Statement of Faith
1. The Scriptures
We believe that the Bible was written by men, is divinely inspired, and is the record of God's revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure for divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and its contents are without error. It reveals the principles by which God judges us; and, therefore, is - and will remain to the end of the world - the true center of Christian union and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. The criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ (Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4: 1-2; Joshua 1:8; Psalm 19:7-10; Psalm 119:11,89,105,140; Matthew 5:17-18; Luke 24:44-46; Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21).
We believe that there is only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without divisions of nature, essence or being.
1. God, the Father:
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purpose of His grace. He is all-powerful, all loving, and all wise. God is Father of truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men (Genesis 1:1; Exodus 3:14; Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 42:5-8; Isaiah 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; Matthew 23:9; Matthew 28:19; Mark 1:10-11; John 4:24; John 14:6-13; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Ephesians 4:6; 1 Timothy 1:17).
2. God, the Son:
Christ is the eternal Son of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the will of God, taking upon Himself the demands and necessities of human nature and identifying Himself completely with mankind, yet without sin. He honored the divine law by His personal obedience; and, in His death on the cross, He made provision for the redemption of men from sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body and appeared to His disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He ascended into heaven and is exalted at the right hand of God where He is the One Mediator, in whose Person is affected the reconciliation between God and man. He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission. He now dwells in all believers as the living and ever-present Lord (Psalm 2:7; Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:18, 3:17, 16:16; Luke 1:35, 22:70; John 1:1-18, 11:25-27, 14:6, 17:1, 20:1; Acts 2:22-24; Romans 1:3-4, 5:6-21; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; Hebrews 1:3, 7:25, 13:8; Revelation 19:16).
3. God, the Holy Spirit:
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God. He inspired men of old to write The Scriptures. Through illumination, He enables men to understand the truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts of sin, righteousness, and judgment. He calls men to the Savior and affects regeneration. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church. He seals the believer unto the day of final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the assurance of God to bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens and empowers the believer and the Church in worship, evangelism, and service (Genesis 1:2; Psalm 51:11; Ezekiel 37:14; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 3:16, 12:28-32; Luke 4:18-19; John 4:24, 14:16-17, 15:26, 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4; Romans 8:9-16; 1 Corinthians 3:16, 12:3-11; Ephesians 1:13-14).
We believe that man was created by the special act of God, in His own image, and is the crowning work of His creation. In the beginning, man was innocent of sin and was endowed by his Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice, man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan, man transgressed the command of God and fell from his original innocence; whereby his descendants inherit a nature and an environment inclined toward sin; and as soon as they are capable of moral choice, become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore, every man possesses dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love (Genesis 1:28-30, 2:7, 3:1; Psalm 8:3-6, 51:5; Jeremiah 17:5; Matthew 16:26; Romans 3:10-18, 3:23, 5:6, 7:14-25, 8:6; 1 Corinthians 1:21-31; Ephesians 2:10).
4. The Church
We believe that the true Church is composed of all persons who, through saving faith in Jesus Christ, have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit. We believe that a local, visible New Testament Church is a congregation of baptized believers associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel; meeting together for worship, teaching and preaching of God's Word and the observance of the ordinances of Christ; governed by the teachings of His Word and that the only Scriptural offices are pastors (bishops and elders) and deacons, whose qualifications and duties are defined in the epistles of Paul. (Matthew 16:15-19, 28:19-20; Acts 1:8, 2:41-47, 6:3-6, 8:35-39, 20:28; Ephesians 1:22-23, 3:19-21, 4:4-16; 1 Timothy 3:1-13) We believe that baptism and the Lord's Supper are the only ordinances of Christ given to the local Church. Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer's faith in a crucified, buried and risen Savior; the believer's death to sin; the burial of the old life; and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. The Lord's Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby we memorialize the death of our Lord and anticipate His coming again. We believe that participation in this ordinance is open to all believers who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, and that solemn self-examination must always precede the taking of this Supper (Matthew 3:13-17, 26:26-30; Romans 6:3-5; 1 Corinthians 11:23-29, 12:13; Colossians 2:12).
We believe that salvation includes every divine action on behalf of the believer, from his deliverance out of the lost estate to his final presentation in glory conformed to the image of Christ (1 Corinthians 1:30; Ephesians 5:25-27; Philippians 1:6; 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; Titus 2:11-13). 1. The believer was saved when he, by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, was spiritually born again as a child of God (Luke 7:50; Acts 28:30-31; John 1:12; 1 Corinthians 1:28; 2 Corinthians 2:25; Ephesians 2:8; 2 Timothy 1:9). 2. The believer is being saved from the dominion of sin, divinely preserved and sanctified. (Romans 6:1-14, 8:2; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Galatians 2:20, 4:19; Philippians 1:19, 2:12; 2 Thessalonians 2:13). 3. The believer will be saved from the presence of sin when he is presented faultless in glory (Romans 13:11; 1 Thessalonians 5:8; Hebrews 1:14, 9:28; 1 Peter 1:3-5; 1 John 3:1-3).
We believe in the personal, imminent, and pre-millennial return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The time of His coming is nowhere revealed; therefore, it is the duty of all believers to live in readiness since His coming will be sudden. When He comes, He will claim His Body, the one true Church (Matthew 24:27-31, 24:36, 25:31-46, 26:64; John 14:3; Acts 1:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17, 5:2; 2 Timothy 4:1; Hebrews 9:28; 1 John 2:28). We believe in the bodily resurrection of all mankind. Those who have been saved by faith in Christ out of every age in time will dwell forever with Christ (in heaven). Those who have rejected Christ will spend eternity in the lake of fire (hell), along with the devil and his angels (Daniel 12:2; Matthew 25:46; John 5:28-29, 6:40; Acts 24:15; 1 Corinthians 15:12-28, 15:35-54; 1 Peter 5:4; Revelation 20:1-15, 21:21).
We believe that marriage is an institution ordained by God limited to the union of one man to one woman as created in Gen. 2:18-24 and reiterated by our Lord, Jesus Christ in Matt. 19:4-6. It is meant by God to be a life-long commitment in the eyes of God (Mal. 2:16, Matt. 19:6). In its truest sense a Godly marriage reflects the covenantal love that Christ has for His Bride, the Church (Eph. 5:25-33).