- What We Believe
“Watch your life and your doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” 1 Timothy 4:16
1. In essential beliefs, we have unity. “There is one Body and one Spirit…there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of us all…” Ephesians 4:4-6
2. In non-essential beliefs, we have liberty.
“Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters…Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls…So then each of us will give an account of himself to God…So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God.” Romans 14:1, 4, 12, 22
3. In all our beliefs, we show love.
“…If I hold in my mind not only all human knowledge but also the very secrets of God, and if I have the faith that can move mountains – but have no love, I amount to nothing at all.” 1 Corinthians 13:2
- FOUR ESSENTIAL TRUTHS
1. The Bible is the Word of God.
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:16
“We also thank God continually because, when you received the Word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it, not as the word of men, but actually as it is, the Word of God, which is at work in you who believe.” 1 Thessalonians 2:13
God’s Word is the only completely reliable and truthful authority and we accept the Bible as our manual for living. Our first question when faced with a decision is, “What does the Bible say?” We practice daily Bible reading and Bible study. The Bible is the basis for all we believe.
2. Jesus is the Son of God.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6
“For Jesus is the one referred to in the Scriptures, where it says, ‘The stone that you builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.’ There is salvation in no one else! There is no other name in all of heaven for people to call on to save them.” Acts 4:11-12
Jesus Christ, second Person of the Trinity, lived a sinless life on earth and voluntarily paid for our sin by dying on the cross as our substitute. This accomplished salvation for all who receive grace by trusting in Him alone. He rose from the dead and is the only mediator between God and us. He baptizes believers in the Holy Spirit and will return to earth to consummate history.
3. You must be Born-Again.
“When anyone becomes a Christian he becomes a new person inside. The old passes away, a new life has begun.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Jesus: “If you try to keep your life for yourself, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for me, you will find true life.” Matthew 16:25
God created humans to have fellowship with Him, but they defied God by sinfully going their own way. As a result, we need God’s saving grace to end our alienation from Him. Salvation comes only through God’s grace – not human effort – and must be received personally by repentance and faith. At the end, everyone will experience bodily resurrection and the judgment. Only believers will enjoy eternal fellowship with God.
4. Believers can be Spirit-filled and Spirit-led.
“…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you…” Acts 1:8
“…be filled with the Holy Spirit” Ephesians 5:18
“If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” Luke 11:13
We believe the only way possible to live the Christian life is by God’s power within us. Every believer can be filled with the Holy Spirit by simply asking. We seek to practice a daily dependence on God’s Spirit to enable us to do what is right.
- THE CHURCH’S STATEMENT OF FAITH
The Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of theChurch’s faith doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our Pastor/Elders Team is theChurch’s final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.
HOLY BIBLE: The Holy Bible, and only the Bible, is the authoritative Word of God. It alone is the final authority in determining all doctrinal truths. In its original writing, it is inspired, infallible and inerrant (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Proverbs 30:5; Romans 16:25-26).
TRINITY: There is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and co-eternal (1 John 5:7; Genesis 1:26; Matthew 3:16-17, 28:19; Luke 1:35; Isaiah 9:6; Hebrews 3:7-11).
JESUS CHRIST: Jesus Christ is God the Son, the second person of the Trinity. On earth, Jesus was 100% God and 100% man. He is the only man ever to have lived a sinless life. He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, performed miracles, died on the cross for mankind, and thus atoned for our sins through the shedding of His blood. He rose from the dead on the third day according to the Scriptures, ascended to the right hand of the Father, and will return again in power and glory (John 1:1, 14, 20:28; 1 Timothy 3:16; Isaiah 9:6; Philippians 2:5-6; 1 Timothy 2:5).
VIRGIN BIRTH: Jesus Christ was conceived by God the Father, through the Holy Spirit (the third person of the Trinity) in the virgin Mary’s womb. Therefore, He is the Son of God (Matthew 1:18, 23-25; Luke 1:35; Isaiah 7:14; Luke 1:27-35).
REDEMPTION: Man was created good and upright, but by voluntary transgression he fell. His only hope of redemption is in Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Genesis 1:26-31, 3:1-7; Romans 5:12-21).
REGENERATION: For anyone to know God, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential (John 6:44, 65).
SALVATION: We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. His death, burial, and resurrection. Salvation is a gift from God, not a result of our good works or of any human efforts (Ephesians 2:8-9; Galatians 2:16, 3:8; Titus 3:5; Romans 10:9-10; Acts 16:31; Hebrews 9:22).
REPENTANCE: Repentance is the commitment to turn away from sin in every area of our lives and to follow Christ, which allows us to receive His redemption and to be regenerated by the Holy Spirit. Thus, through repentance we receive forgiveness of sins and appropriate salvation (Acts 2:21, 3:19; 1 John 1:9).
SANCTIFICATION: Sanctification is the ongoing process of yielding to God’s Word and His Spirit in order to complete the development of Christ’s character in us. It is through the present ministry of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God that the Christian is enabled to live a godly life (1 Thessalonians 4:3, 5:23; 2 Corinthians 3:18, 6:14-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3; Romans 8:29, 12:1-2; Hebrews 2:11).
JESUS’ BLOOD: The Blood that Jesus Christ shed on the Cross of Calvary was sinless and is 100% sufficient to cleanse mankind of all sin. Jesus allowed Himself to be punished for both our sinfulness and our sins, enabling all those who believe to be free from the penalty of sin, which is death (1 John 1:7; Revelation 1:5, 5:9; Colossians 1:20; Romans 3:10-12, 23, 5:9; John 1:29).
JESUS CHRIST INDWELLS ALL BELIEVERS: Christians are people who have invited the Lord Jesus Christ to come and live inside them by His Holy Spirit. They relinquish the authority of their lives over to him thus making Jesus the Lord of their life as well as their Savior. They put their trust in what Jesus accomplished for them when He died, was buried, and rose again from the dead (John 1:12; John 14:17, 23; John 15:4; Romans 8:11; Revelation 3:20).
BAPTISM IN THE HOLY SPIRIT: Given at Pentecost, it is the promise of the Father, sent by Jesus after His Ascension, to empower the Church to preach the Gospel throughout the whole earth (Joel 2:28-29; Matthew 3:11; Mark 16:17; Acts 1:5, 2:1-4, 17, 38-39, 8:14-17, 10:38, 44-47, 11:15-17, 19:1-6).
THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: The Holy Spirit is manifested through a variety of spiritual gifts to build and sanctify the church, demonstrate the validity of the resurrection, and confirm the power of the Gospel. The Bible’s lists of these gifts are not necessarily exhaustive, and the gifts may occur in various combinations. All believers are commanded to earnestly desire the manifestation of the gifts in their lives. These gifts always operate in harmony with the Scriptures and should never be used in violation of biblical parameters (Hebrews 2:4; Romans 1:11,12:4-8; Ephesians 4:16; 2 Timothy 1:5-16, 4:14; 1 Corinthians 12:1-31, 14:1-40; 1 Peter 4:10).
THE CHURCH: The church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointments for the fulfillment of Jesus’ great commission. Every person who is born of the Spirit is an integral part of the church as a member of the body of believers. There is a spiritual unity of all believers in our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:22, 2:19-22; Hebrews 12:23; John 17:11, 20-23).
TWO SACRAMENTS: Water Baptism: Following faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the new believer is commanded by the Word of God to be baptized in water in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38).
THE LORD’S SUPPER: A unique time of communion in the presence of God when the elements of bread and grape juice (the Body and Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ) are taken in remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 16:16; Acts 8:12, 36-38; 10:47-48; 1 Corinthians 10:16, 11:23-25).
HEALING OF THE SICK: Healing of the sick is illustrated in the life and ministry of Jesus, and included in the commission of Jesus to His disciples. It is given as a sign, which is to follow believers. It is also a part of Jesus’ work on the cross and one of the gifts of the Spirit (Psalm 103:2-3; Isaiah 53:5; Matthew 8:16-17; Mark 16:17-18; Acts 8:6-7; James 5:14-16; 1 Corinthians 12:9, 28; Romans 11:29).
GOD’S WILL FOR PROVISION: It is the Father’s will for believers to become whole, healthy and successful in all areas of life. But because of the fall, many may not receive the full benefits of God’s will while on Earth. That fact, though, should never prevent all believers from seeking the full benefits of Christ’s provision in order to better serve others.
• Spiritual (John 3:3-11; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; Romans 10:9-10)
• Mental and Emotional (2 Timothy 1:7, 2:11; Philippians 4:7-8; Romans 12:2; Isaiah 26:3)
• Physical (Isaiah 53:4,5; Matthew 8:17; 1 Peter 2:24)
• Financial (Joshua 1:8; Malachi 3:10-11; Luke 6:38; 2 Corinthians 9:6-10; Deuteronomy 28:1-14; Psalm 34:10, 84:11; Philippians 4:19)
RESURRECTION: Jesus Christ was physically resurrected from the dead in a glorified body three days after His death on the cross. In addition, both the saved and the lost will be resurrected; those that are saved to the resurrection of life and those that are lost to the resurrection of eternal damnation (Luke 24:16, 36, 39; John 2:19-21, 20:26-28, 21:4; Acts 24:15; 1 Corinthians 15:42, 44; Philippians 1:21-23, 3:21).
HEAVEN: Heaven is the eternal dwelling place for all believers in the Gospel of Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:3, 12, 20, 6:20, 19:21, 25:34; John 17:24; 2 Corinthians 5:1; Hebrews 11:16; 1 Peter 1:4).
HELL: After living one life on earth, the unbelievers will be judged by God and sent to Hell where they will be eternally tormented with the Devil and the fallen angels (Matthew 25:41; Mark 9:43-48; Hebrews 9:27; Revelation 14:9-11, 20:12-15, 21:8).
SECOND COMING: Jesus Christ will physically and visibly return to earth for the second time to establish His Kingdom. This will occur at a date undisclosed by the Scriptures (Matthew 24:30, 26:63-64; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-8; Revelation 1:7).
SANCTITY OF HUMAN LIFE: We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life. (Ps 139.)
MARRIAGE: Because God has ordained marriage and defined it as the covenant relationship between a man, a woman, and Himself, theChurch will only recognize marriages between a biological man and a biological woman. Further, the pastors, elders and staff of theChurch shall only participate in weddings and solemnize marriages between one man and one woman. Finally, the facilities and property of theChurch shall only host weddings between one man and one woman.
MARRIAGE, GENDER, AND SEXUALITY: We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen. 1:26-27.) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union as delineated in Scripture. (Gen 2:18-25.)
We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (I Cor 6:18; 7:2-5; Heb 13:4.)
We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality incest and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matt 15:18-20; I Cor 6:9-10.)
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of theChurch as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to theChurch members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by theChurch in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality. (Matt 5:16; Phil 2:14-16; I Thess 5:22.)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; I Cor 6:9-11.)
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31.) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture not the doctrines of theChurch.