Blue Hills Baptist Church is a gospel-centered congregation that has been serving Independence, MO for over 200 years. In that 200 years, to the praise of God, the gospel of Jesus Christ has been proclaimed, lives have been renewed, souls have been saved, the Bible has been preached, and our community has been served. While we thank God for His faithfulness in the past, we realize that our mission is not yet finished, it goes on from generation to generation.
To help you know us better, below is our church vision and theological beliefs. Please do not hesitate to reach out if we can help you in any way. We also warmly welcome you to come visit us on a Sunday morning or Wednesday night!
I. Our Vision
It is our aim to glorify God and serve Independence by proclaiming the gospel, growing in the Word, enjoying God, loving the church, and making disciples. We joyfully pursue this by focusing on the following values:
God is not silent, He speaks and invites us to come and listen. We celebrate the fact that the God of Heaven can be known, for He has sought us out and made Himself known in the pages of Scripture. We are committed to teaching and preaching the Bible week in and week out, because God's powerful work in our lives is accomplished by His powerful Word. This is where we see His glory and this is where we learn the truth about ourselves, the truth about our world, and the truth about our wonderful Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
The central heartbeat of the Bible is the gospel of Jesus Christ. The gospel is the good news of what God has done through His Son Jesus Christ (especially His life, death, and resurrection) to save us from the eternal punishment of our sins and reconcile us to Himself forever. It is the breathtaking good news that, though we are more sinful than we ever realized, there is a God who is more loving and gracious than we ever dared to hope.
This gospel saves the lost and renews the saved. It touches every part of our lives and shapes every aspect of Christian ministry. We want the gospel to have a felt presence in the life of Blue Hills.
We are saved into union with Jesus (our Head) and into union with each other. A church isn’t merely a building, it is a family and community. In this community we support one another in prayer and fellowship, bear each other’s burdens, grow in grace, celebrate victories, and work together to serve the body and local community. This is where the church becomes the church in her true form.
The gospel not only gives us a new status of acceptance with God, it has opened the door into the eternal enjoyment of this God. As one author has put it, “You, oh God, have made us for Yourself and our hearts are restless until they rest in You.” We want to see people experience personal renewal as they enjoy and adore the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (even as these three Persons enjoy and adore them).
More can be done after prayer but not before it. If the Lord does not build the house we realize that our labors are in vain. We want to be a praying church that lifts our eyes upwards in dependence on God. Even more, we want to enjoy the gift of prayer and communion with God.
It is our prayer and passion to see people grow in spiritual maturity and personal renewal and to do our part to help them in their discipleship journey. We also want to help people identify their gifts and have opportunities to use them. Additionally, we realize the importance of training the next generation of gospel-ministers, and to that end, we want to make ourselves available for their discipleship and preparation.
Christ has commissioned His church to make disciples of all nations and herald the good news of the gospel. Even as God sent His Son into the world to accomplish salvation, He is now saving His people from every tribe, tongue, and nation. We are truly honored that God calls us to participate in His restoration process, and to that end we pursue worldwide evangelization as well evangelizing our local community.
II. What We Believe
Since God is a speaking-God we celebrate the fact that the God of Heaven can be known, for He has sought us out and made Himself known (Hebrews 1:1-4; 2 Timothy 3:16). Our aim is to be wholeheartedly committed to the great doctrines of Scripture and historic evangelical theology so that we can know and exalt the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Below is a summary of our core theological beliefs. For a fuller expression of our beliefs, please see our doctrinal statement The Baptist Faith & Message 2000.
In a unique and glorious way, God wrote a book. We believe the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments are the very words of God, written by historical authors under the divine inspiration of God’s Holy Spirit. They make up the authoritative and inerrant Word of God, our supreme rule for faith and practice.
THE LIVING GOD
There is one true and living God who is the Creator of all things, the gracious Savior of sinners, and the sovereign King of the universe. God is one in essence and eternally exists in three distinct Persons — God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. These three Persons are one with each other, equal in their eternity and divine attributes, and partner together in the creation and control of the universe, the redemption of human beings, and the restoration of all things.
In the creation of all things, God created human beings, male and female, in His own glorious image. God bestowed on them the glory and joy of loving fellowship with Himself, He made them sinless and equal in dignity and worth, and He wisely created them for complimentary roles in the contexts of marriage, family, and the local church.
As a result of the disobedience and rebellion of our first parents (Adam and Eve), the human race fell from its perfect condition in fellowship with God into a condition of decay, sorrow, sin, death, and separation from God. The world we see is not the world that was, and who we are is not who we were originally meant to be. We are far from home. In this fallen condition, all men and women are now sinful by nature and by choice, deserving of divine punishment, and entirely unable to remedy the situation. We stand utterly in need of God’s redeeming grace, which He is pleased to give through His Son, Jesus Christ.
The just God (who must pronounce judgment on the guilty) is an infinitely merciful God (who gives everything for their forgiveness and rescue.) From eternity, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit formed a plan to redeem fallen sinners and restore them to God's favor and fellowship.
The Son of God came into the world as a man amongst men—God in the flesh. Jesus was and remains fully divine and fully human in his one Person. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit in the womb of a virgin, He lived a life of perfect righteousness on our behalf, He bore the divine punishment for our sins in His death at the cross, and He bodily rose from the grave on the third day—proving His divine identity and overcoming the reign of sin, death, and Satan.
He now sits at God’s right hand in heaven, He is gathering His people to Himself from all corners of the earth through the ministry of the gospel, He continually intercedes for us, and He will return one day to finish God’s restoration process.
God’s gift of salvation in Christ is freely offered to all and is received, not by works or merit, but by faith alone in Christ alone. All who by God’s grace come to saving faith in Christ: the Spirit of God now dwells within them and has given them new spiritual life (regeneration), they are eternally forgiven of all sins and credited with the righteousness of Christ in a new standing before the Father (justification), they are made the beloved sons and daughters of God (adoption), they are being shaped into the likeness of Christ through life’s pilgrimage (sanctification), they will never perish or fall from grace (preservation), and they will be kept by God until they inherit glorified bodies in God’s eternal, glorified kingdom (glorification.)
All who place their faith in Jesus Christ are brought into His one universal Church, composed of all believers and true churches world-wide. A local church is an outpost of Christ’s eternal Kingdom and is meant to be a foretaste of what will come upon His return. Each local church is commissioned by God to proclaim His gospel, preach His Word, love and serve one another, do the work of faithful evangelism, make disciples, and observe the ordinances of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.
In the culmination of God’s purposes, Jesus Christ will visibly, physically, and personally return to the earth to judge the living and the dead, defeat all evil, bring His Church into eternal glory, and set up His eternal Kingdom of righteousness and peace. All those who are in Christ will be raised to everlasting joy and life on the basis of His saving work (e.g Heaven). All those outside of Christ will be raised to judgement and everlasting misery, receiving the just penalty of sin (e.g. Hell). God will create a new heavens and a new earth, wherein we will dwell in the endless glory and joy of His fellowship. The old things will have passed away and God will make all things new.