Maitland Baptist Church (MBC) is simply a community of people who love God and are doing life together in a way which responds to the grace shown to us by Him and which reflects the love of Jesus to each other.
We recognise that Jesus is the head of the church and that our agenda is set by seeking Him, reading God’s word and being open to the empowering of the Holy Spirit to guide and equip us for the building up of God’s kingdom in the place he has put us.
MBC’s vision statement – Loving God, Loving People, Making Disciples – reflects Jesus core call to today’s church and is the focus for the pastoral team as it leads the church and encourages its members to be ‘participants in’ rather than ‘observers of’ what God is doing in his community at Maitland and beyond.
MBC has established a leadership team comprising a number of co-equal pastors who are engaged in preaching, discipling and pastoral care and who are also responsible for different areas of ministry as they work alongside a group of elder/leaders. Together this leadership team stays in touch with the church community, prays for them and encourages them towards a real and dynamic walk with Jesus. Leadership decisions are made on a collaborative basis in an environment of mutual accountability and respect for each other recognising that God has given each of us different strengths and abilities to practice in the life of the church.
What we believe
1. The Nature and the Unity of the Godhead
We believe in one eternal God who is the Creator of all things. He exists in three Persons: God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. He is a personal God who is totally loving, completely holy and infinite in power and wisdom.
2. Jesus – Both God and Man
We believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born as a physical person of the Virgin Mary, so the nature of God and the nature of man, were united in one person.
3. God the Holy Spirit
We believe the Holy Spirit is eternally one with God the Father and God the Son. The Holy Spirit moves amongst his people seeking to reveal his nature and draw mankind into a relationship with Himself.
4. The Bible
We believe that the Bible, consisting of sixty-six books is God’s Word written by people of God inspired by the Holy Spirit. It is totally accurate and authoritative and relevant to us today. It reveals who God is, His love for us and teaches us how to live in a way that pleases Him.
5. The Sinfulness of People
We believe that God created man in His own image, to be without sin but with the ability to make our own choices. Mankind originally lived in perfect harmony and relationship with God but was then tempted by Satan and chose to disobey God’s instructions. This act of rebellion introduced sin into the world. We are today all born with the natural inclination to sin which separates us from relationship with God and destines us to spiritual and physical death.
6. God’s plan to save mankind
We believe that God – who loves us more than we can imagine – chose to intervene and provide a means of rescuing mankind from our sin. God took on human flesh and came down as one of us in the person of Jesus Christ. He died on the cross, taking the sins of humanity upon himself and was punished in our place but three days later rose again, conquering death, winning victory over sin. Those who believe Jesus paid the price for their sin and choose to follow Him enjoy a restored relationship with God and have eternal life with Him.
7. The work of the Holy Spirit
We believe the Holy Spirit reveals the truth to us, helps us to see our sin, helps us comprehend Gods love for us and helps us understand and trust in God’s plan to save us. The Spirit comforts, guides and empowers us to live with the qualities of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The Holy Spirit also enables us to identify and effectively use special gifts that God gives us to build and encourage the Church.
We believe that prayer is essential to our faith and enables us to be effective followers of Jesus. Prayer is a two-way and ongoing conversation between ourselves and God and is vital if we are to have an intimate relationship with Him. Prayer provides us with the opportunity to thank, praise and worship God for who He is. Through prayer we are able to share with God our innermost thoughts, feelings, requests, confessions, and desires and the bible tells us we can be confident that he hears our prayers. God directs, teaches, corrects, and comforts us through our prayer life. The Holy Spirit helps us pray in times when we don’t know what to say.
9. The Church
We believe that those who have placed their faith in Jesus are together a distinctive community of faith, the Church, of which Christ is the Head. The members of His Church meet together in local gatherings for worship, teaching from the Bible, mutual encouragement, prayer and to celebrate baptism and communion. The Church’s corporate expression of faith is in ‘loving God, loving people and making disciples’. The church brings healing to the world by serving our communities and loving and caring for the poor and the oppressed and engages culture on every front with God’s truth, hope and love
We believe that the act of baptism reflects a personal decision to publicly declare our faith in Jesus Christ and to respond to His command to be baptised. Being baptised by full immersion follows Jesus example of baptism and symbolises death to our old sin- controlled life, its burial, and our resurrection to a new life in Him as we allow His spirit to indwell and change us.
We believe that Jesus has asked us to remember His death and His resurrection by sharing in a special meal together called communion. When we share in communion, we are reminded that Jesus sacrificial death paid the price for our sins. It is also an opportunity for us as a church family to be thankful for our restored relationship with God and to celebrate Jesus victory over death and our eternal life with Him.
12. The return of Jesus Christ
Although we are not able to determine exactly when, We believe that Jesus Christ, in keeping with His promise, will return personally, bodily, and visibly in His glory to the earth to gather those who have been his faithful followers to himself for eternity, to set aside for judgement those who have rejected Him and establish a new and perfect kingdom in which He will reign.
We believe that the written account in Genesis is the accurate record of creation and that God made the universe and all that is within it. Man and woman are the intentional and direct creation of God – spirit, soul and body, made in His image.
14. Our responsibility as followers of Jesus
We believe that God has individually equipped us so that we can successfully achieve His purpose for our lives which is to worship Him, fulfil our role in the Church and serve the community in which we live. Our worship is a lifestyle where in all circumstances our words and actions bring glory to God.
15. Human Life
We believe that human life is sacred from conception to its natural end; and that we must have concern for the physical and spiritual needs of others. Because mankind is made in the image of God, every person, regardless of race, religion, colour, culture, class, sex or age, has an intrinsic dignity and should be loved, respected and served, not exploited.
We believe God’s plan for human sexuality is to be expressed only within the context of marriage and that God created man and woman as unique biological persons made to complete each other. God instituted monogamous marriage between male and female as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. For this reason, we believe that marriage is exclusively the union of one genetic male and one genetic female.
A comprehensive PDF version of the ‘Core Value’ document containing bible references relevant to each value statement can be viewed by clicking here.