God: We believe in one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This God is the maker of all things both material and immaterial. This God not only created the universe, but also acts in history to save it.
Humanity: God’s chosen creatures, fashioned to be God’s unique image bearers in the world, responsible for carrying on the work of God, on behalf of God, in and through creation.
Sin: Humankind’s refusal to be what they were made to be in relation to God. Understood in terms of breaking God’s covenant. Sin taints the entire human person to the extent that God’s grace becomes absolutely necessary for salvation. Human beings will never come to God in their sinful state unless God first approaches them in grace.
The World/Kingdom of Darkness: By this phrase “the world” we do not refer to the whole of creation, which Genesis says is very good, but rather any system of fabricated human autonomy that ignores, and indeed is hostile toward, God’s saving activity in Jesus Christ. It is the antithesis of the Kingdom of God.
Bible: The Bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit, and thus free from error, though written by real human authors at specific times in history. The Bible is the record of the Triune God’s saving speech and acts in history (66 books, both Old and New Testaments). Although God’s reality may be acknowledged through creation, God’s will cannot be understood rightly without the Bible. Furthermore, the Bible reveals that God can be known personally, intimately, and redemptively through participation only through what is called a covenant.
Covenant: A covenant is a binding agreement between two or more parties. Based upon the specific terms and agreement of the covenant in question, the two or more parties are bound thereby. Though God has created the world in such a way that all might know of God’s reality and attributes, only by entering into covenant with God on God’s own terms is the inner life of God (i.e. the Tri-unity of God) revealed personally, intimately, and redemptively to humanity. God gives God’s self exclusively in covenant agreement. The terms of God and the covenant have been revealed in various ways to humanity throughout history (Heb. 1:1-2).
Jesus Christ: He is the historical Jesus of Nazareth as presented in the twenty-seven books of the New Testament. He is both the Messiah of Israel and the hope of the whole world. It is by him and through him and for him that God offers God’s self to the world. He is himself both the covenant offer and offerer, to which all previous covenants point; the greatest and final covenant of God to humankind. And because Christ is “very God of very God” to reject him is to reject the Triune God who sent him. This covenant was sealed in the death of Christ on the cross at Calvary, and stipulated in the terms, themes, and paradigms of the New Testament.
Invitation: Though this covenant is made exclusively through Jesus Christ, the invitation is inclusive in that it is proclaimed to all who will hear it. The Holy Spirit is the great evangelist, already at work in the world testifying to the good news about Jesus, and inviting all into this covenant. Therefore, all human missionary effort must be understood as being utterly dependent on the Spirit’s preparatory work, and not the Spirit being dependent upon humanity’s work.
Conversion: Conversion is not the mere switching of political allegiances, religious forms, or indeed of any other earthly power structures (however noble that might seem). Rather, conversion is characterized as breaking covenant with the false gods of this age, and entering into covenant with the Triune God, who then transforms the believer and the believing community by the inner life of love that eternally exists between Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
False Gods: Since one cannot truly convert to something without converting from something, a brief definition of “false gods” is necessary. Martin Buber once said, “Idols are idols, whether mental or metal.” It is important to remember that at the heart of idolatry is the notion of fashioning ideas about God according to one’s own image. Therefore, conversion implies the process of leaving behind thoughts and actions that do not derive from, and find authority in God’s own self-revelation in Christ, attested to by the Holy Scriptures.
Service: God did not save anyone for nothing. Rather, he saved everyone for a purpose. That purpose is much larger than the escape from hell. It includes a life of service and commitment in this world today. Just as Jesus did not come to be served but to serve (cf. Mark 10:45), we as Christians gather together as a church, not to be served, but to serve others in loving memory of Jesus Christ who first served us.
Last Things: As Jesus ascended into heaven in bodily form, so he will return to this world in bodily form. In the end, everyone will be resurrected. Some to everlasting life, and some to everlasting condemnation. God will not only end the curse of the Fall, but will transform all of creation into a theater of glory in which the love and salvation of God is celebrated and enjoyed by all his people forever.
The purpose of the staff and leadership is to equip the members of Image Church with resources and opportunities to mobilize their faith in Jesus in practical ways in order to experience God’s transforming power in our own lives and the lives of those around us.
Pastor Mike is currently the senior pastor of Image Church in Ladera Ranch, CA. Mike was born in Southern California, but raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. Growing up as a pastor’s kid in the Calvary Chapel movement of churches, Mike was immersed in the church and knowledge of the Scriptures, but walked away from Jesus during his teenage years. After years of believing the lie that ‘the world’ could offer him something better, he learned by experience that “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23a). One morning after being surrounded by circumstances he never imagined he would find himself in, Mike heard the voice of God and had a powerful conversion experience while on the floor of his apartment in Azusa, CA. From that day forward he experienced an insatiable desire for studying the Bible, Christian fellowship, ministry, and most of all, a personal relationship with Jesus.
Since that time the Lord has opened up a variety of doors for Mike to serve in ministry. He has served as a volunteer youth leader, a ministry intern in the U.K., a high school Bible teacher, an assistant pastor (Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa), and currently serves as a senior pastor.
Additionally, though just a mediocre student in high school, Mike’s renewed passion for education has led him to earn degrees from Calvary Chapel Bible College, Orange Coast College (A.A.), Vanguard University (B.A.), Veritas Evangelical Seminary (M.T.S.), and most recently Fuller Theological Seminary (M.A.) where he also received the Frederick Buechner Award for Excellence in Writing in 2015. He is currently an adjunct professor at Calvary Chapel Bible College in Murietta, CA.
Pastor Mike is married and has a blended family with six children.
27762 Antonio Parkway L-514
Ladera Ranch, CA. 92694
We meet at the Ladera Ranch Elementary School located just off the 5 freeway and Crown Valley Parkway at 29551 Sienna Parkway.