Evangelical “Free” Church

Greg Strand – September 23, 2015 Leave a comment

What does the “free” mean in Evangelical Free Church?

The term “Free” has two meanings.

First, in reference to history, it refers to the fact that in Europe, the Free Church was free from the state church control.

Second, in reference to theology, it refers to our local church polity in that each local church is autonomous, i.e. free from ecclesiastical and hierarchical control.

Here is how this is explained in Evangelical Convictions: A Theological Exposition of the Statement of Faith of the Evangelical Free Church of America (261):

Though not included among our central doctrinal convictions, the Evangelical Free Church of America is congregational. That is, Evangelical Free churches are autonomous and self-governing. [The Articles of Incorporation of the Evangelical Free Church mandate that the EFCA “shall be an association and fellowship of autonomous but interdependent congregations of like faith and congregational government” (II.A.)] We hold this as an integral part of our history and tradition, and on the basis of our understanding of biblical teaching.



Greg Strand


Affectionately called “Walking Bible” by his youngest daughter, Greg Strand has a ministry history that goes back to 1982. Since that time, he has served in local church ministry in a variety of ministry capacities: youth pastor, associate pastor of adult ministries and senior pastor. He is currently the EFCA's Executive Director of Theology and Credentialing. Greg reads voraciously and never stops learning — a passion reflected in the overflowing bookshelves that spill from his library to multiple offices. And he could tell you about each of those books! His hunger for learning pales in contrast to his great love for God and for teaching the Word of God.

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