Vineyard Genetic Code

The following 10 hallmarks should characterise any local Vineyard church. John Wimber, the founder of the Vineyard Association of Churches, intended that it would stand alone as a ten-point summary of the basics of the Vineyard. Because they are the common characteristics of the family of Vineyard churches, we call them the “Vineyard genetic code”.

  • The BIBLE is central to our teaching, faith and life. This means simple, life-oriented teaching and Biblical exposition.
  • WORSHIPPING GOD is our highest priority. Not just singing; it’s much more than that. It has to do with regular, corporate, contemporary worship that is personal, intimate and non-manipulative.
  • SMALL GROUPS (home groups, focus groups etc.) are the basic structure of the church. They are a place of relationship, growth and discipleship, where people feel that they belong and are accepted. They also provide a risk-free environment in which to develop and practise spiritual gifts.
  • SPIRITUAL GIFTS are in every believer and need to be identified, encouraged and exercised for the common good.
  • TRAINING is fundamental to the church – to ‘equip people’ for the work of ministry in all its aspects as well as for life itself.
  • MINISTRY TO THE POOR is very important to God and to the Vineyard – it should be a regular practice of mercy in terms of feeding, clothing, helping, serving, etc.
  • SIGNS & WONDERS are expected to be a normal and regular part of church life. This includes healing the sick and broken, freeing the oppressed and facilitating the works that only God can do.
  • SHARING OUR FAITH is the call of every believer – to bring others to faith through friendship and the genuine expression of love and care for others. Real church growth means reaching out into the world and advancing the Kingdom of God. The message should be transmitted both by deeds and words.
  • OTHER CHURCHES must be loved, respected and worked with, because we are part of the one body of Christ. We must always seek to have good relationships with the broader church.
  • CHURCH PLANTING AND MISSIONS are at the heart of the Vineyard calling. Every church must have a vision to grow and multiply and to touch other parts of the world.