We are an autonomous church governed by a team of elders (Pastors) who have chosen to relate to, and partner with, an apostolic (translocal) team called New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI)
This team is led by Tyrone and Nicole Daniel, and through our relationship (partnership) with NCMI we receive instruction, encouragement and friendship, whilst making ourselves accountable to the team
On the 28th January 2007, Mike and Bev Luke started (planted) Nelson Bays Church in the Enner Glynn Community Hall. Three and a half years later, in August 2010, the church moved to its current location on 175 Quarantine Road.
On the 13th December 2015, Mark and Colette Meeske transitioned the leadership of Nelson Bays Church from Mike and Bev Luke. The leadership team includes two other eldership couples, Andrew and Margaret Bishop as well as Craig & Sonja Robas. The leadership team also includes a number of deacons. On the 24th February 2019, we changed the name of the church from Nelson Bays Church to Christ First Church, to better reflect who we are as a church, what’s important to us, where we are going and what we want to live in.
Our mission statement
To build a New Testament church, made up of people who are passionate about Jesus, devoted to one another and committed to reaching neighbourhoods and nations.
Our desire is to impact our community and city with the gospel and then also to see the nations discipled. Our ongoing desire is to establish a community of friends who endeavour to serve the purposes of God in this generation. We believe in the “priesthood of all believers”, and are committed to developing and maintaining covenantal relationships one with another.
Our desire is to impact our community with the gospel of Jesus Christ, both through salvations and social action; but then also to see the nations discipled by planting New Testament churches, training and releasing large-capacity leaders, and bringing the whole priesthood to a place of liberty and effectiveness.
Our heart is to be a base church, where other churches and ministries can benefit from our resources. Our hope is to bring all of God’s people to a place of maturity, where we can be competent as ministers of His grace (2 Corinthians 3:6). We seek also to live out a “whole bible theology” where the truth of God’s Word is our final authority on all matters.
Our vision has 3 main components to it:
This is our upward (Christ-ward) focus. Our intent is to put Christ first in everything. For us it’s all about Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith and church. We live to make much of Jesus, the Head of the church. He is our primary focus and devotion. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together… that in everything he might be preeminent (Col 1:17-18). Our mandate is to know Christ and to make him known; where knowing Christ is our greatest joy, following Christ our greatest pursuit, and glorifying Christ our greatest goal.
This is our inward (Church-ward) focus. Here our focus is on the family of God (Christ’s community), which is built on covenantal relationship, fashioned by our love, loyalty and commitment to one another. We have two priorities:
Integration, which is about belonging. It’s not enough to just believe in what we do or attend the meetings, we need to belong! Integration is about finding your place in God’s family.
Functioning, is about being involved. It’s being willing and available to play your part in the Body. It’s about participating as opposed to spectating.
This is our outward (world-ward) focus. We believe that the church exists for its “non-members”. Mission exists because worship doesn’t; and until every knee bows and every tongue confesses, and every heart worships Jesus as Lord and King – we are on mission! There is a church because there is a mission (not the other way round). The Great Commission (Matt 28:19-20) is our mission! Our mandate is to “seek and save the lost” (Luke 19:10). Whether we go to them or they come to us.
We believe every believer is called to “do the work of an evangelist” (2 Tim 4:5).
Friendship before function
Life before structure
Reality before ritual
Character before charisma
Worshippers before workers
Ministry before meetings
Truth before tradition
Commitment before convenience
Giving before getting
Going before staying
Participation instead of spectating
Wild but not weird
A community, not a preaching centre
Supernaturally natural and naturally supernatural
All believer evangelism
It’s our practices that ultimately reflect our priorities (values)!
Part of our value system is what we read in Acts 2:42 “They [the church] devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching (the Word of God) and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer”.
We’ve equally chosen to devote ourselves to these four disciplines.