We are a church that seeks to glorify God through the three Greats of the Bible: the Great Commandment; the Great Community, and the Great Commission.
The Great Commandment
At Acts Fellowship Church, we seek to live out the call of Deut. 6:5 to “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” This is what Christ calls the Greatest Commandment, and it’s from this commandment that the other parts of our vision derive. The goal of all that we do at Acts is always first and foremost to honor God. For sinners like us, the only hope we have for this to happen is when we believe upon and cling to Jesus Christ, and so we believe the gospel is our central and most important message. Acts exists to live to see this message make progress in the lives of others. In order to ensure that it is heard and understood, we believe in strong teaching ministries both from the pulpit and in the classroom. We also want to remember that it’s a message worth celebrating, and that God in fact calls us to express these affections together; so we believe corporate worship is an integral part of our church. We also know that to love something is a pretty comprehensive activity, and so we operate with the understanding that we want to focus on the inner life of those in our church, not just the way they appear to live on the outside.
The Great Community
We believe God has called his church to be the Great Community, expressing Christ’s love to one another and to the world. Our Lord teaches us in Matt 22:39-40 that loving our neighbors as ourselves is the second greatest charge given to God’s people. In accordance with Luke 10:25-37 (The Parable of the Good Samaritan), we believe that as a community of Christians, we should be more concerned with loving people than with worrying about the boundaries and limits of our associations. This is something we’re still growing into at our church, but please be with us as we seek to learn what it means to love this world on Christ’s behalf, particularly the poor and suffering in Austin.
We also believe that Christ means for us to demonstrate his love to other believers. We believe part of what it means to be in a church is that we belong to one another, and so we place a high value on membership. Acts is not about creating an elitist club, but rather we believe we have a special responsibility to those who have committed to being a part of our community here. We believe that each member of our body has something important and valuable to do in Christ’s name for us to function well. Therefore, part of our vision as a Great Community is to provide those in our church with a range of opportunities to serve and be used by God. We also believe that the authority God gives to the church needs to be exercised to protect its members and its message, and our vision is to see church discipline exercised judiciously and wisely to ensure the purity of Christ’s body. Additionally, we are committed to creating a real, living and breathing community that loves living life together, so you’ll see our calendar full of events to promote fellowship and camaraderie.
The Great Commission
The Great Commission (Matt 28:18-20) stems from the second greatest commandment given to the followers of Jesus Christ which is to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matt 22:39). It contains one verb and three participles. The command is “to make disciples” of Jesus Christ as they are “going,” “baptizing,” and “teaching.” The scope of going is to “all the nations.” Baptizing is to be done in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit to those who would come to believe. And their teaching is for the hearers to observe everything Jesus taught them.
It is God’s sovereign plan to work in and through His followers in every generation to make Him known to the world. But how will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without someone telling them? Therefore, it is our role in God’s plan to be the feet that bring the good news, and the lips that speak the truth. The early church obeyed this commandment in various ways. The Bible records at least five ways that the gospel was shared. (1) Personal Evangelism. The earliest Christians faced severe persecution, and as a result, they were forced to flee to their homes. As they scattered across various regions, they took the message of salvation through Jesus Christ with them. This is called “personal evangelism.” Throughout church history, vast majority of the conversions were done through personal evangelism rather than a “church wide outreach event.” It was one person sharing the gospel with another; (2) Open air preaching. Both Jesus and Paul often found places where groups of people gathered and sought to preach to them. Some may call this “street witnessing;” (3) Small Gatherings. Early believers often met together and witnessed in households; (4) Large Gatherings. Since many early believers were former Jews, that infrastructure for large gatherings became a vital tool for the expansion of the Church; and (5) Missionary journeys. Our church will seek to fulfill the great commandment through 3 primary avenues: 1) by equipping its members in personal evangelism, 2) by planning for various evangelistic events, and 3) by going on mission trips.