WHO ARE WE?
Cornerstone Church is a Christian community in Johannesburg. We love Jesus, we love people, and we’re on a mission of showing God’s love to the world. This website gives you an idea of who we are but best of all, come and visit!
Cornerstone Church Bedfordview began in March 1983 when two Baptist communities came together to form one church. We were led by Leon and Pat van Daele who now serve in Australasia (based in Adelaide). Jim and Margaret Lamont led us after Leon and Pat and in 2001 moved to serve in the Americas (based in Los Angeles). Marcus and Adele Herbert took over the leadership of the church at that time and are currently still the ‘lead / visionary elders’ along with the eldership team.
We initially began in the Bedfordview Town Hall and as time went by had to make use of two different school halls to have our meetings. We were growing fast and eventually in 1989 moved into our current facility in Benard Road East, Morninghill, which we now call Cornerstone Church Bedfordview.
A Church in the City
In 2010 we went through a radical change as we began to feel that God was calling us to expand further than just Bedfordview and become a “church in the city”. Our first step in this direction was the planting of Cornerstone Church Uptown in March 2010 in the central Johannesburg suburb of Braamfontein. Johannesburg has a rich cultural diversity and it’s been exciting to see our church morph into one where more people of vastly different backgrounds are a part of us.
In October 2011 we also expanded into Johannesburg South with Cornerstone Church South Side in the suburb of Winchester Hills. Along with this has come Yeoville and Rosebank (in 2013) and beyond.
With Cornerstone now stretched across the city this has resulted in more homes opening up in areas that we would otherwise never have had an impact in if we just stayed in Bedfordview. We value meeting in larger corporate contexts at our sites and meeting in homes (what we call ‘Life Groups’). These two ways of meeting are integral to a healthy church life. For details of where and when we meet, click here.
Throughout Cornerstone’s history we have been privileged in sending many out to plant churches all over the world. We still support these churches through our friendships and ministry and often even financially. This is part of our heritage and inheritance as a church and will always remain a value in Cornerstone.
Our vision is multifaceted: to continue to support church plants into the nations; to continue to work into the nations, our city and our regions; and to continue to expand with sites all over Johannesburg, to truly become a ‘church in the city’.
Working into nations and regions
Our relationship with NCMI
In a larger context, we partner with New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI), a trans-local ministry team with an apostolic heart that is comprised of men and women who, through partnerships based on friendship, help pastors / elders build their local churches in doing the work of Jesus Christ’s Kingdom in their areas and also provide opportunities for churches to bring the Gospel to regions beyond their own borders. Click here for more info on NCMI.
Because we all come from many different backgrounds and cultures and have all had our share of experiences, you might want to discuss the below with one of our elders for further clarity. We encourage questions so ask away! You can also email us at email@example.com.
Plus, check out our forthcoming foundations manual (ask the office for details) if you would like the below explained in more detail.
Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. He came to earth, was conceived of the virgin Mary and healed many who were afflicted with diseases, sin and by the devil. He was eventually crucified on a cross but rose again to life on the third day after his death. Through his death and resurrection he took the sin of mankind upon himself; paid the price for sin on behalf of mankind; broke the power of Satan over mankind; and reconciled God and mankind so that all of us – regardless of culture and background – may know God personally. Jesus opened the way for man to live eternally in God. And this is all the tip of the iceberg!
Read more about Jesus here.
We believe that the Christian Bible is inspired by God and infallible. It is to be used to set all matters of doctrine and life for us today – as individuals and together as the Church.
God is one but in three persons. This doctrine is a mystery but is nevertheless true. We believe in God the Father, God the Son (Jesus Christ) and God the Holy Spirit, who are all one God.
We believe that mankind chose to go its own way and be out of relationship with God (Genesis 1:26,26; 3:1,24). This ‘fall’ resulted in sin and death entering the world. (Romans 5). Because God must uphold justice he must judge all of us for our own sins. But because God is also love, he has reconciled mankind to Himself through the death and resurrection of Jesus. Anyone who puts their trust (faith) in Jesus is judged as righteous and no longer as sinful. Those that reject God’s offer to be judged as righteous in Jesus, however, will face eternal destruction.
The Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit – God Himself – lives in every Christian from the moment they put their faith in Jesus. We also believe that the Holy Spirit empowers Christians through dispensing numerous gifts to continue the work of Jesus in this world, which in the Bible is called ‘The Kingdom’.
We believe that all Christians, once they put their faith in Jesus, should be baptised in water (full immersion) as a statement to others, themselves and even Satan that they are now ‘within Christ’ and therefore no longer ‘in sin’ and death. (Romans 6.)
Jesus Christ instructed his followers to always remember him through the breaking of bread. We call this ‘communion’ and regularly obey this ordinance in our meetings.
Jesus Christ commanded that his Church go and make disciples of all nations (Matt 28). This instruction is encapsulated in the word ‘apostolic’. We are a Church that works not only into our city but also into many nations of the world. We firmly believe that this is a core part of how Christianity should be lived out. This is why we also partner with New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI), a trans-local ministry team that works into many nations. Read more about our relationship with NCMI here.
One Universal Church
The Church of Jesus Christ has a multitude of expressions but is nevertheless still one church as the Church is anyone who has a relationship with Jesus. This means we do not see ourselves in any exclusive way. The purpose of the Church is to further Jesus’ Kingdom by living as Jesus lived and making disciples of all nations (Matt 28), who will then also live as Jesus lived and make disciples, and so it continues.
Jesus is our focus in everything we do. We exist to make Him known throughout the world as the one who reconciled us to God and shows us God’s unconditional love. We look to live as he lived and love as he loved.
Friendship before function
Relationships take a priority – not performance, skill or giftings. We see fellowship as a core value established by God in his Church from the beginning (Acts 2:42).
In line with ‘friendship before function’ (above), no believer in Jesus should live as an island but ought to be integrated into a local church and fulfilling the ministry God has given them there.
Truth before Tradition
(2 Timothy 2:15)
What we see in the Scriptures always supersedes any tradition. Our theology fashions our behaviour, not the other way around.
Wild but not Weird
We’re often called by God to do things that may make us uncomfortable and don’t fit in with our culture. God will never contradict what we can see in the Bible (He’ll never tell us to do something immoral) but we even see that Jesus did many things that could be seen as rather wild. But He was always relevant and only acted out of love.
Jesus instructed us to make disciples of all nations (Matt 28). This was an instruction for everyone in Jesus’ church, not just pastors or a select few. This is why we do a lot of ministry outside of our church into many areas of the world, where God opens doors for us, and every one in the church is encouraged to ‘go’.
God has established that local elders should lead a local church – not a headquarters, an arch-bishop, the state or any other kind of authority figure. Our relationship to New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI) does not override this Biblical value as we are not in a denomination of any kind. Read more about that relationship here.
To disciple the nations in the freedom and reality of the Kingdom of God because of our love for God and all people.
– To seek and save the lost
– To train, equip and send all believers
– To build a strong home base church in Johannesburg
– To plant and encourage churches in every nation
Where do we go?
We also work into many regions outside of the city of Johannesburg as a church and in our partnership with New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI), as well as other churches who partner with NCMI. Here is a list of areas we currently regularly work into, although we do work into other areas from time to time as well.
How do we work into these areas?
We partner with leaders of local churches into these areas in what it is that they may need for their church and / or region, given their context. So we may facilitate leadership training times, outreaches, music training, worship times, and so on. Many of the churches we work with were planted from Cornerstone. Also, if you have a contact or somewhere you would like to get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- South Africa
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United States
WANT TO GET INVOLVED?
We have trips to these various areas and others all year around. We use all our communication tools to keep everyone informed on where we’re going and who to contact. Keep your eye on our website or subscribe to our Stay Connected newsletter. We also announce these details in our meetings.
WHO IS NCMI?
NCMI is a trans-local ministry team, with an apostolic heart, that is comprised of men and women who, through partnership, help pastors/elders build their local churches to equip and mobilise believers for the fulfillment of the work of the Kingdom and the discipling of the nations. Pastors, churches, and individuals from more than 100 countries around the world are partnering with NCMI, embracing an apostolic-prophetic model to participate in the various opportunities for envisioning, encouragement, training, and church planting.
Check out NCMI.net for details.
For more info: