The central theme of the New Testament is God’s love for you as an individual. This love was revealed through Christ’s coming into the world and living among men, His dying on the cross, and rising from the dead. Through Christ’s death God offers you forgiveness for your sins, and through His resurrection the promise of everlasting life. Christ died and rose again for the whole world, but for you to become a Christian is an individual matter. The only way to establish a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is to accept His offer of forgiveness and everlasting life. The following Scripture passages show God’s part and yours. Read each verse and believe it, for it is the Word of God speaking to you.
God's Love is Revealed "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3.16 God loves you and all of mankind. He wants to bless your life and make it full and complete. He offers you not only an abundant life here and now, but a life which is eternal—His very own life.
Man is Sinful "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." Romans 3.23 The saying, "Well, we're just human, nobody is perfect," is Biblically sound. When we acknowledge this truth, we can see our separation from God, for he is holy.
Sin Has a Penalty "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6.23 To continue in sin will result in spiritual death, which is separation from God forever. The alternative is to personally receive God's free gift, which is pardon for sin and provision for everlasting life.
Christ Paid the Penalty "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5.8 You may think you must lead a "good" life and do charitable acts for God to love you. This is not so. God loves you even in your sin. He sent Christ to die in your place and to pay the penalty for your sin so that you can be reconciled to him.
Salvation is a Free Gift "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast." Ephesians 2.8-9 Grace means underserved favor. God graciously offers to you what you could never do for yourself. God's gift to you is free. You do not, and cannot, work for a gift. All you need to do is receive it. Believe with all your heart that Jesus Christ died for you to provide deliverance from your sins and to give you eternal life.
We Must Receive Christ "Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God." John 1.12 When you receive Christ—when you accept what he has done for you—you become a child of God. Picture, if you will, Jesus Christ standing at the door of your life. Invite him in. He is waiting to be received into your life.
You can invite Jesus Christ into your life right now by praying to God something like the following:
Dear Lord, I know that I am a sinner and that I need your forgiveness. I believe that Christ died in my place to pay the penalty for my sin, and that he rose from the dead. I now invite Jesus Christ to come into my life as my Savior. Thank you for making me your child. Help me learn to please you in every part of my life.
- your sins were forgiven (Colossians 1.14)
- you became a child of God (John 1.12)
- you were made an heir to all of God's blessings (Romans 8.16-17)
- you now possess everlasting life (1 John 5.12-13)
You became a Christian the moment you received Christ. Don't trust your feelings, for they will change. Take God at his Word and believe his promises. Review the above passages whenever doubts arise. You should be able to say with assurance that, "I have recieved Christ. On authority of God's Word, I have eternal life." May God grant you "all joy and peace in believing." (Romans 15.13)
If you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior please let us know and we will send you some helpful literature.
We encourage you to take a next step if you are a new follower of Christ. Attend a Christianity Explored course. Click here for more information.
Elementary: We invite all children to be a part of our children’s ministry. Age appropriate classes meet during all Sunday services as well as AWANA on Wednesday nights. Most children’s ministry classrooms are in the east wing (nursery, Lambs, and Busy Bees are on the first floor, with the Pre K–5th grade on the second floor).
Junior and Senior High: Student Ministries meets at 9:35am in the Student Ministry Center (near the back entrance), and then attends worship at the 10:55am Creative Service or 11:05am Balanced Service.
College: Cutting Edge Ministry meets at 9:55am in the South Life Center and then attends worship at the 10:55am Creative Service or 11:05am Balanced Service.
At South Church we practice believer’s baptism by immersion. According to the command of Jesus himself and consistent with New Testament teaching, those who have consciously turned from their sin and put their personal faith in Jesus Christ should be baptized as an outward sign of their commitment to Him as Savior and Lord. Baptismal services are typically held three times annually during evening services. Those interested in being baptized are required to attend baptism classes led by pastoral staff and deacons.
Please contact Marilyn Wagner in the church office with questions or to register for upcoming baptism classes.
At South Church we celebrate communion, also known as the Lord’s Supper, in accordance with Jesus’ command to “do this in remembrance of me.” Communion services are held on the first Sunday of each month and alternate monthly between morning and evening services.
Those who have consciously turned from their sin and put their personal faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, are at peace with fellow Christians in a church that embraces the Gospel, and seek strength and grace to live more faithfully to Christ, are welcome to receive communion at South Church.
Church membership is about belonging to one another and becoming like Jesus. It is the way for individual Christians to make their formal commitment to the South Church family. In becoming a church member, individuals express their submission to the leadership of the church in accordance with the teaching of Scripture and the doctrinal statement of South Church.
Requirements for South Church Membership:
- Personal profession of faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
- Committed to corporate worship and personal devotion to Christ and His Word.
- Baptism as a believer—at South Church we practice believer’s baptism by immersion. According to the command of Jesus himself and consistent with New Testament teaching, those who have consciously turned from their sin and put their personal faith in Jesus Christ should be baptized as an outward sign of their commitment to Him as Savior and Lord.
- Membership Course—attend The Membership Course that is normally offered three times during the year.
We are offering this lunch for people who are newcomers to South (anyone from a first-time visitor to someone who has been attending for up to six months or so).
Christianity Explored Who is Jesus? Why did he come? What does it mean to follow him? We will answer these questions by studying the life of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark on Sunday evenings. This study is perfect for a sincere seeker of spiritual truth or a skeptic who has real questions about the Christian faith. It is also a perfect opportunity for a seasoned saint to bring along a nonbelieving friend. Join Pastor Joel for this eight-week course in the Fireside Room. Light refreshments and childcare will be provided. Please RSVP by clicking here.