Visitor's Guide

Visitor's Guide
Our mission at Northdale Lutheran Church and School is simple: “To preach and teach the word of the Triune God to all people so that all may worship and serve him now and in eternity.” This is what we exist to do as God’s people and purpose for which we have organized together as a congregation.

 
    Pastor's Message
  • Dear friends in our Savior Jesus,

    "What's in it for me?" We live in a such a busy and crazy society and have so many choices before us that before we make a decision about anything, we need to know the benefits.  "How is this going to benefit me?"

    This is the same question many people ask as they consider a church to join or even whether or not they need God in their lives.  "What need do I have to follow Jesus?"  Perhaps you have even asked that same question.

    As we look at our lives, the biggest problem that confronts us is sin.  And sin brings death.  God tells us in Romans, "The wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23) and in Ezekiel, "The soul that sins is the soul that will die." (Ezekiel 18:4)  All have sinned.  Therefore all will die.  And God's judgement means more than just physical death.  The soul that sins will die eternally.  Hell is a real place of separation from God where those who have no payment for their sins will go after this life.

    This is the joy we have in Jesus.  In Jesus, there is payment for our sins.  St. Paul records the joy we have in Jesus in 2 Corinthians, that "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." (2 Cor. 5:21)  Hebrews tells us that Jesus "appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself... Christ was sacrificed to take away the sins of many people." (Hebrews 9:26-28)

    What need do you have for Jesus?  In him is spiritual life. In him is eternal life.  Heaven also is a real place that is waiting for all who trust and believe in Jesus.  Until then, you can know and trust that your God is watching over you and will provide all that you need physically and spiritually.  What need to you have for Jesus? Friends, I pray that you see in Jesus your Lord and Savior.  And I pray that he leads you to trust and believe in him not only for this life, but for the one to come.

    We are glad to share with you the love of Jesus our Savior. I invite you to seek further the benefits that Jesus has waiting for you.  I invite you to join us as we gather before our Savior in worship and praise.  "My God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.  To our God and Father be glory forever and ever." (Philippians 4:19)

    In Christ's service,

    Pastor Charlie Vannieuwenhoven
    What is a Lutheran?
  • Even though the Lutheran Church, worldwide, is the second largest Christian church (the Roman Catholic is the largest), we recognize that the Lutheran church is not that well known in Central Florida. Therefore, we are happy to share this brief overview of the Lutheran faith.

    First and foremost, we are a Christian church. Although we are named after Martin Luther (1483-1546), there is really no such thing as a “Lutheran” doctrine. Luther’s contribution was not to formulate new teachings or beliefs but simply to return to the teachings of the early Christian Church as recorded for us in the Bible. We might summarize it this way: “All Lutheran teachings are Christian teachings and all Christian teachings are Lutheran teachings.”

    What do we believe?
    • That Jesus Christ is true God from all eternity and also true man since the time he was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary.
    • That Jesus, as both true God and true man, lived a sinless life and then died a death he did not deserve (crucifixion) to pay for our sins so that we might be rescued from the eternal punishment of hell and enjoy the perfect happiness of heaven.
    • That we receive this forgiveness as a gift of God through faith (trusting in Jesus as our Savior).
    • That our love for this gift of forgiveness, won by Jesus, will prompt us to do good works as expressed in the Ten Commandments.
    • That the mission of the church is to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the entire world.
    • That baptism is a sacrament through which the Holy Spirit conveys the gift of faith and forgiveness, even to infants.
    • That the Lord’s Supper is a sacrament in which, together with the bread and wine, we receive the true body and the true blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
    • That confession, repentance, and good works are the proofs that a person has genuine love and faith for Jesus in his heart.
    • That Jesus, by removing our sins, has also removed God’s anger against us.
    • That, through Jesus, we can now pray directly to God with our prayers of petition, repentance, and praise. We firmly believe that our heavenly Father hears our prayers and, according to his perfect knowledge, answers them in the time and manner that is best for us.
    • That when a person comes to faith in Jesus Christ as his/her Savior, all former sins are not only forgiven, they are forgotten.
    What is a church service like at Northdale Lutheran?
  • If you come to one of our worship services, you will see us do the following things:

    • We will open our service in the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
    • As a congregation, we will confess our sins to God and hear that our sins have been forgiven in Christ.
    • We will read and explain sections from the Bible (the gospel and epistle reading for that Sunday).
    • We will confess together our Christian faith according to the of either the Apostles’ or Nicene Creed.
    • We will apply the truths of God Word to our daily lives through a sermon.
    • We will pray together the Lord’s Prayer.
    • We will offer our “first fruits” (our offering) to the Lord.
    • We will praise the Lord with hymns.
    • We will close the service with the blessing.

    For a first hand view of one of our services, check out our services on YouTube where they are streamed live and archived. Go now >
    Are all Lutheran churches the same?
  • The Lutheran church is divided into three main groups or synods. Even though we still have a common name (Lutheran), we no longer have common beliefs. We are a “conservative” Lutheran church in the sense that we still believe that the Bible is the unerring Word of God, that it is the responsibility of the church to teach the Bible, and it is our responsibility to live according to it.