The NCD district staff is putting a considerable focus these days on Article 8 of the EFCA Statement of Faith:
We believe that God’s justifying grace must not be separated from His sanctifying power and purpose. God commands us to love Him supremely and others sacrificially, and to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed. With God’s Word, the Spirit’s power, and fervent prayer in Christ’s name, we are to combat the spiritual forces of evil. In obedience to Christ’s commission, we are to make disciples among all people, always bearing witness to the gospel in word and deed.
Our focus is especially on the second sentence, since these things have often been widely neglected in evangelical circles for many years.
So you may have heard about (or attended) Pastors Teaching Conference in October, where compassion and justice were the themes. You may have seen our Christmas vitation to support Safe Families for Children, a Christian foster-care ministry. Maybe you’ve checked out the new website www.CaringFriendsNetwork.org. If you’ve been at district events this year you’re likely to have heard about “Article 8 initiatives”—the mobilizing of Christians and churches to represent Christ and build bridges to the gospel by ministering holistically in their communities.
So what do you think? What are your impressions of this focus? What do you like and dislike? Are you enthusiastic, apprehensive? What questions or concerns do you have? We want to know what you’re thinking so that when we address this topic on the website in the future we’ll be able to speak to it more helpfully. Let us hear from you: leave a comment.