Thank you so much for your interest in learning more about the establishment of Lakeside Bible Church. Lakeside is being started by Laurel Baptist Church in Charlotte, North Carolina, and, Lord willing, it will begin assembling as an autonomous church in late 2019. It has been in the heart of the people of Laurel Baptist Church for the last eleven years to see the gospel of Jesus Christ spread across the world, and the announcement of Laurel's first local church plant in the Charlotte metro area comes with much prayer and excitement. Scroll below to discover more information about the establishment of Lakeside Bible Church, and prayerfully consider partnering with us as we start this new church.
The broad evangelistic goal of Lakeside Bible Church is north Mecklenburg County which consists of the towns of Huntersville, Cornelius, and Davidson. According to a report published by the UNCC Urban Institute, the population of this section of Mecklenburg County has grown ten times its size in 1990 and now is home to nearly 100,000 people. This area is not without gospel light, but it certainly could use more. It is the desire of Lakeside Bible Church to come alongside of the Bible preaching churches in this area and partner with them for the sake of the gospel.
Through various considerations, Cornelius became the target for the location of the church gatherings while the specific evangelistic target became the east side of Interstate 77 from Gilead Road (Huntersville) to the northern border of Davidson. According to the United States Postal Service, this small section of north Mecklenburg County contains over 21,000 homes.
*Town map is provided courtesy of Visit Lake Norman
*Statistical analysis is taken from the 2018 Demographic and Housing Assessment report by the UNCC Urban Institute.
After graduating from Bible college, Jared Blankenship began serving Laurel Baptist Church as an assistant pastor just one week after marrying his wife, Julie, in 2009. While initially focused on youth and music, the scope of Jared's pastoral ministry has expanded over the years to include various responsibilities that have, by God's grace, equipped him to be the Lead Pastor of Lakeside Bible Church. Jared's primary responsibilities over the last few years have centered on the day to day administration and pastoral oversight of Laurel Baptist Church. In 2018, God began cultivating a desire in Jared's heart to be a Lead Pastor. After months of prayer and counsel, it became clear that the Lord was preparing him to lead a team of people to plant this new church on the lakeside of Charlotte.
Jared and Julie have two beautiful daughters, Ashlynn (7) and Harper (3). The Blankenships love the metropolitan area of Charlotte, and they consider serving the city they love with the gospel of Jesus Christ to be one of the greatest privileges of their lives. It is their passion to glorify God in the establishment of Lakeside Bible Church.
Labels are important, and the identity of this church to the outside world is purposeful. Included in the name of the church is its location, its foundational beliefs, and its nature as a New Testament assembly. The following is a brief description as to why Lakeside Bible Church was chosen for the outward identity of this church plant:
It was out of a desire to represent the broad evangelistic target of the church that the name Lakeside was chosen. It was feared that being specific to Cornelius in the name would seem to exclude the other two towns of Huntersville and Davidson. The main tourism organization in this area, Visit Lake Norman, consistently refers to these three towns as "the lakeside of Charlotte." With the population of this area being familiar with the term, it seemed clear that this would appropriately accomplish the goal of representing the broader evangelistic target area.
This church will be a Baptist church in terms of doctrinal position and general practice of church polity. As a plant of Laurel Baptist Church, it will mimic Laurel both theologically and practically. The term Bible was chosen purposefully. It is the desire of Lakeside Bible Church to be known as being faithful to the Scriptures before being faithful to a denomination or doctrinal framework. This church will stand on the truths of the Bible even if those that take on the specific label of Baptist do not. Lakeside will not be ashamed to be Baptist, and it will not conceal its belief in traditional Baptist doctrine. It is simply the desire of Lakeside Bible Church to first and foremost be identified with Christ through its commitment to the Scriptures.
While the outward identity will be Lakeside Bible Church, the inward culture of Lakeside will have an emphasis on the biblical essentials of the Church. In this sense, we want to be essentialists when it comes to structuring and living life in Lakeside Bible Church. There are five essentials, or core values, on which we will endeavor to focus.
Just like Laurel Baptist Church, Lakeside will be committed to faithfully expounding the Scriptures chapter by chapter, verse by verse. Everything Lakeside does will have its root purpose in understanding and obeying the Bible.
Lakeside's gatherings will be for the express purpose of worship that includes singing, praying, preaching/teaching, giving, and serving. Believing that one of the most evangelistic things Christians can do is passionately worship God, the worship gatherings of the church will be organized with believers primarily in mind.
In the spirit of Acts 2, Lakeside's members will endeavor to love, serve, and fellowship with one another sincerely. In anticipation of God's coming kingdom, members will be led to continually fellowship with one another as citizens of that kingdom.
Our mission from God is to be a faithful witness of the gospel of Jesus to the people of Mecklenburg County and beyond. As we are faithful to His mission, we will trust Him to be fruitful in His purposes.
God has called Christians to holiness, and it is the role of the church to keep itself pure. Lakeside's members will be long-suffering to one another, but they will not tolerate sinfulness in their midst. Lakeside will commit to admonishing one another in personal holiness.
As we eagerly await the establishment of Lakeside Bible Church, we are praying that the Lord will provide partnering churches that will pray for this work and commit to supporting it financially. Not only are we praying for churches that will support the work on a monthly basis, but we are also praying that the Lord will provide the $50,000 needed for initial startup expenses. Will you prayerfully consider giving to help Lakeside Bible Church get started? For more information on how to become a partner or to schedule Pastor Jared to present the work to your church, please contact us one of these ways:
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone - 704-430-9216