For God’s glory Legacy Church exists to be a family of disciples who magnify and multiply the gospel of Jesus Christ through Bellingham to Whatcom County and the ends of the earth.
The gospel is more than a possession to be had, it is glorious truth to be lived. What has been entrusted to us is too great not to share. While our world is painfully broken, Jesus is making all things new. His legacy is the greatest story ever told! Jesus gives new life, shapes who we are, and is why we live. He redeems people, marriages, families, cities, cultures, and generations. Our desire is for Legacy Church to be make much of Jesus as His legacy lives in us and through us.
By God’s grace we hope to be a church uncompromising in these five areas.
1) GOSPEL CENTERED
Jesus saves sinners from death to life. The gospel is the good news that Jesus came to save sinful humanity from ourselves and put an end to the separation that we have made between ourselves and God by our rebellion. God is holy and we are not. We have rebelled against God by choosing to disobey and disbelieve the God who created us. But God loved us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, to live a perfect, sinless life and die a rebel’s death on the cross in our place to satisfy the wrath of God that we deserve. Jesus resurrected from death to reconcile us to God. His completed work is a gift, available to anyone who would turn from sin to worship Jesus and be saved. Jesus Christ is the only mediator between God and humanity. He is the only one that can reconcile us to God, save us from ourselves and our sin to a life of knowing and loving God.
What Jesus accomplished through His death and resurrection is so powerful that it restores sinful people into right relationship with God AND then it continually affects and transforms every area of our lives. Christianity is not about mere rules, advice, or performance-modification. A gospel-centered church understands that change of any kind, especially authentic heart transformation, cannot happen apart from the gospel of grace. A gospel-centered church focuses on the gospel in all areas of the spiritual life of the church – prayer, teaching, worship, discipleship, social justice – all of this happens by the grace of God available because of the sacrificial death of Jesus to save sinners from death to life. Tim Keller puts it this way, “The gospel is not the ABCs of the Christian life, but the A to Z.”
2) MISSIONALLY FOCUSED
More than just supporting missionaries and missionary efforts, we believe that all Christians are missionaries. Missions is not to be seen as merely an activity of the church, but rather an attribute of who God is. God is a sending God in that He sent His Son into the world to save sinners from death to life. The love of Christ compels us to be reconciled to God and then be His agents of reconciliation. We are ambassadors of Christ in this world as God is making His appeal through us to be reconciled to God (2 Corinthians 5:17-21). Because we have been united with God through Jesus Christ we are now partners with Him in His mission to seek and save the lost. Therefore, the church doesn’t just have a mission, God’s mission has a church. To be missional is to be aware of what God is doing in the world around us and seek to partner with Him in what He is doing. This means that we are disciples, making disciples. Practically this looks like a family of missionaries living with gospel intentionality in our everyday lives (Matt.28:18-20). For many, this is a radical shift from thinking that the church is service they attend or a club that they belong to. By God’s grace, we are God’s people, on God’s mission, for God’s glory.
3) BIBLICALLY GROUNDED
D.A.Carson writes, “It’s been said that the Bible is like a body of water in which a child may wade and an elephant may swim. The youngest Christian can read the Bible with profit, for the Bible’s basic message is simple. But we can never exhaust its depth. After decades of intense study, the most senior Bible scholars find that they’ve barely scratched the surface. Although we cannot know anything with the perfection of God’s knowledge (his knowledge is absolutely exhaustive!), yet because God has disclosed things, we can know those things truly.”
1 and 2 Timothy were written by the Apostle Paul to his young protégé Timothy, who had been tasked with organizing house churches into functioning congregations. Paul was hoping to help Timothy in person, but just in case he wasn’t able to make it, he writes: “Although I hope to come to you soon, I am writing you these instructions so that, if I am delayed, you will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:14-15). These instructions apply to our churches today. One of the first topics Paul instructs Timothy about is to “command certain people not to teach false doctrines… and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel” (1 Tim. 1:3, 11). One of the reasons this is so important to Paul and ought to be critically important to us is because bad theology hurts people.
Unfortunately, we live in an age of biblical illiteracy. In many churches and Christian homes the Scriptures are not treated very seriously. Sadly, many churches have elevated pragmatics over the authority of Scripture to determine the course of their ministry. Lifelong church goers are often unsure of the central message of Bible, have no idea how the Old Testament relates to the New Testament, and regularly quote their favorite passages grossly out of context. Tim Keller has written that, “Pastors and churches who are too busy, or too distracted, to make biblical knowledge a focus of their ministry produce believers who simply do not know enough to be faithful disciples.”
We see biblical preaching and teaching as central to the life of the church and urgently needed today. We are committed to preaching, teaching, reading, studying, interpreting, pondering, discussing, praying, and living the Word of God. More than desiring to master the Bible, we desire to be mastered by it.
4) PRAYER DRIVEN
The gospel produces a faith in God that causes believers to ask Jesus to accomplish what only God can do. We see this throughout the early church in Acts 2 and even more so in Acts 4:24-31. Their example teaches us to pray body and then live in a way that is empowered by the Holy Spirit. The early church shows us the connection between the power of corporate prayer and people experiencing the glory of God. As we pray our eyes are opened to the glory of God. As we pray our heart’s become aligned with God’s. As we pray we preach with boldness, clarity, conviction, and power. In Acts 7:55-56 Stephen lifts his eyes to heaven in prayer, catches a glimpse of Jesus’ glory, and in awe he begins to proclaim it to those around him. When this happens among a group of people on a city-wide scale there is a gospel awakening. Because Jesus taught that, “my house shall be a house of prayer”, we desire to be a praying church. We will attempt to take no ground that hasn’t first been taken through prayer.
5) MULTIPLYING CHURCHES
We are passionate about church planting because we are passionate about Jesus. We want to see Bellingham, Whatcom County, the Pacific Northwest, and all nations saturated with the gospel. We believe the most effective way this will happen is through churches planting churches. As the gospel continually breaks out and the Kingdom is continually expanding, we aim to be a church planting church plant. Our goal is to plant new, healthy, like minded churches. This means that we are committed to investing time, finances, and energy into continually developing leaders. From the beginning our entire church functions as a training center so that as Jesus calls men to the work of planting new churches we can partner with Him in equipping, resourcing, sending, and supporting church planters. We are a church planting church plant.