Mission & Beliefs
Mission & Beliefs
When Summit officially launched on the campus of Florida Gulf Coast University in September of 2003, we knew that God was calling us to make disciples of Jesus that would represent the gospel to every man, woman and child in Southwest Florida. Now, more than a decade later, with three locations in Gateway, Fort Myers and Naples, we continue to have a growing burden for the lost, not only in SWFL but also throughout our state, nation and world.
Our ministry is built upon God-glorifying, gospel-centered, missionally-driven, disciple-making activity in hopes of becoming and reproducing people who demonstrate the outcomes of biblical discipleship. And as we pursue intimacy with God, allow the Spirit to produce fruit in us, steward our lives well, engage in the mission and share our grace story with others, our community will have repeated opportunities to hear, see and respond to the good news of Jesus Christ. All for His sake and His glory.
We are committed to knowing God, worshiping God, and being led by God.
We are committed to embracing the gospel, applying the gospel and proclaiming the gospel.
We are committed to embracing God’s mission, understanding what the mission demands of us and living as missional ambassadors.
We are committed to seeing people trust Christ, obey Christ and imitate Christ.
A detailed knowledge and understanding of God's heart and activity that
comes from pursuing Him as our greatest treasure.
The acting presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Church that demonstrates the
character of God and distinguishes His people from an unbelieving world.
Faithfully using everything God has entrusted to us to reflect His glory.
Understanding the mission of God and discovering how he has uniquely gifted me to love
and serve His church and the places where I live, work, and play.
Embracing the fullness of the gospel and being transformed by it in such a way
that we desire to live out and share God's message with others.
There is one God who eternally exists in three equally divine persons – the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. He is the beginning and end of all things. He is the Creator of the universe and author of all life. All history moves toward Him and finds its culmination in His sovereign plan.
(Genesis 1; John 1:1; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15-23; Revelation 19:6)
Jesus, the Son, was born of a virgin and came to earth because of God’s love for humanity. In living a fully human/fully divine life He is both our example and victorious King. He inaugurated God’s kingdom on earth and died for the sins of His people. He conquered death and rose from the grave before ascending to the Father where He reigns with Him. He will return one day in power and glory. He is our Savior and Lord. He is the only Way, the only Truth, and the only Life.
(Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-18; Matthew 27:54; John 14:6-7; Colossians 1:15-23; 1 Timothy 1:15)
The Holy Spirit is the fully active power of God at work in the world today. He was sent to comfort and to reveal Truth. He equips, enables, and empowers believers to live out the ordained purposes for their lives.
(John 14:15-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-16)
Salvation is God’s gift of redemption for His Church. It is the free gift of grace received by faith alone in Jesus Christ to all who would repent of their sins and believe in his finished work on the cross. Salvation cannot be found outside of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
(John 1:12; John 14:6; Acts 4:12; Ephesians 2:8-9)
Created in God’s own image, humanity is God’s crowning work in creation. Our primary purpose is to glorify God along with all of creation. Human beings are sinful at birth, and the only hope for humanity is found in the finished work of Jesus.
(Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Psalm 51:5; Romans 3:23; Romans 5:12; Ephesians 2:3)
The gospel is the good news that God, our righteous King, because of his great love for us, sent Jesus, the Son, to live, die, and be raised in our place for the punishment of our sins, so that, through faith, we are reconciled to God in order that, by the Spirit, we might live as kingdom citizens in relationship with and in representation of Him.
(Luke 2:10-11; Luke 4:14-21; John 3:16-17; Romans 1:16-17)
The Bible is wholly authentic, inspired, fully trustworthy, and without error in the original writings. There is nothing that can be added to it or taken from it. The Bible is the revealed word of God and is useful for teaching, encouraging, and correcting.
(Psalm 19:7-14; 2 Timothy 3:16-17)
The Church is God’s chosen instrument to bring His Gospel to every man, woman and child. There is one Church of which Jesus Christ is the head. The Church is made up of every person who places their trust in the finished work of Jesus.
(Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 2:41-47; Ephesians 3; Ephesians 4:1-13)
At Summit Church we practice what is referred to as an “Interdependent Leadership” model. Simply defined, God gives the gift of leadership to the Church and calls a plurality of elders with complimentary abilities and functions to serve Him collectively to equip God’s people to carry out His purposes in the world (Ephesians 4:11-12). The primary metaphor to describe the New Testament Church is the “body” comprised of individual members serving as differing parts (I Corinthians 12:8-27) with Jesus Christ as the only appointed “Head” of His “body”.
Furthermore we see the model of leadership established in the very nature of our Triune God; (1 Corinthians 12:4-7) three distinct persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) with three distinct roles, acting in complete interdependence with one another. Interdependent Leadership is not only biblically grounded in God’s design for His body, and modeled by His very nature, but it also emphasizes the “heart” that God desires for His leadership (Mathew 20:20-28).
Currently, Summit has six directing elders, each having a variety of complimentary functions and gifts, who lead together under the authority and headship of Jesus Christ. No one man has more authority than the other, but instead, each mutually submits to and empowers the others to lead where they are most gifted. This provides a high level of accountability, cultivates humility and trust, and gives confidence to the body to know that the elders must collectively be convinced of God’s will for the church before acting.
We realize our structure of not having one primary leader is not normative. However we believe that Interdependent Leadership, collectively leading out God’s mission for His Church, can more completely mobilize and disciple the body to carry out its destiny in the world.