At Christ Church Knoxville, we have committed ourselves to biblical principles of life and love which, we trust, will constantly manifest in such a way as to ensure those who fellowship with us of the following:
Our freedom in worship will never surrender to fanaticism.
Our worship is forthright, embodied, and expressive, but we differentiate between the sound of praise and the noise of people. We worship as a choir in chorus, not as soloists in competition. We worship in the spirit with liberty, but in concert under leadership. It is safe to praise aloud with us, for we will partner together to worship in the beauty of holiness, and we will preempt both prideful formalism and personal fanaticism.
Our openness to one another will never exploit anyone.
Our services foster communication and interaction, recognizing that true fellowship is impossible without the pursuit of transparent and authentic sharing. What is shared in prayer is sacred with us, and what is shown from your heart is treasured. We hold this trust: all who minister the life of Jesus to one another will always function in the love of Jesus. That love is unconditional and non-manipulative, and it always covers weakness and sin with strength and forgiveness.
Our welcome to spiritual gifts will never violate the Word of God.
We ask the Holy Spirit to be present here and to distribute gifts among us according to His will. All the gifts are present in the Church, and every believer is urged to be free and responsible to minister gifts with sensibility. We are covetous of their manifestation, but not gullible as to their demonstration. Graciousness in ministry, submissiveness in spirit, and order in operation of the gifts is scriptural and, therefore, insisted upon in this assembly.
Our joyousness will never degenerate into mere excitability.
Childlike simplicity and faith can transcend patterns of pomp and pride, which society dictates we accept. But childlike is not childish, and so we refuse to be bound to the idea that true simplicity is either glib or emotionalistic. The joy and release in laughter, applause, shouting, dancing, or tears involve the emotions; but not merely sensational ones. True freedom is as thoughtful as it is liberated, and we chose to live in and worship from that freeing truth.
Our commitment to the truth of God will never be devoid of the love of God.
Our fellowship (the way we relate to one another, and together relate to God) is controlled by the light, truth, and holiness of God. We believe that it is this truth that promotes true fellowship, builds up the Body of Christ into a dwelling place for His presence, and ultimately provides a place of freedom and safety from our common adversary. But this embrace of the truth should never encounter the believer apart from the love, grace, and mercy of God. In all our relating we strive to exhibit simultaneously God’s character of holiness and love.
In all, our prayerful wish is to live as the Church manifested at her birth:
So continuing daily with one according in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved. (Acts 2:46-47)