What Bible version do you use, and why?
We primarily use the English Standard Version (ESV) at Crossway. We have several reasons for preferring the ESV. First, it is a literal, word-for-word translation. The translators have tried to stay as close to the original manuscripts as possible. Second, it maintains important biblical and theological words (such as "propitiation") which are necessary to accurately convey the meaning of the original text. Third, it is an appropriate translation for all ages. It is understandable for children, yet useful for deeper study for older individuals.
You don't need to have an ESV to follow along with the teaching at Crossway. However, it would probably be most helpful to you to have a literal translation (such as the New American Standard or the New King James) rather than a paraphrase (such as The Message or The New Living Translation).
What kind of music do you have at your church?
God's Word presents both singing and musical instruments as major features of God-exalting worship (Psalms, Col 3:15, Eph. 5:18-19, James 5:13). We are careful to choose songs that present the truth of God's Word through lyrics that are accurate, beautiful, and singable, but we do not believe that the Bible provides specific guidelines as to the style of the music. The Lord has richly provided us with an array of musically gifted people, and we want to use those gifts to play and sing together with the purpose of bringing glory to God. We believe that those who lead music are to worship as they play and sing, and in this way they are "lead worshippers" in our singing time (1 Cor 10:31). We do not hold to what is sometimes called the "regulatory principle" of worship as we do not see it specified in Scripture.
Can anyone take communion at Crossway Church?
We believe that the Lord's Supper, or communion, is for all believers because all believers are instructed to participate in the ordinance. Indeed, it is called "the cup of the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:27), which extends beyond our fellowship to all who are the Lord's people. Also, the limitations that are given for participation in the Lord's Supper are given for the person himself (1 Corinthians 11:28). While each person is told to examine himself, the church is not given that same instruction to examine the individuals. It is important to note that each person is to take it seriously as directed in 1 Corinthians 11:27-30.Are you a charismatic church?
While we consider many of those who hold to doctrines that define the charismatic movement to be fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, we do not agree with or support many of the doctrines or practices of the charismatic movement. We believe that the gifts of apostleship, prophecy, tongues, and miracle-working (miracles performed directly through men) were energized by God only during the foundation stage of the church (Ephesians 2:20; 1 Corinthians 14:20-22; 2 Corinthians 12:12). The God-given purposes of the gifts have been fulfilled, and we now appreciate these gifts by recognizing God's provision for us through the past use of the gifts. God does energize other gifts today such as the gifts of leading, serving, teaching, and helping. Christians must be good stewards of their gifts by using them to build up other believers in the local church.
Do you marry people from outside your church?
Priority is given to members and their families. Outside requests will be given consideration at the discretion of our pastors and/or our pastors' availability. Each couple married at Crossway will be required to attend extensive pre-marital counseling with a pastor and/or an approved pre-marital counselor. The details of pre-marital counseling program will be presented by a pastor to the prospective couple for mutual agreement before any decision or plans are made. Because of the time commitment involved in the counseling it is suggested that, if at all possible, contact with a pastor be made at least six (6) months prior to the wedding date. There are a few situations specified in Scripture that may prohibit both the pastor's participation and the use of the facility.
For more information, read these related documents: Wedding Policy and the Facility Contract.What do people wear at your church?
We do not believe that the Bible specifies any particular style of clothing to wear to church. 1 Peter 3:3-4 and 1 Timothy 2:9-10 teach that modesty (not dressing to impress or draw attention) is an expression of a humble and God-exalting heart. Most people here dress in casual or "business-casual" attire, but most of all we want to put on compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, gentleness, forgiveness, and love (Colossians 12–14)!Who leads the church?
Our church is led by our elders
. We believe this follows the pattern of church government described in the New Testament. Our elders work as a pastoral team and agree before decisions are made. There is no time limit to the service of our elders.What does your church teach about divorce and remarriage?
Scripture speaks of marriage as a picture of Christ's sacrificial love for the church, so we believe that marriage is to be held in honor among all. We also believe that our Lord gave provisions for allowable divorce (sexual immorality - Matt 5:31-32, Matt 19:3-12; and, abandonment by an unbelieving spouse - 1 Cor 7:13-16) and that remarriage ("in the Lord," i.e., to another believer) of the innocent party is within the will of God in these cases. Remarriage is also within God's will for one whose spouse has died (Romans 7:1-3). Additionally, we believe that those who were divorced/remarried before conversion are new creations in Christ (2 Cor 5:16,17) and are free to remarry in the Lord or hold church office (elder, deacon), assuming they meet the biblical qualifications.
We are also aware of various ways that the Bible's teaching on marriage has been manipulated to perpetuate situations of domestic abuse. We do not want to pit the sanctity of marriage against the protection of the weak and oppressed or the responsibility to confront sin within the church. Abuse within the marriage relationship is an affront to the testimony of Christ's sacrificial love for the church, and those who suffer abuse of any kind should find safety and help in the church. Do you believe women can be pastors?
We believe God's Word teaches that women have many vital functions in the local church, but that the office of overseer/pastor/elder is to be reserved for men. This is based on teaching found in 1 Timothy 2:9-15, 1 Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9, and 1 Corinthians 14:34-35.What does your church teach about alcohol?
There is no command in the Bible that forbids drinking alcohol. Ephesians 5:18 does instruct us to "not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit." The often suggested idea that the wine of the Bible was either unfermented (non-alcoholic grape juice) or greatly diluted makes the command of Ephesians 5:18 next to meaningless.
Those who forbid all alcoholic beverages may be seeking a noble goal of eliminating the problems that come from drinking in excess, but they are using the Bible as a proof-text for something it does not say. Drinking in excess is clearly spoken against in the Bible (Proverbs 20:1), but drinking itself is not forbidden. It is simply wrong to declare a practice to be categorically sinful if the Bible does not represent it as such. However, while God's Word does not outlaw the consumption of alcohol, it does caution against leading those with a weaker conscience to stumble into sin. We must be careful not to cause another to do something that their own conscience may lead them to believe is sinful (Romans 14:1-23). We must also exercise wisdom and compassion toward those who have been enslaved to addictive substances, to avoid becoming a source of either temptation or shame.