WHAT DOES 'REFORMED' MEAN?
By "Reformed" we mean that we're Protestant and embrace the Reformation ideas of Christ alone, faith alone, and Scripture alone. This means we believe that salvation can only be found in Christ, can only be received by faith, and is only revealed in the Bible. The word "Reformed" may be new to you, or it may not be, either way we're a family made up of many backgrounds and traditions that call Rockwall Pres home.
Furthermore, we are Presbyterian (learn more below). We believe God appoints elders to shepherd the Church. We're a member of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), to which we hold ourselves accountable.
Our denomination adheres to the particular expression of Christian doctrine found in the Westminster Confession of Faith.
We always try to stress that you don't have to be "Reformed" or identify as a "Presbyterian" to join us at Rockwall Pres. We celebrate the many diverse and faithful denominations within Christ's body.
Holding to the historic faith.
We believe God preserves his people in every time and place throughout history.
WHAT REALLY MAKES Any CHURCH A CHURCH?
We hold to the historic Christian faith. By "orthodox," we mean that we affirm the essential ideas of Christianity that have survived for two thousand years and remained common across denominational boundaries and traditional expressions. This is an important value we hold because the Scriptures call for unity amongst believers, as we are all members of one body, how then do we determine what makes a believer? What basic set of beliefs are central for a church to be faithful to the Scriptures and considered to be a part of the true Church?
WE DESIRE TO SEEK UNITY
Together with our sister Christian churches around the world and throughout history, we confess the Apostles’ Creed as a concise expression of the core beliefs that unite the true Church of every time and place. Given the call for unity in the Scriptures, we want to major in the majors and minor in the minors. We consider the Apostle’s Creed to contain “the majors”, or the "basics", of the faith that unite the one Church of God.
THE APOSTLES' CREED:
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord:
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead, and buried;
he descended into hell.
the third day He arose again from the dead;
he ascended into heaven,
and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit;
the holy *catholic church;
the communion of saints;
the forgiveness of sins;
the resurrection of the body;
and the life everlasting.
[ * by 'catholic' it is referring to the true Church of every time and place throughout history ]
WE LOVE THE CHURCH IN ALL OF ITS FAITHFUL EXPRESSIONS
At Rockwall Pres we celebrate the diversity of traditions in the Church throughout the world, yet we lament the divisions that exist. This doesn't mean we celebrate every practice or expression, but it does mean we don't simply celebrate our own. The body of Christ is bigger than our church, our denomination, and our particular tradition.
We look forward to the day when Christ will finally and completely "unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth" (Ephesians 1:10).
Christ is King over all of creation.
1 Corinthians 15:27
WE ARE CHRISTIANS ABOVE ALL ELSE
We consider ourselves to be evangelical. This word can be understood (or misunderstood) in different ways, and most commonly, it's associated with the realm of politics. We're not evangelical in a political sense, but in its more classical definition, which essentially means these two ideas:
1. We believe that the Bible is authoritative in all matters of life
2. We believe that humanity may relate personally with God through Jesus
We don't mean that Christianity is simply a personal religious preference, but that it's simply true – like gravity – and that it pulls and influences everything. There is nothing that exists that doesn't fall under the reign of Christ, because the death and resurrection of Jesus effects all creation (Philippians 2:9–11).
JESUS CHRIST IS SAVIOR AND KING
All mankind is accountable to Jesus Christ and his word is authoritative above all else. As a result, we unapologetically proclaim to everyone this good news that Christ, our risen Savior, is King and that all things are subject his rule (1 Corinthians 15:27).
What is Presbyterianism?
We get this question a lot as many people learn more about Rockwall Pres. In short, the word "Presbyterian" comes from the Greek word "presbuteros," which simply means "elder." Presbyterian church government can simply be remembered to mean "elder-led."
Therefore, a Presbyterian church is governed by a collection of elders that are nominated and voted upon by the church congregation. It's the role of this body of elders, called a "session," to oversee and shepherd the church.
WE'RE A DIVERSE BODY
Presbyterianism may be completely new to you, as you may have grown up in a different tradition. We tell everyone that being a member of Rockwall Pres in no way means that you have to be "Presbyterian in all things." Our congregation is a diverse mixture, from Baptist, Bible, Catholic, and non-denominational backgrounds. Becoming a member at Rockwall Pres is not a commitment to be Presbyterian; it's a commitment to the leadership, people, and mission that God has given us.
WE FOCUS ON OUR CALLING
Our ultimate goal as a church is to see you thrive as a disciple by growing in your love for Christ and others. We believe that our form of government is sanctioned in the Scriptures, as are other forms of church government. Yet ultimately, issues of church government are secondary to Christ's call for us to extend his kingdom to the ends of the earth.