Who We Are
We want God’s Word to be the standard and authority for all we do.
We recognize, however, that there are a variety of interpretations of scripture even within the Body of Christ. At some point, we will encounter theological differences with Christians from other churches and our own. When this happens, we fully embrace the old axiom: In the essentials, unity (Ephesians 4:4-6); in the
non-essentials, liberty (Romans 14); in all things, charity
Doctrine and Theology
The Four Pillars
Every church, denomination, or ministry family has certain hallmarks that distinguish it from others. Let’s understand four key theological pillars about the Free Methodist Church.
Wesleyan-Arminian theological heritage
As a Free Methodist church, Centerpoint upholds a distinctively Wesleyan-Arminian theology. On the continuum of Calvinism to Arminianism, ‘Wesleyan - Arminian’ is in the center, holding to the scriptural truths of both positions. In short, we see that the mystery and majesty of God’s sovereignty is so great that it includes man’s true free moral agency - the actual ability to choose.
Emphasis on Holiness
The pursuit of holiness has been a central focus since the Holiness Revival movements of the 1800’s that gave birth to the Free Methodist Church.
Concern for the Poor
One of the truest evidences of a healthy church is its concern and care for those who are in need.
Holistic Biblical Exegesis
The best theology is one that attempts to deal with the whole counsel of God’s Word rather than building a theology of personal preference around isolated portions of Scripture.
The Gospel and Salvation
It’s crucial that we have an agreed understanding of the gospel, because it is the primary essence of what we share as a family united in Christ.
1.God created me to have a relationship with Him (Ephesians 1:4-5).
5.Each of us must individually believe in Him and receive the gift of salvation He offers us (Romans 10:9).
You can receive the gift of salvation today by speaking the following words to Jesus Christ from a sincere heart:
“Dear Jesus, thank you for making me and loving me even when I’ve ignored You and gone my own way. I realize I am a sinner and I need You in my life. I ask You to forgive me. Thank You for dying on the cross for me. Please help me to understand it more. As much as I know how, I want to follow You from now on. Please come into my life and make me a new person inside. I accept Your gift of salvation. Please help me to grow now as a Christian.”
At Centerpoint, we observe two sacraments – holy practices that Jesus asked us to do as His followers.
The first sacrament is baptism. It’s important to note that Christ Himself was baptized (Matthew 3:13-15) and that He commanded us to baptize others (Matthew 28:19-20). Baptism tells the world we are truly His followers (Matthew 10:32).
Baptism doesn’t make you a believer; it shows you already believe. God’s Word is clear that the act of baptism isn’t what saves you. Only faith in Christ does that (Ephesians 2:8-9). Baptism is symbolic - an outward act of an inward change that has already taken place.
Baptism identifies us with Jesus Christ. Going in and out of the water illustrates Christ’s going in and out of the grave. It also makes a bold statement to others that the old life of sin is done and a new life in Christ has started (Romans 6:4).
The method of baptism isn’t as important as the motive. At Centerpoint, we baptize by immersion because every baptism in the Bible was by immersion (Acts 8:38-39) and because the Greek word for baptism – baptizo – means “to immerse under water.” Still, the method of baptism is secondary to a heart that genuinely desires to follow Christ and let the world know about it.
At Centerpoint, we encourage children to wait until they are at least nine years old to be baptized. God’s Word is clear that a decision to be baptized should be preceded by an authentic decision to follow Christ. At Centerpoint, we feel that children who are at least nine years old are developmentally able to understand the symbolism of baptism and the importance of a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Younger children are invited to be dedicated to the Lord. Dedication ceremonies take place during a weekend service and are intended to be a covenant between the parents and God on the behalf of the child (Deuteronomy 6:6-7). The parents promise to raise their child in the faith until the child is old enough to make a personal decision for Christ. The church family agrees to pray for and care for the child within the church family.
The second sacrament is Communion. Jesus never asked His disciples to remember His birth, but He did ask them to remember His death and resurrection (1 Corinthians 11:23-26). Communion is a simple act that reminds us of the sacrifice Christ made on our behalf.
Self-examination should always come before Communion. God’s Word tells us that it is possible to take Communion in “an unworthy manner” (1 Corinthians 11:27). We must center our heart and mind on Him, attempt to restore any damaged relationships (Matthew 5:23-24), and make sure to confess any sin in our lives prior to receiving Communion (1 John 1:9).
We observe Communion as a church family once a month. Jesus never told us when or how often we should observe Communion. At Centerpoint, we usually take communion on the first weekend of every month. We also encourage believers to observe Communion with their LifeGroup or at home with family and friends. While any member of the church is allowed to administer communion, our pastoral staff or Board members typically do so during weekend services.
Gifts of the Holy Spirit
Simply put, Centerpoint firmly believes in the gifts of the Spirit and wants every believer to know and use his or her gifts regularly. God’s Word tells us that the Holy Spirit guides us (John 16:13), convicts us (John 16:8), and intercedes for us (Romans 8:26). He also empowers us for ministry (1 Corinthians 12:7).
Jesus promises to give the Holy Spirit to those who ask. Before He ascended to the Father, Christ promised to leave us the Holy Spirit (John 14:16-17). Early Christians received this Promise through prayer and the laying on of hands (Acts 8:14-17).
The Holy Spirit gives each of us unique gifts to serve the Church and to show others God’s love. There are at least three different passages in Scripture that detail the gifts of the Spirit (Romans 12:6-8, Ephesians 4:11, and 1 Corinthians 12). No particular list is exhaustive, however, and we believe there is a place for all of the gifts to be seen and used.
All spiritual gifts should be used in a manner consistent with God’s Word. Scripture clearly says not to put out the Spirit’s fire or treat prophecies with contempt. Yet it also calls us to test all things and only hold on to the good (1 Thessalonians 5:19-21). This is a unique balance that can be difficult to maintain. At Centerpoint, we want to encourage the use of the more charismatic gifts (e.g. tongues, interpretation, prophecy, healing, word of knowledge), and we believe the LifeGroup setting is the best environment for this. This environment affords plenty of time to test everything, and a solid framework of relationship and trust. This helps us guard against sensationalism and a sense of pseudo-spiritual fabrication.