What We Believe

Our Mission

The mission of First Free Rockford is to bring people into a relationship with Jesus Christ.

Our Vision

To see all generations go, tell, and show the love of God to the city of Rockford and around the world.

3 Marks of  Healthy Discipleship

We encourage all believers to actively grow their relationship with Christ in the context of a community by worshiping together, growing together, and serving together.

Worship

We worship through our various worship venues that we offer here at First Free Rockford. We currently offer five different worship venues for you and your family. Three that are located at our main campus and two that are off campus at Rockford Rescue Mission, and Fairhaven Christian Retirement Center. These venues vary in musical worship styles and atmosphere to meet the worship styles of a multi-generational church.

Grow

We grow through our Life Group ministry and various Bible Studies that take place throughout the week. We have both sermon-based and curriculum-based Life Groups that meet at various times throughout the week, and we offer Bible Studies for both Men and Women along with learning opportunities for both Kids and Students.

Serve

We serve as a church in various ways both in the Rockford community and around the world. We partner in various ways with the Rockford Rescue Mission and the Pitney Place for Women and Children. We aim to fight for Social Justice issues in Rockford and around the World through various partners like: Kids Around the World, Tabitha Centers, and First Love International.

Our Denomination

Evangelical Free Church of America

We are members of the Evangelical Free Church of America , an association of autonomous churches united around 10 theological convictions, which forms the basis of what we believe.  Learn more about the EFCA by visiting their website at efca.org.

Our 10 Statements of Faith

Statements of Faith

The Evangelical Free Church of America is an association of autonomous churches united around the same theological convictions.

God

We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory.

The Bible

We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. As the verbally inspired Word of God, the Bible is without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for salvation, and the ultimate authority by which every realm of human knowledge and endeavor should be judged. erefore, it is to be believed in all that it teaches, obeyed in all that it requires, and trusted in all that it promises.

The Human Condition

We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God’s saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed.

Jesus Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus—Israel’s promised Messiah—was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate.

The Work of Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation.

The Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its guilt. He regenerates sinners, and in Him they are baptized into union with Christ and adopted as heirs in the family of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service.

The Church

We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God’s grace through faith alone in Christ alone. ey are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. e true church is manifest in local churches, whose membership should be composed only of believers. e Lord Jesus mandated two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. ough they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer.

Christian Living

We believe that God’s justifying grace must not be separated from His sanctifying power and purpose. God commands us to love Him supremely and others sacrificially, and to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed. With God’s Word, the Spirit’s power, and fervent prayer in Christ’s name, we are to combat the spiritual forces of evil. In obedience to Christ’s commission, we are to make disciples among all people, always bearing witness to the gospel in word and deed.

Christ's Return

We believe in the personal, bodily and glorious return of our Lord Jesus Christ. e coming of Christ, at a time known only to God, demands constant expectancy and, as our blessed hope, motivates the believer to godly living, sacrificial service and energetic mission.

Response & Eternal Destiny

We believe that God commands everyone everywhere to believe the gospel by turning to Him in repentance and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal conscious punishment and the believer to eternal blessedness and joy with the Lord in the new heaven and the new earth, to the praise of His glorious grace. Amen.

Our Ordinances

Baptism and Communion

The EFCA believes (cf. Article 7, The Church) that one is saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, to the glory of God alone (key Pauline and Reformation truths). When participated in by faith, there is a strengthening of one’s faith, although there is no salvific efficacy in the ordinances in and of themselves.

Evangelical Convictions: A Theological Exposition of the Statement of Faith of the Evangelical Free Church of America (181-182) summarizes our understanding of the ordinances and affirms:

  1. Christ has given His church two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and the practice of these ordinances is an essential distinguishing mark of a church
  2. these ordinances are signs, that is, visible and tangible expressions, of the gospel, and as such they serve to strengthen our faith—“confirming and nourishing the believer”
  3. the signs (water in baptism, the bread and grape juice or wine in the Lord’s Supper) must be distinguished from what they signify (God’s saving work in the gospel and Christ’s presence with us) [n. 79. Thus we deny baptismal regeneration and the doctrine of transubstantiation]
  4. the practice of these ordinances does not save us, and we receive spiritual benefit from them only when they are celebrated in “genuine faith” in Christ
  5. the ordinances serve to separate the believer from the world and to give a visible designation of those who belong to the body of Christ

Our Statement denies that:

  1. either baptism in water or participating in the Lord’s Supper is the instrumental cause of regeneration
  2. the grace of God is automatically and effectually conveyed through the administration of the ordinances themselves

In addition, our Statement does not prescribe the “time” or “mode” of baptism (allowing for both credo- and paedobaptist practices) nor does it define the precise manner in which Christ is present in the Lord’s Supper (allowing for a variety of historic Evangelical views).