where people of all backgrounds can come and discover a God who welcomes them in with open arms. Not everyone at New City believes the same thing, and we don’t always agree on all aspects of how we are to understand the rich faith that forms our heritage. We believe that this is one of our strengths. Within this beautiful diversity, there are key truths that deeply unite us, and this Statement of Affirmations seeks to capture some of these.
We affirm the breadth of the Christian faith – the Church is the community of all those who confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and Saviour. As such, there is within it a breadth of perspectives and expressions of understanding around aspects of faith and doctrine. This is natural and to be expected given the diversity of cultures, persons and traditions.
Within that, as a body of believers, New City Church makes this affirmation of faith and practice:
We affirm the nature of God as creator and sustainer of all things, actively involved in the world. God is defined by holy love, eternally self-giving. We affirm the centrality of Christ, who is truly and properly God and truly and properly human. Jesus, who has existed eternally, is the one for whom and by whom all things were made.
We affirm the triune nature of God – three persons in community: Father, Son and Spirit. God is not gendered, but uses metaphor and analogy to reveal Godself to us with the goal of nurturing relationship with us and teaching us to live in God’s image.
We affirm the Bible (being the 66 books of the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament) as the source of direction for faith and life. We affirm this as God’s self-revelation. At its heart, the Bible revolves around the person and work of Jesus as the ultimate Word of God by whom all of Scripture is to be understood. Interpreting the Bible for new eras and unique challenges is the task of theology, to which all people in the church are called, equipped by the Holy Spirit.
We affirm all humanity as made in the image of God – created from and for love. As such every person is imbued with an inherent dignity and worth that cannot be diminished. Being in the image of God, we share with God the task of stewarding Creation, nurturing what has been gifted to us.
We affirm the inherent dignity of Creation, of which humans are a part, and the mandate for humans to steward creation in the image of God. Creation continues to teach us about the beauty and wonder of God. Rocks, mountains, birds and other parts of creation are seen to consistently praise God, and teach us about the beauty and wonder of God. As such, the cosmos has rightly been called the “second book of God”, revealing God to us, showing us God’s might, majesty and love.
We affirm the work of the Holy Spirit as advocate, comforter, empowerer, teacher. The Spirit infills and indwells every believer in Christ, nurturing Christlikeness in us, both teaching and empowering us to walk in righteousness.
We affirm that everyone is welcome at the table of the Lord - literally (in terms of the communion table) and metaphorically (in the sense of God’s wide welcome for all, which we as the church must incarnate).
We affirm the present and ongoing work of God in the world, and in the final restoration of all things when Christ comes again. This is necessary because of the brokenness of humanity and the world, which have fallen from their initial state of perfection and are in need of salvation which comes only from Christ.
We affirm that the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ has accomplished all that is necessary for salvation, and that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
We affirm that the church has been given the Spirit to embody the life of Christ together as a community. Surpassing denominational boundaries, the church is the family of God who, through Christ, joins with God in ushering in the new city. As such, our life together is defined by holiness.
Seeking to live our lives in the pattern of the life and ministry of Jesus, we affirm that holiness is demonstrated through our active engagement in the world, not only declaring the kingdom of God but demonstrating it through our love in action (Matt 25:31-46). As such, holiness should not be understood as avoidance. We are “set apart” not to avoid others, but to join Jesus in the ongoing work of restoration and redemption, and to point towards the fulfilment of this work when Christ comes again.