A message presented at the Calvary Chapel Pastor’s Conference by Pastor Damian Kyle
If you are interested in what makes Calvary Chapel distinctive, this is the study you are looking for. It’s a fifty (50) minute Video Message that will be well worth your time! Additionally, if you prefer, the message was transcribed for you to read. Click “save” above to find the .pdf transcription.
What is it that makes Calvary Chapel different from other Bible-believing, evangelical churches?
It’s always good to have a grasp of the unique work that God has done in our fellowship. If Calvary Chapel is exactly like the church across the street it would be better to simply merge the two. But, if there are distinctives that make us different, then we have a unique and special place in the plan of God. Certainly there are churches that share many of our beliefs and practices. We’re not renegades. But God has done a wonderful work of balance in the Calvary Chapel movement that does make us different in many areas.
If Calvary Chapel is exactly like the church across the street it would be better to simply merge the two.
There are many who believe in the gifts and the ministry of the Holy Spirit, but they don’t have a strong emphasis on Biblical teaching, nor do they look to the Word to guide their experiences with the Holy Spirit. There are many who have a strong emphasis on teaching the Word of God, but they don’t share the view that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are available and valid today. In Calvary Chapel we find the teaching of the Word, and an open heart to the work of the Holy Spirit. It is this balance that makes Calvary Chapel a distinct and uniquely blessed movement of God. And so it’s important to understand the Biblical principles that make up the picture of why God has allowed us to exist and grow.
In Calvary Chapel we find the teaching of the Word, and an open heart to the work of the Holy Spirit
This is not to say that all Calvary Chapels are identical. I’m always amazed at how God can take simple basic elements and create such variety out of them. Basically, all of us have two eyes, a nose, a mouth, and two ears, and yet how different we all look from each other! People also have different emotional makeups. Now, God loves everyone. He loves the highly emotional and He loves the dull and unemotional. In the same way, wanting all men to be able to relate to Him, God created a wide variety of churches. Some churches appeal to those who are very emotional in their nature while others appeal to a more staid and formal personality. God, desiring to reach and bless all kinds of people, seems to enjoy having a wide variety of churches so that everybody’s needs might be met, from the highly emotional to the very formal, and all those in between. Each of us has a part to play in God’s plan, but we all need to know where we fit in this wide spectrum. That is why it’s crucial for us to grasp what we call the Calvary Chapel Distinctives. As we see what makes our fellowship unique, we will also come to better understand our position in the body of Christ.*
*This is an excerpt from the book titled Calvary Chapel Distictives by Pastor Church Smith. Read the eBook HERE.