The people at Epiphany come from a variety of backgrounds. We are multi-generational and multi-ethnic. We have diverse opinions on most issues—whether it’s about politics or paint colors for the bathroom. The one person who unites us is a Jewish construction worker named Jesus. In the springtime of 30 A. D., he was publicly crucified and buried by order of the Roman Empire. Days later, he was seen alive by over 500 eye-witnesses.
We believe that this same Jesus has called us to be his people. For over sixty generations now, his followers have been claiming that God raised Jesus from the dead, making him the King of the Jews and the Lord of all people. About 75 years ago, Jesus began gathering a little group of followers at Epiphany. We didn’t have a building yet, so we worshiped in our neighborhood public school. For seven years (1941–48), the St Louis School Board graciously let us use their building.
We believe that Jesus is the center of a new story we share. We welcome everybody to come meet him because he welcomes everybody. He promised, “Whoever comes to me, I will never drive away” (John 6:37).
We believe that Jesus wants to give life to everyone. To get us there, he speaks some hard truth about our situation. To rescue us, Jesus gives us bad news first. It’s like a cancer doctor giving a bleak diagnosis to a patient. Telling someone, “Without treatment, you will certainly die,” sounds harsh. But, the doctor wants to save, not to hurt.
So Jesus tells us that all people are trapped in darkness: “Light has come into the world and people loved darkness rather than the light” (John 3:19). He says, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12).