A word about us

 

Grace United is a community of believers in Jesus Christ who live and work and play in the Northampton area. We are a rescued people connected to God through faith in Jesus Christ, His death and resurrection.

We are fun-loving, often failing, still growing, good-hearted people who put our faith in Jesus Christ.

We haven't got it all together.

But together, we are learning to trust God’s love and to walk in His ways.

Trusting Jesus, we know that we are fully welcomed to God, unconditionally loved and mercifully forgiven. We are forever holy and precious to God all because we trust Jesus and what He's done that it's more than enough. And in Him, we are more than enough.

This changes how we relate to others.

We are learning to forgive and to accept forgiveness; we are discovering freedom as we discover who we are in Christ; we are also growing in love, and maturing into wholeness. We are learning that Jesus is a world changer.

And this is moving us past our fears to share Jesus with our neighbors and others who think God has it out for them.

 

Our Lead Pastor

 

Dr. Steve Behlke is the pastor of Grace United. He and and his wife, Polly, have three grown children.

Steve has pastored three churches over 25 years and joined Grace United soon after we launched in 2013.

His passion for Jesus Christ and for people to know the grace of God that sets us free is expressed in an engaging style which connects rich and life-changing truths in an understandable and accessible way.

Steve also enjoys riding his Triumph speed triple through the winding backroads of beautiful New England.

 

 

Some distinctives about Grace United

 

We seek to live as a community of grace, not law or legalism.

It's important to give people a place to process the truth about Jesus and how it changes our own lives, so we can walk in the healing, freedom, and new identity that we have been given in Christ.

 

We are a grace community with a great commission.

We are blessed to be a blessing. Our Lord commissions us to share the good news that changes lives with others.

 

We are here to help people to soar in a relationship with Jesus Christ.

To soar with Jesus is to know Him intimately, trust Him personally, and to live out our faith in the world.

 

We are theologically "free grace."

We believe that people are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.


 

Bigger Goal

 

Our goal is to live our life in Christ in a way that is real and leads to abundant life and maturity.

We want to heal and find freedom in Christ, not just for our sakes but for others. We want to live lives that care for others.

We believe God put us in families and in community together not only to receive grace but to extend it to those who desperately need it.

We want to act on our freedom, to protect ourselves from moral failures that cause so much harm.

In our relationships, we want to  trust God with what others have done to us and forgive them, to trust God with our needs so we can meet others needs in love.

In our church, we believe God reveals Himself as we utilize our gifts and we help others to know Jesus and to mature in Christ and faith and love.

In our mission, God fills us to be generous with the gospel, to share the goodness and grace of God with others, to help those who are bound in sin to know God’s love and His goodness and His power to free and heal and restore their lives.

Even in our finances, we want to be merciful and generous to others.

Our Beliefs

 

God

We believe one God, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. .


God the Father

We believe God the Father is full of love and rich in mercy. He is the eternal Father having authority over the Son and the Holy Spirit.

All glory and power and dominion are ultimately to the Father.


Jesus Christ

We believe Jesus Christ is the eternal Son, sent by the Father. The eternal Son became man and lived among mankind.

Through human sin and rebellion, Jesus was crucified as a voluntary sacrifice for the sins of the world.

Three days later, Jesus rose from the dead, showed Himself alive, then ascended to the Father in glory, and is now seated at His right hand.


The Holy Spirit

We believe the Holy Spirit is personal and relational. The Holy Spirit reveals Jesus Christ and grants the faith to believe and also to live for Jesus. He makes God's presence personal in each believer and He empowers the church to share the good news and to be witnesses to the love of God in Christ.


Salvation

We believe that eternal life, the forgiveness of sins, a righteous standing with God, and a secure relationship forefcer is freely given by God to whosoever trusts Jesus.

We commonly say, "Eternal salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone."

The believer is eternally secure in one's relationship with Jesus and guaranteed the free gift of everlasting life.


The Christian Life

God's first concern is for our trust in His Son, rather than good behavior. We believe the Christian life is a life of faith and love, and then obedience.

So it is important to learn to know and trust God and to experience His love that we may love Him and extend His love to others.

The Christian life is a marathon of trials and growth, hurts and healing, grief and celebration.

Mature Christian character is not automatic or linear; it is nurtured over time in community and it is best expressed in love.


The Bible

We believe the Bible is God's Word, and the very words of life; it was written by men who were moved by the Holy Spirit.

The Bible is faithful and true in all it declares and it is the highest source of wisdom and authority for our church.


The Church

We believe the church is the body of Christ and the family of God comprised of born again believers who trust Jesus Christ for everlasting life.

The church exists to worship the Lord, to share the good news with those who are far from God, and to make disciples of Jesus Christ.


The Future

We believe Jesus is coming again to set up His kingdom of righteousness and peace over the whole world.

He will judge His enemies, reward His saints, and establish the New Jerusalem, New Heaven, and the New Earth forevermore. Amen.