About Our Church
Our Church Family:
First Covenant is a Bible-centered family of believers, and a member of The Evangelical Covenant Church, a growing denomination of more than 850 congregations in the United States and Canada with ministries on five continents of the world. It was originally founded by Swedish immigrants in 1885 as a voluntary covenant of churches committed to working together to share the Good News of Jesus Christ, but it has expanded into a multi-ethnic ministry reaching thousands worldwide. Covenant churches emphasize the Bible's witness to new life in Jesus Christ expressed in a day-to-day walk with the Lord.
Our vision is to glorify God and make Christian disciples.
We, as First Covenant Church, are committed, both corporately and individually, to live out God’s Word and to be Christ’s ambassadors by:
- being faithful to the Gospel of Christ in the Peoria area and throughout the world;
- following Christ’s commands to meet together, to worship Him, and to disciple one another;
- focusing on meeting the needs of people in our church and in our community.
Our Statement of Faith:
We believe in the holy Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, as the inspired Word of God, inerrant in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for the salvation of humanity, and the only perfect rule of—and the Divine and final authority for—Christian faith, doctrine, and conduct. With that as our basis, we as a church believe:
- In one God, Creator of all things, infinitely perfect and eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
- That Jesus Christ, as the Son of God, is both true God and true man, having been conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He died on the cross as a sacrifice for our sins, in accordance with the Scriptures. Further, He arose bodily from the dead, ascended into Heaven, where, at the right hand of the Father, He is now our High Priest and Mediator.
- That the ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ and—during this age between the cross and the rapture—to convict humanity, regenerate the sinner, and instruct, guide, indwell and empower the believer for Godly living and service.
- That humanity was created in the image of God but fell into sin and is, therefore, lost. Only through regeneration by the Holy Spirit can salvation and spiritual life be obtained.
- That the shed blood of Jesus Christ and His Resurrection provide the only ground for justification and salvation for all who believe. “Since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand” (Romans 5:1-2).
- That water baptism and the Lord's Supper are sacraments (holy actions) to be observed by the Church during the present age. They are visible, external, temporal expressions of invisible, spiritual, eternal truth—but not to be regarded themselves as means of salvation or sources of special grace.
- That the true Church is composed of all such persons who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit through faith in Jesus Christ and are united together in the Body of Christ of which He is the Head.
- That the local church (as part of the true Church) should sincerely welcome everyone to join in worship with us, and extend the invitation to join as fully involved members to those who profess and live out their regeneration in Christ.
- In the personal and imminent coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and that this “Blessed Hope” has a vital bearing on the personal life and service of the believer.
- In the the bodily resurrection of the dead; of the believer to joy and everlasting worship of the Lord; of the unbeliever to judgment and everlasting conscious punishment.
Our Relational Covenant:
We, as the family and household of God, each have a personal and corporate responsibility to live our lives by the work of the Holy Spirit in such a way that we honor our Lord in what we do, and in how and why we do it. Grounding ourselves first and always in the Word, we at First Covenant Church commit to hold love as our prime operating principle, to pray for one another, and to strive when interacting with one another to:
- Consciously create a safe, church family environment
- Actively strengthen and build up one another
- Intentionally conduct ourselves with a spirit of humility, grace, and peace
- Lovingly speak truth to one another in times of conflict
- Genuinely commit to our fellowship and minister alongside one another
At every stage, we will ask ourselves, “Does this draw us closer to God and to one another, or does this push us farther away?” seeking, pursuing, and—as far as it depends on us—living in peace.
(for the long version of this Relational Covenant—with Scriptures and commentary—please click here)
For more information about any of these statements or about the church in general, please feel free to contact us.