By Keith Boyette
February 23, 2022
The foundation of the Global Methodist Church is the person and work of Jesus Christ. He is Savior and Lord. There is no other name by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12 NLT). The GM Church exists to make disciples of Jesus Christ who worship passionately, love extravagantly, and witness boldly. We have no other message to proclaim than the message entrusted to us by Jesus. Everything that the GM Church declares and does flows out of this confession. The life and teachings of Jesus provide the content of our mission, vision, and ministry as a church. The GM Church exists to glorify God, to lift Jesus high so He can draw all people to Himself, and to enable us to be available to Jesus for His work of transformation so we become more and more like Him.
We desperately depend on the Holy Spirit to empower all that occurs in the GM Church. The Holy Spirit graces us with understanding, wisdom, and discernment. We are guided into all truth by the Holy Spirit. Through the Holy Spirit, we experience the fullness of God enabling us to be the body of Christ. We are a church which is utterly dependent on the work of the Holy Spirit to shape us as God’s people and to transform us so that we embody the character of Jesus. The Father sovereignly leads us. He is the Creator and Preserver of all things.
The centrality of what we believe undergirding all we speak and do is emphasized by the name chosen for our governing charter – the Transitional Book of Doctrines and Discipline. The book is transitional only in the sense that it provides direction for the GM Church from its launch until its convening General Conference. The word “doctrines” has been included in its title to emphasize that we are a church founded upon and true to our core beliefs. How we are organized, and what we speak and do flow out of our doctrinal confessions and commitments.
Part One of the Transitional Book of Doctrines and Discipline provides a succinct and comprehensive statement of the GM Church’s theological confessions. Our beliefs emerge from the apostolic witness disclosed in Scripture and summarized in the great confessions of the Christian church – the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Definition of Chalcedon (¶ 105). These creeds are foundational. The distinctives of our stream of Christianity are found in the Articles of Religion and the Confession of Faith (¶ 106), and in the Standard Sermons of John Wesley and in his Explanatory Notes on the New Testament (¶ 107).
The GM Church stands on the shoulders of those who have gone before us in the faith. Thus, we honor them by remaining committed to, preserving, and continuing this heritage of faith they delivered to us (¶ 101). In addition to our commitment to the great creeds and confessions of Christianity, we affirm the primacy and centrality of Scripture to our life together in the GM Church. Scripture is the “primary rule and authority for faith, morals, and service, against which all other authorities must be measured” (¶ 104). Scripture reveals the Word of God to us so far as it is necessary for our salvation.
With those Methodists who have preceded us in the faith, the GM Church passionately embraces and proclaims the way of salvation made evident in the life and teaching of Jesus, and the story of God and creation set forth in Scripture. We affirm and make known the grace of God in all of its facets – from prevenient grace, the grace that goes before us illuminating our need for a Savior and enabling our genuine response to God in Jesus Christ, to convincing grace, leading to repentance and our seeking after God, to justifying grace, reconciling us to God as we experience forgiveness of our sins made possible by Jesus’ sacrifice, to sanctifying grace, enabling us to move from being born again spiritually to maturity as disciples of Jesus as we are made perfect in love and experience the fruit of the Holy Spirit made known in our lives, to glorifying grace, as the promise of resurrection is realized and our souls and bodies are perfectly restored to God’s original design for us.
The GM Church longs for a fresh awakening emerging from the life-giving truth entrusted to us in this generation that all people might know Jesus in all of His fullness, that the truth of the Gospel will set people free, and that we might be transformed individually and as a people so that God’s will indeed is done on earth as it is in heaven. We are confident that we are a people through whom God desires to bring revival. On these truths, Jesus is building His church. As Jesus declared, “I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it” (Matthew 16:18). This is our hope and the assurance of our faith.
Rev. Keith Boyette is chairman of the Transitional Leadership Council of the Global Methodist Church (in formation). Prior to 2017, he was the founding pastor of Wilderness Community Church in the Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church. Since 2017, he has served as President of the Wesleyan Covenant Association.