|Statement of Faith||Learn More about Calvary Chapel|
by Larry Taylor
|"What Calvary Teaches" is for the person interested in getting a brief summary and handle on what a Calvary Chapel fellowship church is all about. This booklet gives a brief history of the Calvary Chapel movement (Calvary Chapels are non-denominational), a brief description of where Calvary churches fit doctrinally and practically regarding Fundamentalist and Pentecostal type churches, a brief doctrinal statement, a brief explanation of what Calvary churches do not believe or practice, a brief description of the importance of worship to Calvary churches and some final words.|
|CALVARY CHAPEL DISTINCTIVES
The Foundational Principles of the Calvary Chapel Movement
by Chuck Smith
What is it that makes Calvary Chapel different from other Bible-believing, evangelical churches? It's always good to have a grasp of the unique work that God has done in our fellowship. If Calvary Chapel is exactly like the church across the street it would be better to simply merge the two. But, if there are distinctives that make us different, then we have a unique and special place in the plan of God. Certainly there are churches that share many of our beliefs and practices. We're not renegades. But God has done a wonderful work of balance in the Calvary Chapel movement that does make us different in many areas.
There are many who believe in the gifts and the ministry of the Holy Spirit, but they don't have a strong emphasis on Biblical teaching, nor do they look to the Word to guide their experiences with the Holy Spirit. There are many who have a strong emphasis on teaching the Word of God, but they don't share the view that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are available and valid today. In Calvary Chapel we find the teaching of the Word, and an open heart to the work of the Holy Spirit. It is this balance that makes Calvary Chapel a distinct and uniquely blessed movement of God. And so it's important to understand the Biblical principles that make up the picture of why God has allowed us to exist and grow.
This is not to say that all Calvary Chapels are identical. I'm always amazed at how God can take simple basic elements and create such variety out of them. Basically, all of us have two eyes, a nose, a mouth, and two ears, and yet how different we all look from each other! People also have different emotional make-ups. Now, God loves everyone. He loves the highly emotional and He loves the dull and unemotional. In the same way, wanting all men to be able to relate to Him, God created a wide variety of churches. Some churches appeal to those who are very emotional in their nature while others appeal to a more staid and formal personality. God, desiring to reach and bless all kinds of people, seems to enjoy having a wide variety of churches so that everybody's needs might be met, from the highly emotional to the very formal, and all those in between. Each of us has a part to play in God's plan, but we all need to know where we fit in this wide spectrum. That is why it's crucial for us to grasp what we call the Calvary Chapel Distinctives. As we see what makes our fellowship unique, we will also come to better understand our position in the body of Christ. Read more...
|THE PHILOSOPHY OF MINISTRY
OF CALVARY CHAPEL
by Chuck Smith
The philosophy of Calvary Chapel concerning the role and function of the church is found in Ephesians 4:9-13 where Paul speaks about Jesus Christ Who has ascended into heaven, but He is the One Who first of all descended into the lower parts of the earth. And when He ascended, He led the captives from their captivity. And He gave gifts unto men and gave to some to be apostles, to some prophets, and some evangelists and some pastors and teachers. He then declares why - for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the building up of the body of Christ. We believe that the church exists primarily for Jesus; to bring pleasure to Him; that we might be to the praise and glory of His grace. The Lord has created the church for His own good pleasure, and thus, the church exists primarily for Him; it is His church. Christ said, "Upon this rock I will build My church." I am a part of His church. There is only One Person Who can say, "My church." And that is Jesus. It is His church. The interesting thing about His church is that you can't join it. You've got to be born into it. We are born again by the Spirit of God into the church of Jesus Christ. It is His church.
What, then, is the purpose of His church? To bring glory to God; to be God's instrument of ministry to the Lord. But also in a secondary sense, the church exists for the edifying or the building up of the saints; to bring the saints into full maturity so that they might engage in the work of the ministry. Read more...
|A VENTURE IN FAITH (video)
The History and Philosophy of the Calvary Chapel Movement
Michael K. MacIntosh & Raul A. Ries, Executive Producers
"Not by might nor by power, but My Spirit," says the LORD of hosts. Zechariah 4:6
When God pours out His holy Spirit in a great and undeniable work, either through an individual or a group of individuals, inevitably there seems to be that curious part of human nature which cannot resist the temptation to systematize, categorize, analyze, and codify the work far beyond the simplicity of the life-changing power of God's Holy Spirit working through His Word.
To avoid that temptation the executive producers in keeping with the teaching style of pastor Chuck Smith, have decided to let his story tell itself as much as possible, expounding only on the components of the Calvary Chapel ministry that have kept it a fresh, simple, and unique part of the body of Christ.
Although the executive producers recognize and acknowlege similarities between the Calvary Chapel movement and other great revivals in church history, they are content to allow theologians and church historians to analyze and philosophize any of the comparisons and contrasts that can be made. Instead they are satisfied with simply accepting the move of God's Holy Spirit among the Calvary Chapels as just that-God moving among His people as He always has in generations past.
Any attempt to reduce God's uncontainable work to fit the limited capacity of man's understanding gives man far more credit than he deserves. It is better to understand that the begining ending and determining factor in man's relationship to God is God's relationship to man. God's the initiator-always was, always is and always will be.
The purpose of this documentary then is to glorify God by examining an on-going work He is doing through available human vessels in modern and challenging times as His Holy Spirit continues to seek men and women who are willing to obey Him to the point of totally surrendering their lives to Him.
This is a personal look at such a man and the movement that followed as a result of his obedience.