HELPING PASTORS PLANT & CULTIVATE HEALTHY CHURCHES FOR GLOBAL HARVEST
The Great Commission is the responsibility of the local church. In order for the local church to be faithfully and effectively engaged in mission, she must be led by godly pastors who are faithful to the pattern and standard of the New Testament. Pastors lead from the reality of being personally reconciled to Christ and equipped to lead Christ’s Church. Pastors lead in the power of the Holy Spirit by placing the gospel at the center of the church’s teaching, prayer, worship, community, and mission. The pastoral role is to be filled by men who meet the Scriptures standard for leadership. Men who are affirmed and sent, and who serve as skilled master builders laying a firm foundation of Jesus Christ and the whole counsel of His word. These pastors are those who are kingdom minded and who love the local church, who are filled with and rely on the Holy Spirit. They get their hands dirty in guiding the doctrine and practice of the church. We believe that pastors are called to lead the church to practice regenerate church membership and church discipline and also embrace the biblical distinctions of gender roles. They shepherd a church ready to bring transformation to its own community, its region, and to the nations. Pastors equip the saints for the work of the ministry ; training, sending, and multiplying disciples and churches locally and to the ends of the earth.
PLANT & CULTIVATE HEALTHY CHURCHES
The Great Commission is a call to make disciples, and therefore it is a call to plant churches. New Testament mission and discipleship consisted of reaching individuals, baptizing them, and teaching them to observe all that Jesus commanded, all happening in the context of a covenant community. These covenant communities—local churches—are the engines of mission Jesus established to perpetuate the global Christian movement. We believe that a healthy church conforms its teaching and practice to that of Scripture, God’s inspired Word. It devotes itself to the teaching of the Word, gathered prayer, community fellowship, and evangelistic mission. The church glories in the sovereignty of God over human salvation, applies the baptistic theology of the New Covenant, and is eager for the supernatural working of the Holy Spirit. Healthy churches come in all sizes and cultures and meet in many different kinds of places. However, we believe that a healthy church is one that seeks to build a community from all cultures where Christ is King, displaying in its midst that the Gospel is for all peoples.
FOR GLOBAL HARVEST
The knowledge of the glory of God will cover the earth as the water covers the sea. This is the purpose of the Great Commission. Jesus has purchased for himself a multitude from every tribe, tongue, and nation, and has given his church the Spirit to accomplish this task. The local church must rise to this challenge until North America is saturated with healthy churches and every global unreached people group has its own healthy, indigenous communities where Christ is King. We must prioritize the unreached, the unengaged, and the strategic. We must extend words of truth, deeds of mercy, and lives of holy sacrifice. We must cooperate with other like-minded churches and we must embrace the high cost of suffering that reaching the nations will require. We must be devoted to prayer and fasting to ignite and sustain the Spirit-led advance of Christ’s church. The glory of God and its display among all peoples must be our chief motivation, the gospel our message, the local church our means. Through healthy churches planting healthy churches we believe we will reap a global harvest.
WHAT IS THE IMMANUEL NETWORK?
THE IMMANUEL NETWORK IS A MISSION COOPERATIVE OF LIKE MINDED LEADERS WHOSE MISSION IS TO PLANT AND STRENGTHEN HEALTHY MULTIPLYING CHURCHES IN NORTH AMERICA AND THE UNREACHED PEOPLES OF THE WORLD.
The Immanuel Network is a mission cooperative. That means we are not simply another missions or church planting organization. Rather, we are pastors, missionaries, and church planters who have been shaped by the ministry of Immanuel Baptist Church. We desire a deep level of theological and missiological like-minded support in the difficult task of church planting and cultivating health among existing churches. As a network, we relate to missions and church planting organizations in a complementary partnership, eager to support their commitment to the Great Commission and seeking to provide ongoing leadership development, training bold men and women with gospel DNA and a heart for the hardest places. Because unity results in effectiveness we want to serve like-minded global and local leaders through providing a network of qualified, trustworthy mission partners, and through raising up, preparing, resourcing, and coaching the next generation of church planters and leaders. The Immanuel Network is based out of and facilitated through Immanuel Baptist Church in Louisville, KY, and currently active in seven of eight major world regions in 15 countries.