Over and above all of our core values is the Lord Jesus. More than anything else, we value Him and His gospel. We exist to know, worship, love, and obey Jesus, and to help others to do the same as they follow Him. Everything we value, we value for His sake. We will live to honor Him and to depend on Him to see these values manifested in and through us.
We believe that if we are faithful to the vision God has given us of being disciples who make disciples of Jesus, for His glory and the joy of all peoples, these values should and will shape our lives:
Love for God and People
Jesus said that greatest commandment in the world is to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” and that the second greatest is like it: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:37-38). God’s Word also says that if we have all faith and all knowledge but do not have love, we are nothing. We love God in being faithful disciples of Jesus, and we love people in leading them to follow Jesus. We will love and worship God above all else, and by His Spirit, we will seek to let the love of God so clearly seen in the gospel source and saturate everything that we do.
By God's grace, He has rescued us through faith in Christ crucified and raised for us. Our hope of salvation is not in our good works before God, our church attendance, or how well we maintain our relationship with Him. We were forgiven our sins through faith in Jesus alone, and we grow in grace through faith in Jesus. Our desire is that the message of salvation for sinners by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone will pervade our lives as His ministers of reconciliation to the world. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16)
Jesus spent 3 years pouring his life into 12 disciples and then told them to go and make disciples of all nations. We believe that making disciples is the primary purpose of the people of God; it is our chief focus and primary goal. Discipleship consists of seeing people come to faith in Christ and teaching them how to follow and obey Him. We believe that this is done best when we impart to others, not only the gospel of God, but also our very lives, each of us inviting others into our lives in order to model what it looks like to know and follow Jesus. This is what Missional Communities and Huddles are all about at Rivertown Church.
The Word of God
The Bible contains the very words of the God of the universe. Our passion is to lay aside our presuppositions about God and to know God as He has revealed Himself through the Bible. God has given us His Word to function like a window that we can look through to see Jesus. We believe that as we draw near to God through His Word, He will reveal Himself to us and show us how we can respond to His Word in repentance and faith. God’s Word is central in our weekly gatherings and in our discipleship.
Jesus said that His church would be called a house of prayer. God gives us the privilege of listening and speaking to Him, and doing so helps us to know His heart and have His perspective. God uses the prayers of His people to accomplish His will, and we want to live lives characterized by seeking His will, relying on His strength, and interceding for those around us. We want to pray desperately, like we truly believe that apart from Jesus, we can do nothing. It is also through prayer that we praise God, make our needs known to Him, and pray for His will to be done and for His kingdom to be advanced in the places where He’s placed us.
God made people to live in relationship with Him and with each other. Our relationship with each other is deepened as it is centered around His mission of making disciples. We desire to be intentional in loving each other and loving the town of Brattleboro as we live together as family. It is not our objective to add more to the lives of already busy individuals. Instead we aim to teach people how to live for the mission of Jesus in the context of the lives they are already living.
We desire to be intentional about the multiplication of disciples, missional communities, leaders, and churches. God has ordained that His kingdom expand as His people are obedient to make disciples who will make disciples. We will be committed to discipleship as God’s means for kingdom expansion. We believe as we focus on our calling to be disciples who make disciples, Jesus will build His church. His kingdom will be expanded through multiplying churches comprised of multiplying missional communities as we are faithful to multiplying disciples.