what we believe

As followers of Christ, we are all called to “work out our salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12b). God’s Word is a great treasure given to us to reveal who God is and how He is moving in our world and history. The people of God have a great responsibility to accurately understand the Word of God and to apply it to our lives and the world around us.


As part of the Evangelical Free Church of America, we abide by their Statement of Faith. It accurately reflects our understanding of who God is, of salvation and how to live as Christians in our world today. 


The Evangelical Free Church of America is an association of autonomous churches united around these theological convictions: 

  • God—We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory. 
  • The Bible—We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. As the verbally inspired Word of God, the Bible is without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for salvation, and the ultimate authority by which every realm of human knowledge and endeavor should be judged. Therefore, it is to be believed in all that it teaches, obeyed in all that it requires, and trusted in all that it promises. 
  • The Human Condition—We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God's saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed. 
  • Jesus Christ—We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus-Israel's promised Messiah-was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate.
  • The Work of Christ—We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation. 
  • The Holy Spirit—We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its guilt. He regenerates sinners, and in Him they are baptized into union with Christ and adopted as heirs in the family of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service. 
  • The Church—We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God's grace through faith alone in Christ alone. They are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. The true church is manifest in local churches, whose membership should be composed only of believers. The Lord Jesus mandated two ordinances, baptism and the Lord's Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. Though they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer.
  • Christian Living—We believe that God's justifying grace must not be separated from His sanctifying power and purpose. God commands us to love Him supremely and others sacrificially, and to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed. With God's Word, the Spirit's power, and fervent prayer in Christ's name, we are to combat the spiritual forces of evil. In obedience to Christ's commission, we are to make disciples among all people, always bearing witness to the gospel in word and deed.
  • Christ's Return—We believe in the personal, bodily and premillennial return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The coming of Christ, at a time known only to God, demands constant expectancy and, as our blessed hope, motivates the believer to godly living, sacrificial service and energetic mission.
  • Response and Eternal Destiny—We believe that God commands everyone everywhere to believe the gospel by turning to Him in repentance and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal conscious punishment and the believer to eternal blessedness and joy with the Lord in the new heaven and the new earth, to the praise of His glorious grace. Amen.


MEMBERSHIP

At Valley Free, it is our hearts’ desire to create a healthy church community. We are committed to leading individuals and families into an abundant life with Jesus Christ. Our commitment is to join in life and faith though all the seasons and circumstances of life. We believe that this commitment is one of the strengths of our church family.


In addition, we believe that membership in our church family is not about conformity but about complementary and supportive relationships. It is about commitment to a ‘family of families’ more than membership in a club. As in any significant relationship, both parties need to share the same vision, values and commitment.


If you are interested in becoming a member of Valley Free, we ask that you contact the church office for the date of the next informational meeting. 

child dedication

What is Child Dedication?

Child dedication is a ceremony designed for you to publicly recognize your child as a gift from God.  It is an opportunity to express your commitment to raise your child in a Christian home where they can come to know, love, and serve Jesus.


It is also a time for the congregation of Valley Free to declare their commitment to partner with you in raising your child to know Jesus Christ in the context of a loving, biblical community that supports and prays for your family.  


We believe child dedication to God is based scripturally from Hannah's dedication of Samuel (1 Samuel 1:19-28) and Mary and Joseph's dedication of Jesus (Luke 2:21-22). It is a holy time of heart commitment by parents to dedicate their children to the Lord for His purposes (Deuteronomy 6:6-9).  


Public Child Dedication is actually a "parent dedication". It is your statement of personal faith in Jesus Christ and your desire that your home be a place where His Word is lived, honored and obeyed. In order for you to dedicate your child to God, you must have first offered yourself to Him. It is inconsistent for an unsaved parent to offer their child to the Lord if they have not first offered their own life to Christ.  


If you have questions as to what this means or uncertainty as to your personal salvation, please talk to a pastor. We want you to know Jesus personally, so you can truly be God's instrument in your child's life.


Child Dedication is Not Baptism

Child dedication does not provide salvation for the child. Valley Free Church believes public water baptism is the outward sign for those who have inwardly chosen to be cleansed from sin by confession and faith in Jesus Christ.  


Child dedication is simply a public act by which parents commit to raise their children in a righteous and godly environment that involves both the home and faithful participation in local the church.  


Parents should set this example in the home by maintaining faithful prayer, study of God’s Word and church attendance. Home training and family devotional times can be a model for your children in Christian living and service.  


I Would Like to Dedicate My Child

At Valley Free Church, we hold child dedications services 2-3 times a year during the Sunday worship service. Program announcements will be made several weeks prior to each dedication service. Parents will be asked to register through the church office at least one week in advance.  


Parents will be asked to attend a short class prior to the dedication to review what dedication means, answer any questions and review the order of service for the dedication. It is our prayer that this time of dedication will be precious in the sight of God and a meaningful experience for you and your family. 

communion

What is Communion?

Communion, or the Lord's Supper, is a time of remembrance that Jesus himself established. During His last meal with the disciples, the Bible says, "and He took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them saying, 'This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.' In the same way, after the supper He took the cup, saying, 'This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you" (Luke 22:19-20).  


The elements of food and drink point to the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross in order to accomplish the salvation of us all. We receive salvation by faith alone (Ephesians 2:8-9). Communion is a celebration of the sacrifice of Christ for the forgiveness of our sin. In this sense, Communion is a declaration of Christ's death, burial, resurrection and a proclamation of His return, "For as often as you at this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes (1 Corinthians 11:26).  


Why do we observe Communion?

Communion is an act of worship. It celebrates the incredible act of grace whereby the Son of God humbled Himself and took the form of a servant to suffer and die for our sins (Philippians 2:5-11). It is an act of remembering what He did for us: "And when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, 'This is my body, which is for you, do this in remembrance of me'" (1 Corinthians 11:24). Communion is also an act of faith in the work of Christ until He returns.  


How often is Communion observed at Valley?

Jesus commanded His disciples to eat and drink "In remembrance of me," therefore, communion should be observed on a regular basis. Churches vary in how often they observe communion. At Valley, we usually observe communion every four to six weeks. Communion is a great expression of worship, an opportunity to give thanks, a time to reflect and a chance to celebrate, all because of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ.  


Who should take Communion?

Since Jesus shared the first Communion with His disciples and since it is an act of remembering what He has done for us, it is fitting that only those who have made a faith commitment to Christ should take communion. You do not need to be a member of Valley Free in order to take communion, however it is essential that you examine your heart and confess any sin or broken relationships before coming to the table.  


Should my children take Communion? 

We encourage followers of Christ of any age to remember and celebrate what Christ has done for us. Many Christian parents use this time as a way to teach their children about the significance of Christ's sacrifice for our sin. Valley offers a children’s workbook that can assist parents as they explain communion to their children. Contact the Children’s Education Director to receive a copy.  


What does the Bible say about Communion?

You can investigate Communion for yourself by reading the following passages: Matthew 26:17-30, Mark 14:12-26, Luke 22:7-30 and 1 Corinthians 11:17-34.