It is, of course, vitally important to know what a church believes, how it worships and why, and how it governs itself. It is also, however, very helpful to know a little about the Christian “culture” which we are trying to develop in our church community. Let’s take a few examples of practical issues at Church of the King, showing how we try to apply the Bible to our everyday lives
As Jesus is functionally subordinate to the Father, and yet equal in essence with Him, so wives, though joint-heirs with their husbands, are to be functionally subordinate to them. We believe men should rule their households as Christ rules the church. This rule is carried out through service, instruction, and command. We believe wives are to be strong dominion women as described in Proverbs 31, but that the man’s leadership in the home should be clear. The Scriptures teach that men are to both guard and nurture their wives, both physically and in the faith. We believe both husbands and wives should actively work to protect their mate’s reputation and not damage it through a failure to be careful and gracious in their speech. We also, however, encourage couples to consult with their Pastors about whatever problems may arise in their homes. We are committed to providing educational and motivational tools to assist couples in ruling their homes in such a way as to honor God.
The husband’s functional superiority in the family brings with it an increased responsibility and culpability as well. We place a strong emphasis on the practice of family devotions or worship times. The heads of our families are regularly encouraged to lead their families in daily home worship. We provide helps, instruction and encouragement to make this a reality in our homes. We also strongly believe that a sense of vocational calling is extremely important for the Christian man. All legitimate employment should be seen as “Kingdom work,” and “full-time Christian service.” If we take the first man, Adam, as our model, wives are the perfect-fitted helpers so that husbands might engage in God’s work at home, in their community and in their vocation. In a sense, jobs are not primarily means to support wives, but wives are part of God’s means to assist men’s vocational callings.
We believe the Scriptures teach the responsibility of parents to oversee the education and training of the children that God has entrusted to their care. The primary goal of this education is to teach children to view all of life from God’s perspective, and to use all knowledge to the glory of God. This is simply impossible in public (i.e. government) schools. Additionally, in God’s Word, there is absolutely no provision for schools financed and run by the civil state. We are characterized, then, by families that understand the need to remove their children as quickly as possible out of the public school system, and into home school or a closely monitored private Christian school. We try to provide encouragement and assistance to help parents do this.
We believe that parents are to be directly involved in guiding their children towards Christian marriage. Modern dating practices present many difficulties and dangers. We are called to be wise. To think of dating in a romantic or “cute” fashion and fail to understand the sexual dynamics and resultant temptations of dating is being foolhardy. We therefore encourage our families and singles to try, as much as possible, to engage in some form of Christian “courtship.” There is no “approved model” for courtship! We are even a bit reluctant to use the term “courtship,” given its various and sometimes eccentric meanings. But we do think it’s very important for this vital area of sexual purity and delight to be recovered in Christ’s people. This old-fashioned term (courtship) is employed to cause us to hearken back to a time when sexual purity was the norm and marital bliss was therefore enhanced. We provide educational materials and encouragement to parents and singles as they implement their own particular form of “courtship.”
We believe the Scriptures teach us to live within our means. Proverbs 22:7 tells us that the borrower is servant to the lender, thus comparing debt and slavery. Since Christ has made us free, we are to strive very hard to be debt-free in our finances. Romans 13:8 tells us to owe no man anything but the continuing debt of love. We are characterized, then, as a community that makes diligent efforts to avoid debt. We work towards a goal of being free of debt, including real estate debt, and thus being in a position to assist others economically.
We believe that we have a positive requirement to try to assist those members of our covenant community who fall on hard times, either through illness or financial difficulty. We also believe God’s Word provides us the correct means to help such folks, so that our “tender mercies” are not cruel (Prov. 12:10 ). A practical example of this is the Old Testament law of gleaning. The field-owner was required to let those in financial distress work the edges of his field. This produced a “working charity” that can quite easily be adapted to our Christian culture. The congregation is encouraged to assist the needy by making work at their homes or places of business available to them. At the same time, we are prepared to financially counsel those in need of education and encouragement to get their household finances in order. This counsel, of course, comes from God’s Word.
A church is a community in covenant together, and as such, its members are to be encouraged and exhorted to live up to their responsibilities to God and to one another. We offer several Bible studies and breakfast meetings in different locations in the Greater Sacramento area. We see these meetings as an opportunity to fellowship, to confess our sins one to another, to pray for each other, to be instructed and build a sense of accountability and assistance. We strive to implement particular applications of Church of the King’s biblical culture by providing meals for those who are ill or have recently had babies, and by planning and hosting bridal and baby showers. Babies are not seen as curses to be aborted, or as inconveniences to be tolerated, but as great blessings in which we rejoice.
We strongly encourage some degree of involvement in political action for two reasons: defense of our families, and the evangelization of the world. We concur with the Apostle Paul where he admonishes young Timothy with these words: ” Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle–I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying–a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting; [I Timothy 2:1-8]
It seems the civil state grows increasingly more intrusive and oppressive each year. Many of the attacks on the Christian family have come through the political state. We therefore engage in Christian political action (using God’s means to achieve God’s ends) so that we might protect and raise up a godly generation.
Deuteronomy 4:6-8, speaking of God’s civil statutes, says “This is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law?’” America was once such a light to the world, a light which brought many immigrants not just to this country, but to a saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as well. We pray and work for that day to come once more to our State and Nation.
We could go on, but hopefully this small sampler gives you an idea of the Christian community and culture that we are attempting to build at Church of the King here in Sacramento, California.