FOUR THEOLOGICAL TRADITIONS
The Be In Christ Church of Canada has been influenced by four theological traditions during its 200 year history. Each theological tradition has had an important impact on our faith community but the longest and most pronounced influence has been the anabaptist tradition born during the radical reformation period. Using the analogy of a tree to describe our theological history, Anabaptism would be the trunk with Pietism, Wesleyanism, and Evangelicalism being the branches.
Palmer Becker, author of Anabaptist Essentials, summarizes anabaptist theology by stating that “the centre of our faith is Jesus, the centre of our life is community, and the centre of our work is reconciliation.” This excellent summary reflects the BIC commitment to place Jesus’ teaching, example, and atonement for sin at the centre of our lives and our theology. Our movement is Jesus-centered both in interpreting the Bible and living out our Christian faith and practice.
To explore our theology more fully, see our Handbook on Faith and Life.
TEN Core Values
We declare unity with followers of Jesus and his church in all times and from all places. We confess with them the faith as embodied in the Apostle’s and Nicene Creed.
Below are listed the core values that have been discerned by pastors and leaders to be a summary of essential values and beliefs. These core values represent the highest ideals and aspiration that compel us in our church ministry and personal lifestyle.
Experiencing God’s Love & Grace
We value the free gift of salvation in Christ Jesus and the transforming power of the Holy Spirit.
We value whole hearted obedience to Christ Jesus through the empowering presence of the Holy Spirit.
We value heartfelt worship that is God-honouring, Spirit-directed, and life-changing.
Believing the Bible
We value the Bible as God’s authoritative Word, study it together, and build our lives on its truth.
Belonging to the Community of Faith
We value integrity in relationships and mutual accountability in an atmosphere of grace, love, and acceptance.
Witnessing to the World
We value an active and loving witness for Christ to all people.
We value serving others at their point of need, following the example of our Lord Jesus.
We value all human life and promote forgiveness, understanding, reconciliation, and non-violent resolution of conflict.
We value uncluttered lives, which free us to love boldly, give generously, and serve joyfully.
Relying on God
We confess our dependence on God for everything, and seek to deepen our intimacy with Him by living prayerfully.
THREE UNIQUE EXPRESSIONS
During the evolution of our movement in Canada, the BIC have embraced the idea that our church has developed into three unique expressions. We have embraced those unique expressions as a way to reach out to the increasingly diverse country of Canada.
Our Community Churches have a more conventional style of ministry that feels timeless and appeals to those who are searching for an experience of a Sunday morning service with a strong emphasis on community and relationships.
Although we are a smaller denomination, we have one of the largest and most influential churches in Canada, The Meeting House. The Meeting House has increased our effectiveness at reaching into larger urban centres as the BIC historically started in mostly rural locations.
Recognizing the need for churches that can reach people with little or no church experience, our third expression, Reunion, is a group of churches that focus on church planting through a relational cohort model and has spread outside of Canada to other portions of the world.
The Be in Christ Church of Canada began between 1775 and 1788 near the present town of Marietta, Pennsylvania. Our founding mothers and fathers had an Anabaptist background and were deeply affected by the revivals of the great awakening of the eighteenth century and the Pietistic movements. These revivals emphasized a personal, heart-felt conversion experience.
The movement continued to grow and soon expanded into Canada. From those humble beginnings the movement has grown to locations all around the world. To learn more, click the link below.