Downtown Cornerstone Blog
Mar 26
2012

Easter: Bring Someone!

Uncategorized | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

Easter is one Sunday, even in Seattle, where it is culturally permissible for everyone and anyone to join a church for worship. With the exception of Christmas, there is no other Sunday like it. Let’s not miss this opportunity but leverage it for the spread of the gospel, the good of our city and the glory of God.

We have 235 seats in our theater at AMC. Let’s fill each one of them. Our dream is for everyone in this great city to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ and have an opportunity to respond to his grace-filled, live-giving, soul-satisfying, sin-forgiving news. The gospel of Jesus Christ is for all people, everywhere, including Seattle:

“Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy!” Ps 47:1
“Praise the Lord, all nations! Extol him, all peoples!” Ps 117:1
“And to [Jesus] was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him…” Dan 7:14
“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” – Jesus, John 12:32
“The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent…” Acts 17:30
“[Jesus] desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” 1 Tim 2:4
“For the grace of god has appeared, bringing salvation for all people…” Titus 2:11

This isn’t about merely drawing a crowd. Let’s not be impressed with crowds, but with Christ. Our Father has put us here to be part of His unfolding, redemptive story in this city – and the cities of the world. Let’s ask Him to do what only He can, starting with us, this season. This may be the only time many of our neighbors, family and friends will hear the gospel. Prayerfully ask Jesus who you should invite, step out in loving faith, and let’s watch Him move this Easter. Together, let’s pray for a packed house for the spread of Jesus’ fame.

Mar 13
2012

Happy Birthday, DCC! We’re having a party.

City Life, News | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

You’re invited to your party.

On Sunday, April 1st, we are celebrating our first birthday together as a newly-forming, Jesus-following people in the heart of this great city. Jesus’ church is a people, not a place, so this is our birthday. We’re not celebrating the planting of an organization, but the planting of the gospel in this city that is resulting in a new, redeemed, forgiven people for Jesus – us. Yet, this isn’t about us and what we have done, but about Him and what He is doing.

We exist to build a great city through
the gospel of Jesus Christ for the glory of God.

A great city is one in which Jesus is loved, sin is forgiven, lives are transformed, mercy is extended, hope is planted, justice is worked, and joy is rampant. All of this points to the Great City that is to come (Rev 21:9-27) and is only, ultimately, made possible through the gospel of Jesus. We’re already seeing this take place in small measure and it is beautiful in God’s sight.

We don’t know the future,
but we know the One who holds the future
– and He’s all that really matters.

At the end of our lives, we’ll only wish we had trusted Him more and loved others better. While it is (very!) exciting to think of all that Jesus may do in and through us, let’s not make those things the standard of our success. Let’s work, pray, love, serve, live, and share the gospel as though it is all up to us (because it is!)…while trusting it is all up to Him (because it is!). Somewhere in the middle of all that we get the joy of partnering with God in His purposes and He gets the glory.

But, don’t forget. Jesus is our success.
Jesus is our righteousness.Jesus is our hope.
Jesus is our celebration. Jesus is our joy.
Jesus is our salvation. Jesus is our redemption.
Jesus is our Shepherd. Jesus is our King.
Jesus is our God.

So, you’re invited to your own party as we celebrate Jesus’ work in, among and through us. From the beginning of this church, we have asked Him to do what only He can, so that the city will not confuse our work for His. Let’s continue to trust Him for the same in the year(s) ahead.

Join us on Sunday April 1st, 10:00am, at the AMC Theatres in Pacific Place (6th & Pine) for a family-style celebration. Be sure to invite someone to see what Jesus is doing. No Cornerstone Kids provided.

“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Eph 3:20-21

Dec 13
2011

Please Consider a Year-End Gift to DCC

News

Downtown Cornerstone exists to build a great city through the gospel for the glory of God.

We love Seattle and want all who call this city home to know and love Jesus Christ. That’s why we exist. God has been incredibly gracious to us in 2011. We launched in April, planted six communities throughout the city, baptized 10 individuals, and saw many move downtown to join Jesus’ mission. We are humbled and thankful. Yet, we know Jesus wants to do more. To do that, we need your help.

This is a great time to consider year-end giving or further involvement in 2012.

We are currently 70% of the way to being self-supporting as a church. Our aim is to be fully self-sustaining by the fall of 2014. Until then we are dependent on the faithful giving of our members and the generous contributions of supporters throughout the country. If you have already been giving, thank you for your generosity and desire to see the Gospel take root in the heart of Seattle. You are a great encouragement to us. Whether you’ve given faithfully, or have yet to give, would you consider a year-end gift to Downtown Cornerstone? You can learn more about giving options here.

We know that apart from God’s grace, prayer and the sacrificial giving of his saints, this work would not be possible. Thank you for your generosity, love and support. Merry Christmas!

    Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever.” (Ephesians 3:20)
Sep 16
2010

What Kind of People a Church Plant Needs (including ours!)

Community, Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

The Puritans had a practice of thinking through the various types of people that formed their church or visited during a Sunday gathering. In Perkins’ The Arte of Prophecying (i.e. preaching) he states that any given congregation is generally comprised of…

“[1] the ignorant and unteachable, who needed the equivalent of a bomb under their seats; [2] the ignorant but teachable, who needed orderly instruction in what Christianity is all about; [3] the knowledgeable but unhumbled, who needed to be given a sense of sin; [4] the humbled and desperate, who need to be grounded in the gospel; [5] believers going on with God, who needed building up; and [6] believers who had fallen into error, intellectual or moral, and needed correction.” J.I. Packer, A Quest for Godliness, p286

ARE YOU SERIOUS?

This type of intentional thinking is also needed when inviting others to participate in the planting of a new church. It can be easy to assume that being on the launch team/community of a new church plant should be left to mature, stable, devoted Christians who are serious about their faith and Jesus’ mission. That may be every church planter’s dream, but I have yet to meet a church planter that has a launch team where that is the case. Even more, this can leave others that don’t fit into this category on the fringes not feeling able, qualified or wanted.

ARE YOU NEW TO THE FAITH?

On the other hand, many planters hold to the position that the initial launch community should be comprised of mostly new converts and non-believers. We see this in Paul’s ministry in the Book of Acts. He enters a city, proclaims the gospel, people believe, and a church is formed. This opens up wide networks of friends that have yet to meet Jesus. It also creates a strong missional dynamic into the DNA of the church from the very beginning that is hard to build in later. Yet, Paul rarely worked alone, sometimes he left co-workers behind, and at other times he sent others out in advance of his arrival. Our context is also different today. What do we do about the Christians who are not connected to a church, part of a dying church, or feel called to step out in faith to be part of a new church?

MAKING DISCIPLES.

The mission of the church is to make disciples (i.e. followers of Jesus), which not only includes moving people to initial faith in Jesus (salvation) but through a life of continued faith in Jesus (sanctification). It includes coming alongside non-Christians, young Christians and maturing Christians and pointing each to Jesus as individually needed. That means a young church, such as our own, should reflect the body of Christ in all its diversity, in all levels of maturity, while embracing the guaranteed messiness that results.

FIVE TYPES OF PEOPLE.

I propose the following five types of people every church plant needs, including our own:

#1 Growing, mature Christians.

Every church plant needs a number of growing and maturing Christians to help set the pace, disciple others, and lead the mission through life and ministry.

#2 Young, teachable Christians.

New and young Christians that are part of a church plant show that the Gospel is at work and mission is taking place. New faith is contagious for everyone. New and young Christians also tend to have more friends who don’t know Jesus.

#3 Humble, honest Onlookers.

The presence of humble and honest onlookers reflects that the church, as a whole, is engaged in the community, building relationships, living out the gospel and inviting others into experience the gospel in community.

#4 Curious, questioning Doubters.

The presence of curious, questioning doubters says the same thing. Those who are doubters, though involved, are saying “I have questions, but this community of faith is compelling.” This is a great sign of missional health.

#5 Hardened, hating Unbelievers.

While the hard and hating may not actively participate in the life of a new church plant, those that do should still be pursuing them. The goal is not to merely get people into the church, but to invite them into our lives. A new plant is regularly praying for those that fall into this category, thus they become part of the life of the community.

WHAT KIND OF PEOPLE DOES A CHURCH PLANT NEED?

Anyone and everyone – but aim for diversity. Obviously, we can do without the drama of heretics, sin, wayward leaders and the like, but God uses even these people to shape and mold His people into His image, in their context. I find this is a simple, yet helpful grid for determining the health, faith and mission of our church.

“The parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable…” 1 Cor 12:22

Want to get involved?

You can start by joining us on Sept 26th for our Vision Night where we’ll take some time to unpack who Jesus is calling us to be and what he is asking us to do in this great city.

Jul 5
2010

Why Plant a New Church in the City?

Teaching | by Pastor Adam Sinnett

The vigorous, continual planting of new congregations is the single most crucial strategy for 1) the numerical growth of the Body of Christ in any city, and 2) the continual corporate renewal and revival of the existing churches in a city. Nothing else–not crusades, outreach programs, para-church ministries, growing mega-churches, congregational consulting, nor church renewal processes–will have the consistent impact of dynamic, extensive church planting. This is an eyebrow raising statement. But to those who have done any study at all, it is not even controversial.
– Tim Keller, “Why Plant New Churches?” (article)

“Church planting? What exactly is that?”

Any way you slice it the idea of church planting is often either misunderstood or, literally, unheard of. The questions are many, including:

  • Why plant (i.e. start) a new church in a city already filled with many other churches, some even growing?
  • Why not focus instead on helping existing churches grow?
  • Won’t starting a new church merely take people away from other churches?
  • Shouldn’t we focus on cultivating better churches, rather than adding churches?

These are valid concerns that stem from a fundamental misunderstanding of the complexities of revitalization, organizational life-cycles, demographic diversity, theological distinctions, leadership styles, evangelism, and general philosophies of ministry within existing churches. To put it simply, it’s more complicated than we may at first realize.

Therefore, to simplify it a bit, the following are seven guiding principles driving us to plant a new church in the heart of the city of Seattle.

#1. Jesus’ fundamental call was to plant Gospel-centered churches.

Matthew 28:18-20 is known as the “Great Commission” from Jesus to the Church. It is a commission to “make disciples”, “of all nations”, to “baptize”, and to “teach”. In other words, Jesus commissions his followers as a sent people; sent to all peoples, to invite them to become one of God’s people, that results in a changed people. It’s a commission to plant churches not merely isolated acts of sharing our faith. Even the act of baptism itself signifies “incorporation into a worshipping community with accountability and boundaries.” (1) (cf Acts 2:42-47) It is apparent the apostles interpreted Jesus’ words in this way as they immediately began to plant churches after Pentecost. (cf Acts 13f)

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