Rev. Joel Ellis
Joel Ellis was raised in the Churches of Christ and began full-time preaching ministry in late 1998. From 1998-2013 Joel served congregations in Alabama, Mississippi, and Georgia and was invited to teach in other parts of the country and in eastern Europe. After many years of Bible study and teaching ministry, the Lord graciously opened the eyes of Joel and his wife Kirstie enabling them to discover the precious doctrine of justification by faith alone and the riches of God’s unmerited and sovereignly bestowed grace. Joel and his family remained for a time in the Churches of Christ teaching the good news of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, for the glory of God alone. Joel accepted the call to become Senior Pastor of Community Christian Church in 2013, and he and his family made the long journey across the country to Arizona.
Joel arrived at CCC in September 2013 and began encouraging the congregation to bring and read their Bibles as he preached expository sermons every Lord’s Day. Several months after his arrival, Joel began preaching through the Book of Romans, and that series would forever change CCC and their pastor. In the midst of significant controversy and division, God remained faithful to his people and to the preaching of his Word. Even as many left because of the changes that had been made to the worship and preaching, the Lord led many new families to the church who longed for biblical preaching and Reformed worship. The Lord had begun true reformation in the congregation, and he continued to teach and reform their pastor as well.
In January 2015 CCC was renamed Reformation Bible Church. A month later the elders began praying about, studying, and investigating the possibility of aligning with a Reformed denomination. After eight months of study and prayer, the elders of RBC proposed to the congregation that the entire church petition to become part of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. Over the next five months the elders shared information with the congregation, answered questions, invited guest speakers from the OPC, and both encouraged and led the congregation in praying for God’s will to do be done. In February 2016 the church voted overwhelmingly to join the OPC, and that desire became a reality in October of the same year.
Joel was examined, received, and installed as a Minister of Word and Sacrament into the Presbytery of Southern California of the OPC in 2016. The beginning of his eighteenth year of full-time preaching and pastoral ministry marks the beginning of his first year of ministry in the OPC. Joel is deeply humbled by and thankful for the privilege and blessing of belonging to a well-ordered church where the gospel is faithfully preached, the sacraments rightly administered, and discipline biblically practiced.
Joel and his wife, Kirstie, have five children who are homeschooled.
Read publications from Joel at "The Power of Grace"