Who We Are
Here at Restoration Church, we are passionate about being a loving community that meets the social and spiritual needs of our neighbors. Regardless of background, we strive to humbly and compassionately engage each other in an effort to find a path of faith through Jesus that can result in flourishing for the entire city. Whether you consider yourself a Christian, agnostic, skeptic, atheist, or anything else, you are welcome at Restoration Church!
The holistic application of the gospel of Jesus Christ does not merely affect the way we live in the world; it should also impact the way we see the world. More than simply giving us opinions on current events, the character of Jesus as seen in the Scriptures and through his life, death, and resurrection is able to speak into our overall perception of life. In this sense, we believe that one’s growing understanding of God’s character in the gospel and his purposes revealed in the Scriptures are able to provide direction regarding every aspect of God’s creation.
The significance of Jesus’ life and the revelation of the Bible is both universal in impact and relational in nature. Though the gospel is the story of God’s grace-filled provision for the brokenness of all humanity, it is both applied and experienced through unique individuals and diverse communities. Rather than provide a sufficient, or even immediate sacrifice from afar, the beauty of the gospel is that God put on flesh and dwelt among us. The Son did not just come and die; he also lived, and he did so in the context of meaningful relationships. Following his example, we desire to be a church that prioritizes transforming our relationships, both with God and with one another, to see them fulfilled in meaning and purpose beyond ourselves by having them increasingly reflect the relational nature of Jesus Christ.
One of the greatest blessings and greatest challenges to living in community is the diversity that exists among people who are different from one another. From nationality and background to appearances and beliefs, there is incredible beauty in God’s creativity amongst people. Though our natural tendencies often lead us to surround ourselves with people that look and think the same way that we do, the gospel of Jesus Christ defeats those barriers and compels us to do life with all people, loving our neighbor as ourselves. United by a common identity in Jesus, Restoration Church desires to equip each individual to leverage their unique gifts and personalities in order to live an outward-facing life as a good neighbor committed to working alongside the other members of their community in order to see our entire city flourish.
Throughout history, cities have played a vital role in glorifying God through the flourishing of his creation. In an age where people are rapidly moving into urban centers and globalization is affecting the entire planet, it is pivotal that Christians reacquire an understanding of their earthly purpose that places cities at the center of their mission. One of the most prominent biblical examples of the importance of cities in the Bible is God’s response through the prophet Jeremiah to the Israelites as they were being exiled into Babylon. When Babylon conquered nations, they often exiled many in hopes that they would acquire Babylonian culture and fully assimilate within the next two generations. Thus, when Judah was taken captive after being defeated by Babylon, their first inclination was to distance themselves from everything related to Babylonian culture. Yet, God negates both of these tactics in Nehemiah 29:5-7 and calls them to be a “city of God” within the “city of man,” as Augustine puts it. Rather than withdraw from the city and all of its culture, God calls the Israelites to invest their lives in the welfare and restoration of the city that he has sovereignly brought them to. At the same time, however, he also calls them to multiply and increase there. God’s plan for his people in the cities of the world, therefore, is that they would increase while serving to the benefit of the their entire city, seeking peace and justice as a natural rhythm of daily life.
Life is best enjoyed when it is lived for a purpose greater than oneself, and we believe the same is true for Restoration Church. While we are certainly a local church living in the city for the city, we desire to be a part of a movement of the gospel of Jesus that grows beyond New York City and impacts the rest of the world. We exist as a church because other established churches have partnered with us, equipping our leaders, financially resourcing our mission, and serving alongside us here in the city. We hope these partnerships do not simply end with the launch of Restoration Church. As a movement, we want to be singularly focused on bringing restoration to lives and to the city. This requires 1) Seeing individuals become changed by the gospel and then turn around to be a catalyst to others in relationship, 2) Seeing new ministries rise up and meet needs in our city that are currently overlooked, and 3) Sending out new leaders to start new expressions of God’s church throughout the greater New York area and to the rest of the world.
The gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ’s provision for broken humanity through his sacrificial death and resurrection. The scope of a gift should always determine the extent of one’s response. Because the gospel tells the story of how an infinitely holy God gave all of himself through the total sacrifice of his own Son on our behalf, our only appropriate response is to allow the gospel to impact every aspect of our lives. From our priorities and decisions to our emotions and lifestyle, we should desire to see the message of the gospel and the implications that flow out of it understood and applied holistically within our lives.
As a church of Jesus Christ, we exist for Gospel Restoration: allowing Jesus to transform the way we think, feel, and act in life and in community for the glory of God and the good of others.