Vision, Values and Characteristics
Ichthus exists to bring the salvation, power and Kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ to the nations. We adhere to the Evangelical Alliance’s basis of faith, and define our identity and character by the following values:
Father, Son, Holy Spirit.
We believe that our experience, the Bible and reason all point to one creator God who is a plurality and who made the diverse universe. The three persons of the Godhead exist in a state of mutual fellowship, relationship and sharing. Their mode of existence is loving communion which is to be reflected in our lives together in his church. We are a relational movement because we have a relational god – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – in loving relationship with us.
Love, Spirit-led humility, Evangelistic heart.
Therefore we believe that the values by which the movement exists and grows are firstly love, which is the first definition of God (1 John 4:8,9,11), then humility which gives room for the Holy Spirit to guide the church (Luke 4:1) and thirdly evangelistic hearts like Christ’s who came to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10). Whether we think we have an evangelistic ministry or not we are all witnesses to his grace and power.
Fellowship, Training, Mission.
The make-up of the church is also three fold. First we are a fellowship where laughter, tears, joys, sorrows, and resources are shared together in training and mission. We believe the whole body of Christ must learn and train, and find a purpose in the mission of serving the world. Whilst we acknowledge the good work of theological colleges and missionary societies, we believe that the church is the place for hands-on training for service and mission.
Celebration, Congregation, Cell.
The full participation in Ichthus life will be found through three fundamental meetings. The celebrations where congregations may come together to worship, where God’s truth and power are more fully manifest and where guidance and inspiration are given for the movement. Congregations are a local expression of the movement. They give opportunity for service and witness both to the body of Christ and the world, salting and lighting as Jesus says (Matt 5:13-16). Cells (homegroups) are linked to congregations and are occasions where lives are shared more meaningfully in homes or houses and support is found in one another.
Words, Works, Wonders.
We proclaim the good news of Jesus through our words in evangelism (truth), through the good works which we practice in the church and the community (goodness), and through the miracles and grace of healing and deliverance which we expect to flow from the church (beauty/glory). All these reveal the heart of God.
Radical, Christocentric, Eschatological.
We seek to make known the reasons behind what we do and experience in our lives in Christ. This is our theology or study of God. It is ‘radical’ in that it continuously resorts to our ‘roots’ in the Bible and the early church. Equally it is ‘Christocentric’ in that we look for Jesus in all of the Bible and in our experience of the Spirit of God (John 5:39-40; Luke 24:26-47). When we say our theology is ‘Eschatological’ we mean that while Jesus has brought in the Kingdom of God it is not yet manifest or operating in its fullness. This is why we pray ‘Your Kingdom come’. When Jesus returns we will see and experience the fullness of the kingdom of God which at present we see only in part.
Faith, Worship, Warfare.
We are a faith movement. We recognise that ‘if we do not stand firm in the faith, we will not stand at all’ (Isaiah 7:9). We completely trust God for growth, provision and our life as a movement. Through worship we touch God’s heart, receive healing and strength to increase our faith and love, and live in the love of God. Because faith and worship will always be contested, we understand that our walk with God often involves warfare against the spiritual powers that oppose and distract us. We are soldiers of Christ, as well as beloved children
Race, Age, Gender.
Paul states that in Christ there is ‘neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male and female’. We seek to see all people as persons of equal worth and potential, seeking to involve all without discrimination of race, age and gender. We aim to be inclusive.
Spheres of Operation
London, United Kingdom, Overseas.
Ichthus is composed of congregations in London working closely together, and link churches in the UK and overseas. We seek to serve all Christians of all denominations in the light of Jesus’ words (John 13:34-35).
Churches Together in England, Evangelical Alliance, Tearfund.
We believe in Christians standing together and cooperating to see the good news of Jesus made known. For this reason we are part of Churches Together in England, a body devoted to ecumenical cooperation on a local and national level. We are also a member of the Evangelical Alliance, whose basis of faith we adhere to, and with whom we have had a close relationship since our inception. We also link to Tearfund and its umbrella body, Integral, in order to support relief and development work across the world. This is love in action and we believe in it.