What Is Christ Church of Cary?
We are a church. The first and most foundational statement about our identity is that we are a local church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus came to build His Church (Matt. 16:18). As a husband loves his bride, so Jesus loves His Church and gave Himself for her (Eph. 5:25). This is why Jesus is appropriately the Head and Savior of the Church (Col. 1:18). Therefore we who have been baptized into Christ weekly partake in the Lord’s Table and trust in Him for the forgiveness of sins, and joyfully submit to Jesus Christ as the Lord of the Church.
We are a Reformed church. To say that we are a Reformed church is an abbreviated way of saying that we are “Reformed according to the Word of God.” This means that we are a church that seeks continually to reform our beliefs and practices so that they might be securely anchored in the authoritative standard of the Word of God, the Bible (Heb. 6:10). We locate ourselves within the mainstream of historic Christianity and firmly believe, confess and teach the orthodox Christian faith as summarized in the Nicene and Apostle’s Creed. Carrying forward the Reformation tradition, we subscribe to the Westminster Confession of Faith with the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, which contain a more detailed expression of what the Bible teaches about God, man, this life, and the life to come.
We are part of the CREC (Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches). CREC is a gathering of churches that is thoroughly Trinitarian, historically Reformed, and warmly evangelical. We are seeking to build communities of believers that begin each week with God-honoring worship in order to joyfully extend the fruit of that worship into every day of the week through our families, our friendships, and our vocations.
At Christ Church we desire our worship to be:
God-Centered Rather than beginning with our needs, feelings, aspirations, or preferences, we believe the primary purpose of worship is to give glory and honor to God. What should be front and center in Christian worship is the radiant and glorious character of the Triune God revealed through His Word and the greatness of His redemptive work on behalf of sinners.
Dialogical We see worship as a marvelous dialogue between God and His people. As we move throughout the service, you will find it helpful to think of our alternating between God’s speaking to us and our speaking to God.
Covenantal One of the basic ways to describe God’s relationship with His people is that it is a covenant – a real relationship of love and faithfulness. Just as all human relationships need to be refreshed and renewed through communication and fellowship, worship is, quite literally, a meeting with God in which we commune with Him and draw near to Him, and He to us.
Objective A common mistake is to evaluate worship purely in terms of our subjective impressions and feelings. Thus, for many people, worship is good only insofar as it makes them feel good. While not wishing to discount the importance of our subjective response—indeed it is our hope that we will be subjectively engaged in worship—we would suggest that worship is first and foremost an activity, not a feeling. “What are we doing?” is thus a more important question than “How do we feel?”
Reverent Worship that is very informal, while certainly making people feel at ease, has the distinct disadvantage of encouraging a light, even irreverent view of God. The Holy One of Israel, the Sovereign God is not merely our buddy. He is majestic and glorious, and we are to rejoice with trembling in His presence. We believe that such a view of God is best encouraged by a service characterized by form, reverence, and joy.
Participatory Worship is not a spectator sport and it is not entertainment. It is an activity in which God’s people actively participate together for the glory of God.
We affirm the following creeds and confessions:
1. I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:
2. And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:
3. Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:
4. Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried: He descended into hell:
5. The third day he rose again from the dead:
6. He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:
7. From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:
8. I believe in the Holy Ghost:
9. I believe in the holy catholic church: the communion of saints:
10. The forgiveness of sins:
1l. The resurrection of the body:
12. And the life everlasting. Amen.
I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.
Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father [and the Son]; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.
And I believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.