Our vision is that New Circle Church would be a picture of what the gospel can do-- break down barriers, conquer brokenness, and create a new 'Circle City.'
We want all the people of our city to know they are loved by God and welcomed into His family at New Circle Church. We want to embrace Indianapolis while working together to redeem and restore the city. Ultimately, we want the story of New Circle Church to be a vital part of the story of Indianapolis. And we want you to be a part of that story, too.
What we believe is vital to who we are as a church and how we function as a body. In keeping with our vision, our beliefs are centered on Christ, applied in the context of community, and compel our desire to fill Christ’s commission.
In essence, our core beliefs encourage us to know, grow, and go.
Our desire at New Circle Church is to know God, the Creator the universe, intimately. We do not just what to know about God, but we want to know His heart and His mission. We believe that His mission is to fill the earth with the knowledge of His glory (Habakkuk 2:14). God does this by giving his Son, Jesus Christ, to ransom people from every nation, tribe, and tongue (Revelation 5:9). This act of God shows us His heart of love, kindness, and grace for the salvation of all who would believe. This act of God not only shows His heart of love, but it also show His heart for justice. On the cross at Calvary, Christ endured the just wrath of God against all the sin of all who would believe in Christ.
We believe this Christ was not just some fictitious idea made up by first century religious zealots; this man was God in flesh, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born to the virgin Mary, and confirmed as God’s Messiah by his resurrection from the dead in fulfillment of the Old Testament Scriptures. Basically, our desire is to know God intimately by knowing the grace that is lavished on us in Christ.
Another desire of New Circle Church is that we grow in our love for Christ and love for others in the context of community. Repeatedly in the Bible, we see that it is expected for Christians to grow spiritually. Thankfully, we are not left to grow alone. The consistent message to the New Testament churches is to grow together like a body. The apostle Paul puts it like this in Ephesians 4:16,
“From [Christ] the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”
Christ is the one who holds the body together, but we are called to grow together as we each do our part.
We believe that each member of our body is gifted by the Holy Spirit in different unique ways, and we love that about our body. We want to take advantage of these gifts. So what we do is gather together in community groups and attempt to build each other up in love. We want to grow together in our love for Christ, our love for church, our love for our neighbors, and our love for our city. And we believe that this is best done in the context of community.
The final desire of New Circle Church is to go out into our neighborhood, our city, and the world to preach the gospel. We do this because we want fulfill the mission of God to “fill the earth with his glory” by obeying the commission of Christ to “make disciples of all nations.” These aims are accomplished when the we, the church, not only want to know Christ, but also make him known. We want those who are far from Christ to know and grow in relationship with Him.
We see God’s heart of love, kindness, and grace when we see his Son, the apostles, and the 1st century church spreading the message of the gospel and loving their neighborhood, their cities, and their world. We want to take on that mission and be a 21st century church that spreads the message of the gospel and loves those in our neighborhoods, our city, and our world. We love the Great Commission that Christ has given to the Church, and we want to be a church that goes out and makes disciples in our great city of Indianapolis.
Statement of faith
We believe that the Bible, both Old and New Testaments, was written by people divinely inspired by the Holy Spirit and is God’s revelation of Himself to us. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction and is completely true and trustworthy. All Scripture points to Jesus Christ, who is himself the focus of divine revelation.
(Deuteronomy 6:4-7; Psalm 12:6; Psalm 119; Matthew 24:35; Matthew 22:29; 1 Corinthians 2:12-16; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:19-21)
We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—one in being, essence, and nature. The three persons of this Trinity are equal in power and glory, having the same attributes and perfections. God is the Creator of the universe. He has always existed, unchanging and without beginning or end. He is holy, loving, merciful, forgiving, compassionate and just and will judge the world in righteousness.
(Deuteronomy 6:4-7; Isaiah 40:26; Matthew 10:29-30; Colossians 1:16-17; Job 37:6-13; Psalm 147:15-18; Mark 4:39-41; Psalm 33:10-11; Amos 3:6; Lamentations 3:37-38; Proverbs 21:1; Proverbs 16:33)
We believe that Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. He is fully man and fully God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born to the Virgin Mary. We believe that Jesus accomplished our redemption through his death on the cross in our place. Our right standing is made sure by his physical resurrection from the dead. We believe that Christ ascended into heaven and is now seated at the right hand of the Father where he intercedes on our behalf. We believe that Jesus will return one day to judge all people and will establish his kingdom on Earth, ruling and reigning forever.
(Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 14:33; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18; 20:1-20, 28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; Romans 3:23-25; 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, 24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; Colossians 1:13-22; Hebrews 7:14-28; Revelation 5:9-14)
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired the writing of Scripture. He exalts Christ and convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. He affects the new birth, baptizes every new believer into the body of Christ at conversion, and seals them until the day of redemption. He sanctifies and comforts believers, and He bestows spiritual gifts upon the church for its edification and for the glory of Christ. The Spirit empowers the maturation of the church through spiritual disciplines, prayer, general revelation and provides understanding of Scripture.
(Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 12:28-32; Mark 1:10, 12; Luke 1:35; 4:18-19; John 4:24, 14:16-17, 26; Acts 1:8; Acts 2:1-4, 38; 19:16; Romans 8:9-11, 14-16, 26-27; 1 Corinthians 12:3-11, 13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14, 4:30; 2 Peter 1:21; Revelation 22:17)
Humanity & The Fall
We believe that humanity, male and female, was created in the image of God. Therefore, every person has inherent value and worth. Originally, humanity was innocent from sin. Yet by their free choice, Adam and Eve sinned against God. Because Adam is the head of the human race, his fall and spiritual death became the fall and spiritual death of every single human being. Having inherited this disease of sin, all human beings are now corrupt by nature, enslaved, and dead to sin by nature and by choice. As a result, we are separated from God, unable to please God or to come to God apart from His grace.
(Genesis 1-3; Romans 1:18-3:20; 5:1-19; 8:7-8, 20; Ephesians 2:1-3; Ephesians 4:25-32; 5:15-33; 1 Peter 3:1-7; Colossians 3:18-4:1; 1 Thessalonians 4:9-12; 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12)
Salvation involves the redemption of the whole person and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense, salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, and glorification. There is no salvation apart from personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.
Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace. Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire person to Him as Lord and Savior.
Justification is God's gracious and total forgiveness of all sinners who repent and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer unto a relationship of peace and favor with God. Because justification is wholly dependent on Christ, followers of Jesus can have assurance that their salvation is irrevocable.
Sanctification is the experience, beginning in regeneration, by which the believer is set apart to God's purposes and is enabled to progress toward moral and spiritual maturity through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him. Growth in grace should continue throughout the believer’s life.
Glorification is the culmination of salvation and is the final blessed and abiding state of the redeemed. Because of the assurance of faith founded in Christ’s work and the Spirit-empowered transformation that begins at the moment of salvation, all true believers, though they may experience both growth and struggle, will persevere in their faith until the end.
(Genesis 3:15; Exodus 3:14-17; 6:2-8; Matthew 1:21; 4:17; 16:21-26; 27:22-28:6; Luke 1:68-69; 2:28-32; John 1:11-14,29; 3:3-21,36; 5:24; 10:9,28-29; 15:1-16; 17:17; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 15:11; 16:30-31; 17:30-31; 20:32; Romans 1:16-18; 2:4; 3:23-25; 5:8-10; 6:1-23; 8:1-18,29-39; 10:9-10,13; 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18,30; 6:19-20; 15:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-20; Galatians 2:20; 3:13; 5:22-25; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-22; 4:11-16; Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 1:9-22; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Timothy 1:12; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 2:1-3; 5:8-9; 9:24-28; 11:1-12:8,14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:2-23; 1 John 1:6-2:11; Revelation 3:20; 21:1-22:5)
We believe that the church, which is the body and bride of Christ, is a spiritual organism made up of all people who have placed their faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus is the head of the church, and we are members of His body. While the church is a universal body made up of all believers from every tribe, tongue, and nation throughout history, we believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament. Such local churches should be independent, autonomous bodies of believers who are led by pastors, yet ultimately operate under the headship and authority of Jesus Christ. The church is distinguished by the Gospel, ordinances, and mission. The church is to be characterized by a love for God (Christ) that empowers a love for one another (Community) and a love for the world (Commission).
(Isaiah 56:1-8; Isaiah 54:1-3; Galatians 3-4; 1 Timothy 3:15; Ephesians 2:11-22; Ephesians 4:1-16; 2 Corinthians 6:16; 1 Peter 2:4-12; 1 John 3:11-24)
Baptism and Communion
We believe that baptism and communion are ordained by the Lord Jesus himself. Baptism is a physical and public demonstration of the spiritual resurrection that occurs at salvation, and represents a commitment as one enters the body of Christ. Communion is an act that points to this ongoing covenant renewal. Together, the divinely ordained means of grace, our public vows of submission to the once crucified and now resurrected Christ, and anticipates his return and of the consummation of all things. Both of these ordinances bring a special interaction and experience with our resurrected Savior.
(Matthew 28:18-20; 1 Peter 3:21-22; Colossians 2:11-15; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:14- 23; 1 Corinthians 11:23-27)
The Kingdom of God
We believe that those who have been saved by the grace of God through union with Christ by faith and through regeneration by the Holy Spirit enter the kingdom of God and delight in the blessings of the new covenant: the forgiveness of sins, the inward transformation that awakens a desire to glorify, trust, and obey God, and the prospect of the glory yet to be revealed. Good works constitute indispensable evidence of saving grace.
Living as salt in a world that is decaying and light in a world that is dark, believers should neither withdraw into seclusion from the world, nor become indistinguishable from it: rather, we are to do good to the city, for all the glory and honor of the nations is to be offered up to the living God. Recognizing whose created order this is, and because we are citizens of God’s kingdom, we are to love our neighbors as ourselves, doing good to all, especially to those who belong to the household of God.
The kingdom of God, already present but not fully realized, is the exercise of God’s sovereignty in the world toward the eventual redemption of all creation. The kingdom of God is an invasive power that plunders Satan’s dark kingdom and regenerates and renovates through repentance and faith the lives of individuals rescued from that kingdom. It therefore inevitably establishes a new community of human life together under God. It is the desire of the church to see the kingdom come, God’s will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
(Isaiah 58:6-14; Mark 1:15; Matthew 18; Luke 17:20-22; Romans 14:17; 1 Corinthians 4:19-21; Revelation 12:10)
We believe in the personal, glorious, and bodily return of our Lord Jesus Christ with his holy angels, when he will exercise his role as final Judge, and his kingdom will be consummated. We believe in the bodily resurrection of both the just and the unjust—the unjust to judgment and eternal conscious punishment in hell, as our Lord himself taught, and the just to eternal blessedness in the presence of him who sits on the throne and of the Lamb, in the new heaven and the new earth, the home of righteousness. On that day the church will be presented faultless before God by the obedience, suffering and triumph of Christ, all sin purged and its wretched effects forever banished. God will be all in all and his people will be enthralled by the immediacy of his ineffable holiness, and everything will be to the praise of his glorious grace.
(Isaiah 65:17-25; Isaiah 66:18-24; Revelation 21; Romans 8:18-25; Matthew 10:28; 2 Peter 2:4-22; Hebrews 10:26-31)