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ABOUT US

PATHWAY TO PARTNERSHIP
Watch the following videos to learn more about who we are and where you fit in Desert Bible Church
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OUR PASTOR
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Justin Erickson 

Without a doubt, I am the last person that I would have ever guessed would plant and pastor a church, having grown up as a dedicated atheist. From an early age, I would turn on the television to mock Christianity because religion seemed like a joke—a way to con people out of money by preying on their fears and inadequacies. But that meant life was completely empty for me because I had no idea why I was here, what I was supposed to be doing, or where I was going. 

I woke up every day with two goals: 1) don't die 2) live for today with as much pleasure as I can possibly find. I was angry, immoral, purposeless, and fearful—that is, until God was pleased to bring me under the preaching of the Gospel. A faithful friend loved me enough to warn me about the judgment to come, and told me about the love of the God I had been rejecting—His kindness, mercy, and grace—that I could have the hope of heaven, a relationship with the God who made me, and forgiveness for all I had ever done and would ever do. I learned that Jesus was a substitute who died in my place, that He absorbed the wrath of God for my sins, and then rose from the dead to conquer sin and death, and is coming again to judge the world in righteousness. I learned that He is Lord of all, and would transform me from the inside out. 

When I trusted Christ July 21st, 1992, everything changed. I knew that I could no longer pursue the course I was on and now had the desire and ability to change, which by God’s grace, I did. It wasn't long until I totally dropped my career path of sports medicine and athletic training and embraced a call to make Christ known by preaching God’s Word and shepherding God’s people. 

As a graduate of the Master’s University (B.A. Missions, 1998) and Master’s Seminary (M.Div., 2001), my greatest passion is to see lives changed by the power of God’s sufficient Word, proclaimed with power, authority, urgency and without apology. I have had the amazing privilege to pastor churches in California as an associate pastor, and Ohio, Nebraska, and Arizona as a Senior Pastor. I love teaching and preaching, the Word, equipping the saints, shepherding and counseling, and church planting. I can’t believe that God would use me.

I am deeply humbled to be joined in ministry by the woman of my dreams, Jana, who has made this journey with me since we were married in 1996 and given me five amazing children: Emma, Ashlyn, Ty, Janie, and Allie. 

Beginning this ministry has been one of the most personally thrilling and helpful decisions we have ever made. I get to partner with some of the most humble and decisive leaders I have ever met; men and women who are Biblical and strategic thinkers, and who have a heart for Christ and the lost. I am thankful to be able to walk this path with them.

WHAT WE BELIEVE
The following are indispensable doctrines essential to the Christian faith - we believe and teach: 

1. The Bible, consisting of both Old and New Testaments, is God’s written revelation to man. It is inspired by God, and thus totally without error in part and in whole, as given in its original documents. It is completely unfailing, accurate, sufficient, and authoritative in all matters pertaining to salvation and godly living. 

2. There is one living and true God, eternally existing in three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The Trinity is one in essence, yet distinct — each member equally deserving worship and obedience.

3. Mankind was created by God in His own image, but is separated from God because of sin. Having descended from Adam, all human beings are born with a sinful nature, are sinners by choice, and are therefore under condemnation. 

4. Jesus Christ, being fully God and fully man, was born of a virgin, lived a perfectly sinless life, died on the cross as a substitutionary and atoning death on behalf of sinners, rose bodily from the dead to conquer sin and death, and ascended to the right hand of the Father, from which He rules over the all things, and until He returns in glory to reign.

5. Salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, to anyone who repents of his sins and believes in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. The gift of eternal life comes not as a result of any human merit but solely by God’s grace to those who truly believe.

6. Every true believer is indwelt and secured by the Holy Spirit of God and is a new creation who walks in the newness of life, desiring to obey God and striving to grow in Christlikeness. 

7. All who put their faith in Jesus Christ are immediately placed by the Holy Spirit into one universal church, the living spiritual body of which Christ is Head and all believers are members. This reality is meant to be expressed in local assemblies of believers who are baptized upon a credible profession of faith, and are associated for worship, service, fellowship, and mission. 

8. Jesus Christ will certainly return in His Second Coming to judge the living and the dead, the redeemed to glorified in eternal life with Him, the unredeemed justly sentenced to eternal damnation in hell. 

WHAT WE AFFIRM

The following declarations describe where we stand on questions and controversies facing the church - we are:

  • Clear about the sufficiency of Scripture — Because we believe God has tied His power to His Word, we affirm the Bible to be totally sufficient for all things pertaining to life and godliness, and as such we use it as our sole guide in ministry including our preaching, evangelism, and counseling.   

 

  • Awed by the Sovereignty of God — Because both Old and New Testaments affirm the absolute free will of God over His creation and the complete inability of man to save himself, we affirm the sovereign grace of God in salvation to rescue sinners — a decision He made in eternity past, brought to fruition in time, and because it cannot be undone, it will remain for eternity. 

 

  • Balanced in our view of authority  — Because the New Testament declares two offices for the church, Elders (open to men only) and Deacons (open to men and women), we strive to empower leaders and servants in Christ’s church whose character, convictions, and commitment provide the church leadership in its doctrine, direction, and discipline. 

 

  • Engaged out of our view of membership — Because the New Testament commands and models dedication to a local church that gathers for teaching, fellowship, worship, prayer, and celebration of the ordinances, we affirm the priority of membership to the local church, but define it in terms of “partnership.” We believe the word, “member” refers to our identity in the body of Christ (something that happened at salvation), but partnership as the tangible commitment to the local church evidenced by participation with our time, talents, and treasures. 

 

  • Satisfied with our understanding of spiritual gifts — Because God is a supernatural God, we affirm His right to act anyway He choses in His church for His glory, including those supernatural manifestations of His Spirit that happened in the early church, but we do not expect those manifestations of His power as the normal Christian experience today through an individual such as a prophet, healer, etc., We teach that the purpose of those evidences was to authenticate the giving of His Word, which we believe is sufficient and complete. We encourage unity with those whose view is different, but ask those who hold a “charismatic” view of the gifts to abstain from its exercise in the public assembly and small groups. 

  • Unwavering in our view of marriage — Because God is the Creator, we affirm His right to declare what we gladly uphold: His biological design for marriage as only being between one man and one woman for one lifetime.  Further, because God made man and women in His image as equal in importance and honor, but different in role and function, we affirm the headship of the husband and the submission of the wife as a living demonstration of Christ in His relationship to the church.

  • Urgent about our commitment to baptism — Because the New Testament teaches that baptism is an outward expression of an person’s inward commitment to follow Christ as Lord, and not a means of grace, we view post-conversion baptism by immersion in water as a matter of personal obedience to Jesus, and prerequisite to partnership. 

  • Restorative in our handling of church discipline — Because God is holy and Jesus commands us to care for one another in His church, especially in matters of personal holiness, we commit to lovingly, impartially, and diligently seek, confront, and restore anyone within our church who has walked away from his or her profession of faith in Christ or commitment to personal holiness — who persists in unrepentant sin.