Ministry Emphasis

cross sunsetEvery church has a particular ministry emphasis. For some it’s their music style. For others its their ministry programs. For Westview Bible Church, the ministry emphasis can be summed up with four important things, the glory of God, the Word of God, the Gospel of Grace and the worship of the Lord.

The Glory of God

The ultimate priority of our ministry is the glory of God rather than the felt needs of people. When a church becomes overly preoccupied with pleasing people rather than pleasing God, it can fall into the trap of becoming more man-centered than God-centered in both its worship and its ministry. This causes a church to focus on giving people what they want rather than providing them with what they need. Westview Bible Church is committed to maintaining a high view of God and an emphasis upon His glory. We do not believe that God exists for our pleasure, but that we exist for His. The Lord should not be viewed as a Genie in a bottle who must view our every wish as His command. He is our Creator as well as our Sovereign Lord. As such, He is deserving of our highest praise, our greatest obedience, our most sacrificial service and above all, reverential respect. While lovingly ministering to people’s true spiritual needs has its place, our greatest concern must always be, “What is most pleasing to the Lord?” rather than, “What pleases the most people?”

The Word of God

The primary emphasis of ministry here at Westview Bible Church is the clear and accurate preaching and teaching of the Word of God. Since we believe in the absolute sufficiency of God’s Word to minister to every need we have (Psalm 19:7-11; 2 Timothy 3:16-17), we are committed to straightforward verse-by-verse, expository preaching that unleashes the transforming truths of the Scriptures to our hearts and lives. We refuse to manipulate the Bible to try and make it say what we want it to say or what appears popular to people. Our desire is to remain faithful to the biblical text and accurately and unapologetically preach the Word (2 Timothy 4:1-5). If you have a genuine hunger for knowing and understanding God’s Word, Westview could be the church for you!

The Gospel of Grace

Many churches today have watered down the biblical gospel to appear more acceptable to most people by solely focusing on God’s love while seeking to avoid  mentioning sin, judgment, or repentance.  We are committed to faithfully proclaiming the true biblical gospel of God’s grace that proclaims that:

  1. All have sinned and fallen short of God’s standards for their lives (Romans 3:10-11, 23);
  2. God’s holiness demands His just punishment of our sin (Romans 1:18; 6:23a);
  3. Christ’s death provides the only satisfactory payment for our sins (Rom. 5:6-9; John 14:6);
  4. Salvation comes by faith alone in Christ alone, not by human works (Eph.2:8-9);
  5. Genuine salvation always leads to repentance from sin and obedience to God (Ephesians 2:10; Acts 2:38; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Titus 2:11-12).

While preaching about man’s sin and God’s judgment is unpopular with many today, we believe that only those who understand the bad news of God’s judgment against sin can fully appreciate the good news of God’s saving grace. John Calvin said, “Faith alone saves, but saving faith is never alone.” True saving faith always results in a living and active faith that seeks to consistently obey, honor and serve God.

The Worship of God

While many churches today have chosen to abandon the great hymns of the Christian faith in favor of the sole use of contemporary songs for worship, we welcome the use of every song both old and new that glorifies God and reinforces the teachings of His sacred Word. Our desire is that all God’s people, both young and old, would be able to worship the Lord in a meaningful way. We encourage older and younger believers to embrace the humility of Christ that demonstrates greater concern for the spiritual welfare of others rather than for their own personal preferences (Philippians 2:3-5).

We believe that many of the great hymns of the faith possess strong messages of worship and faith that can enrich the lives of  young and old alike. We deeply appreciate the rich musical heritage God has given His Church over the centuries along with the solid and doctrinally sound new songs being written today.

Hearing a young man complain, “I don’t like the traditional hymns we sing in church. They don’t do a thing for me,” his discerning pastor responded, “Since when was worship about you?” Sadly, there are many today who like this young man apparently think worship should revolve around their own preferences, rather than being primarily about honoring and exalting our Sovereign Lord.

Traditional hymns of faith like Amazing Grace, Be Thou My Vision, Great is Thy Faithfulness, Crown Him with Many Crowns, and Holy, Holy, Holy are examples of a spiritual legacy of music that places God, rather than us, at the center of true Christian worship. This same godly focus is seen in newer songs like Oh Great God, Before the Throne of God Above, Jesus Messiah, and In Christ Alone.

God wants all of His children, both young and old, to have a place to offer Him worship and praise. Regardless of your age, we hope you will find Westview a place to grow, a place to worship, a place to belong.

Take the time to read Dr. James Montgomery Boice’s excellent article on worship entitled, Whatever Happened to God?  as well as The Problem Defined by Mark Dever.

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Westview Bible Church, 587 Delaware Street, Imperial Beach, CA 91932 (619) 424-8444