Christians learn. Christians delight. Christians do. Christians love God with their Head, with their Heart, and with their Hands. The three of these together make up a Biblical faith; any two of these without the third is NOT the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

River City Reformed Church is here to make disciples of Christ as we teach and learn, as we love and worship, as we do (and refrain from doing).

You cannot enjoy the Creator-Savior if you do not know Him, know His nature and attributes, know His ways. We call this area of worshiping God, the “Head” category, dealing with truth and knowledge. There seems to be a general lack of teachability in the world and in the church today. We know from the Bible that men and women are to be lifelong lovers of learning, especially about their Creator God and Savior. We, therefore, maintain a primary focus on Bible teaching and particularly on developing a mature understanding of Biblical principles in their breadth and depth. (An example would be the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew’s gospel, chapters 5,6, & 7. Here we learn that the prohibition against murder extends in reality to all unjust hatred, and that the prohibition against adultery extends in reality to all improper lusts, unfaithfulness, and disloyalty.)

Our prayer is that God would use RCRC to train up generations of mature believers in the sound doctrines of the Bible. We understand that active one-on-one intentional mentoring and through small groups this will be an enjoyable and necessary part of this pursuit. Perhaps we will see a Christian college or seminary develop from this focus.

To know God but to fail to delight in Him, to lack a joyful desire for Him, to not long for His presence, and for His will to be done, is a fatal misunderstanding of what it means to know God. We call this area of worship the “Heart” category.

Our love for God and His commands should be just that, love. Christians should have a passion for God and a passion for His glory in all things. The truths that enter through our heads must saturate, change, and motivate our hearts toward God. Right understanding and faithful service without passion (holy affections) only demonstrate empty pride or fear, and God hates both pride and fear.

The regular, worship of God on the Lord’s day (Sunday) by His people is a central element of loving God with our hearts. Worship should be God focused, Christ exalting, man debasing, true, joyful, reverent, hopeful, uplifting, and life-changing. The music and praise should reflect the broad range of instruments and genres currently available, with a vivid pursuit of excellence toward that which is highest and best. This applies to the preaching and prayers as well. (In other words, if you rummage through the vegetables at the grocery store in order to find the freshest and juiciest for you and your family, shouldn’t we apply even higher standards to each of the elements which make up corporate worship of the Most High God?)

The preaching of the Word of God should be central to Worship. It must be Biblical, rightly setting forth the whole counsel of the Word. It must focus on the Biblical Christ and His Gospel of Repentence, Forgiveness, Adoption, Restoration, and Hope. A sermon can only be effectively preached by one who has a passionate and felt sense of the things preached. Biblical Preaching exalts Christ and should afflict the comfortable, comfort the afflicted, and encourage the faithful.

Worship, and all Christian living, should be true and right, passionate, and led by the Holy Spirit. Sure, such a statement could scare some. If you have seen worship which is flippant, foolish, & irreverent set forth under the banner of “engaging and spirit-led”, you should be more than a little fearful. However, Biblical worship is true, right, reverent, holy, joyful, and always sensitive to what the Spirit of God is doing among and for His people on that particular occasion, on that particular day, at that moment. Christians need not be fearful of a true Spirit-filled worship which is led by elders who are observably committed to reverence and the glory of God; they should, in fact, accept nothing less.

We become changed by our knowledge and our love of God. We must have our minds changed; there are values, motives, and actions that must be radically altered in order to conform with a right knowledge and a true love of God. We call this the “Hands” category.

The careful, intentional practice of obedience to the revealed will and commands of God, by the power of the Holy Spirit, to the glory of God is not legalism, but righteousness. Christians are called to righteousness; we take this very soberly at River City Reformed Church. There are large areas of freedom which allow for personal preference and individual expression. When one individual imposes his or her preference or expression on another, legalism is the result. Legalism also occurs when we foolishly think our good works are earning God’s favor, in any way.

The other extreme away from legalism is when we selfishly believe we can simply “love God and do as we please”. God is personal, intelligent, and holy; He has certain likes and dislikes. We are called to find out what He likes and then conform our wills to His, by calling upon His own supernatural power. He expects us to change; He requires that we change.

Man was originally made in the image of God. At RCRC, we are eager for God’s Spirit to restore in us that perfect image of our good God which was so fatally marred by the Fall of man in Adam and the resulting curse.

Practically speaking, this means there is great hope for our every weakness, sin, and failure. We can, by God’s Spirit, embrace the beauty of the Biblical complimentarian view of men and women (distinct roles for men and women as defined by our Creator). We can be men who demonstrate all of the manliness and compassion of Christ. We can joyfully practice monogamy, enjoying the delights of the marriage bed, and reject all other forms of sexual intimacy. The practical ramifications of the gospel are immediate and endless.

1 John 3:1(NKJV) Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.