Statement of Faith
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) is an international movement of Christians from many denominations dedicated to presenting Jesus personally to this generation, to mobilizing as many as possible to help in this task, and to the training and equipping of believers for their part in fulfilling the Great Commission. As citizens of God’s kingdom, we are called to love, worship, and obey our Lord, to love and serve His body, the Church, and to present the whole Gospel for the whole person throughout the whole world.
We of Youth With A Mission believe that the Bible is God’s inspired and authoritative word, revealing that Jesus Christ is God’s son; that people are created in God’s image; that He created us to have eternal life through Jesus Christ; that although all people have sinned and come short of God’s glory, God has made salvation possible through the death on the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ; that repentance, faith, love and obedience are fitting responses to God’s initiative of grace toward us; that God desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth; and that the Holy Spirit’s power is demonstrated in and through us for the accomplishment of Christ’s last commandment, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.”(Mark 16:15 NLT).
Foundational Values of YWAM
The eighteen Foundational Values of Youth With A Mission are the expression of our basic beliefs coupled with specific directives given by God since YWAM’s beginning in 1960. They are recorded here in order to pass on to successive generations that which God has emphasized to us. These shared beliefs and values are the guiding principles for both the past and future growth of our mission. Some are common to all Christians everywhere; others are distinctive to Youth With A Mission. The combination of these beliefs and values make up the unique family characteristics of YWAM—our “DNA.” They are values we hold in high regard which determine who we are, how we live and how we make decisions.
1. Know God
YWAM is committed to know God, His nature, His character and His ways as revealed in the Bible, the inspired and authoritative Word of God. We seek to reflect who He is in every aspect of our lives and ministry. The automatic overflow of knowing and enjoying fellowship with God is a desire to share Him with others. (2 Kings 19:19; Job 42:5; Ps 46:10; Ps 103:7-13; Jer 9:23-24; Hos 6:3; John 17:3; Eph 1:16-17; Phil 3:7-11; 1 John 2:4-6).
2. Make God Known
3. Hear God’s Voice
YWAM is committed to creating with God through listening to Him, praying His prayers and obeying His commands in matters great and small. We are dependent upon hearing His voice as individuals, together in team contexts and in larger corporate gatherings, as an integral part of our process for decision making. (1 Sam 3:7-10; 2 Chron 15:2-4; Ps 25:14; Isa 6:8; Amos 3:7; Luke 9:35; John 10:1-5; John 16:13-15; Heb 3:7-8,15; Rev 2:7,11,17,27).
4. Practice Worship and Intercessory Prayer
YWAM is dedicated to worship Jesus and engage in intercessory prayer as integral aspects of daily life. We also recognize the intent of Satan to destroy the work of God and we call upon God’s power and the Holy Spirit to overcome his strategies in the lives of individuals and in the affairs of nations. (1 Sam 7:5; 2 Chron 7:4; Ps 84:1-8; Ps 95:6-7; Ps 100:1-5; Mark 11:24-25; Act 1:14; Eph 6:13-20; 1 Thess 5:16-19; 1 Tim 2:1-4).
5. Be Visionary
6. Champion Young People
YWAM is called to champion youth. We believe God has gifted and called young people to spearhead vision and ministry. We are committed to value, trust, train, support, make space and release them. They are not only the Church of the future; they are the Church of today. We commit to follow where they lead, in the will of God. (1 Sam 17:32-50; Eccles 4:13-14; Eccles 12:1-7; Jer 1:5-10; Dan 1:17-20; Joel 2:28; John 6:9; Act 16:1-5; 1 Tim 4:12-16; 1 John 2:12-14).
7. Be Broad-Structured and Decentralized
YWAM is broad-structured and diverse, yet integrated. We are a global family of ministries held together by shared foundational covenants, purpose, vision, values and relationships. We believe that structures should serve the people and the purposes of God. Every ministry at every level has the privilege and responsibility of accountability to a circle of recognized spiritual elders. (Ex 18:13-26; Num 1:16-19; Num 11:16-17,24-30; Deut 29:10-13; Josh 23:1-24:28; Act 14:23; Act 15:1-31; 1 Cor 3:4-11; Titus 1:5-9; Heb 13:7,17).
8. Be International and Inter-denominational
YWAM is international and interdenominational in its global scope as well as its local constituency. We believe that ethnic, linguistic and denominational diversity, along with redeemed aspects of culture, are positive factors that contribute to the health and growth of the Mission. (Gen 12:1-4; Gen 26:2-5; Ps 57:9-10; Jer 32:27; Dan 7:13-14; Act 20:4; 1 Cor 12:12-31; Eph 4:1-16; Col 3:11; Rev 7:9).
9. Have a Biblical Worldview
YWAM is called to a Biblical Christian worldview. We believe that the Bible – the textbook for all of life – makes a clear division between good and evil; right and wrong. The practical dimensions of life are no less spiritual than the ministry expressions. Everything done in obedience to God is spiritual. We seek to honor God with all that we do, equipping and mobilizing men and women of God to take roles of service and influence in every arena of society. (Deut 8:1-3; Deut 32:45-47; 2 Kings 22:8; Ps 19:7-11; Luke 8:21; John 8:31-32; Phil 4:8-9; 2 Tim 3:16-17; Heb 4:12-13; James 4:17).
10. Function in Teams
YWAM is called to function in teams in all aspects of ministry and leadership. We believe that a combination of complementary gifts, callings, perspectives, ministries and generations working together in unity at all levels of our Mission provides wisdom and safety. Seeking God’s will and making decisions in a team context allows accountability and contributes to greater relationship, motivation, responsibility and ownership of the vision. (Deut 32:30-31; 2 Chron 17:7-9; Prov 15:22; Eccles 4:9-12; Mark 6:7-13; Rom 12:3-10; 2 Cor 1:24; Eph 5:21; Phil 2:1-2; 1 Pet 4:8).
11. Exhibit Servant Leadership
YWAM is called to servant leadership as a lifestyle, rather than a leadership hierarchy. A servant leader is one who honors the gifts and callings of those under his/her care and guards their rights and privileges. Just as Jesus served His disciples, we stress the importance of those with leadership responsibilities serving those whom they lead. (Deut 10:12-13; Ps 84:10; Isa 42:1-4; Mic 6:8; Mark 10:42-45; John 13:3-17; Rom 16:1-2; Gal 5:13-14; Phil 2:3-11; 1 Pet 4:10-11).
12. Do First, Then Teach
YWAM is committed to doing first, then teaching. We believe that firsthand experience gives authority to our words. Godly character and a call from God are more important than an individual’s gifts, abilities and expertise. (Deut 4:5-8; Ezra 7:10; Ps 51:12-13; Ps 119:17-18; Prov 1:1-4; Matt 7:28-29; Act 1:1-2; Col 3:12-17; 2 Tim 4:1-5; 2 Pet 1:5-10).
13. Be Relationship-Oriented
YWAM is dedicated to being relationship-oriented in our living and working together. We desire to be united through lives of holiness, mutual support, transparency, humility, and open communication, rather than a dependence on structures or rules. (Lev 19:18; Ps 133:1-3; Prov 17:17; Prov 27:10; John 13:34-35; John 15:13-17; John 17:20-23; Rom 13:8-10; 1 John 1:7; 1 John 4:7-12).
14. Value the Individual
15. Value Families
YWAM affirms the importance of families serving God together in missions, not just the father and/or mother. We also embrace the inclusion of single-parent families. We encourage the development of strong and healthy family units, with each member sharing the call to missions and contributing their gifts in unique and complementary ways. We uphold and celebrate the Biblical view that God’s intent for holy matrimony is between one man and one woman. (Gen 2:21-24; Gen 18:17-19; Deut 6:6-7; Prov 5:15-23; Prov 31:10-31; Mal 2:14-16; Matt 19:3-9; 1 Cor 7:1-16; 1 Tim 3:2-5; Heb 13:4).
16. Practice Dependence on God for Finances
17. Practice Hospitality
YWAM affirms the ministry of hospitality as an expression of God’s character and the value of people. We believe it is important to open our hearts, homes, campuses and bases to serve and honor one another, our guests and the poor and needy, not as acts of social protocol, but as expressions of generosity. (Gen 18:1-8; 2 Sam 9:1-11; Ps 68:5-6; Prov 22:9; Isa 58:7; Matt 25:31-46; Act 28:7-8; Rom 12:13; Heb 13:1-3; 1 Pet 4:9).
18. Communicate with Integrity
YWAM affirms that everything exists because God communicates. Therefore, YWAM is committed to truthful, accurate, timely and relevant communication. We believe good communication is essential for strong relationships, healthy families and communities, and effective ministry. (Gen 1:3-5; Num 23:19; Prov 10:19; Prov 25:9-14; Zech 8:16-17; Matt 5:33-37; Luke 4:16-22; John 1:1-5; Col 4:6; James 3:1-18).