Grace Bible Church of Pleasant Hill, CA

A Christian, Gospel-Centered, Serving Church Pleasant Hill, CA
Grace Bible Church of Pleasant Hill, CA
Grace Bible Church of Pleasant Hill, CA

Who We Are

Grace Bible Church is a Christian church. In an era of theological and moral relativism, this requires deeper explanation. This means we believe that Jesus Christ is the sole answer to all of man’s deepest needs and questions. God’s mercy and grace alone has provided for such a salvation and it is offered to all in the gospel.

We are among the many that have experienced the grace of God and the peace of being reconciled to our Creator through Jesus. This grace and peace is at once both exclusive and inclusive. It is wide and inclusive as it embraces peoples from every nation, tribe and tongue across every century and millennia. It is exclusive as God offers it solely through faith in Christ alone. It is our privilege to invite, in His name, people of every ethnicity, gender, socio-economic strata and color in our own day to know and experience the same salvation.

The Christian label has seen many variations, mutations and movements. Hence, we should also explain that GBC is an evangelical church. By this we mean that we stand unashamedly on the supreme authority and sufficiency of the Bible. It is our humble desire to see our ministry, teaching and practices fully conformed to the Scriptures. Though we will not arrive at perfection and remain ashamed of our failures, the teaching of God’s Word and its application to every sphere of life remains central to our worship and community life.

In addition to these broad and essential distinctives, we share a common heritage with those Christian churches that uphold the central tenets of what is known as the Protestant Reformation. In the past, these served as a bond of unity between Christians from a wide diversity of church traditions. Therefore, because of our love for the purity of the gospel and the growing doctrinal confusion in our age, we endeavor to reassert and maintain our commitment to these essential truths.

Finally, we are a gospel-centered serving church. The Gospel of Jesus Christ changes people from the inside out and creates a radical new identity. This identity frees us from self-absorption and leads us to accept and serve people we once excluded. God’s grace moves us to serve others irrespective of their merits just as Christ served us irrespective of ours. Therefore, we endeavor to sacrificially serve our neighbors in our community as well as our brothers and sisters out of grateful joy and love for the glory of God.

We are not the originators of these identifying characteristics. We are glad to lock arms with other Christian communities, churches and ministries that embrace a similar vision and exceed us in their application. Partnerships such as these enable us to mutually strengthen one another. The following links will lead you to a few of these partners: The Gospel Coalition, Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, Together for the Gospel.

In outlining these distinctives I want to stress that at GBC we welcome visitors from all backgrounds who are sincerely seeking to understand the message of the Bible. Whether you are a Christian searching for a church home, a young family seeking assistance with the challenges of parenting or someone just beginning to consider the claims and teaching of Jesus, we believe you will find GBC a help and encouragement to you.

About Us

Vibe
Casual, Creative, Friendly, Conservative, Young families, Lots of kids, Hand-clapping, Multigenerational, Lively

Programs
Community Service, Social Justice, Children's Ministry, Young Adults, Youth Group, Choir, Missions, Nursery, Adult Education, Seniors Ministry

Music
Traditional Hymns, Contemporary, Passionate Reverent

Denomination
Reformed

Size
Medium

Language
English

Founded
1995

Plan Your Visit

Services

Contact

Address
40 Cleaveland Rd
Pleasant Hill, CA 94523-3712

Phone
(925) 676-1584

Website

Directions
Get directions on Google Maps

Our Services

What are services like?
Responding to His Grace in Worship We glorify God and enjoy Him by acknowledging His inestimable worth through worship and praise (Rev. 4:11,Ps. 148:13). Worship involves both adoration (Ps. 95:6) and action (Romans 12:1). It is a holy activity that embraces our whole being and is rooted in a true and growing knowledge of our living God (John 4:23-24). Grace Bible Church is a community of saints grateful to God for His grace towards us in Jesus Christ. The grace of God in all that salvation encompasses (Eph. 1:7-8) consumes us with a sense of awe and overflowing gratitude. Gratitude means we actively praise Him and live with accountability before Him (John 14:15). In song and instruction (Col. 3:16), through baptism (Acts 2:41) and the Lord’s Supper (1 Cor. 11:24-26) we regularly assemble to acknowledge Him and receive and respond to His grace. The Lord’s day morning is the corporate expression of our passion for worshiping and delighting in God. In all our activity as individuals and as a church, we represent Him and seek to honor and praise Him (Col. 3:17).

What is the community like?
Applying His Grace in Discipleship We glorify God and enjoy Him by regularly meeting with the express purpose of building up the saints (1 Thess. 5:11,Rom. 14:19,Ps. 148:13). This discipleship involves the experience of loving one another with a fervent love (1 Pet. 1:22) that is actively expressed (James 2:14-16) in a fellowship which promotes growth in Christian character, wisdom and holiness (Heb 10:24-25). The spirit of a truly edifying fellowship is one of loving and gentle interactive accountability (Gal. 6:1). In order to facilitate this interaction we seek to create an ongoing and ever-changing variety of opportunities for smaller groups to assemble. Often the most effective ministry occurs in these smaller and more intimate settings where focused relationships develop among people who know and care for each other. It is our design that these smaller cross sections of Grace Bible Church will ultimately produce a place where everyone belongs. Discipleship also involves the building up of all the members of Christ’s body through the ministry of the Word of God (Acts 20:32). We are committed to the authority and sufficiency of Scripture (2 Tim. 3:16-17) which establishes our world view and frames the way we live our lives. So we preach and teach the Bible in a variety of settings with a humble dependence upon the power of the Spirit of God to empower the Word and transform the lives of individual believers (1 Cor. 2:4-5). These individual believers are then in turn to do the work of the ministry. It is the prerogative of every member to be directly involved in the ministry of the local church. The role of our elders/pastors (both staff and self-supported) is to equip the members for this privilege (Eph. 4:11-12).

What if I'm not a Christian?
Salvation We believe and teach that the salvation of sinful men has always ultimately depended upon the sovereign grace of God. A single divine method of salvation by grace through faith has been in effect since the fall of man (Romans 4:1-9, 9:16; Ephesians 2:8-9). This great truth, however, never nullifies or diminishes the sinner’s responsibility of appropriation nor the servant’s responsibility of communication (Romans 10:8-15). God’s sovereign plan of salvation was divinely drafted in eternity past (Ephesians 1:4; Revelation 13:8), including all of its provisions (the work of Christ and the Spirit) and processes (Titus 3:3-7). Furthermore, on an individual, historical basis, His grace stands behind all the stages of salvation, i.e., past – justification; present – sanctification; and future – glorification (Romans 8:29-30). Thus, our salvation is entirely accomplished by the almighty power of the sovereign and gracious triune God. “He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy,…” (Titus 3:5). Some vital constituents of His salvation plan include: Election: We believe and teach that election is the gracious act of God by which, before the foundation of the world, He chose in Christ those whom He graciously calls, regenerates, justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies (Romans 8:28-30; Ephesians 1:4-11; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 2:10; 1 Peter 1:1-2). We believe and teach that sovereign election does not contradict or negate the responsibility of man to repent and trust Christ as Savior and Lord (Ezekiel 18:23, 32, 33:11; John 3:18-19, 36, 5:40; Romans 9:22-23; 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12; Revelation 22:17). All whom the Father calls to Himself will come in faith and all who come in faith the Father will receive (John 6:37-40, 44; Acts 13:48; James 4:8). We believe and teach that the unmerited favor that God grants to totally depraved sinners is unconditional, i.e., not related to any initiative of their own part nor to God’s anticipation of what they might do by their own will, but is solely of His sovereign grace and mercy (Ephesians 1:4-7; Titus 3:4-7;1 Peter 1:2). Regeneration: We believe and teach that regeneration (i.e., the new birth) is a gracious supernatural work of the Holy Spirit by which the divine nature and divine life are given (John 3:3-7; Titus 3:5). It is instantaneous and is accomplished solely by the power of the Holy Spirit through the instrumentality of the Word of God (John 5:24). The new birth results in the believer’s union with Christ (Colossians 2:13) in His death, burial, and resurrection (Romans 6:1-11), thus receiving the spiritual graces of the New Covenant (i.e., reconciliation, peace with God, a new heart, new affections, and deliverance from the dominating power of sin etc.,) (Deuteronomy 30:6; Ezekiel 11:19-20; Romans 2:28-29, 5:1, 6:5-7, 11,14; Colossians 2:11-12). Because genuine regeneration involves the imparting of a new life, a new heart and saving faith, it will be manifested by fruits worthy of repentance as demonstrated in righteous attitudes and conduct. “Faith working through love” will be its proper evidence and fruit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 ; Ephesians 5:17-21; Philippians 2:12b; Galatians 5:6; Colossians 3:16; 2 Peter 1:4-10). This grace-empowered obedience causes the believer to be increasingly conformed to the image of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 3:18). Such a conformity is climaxed in the believer’s glorification at Christ’s coming (Romans 8:17; 2 Peter 1:4; 1 John 3:2-3). Justification: We believe and teach that justification before God is a gracious act of God (Romans 8:33) by which He declares righteous those who, through faith in Christ, repent of their sins (Luke 13:3; Acts 2:38, 3:19 , 11:18; Romans 2:4; 2 Corinthians 7:10; Isaiah 55:6-7) and confess Him as sovereign Lord (Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 12:3; 2 Corinthians 4:5; Philippians 2:11). This righteousness is apart from any virtue or work of man (Romans 3:20, 4:6) and involves the placing of our sins on Christ (Colossians 2:14; 1 Peter 2:24) and the imputation of Christ’s righteousness to us (1 Corinthians 1:2, 30, 6:11; 2 Corinthians 5:21). By this means God is enabled to “be just, and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (Romans 3:26). Sanctification: We believe and teach that every believer is sanctified (set apart) unto God by justification and is therefore declared to be holy and identified as a saint. This sanctification is positional, permanent, and instantaneous and should not be confused with progressive sanctification. This sanctification has to do with the believer’s standing, not his present walk or experiential condition (Acts 20:32; 1 Corinthians 1:2, 30, 6:11; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; Hebrews 2:11, 3:11, 10:10, 14 , 13:12; 1 Peter 1:2). We believe and teach that there is also by the work of the Holy Spirit a progressive sanctification by which the state (i.e., practice) of the believer is brought closer to the standing he positionally enjoys through justification. This sanctification is an effect of the love of God manifested in the soul, whereby through the gracious empowering of the Holy Spirit, the believer is enabled to live a life of increasing holiness in conformity to the will of God, becoming more and more like our Lord Jesus Christ (c.f. “regeneration”) (John 17:17, 19; Romans 6:1-22; 2 Corinthians 3:18; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4, 5:23). In this respect, we teach that every saved person is involved in a daily conflict. He is a new creation in Christ doing battle against the flesh (2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 7:15-25), but adequate provision is made for victory through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. The struggle nevertheless stays with the believer all through this earthly life and is never completely ended. Eradication of sin is not possible, but the Holy Spirit does provide for victory over sin (Galatians 5:16-25; Ephesians 4:22-24; Philippians 3:12; Colossians 3:9-10; 1 Peter 1:14-16; 1 John 3:5-9). Perseverance: We believe and teach the biblical doctrine of the Perseverance of the Saints. This doctrine has two parts: (1) God will so work with His people in His grace that they will inevitably be preserved to the end and be saved (1 Peter 1:5; Jude 1; John 10:28-30; Philippians 1:6). Thus no true child of God, born of the Holy Spirit, will ever be lost (Romans 8:29-30). (2) It is equally true, however, that no person will be saved without persevering to the end. In order to be saved, believers must persevere to the end in faith and obedience (Mark 13:13; Colossians 1:22-23; Hebrews 3:14, 12:14). The means God uses to bring about our perseverance are His magnificent promises (2 Peter 1:3-4) and His terrifying warnings (Hebrews 10:26ff).

Leadership View all

Tony Sanelli

Tony Sanelli is the founding Pastor-teacher of Grace Bible Church. Born in Central America, he arrived at the United States at an early age and came to know the saving grace of Jesus Christ in 1979. He first sensed the call to preach and teach when leading the Bible study of a San Francisco Bay Area musical group. This desire soon led to an internship and church planting. Since his ordination to the ministry in 1990, Tony has served as a youth pastor, worship leader, church administrator and pastor-teacher. His ministry is driven by the desire to preach and exposit the Scriptures with Biblical accuracy, a Christ-centered focus and pastoral concern. Tony received a Bachelor of Theology from The Master’s Seminary in Southern California. In conjunction with his ministry at Grace Bible Church, he also teaches at Grace School of Theology and Ministry, serves on the school board and speaks at various nearby conferences and camps. He and his wife, Sheri, live and minister in our community with their three children, Nicole, Michael and Jordan.

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