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Why the EPC?



In the Essentials, Unity.

In the Non-Essentials, Liberty.

In all things, Charity.


The Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) has existed for over 40 years and, more importantly, aligns well with our theological convictions & vision.

Water Stone Church is committed to connectionalism, meaning we are committed to being together, being with Christians from other churches and not relying on ourselves to have all the answers or further God’s Kingdom on our own.

We are also committed to being known for what we are for, not what we are against, and we are committed to helping all people catch a cherished glimpse of the New Heavens and New Earth God won't let them forget. This means our focus is on a relationship with Jesus, and it also means you have the freedom to wrestle with Jesus and embrace mystery because, let’s be honest, there’s a lot we won’t know until He returns.

 

This is true of the EPC as well.

 

As a denomination we allow local churches to decide what they believe and practice about non-essential matters, and as a result our denomination’s gatherings are spent focusing on the mission of the Church and our gospel priorities of church planting, church health, discipleship, and global missions. It’s refreshing and empowering. 

The denominational tag-line posted at the top isn’t a gimmick, it’s reality. Is something essential to understanding who Jesus is and what He accomplished through His life, death, and resurrection? We are unified in our commitment to these things. Is something important, but faithful Christians around the globe have different perspectives they draw from the Scriptures? We are unified in our graciousness toward these things. And for everything else Paul says that the greatest of faith, hope, and love is love, or “charity”, and we are unified in our love for all people.

What does that mean for Water Stone Church? It means we have the freedom to be who God has uniquely called us to be, which is unashamed of the gospel and entrusting to others what has been passed on to us. It means we get glimpses of God’s height and breadth in worship with other EPC churches who may do things a little differently than we do. It means we can spend more time equipping the saints, more time loving our neighbors, more time praying for the lost and dreaming about ways to serve Smyrna. 

 

What does that mean for you? Well, it means you can rest knowing Water Stone Church and your fellow brothers and sisters in the EPC want you first and foremost to flourish in your relationship with Jesus Christ. It also means, however, your comfort may be challenged from time to time. While committed to being a reformed, confessional, and missionally connected denomination, we're a big tent. One church may wear robes and ordain women while another church wears shorts and ordains men. One church may only sing hymns while another church may exercise a full expression of the charismatic gifts. That’s what the gospel does though, doesn’t it?

It comforts us in our challenges and challenges us in our comfort. 

That’s Water Stone Church, and that’s the EPC.



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