ARTICLES OF FAITH
THE BIBLE: We believe the Bible to be the Word of God; that the 66 books comprising the Old Testament and the New Testament were verbally, plenarily (completely) inspired; that the Bible is infallible and inerrant down to its very words, and our final authority and our only and all-sufficient rule and practice (Isa 40:8; 2 Tim 3:16; 2 Peter 1:19-21).
THE GODHEAD: We believe that there is only one living and true God, infinite and eternal in every excellence; that in the unity of the Godhead there are three personal distinctions: The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit – all of whom are one in substance, co-eternal and equally share every divine perfection (Isa 43:10-11; John 1:1; 1 Cor 8:6; I John 5:7).
GOD THE FATHER: We believe that the Father is all-knowing, omnipresent, immutable, all- powerful and sovereign over the entire universe (Ps 139:7-10; Isa 46:9-10; Mal 3:6; 1 John 3:20). We believe that He is holy, loving, merciful, and righteous (Ps 89:14; Eph 2:4; 1 Pet 1:16; 1 John 4:7-11); that He is good, does not approve evil, and is the ultimate Judge of moral creatures (1 Pet 1:17; Hab 1:13).
JESUS CHRIST THE SON: We believe in the absolute deity of the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, that He was divine as no other man can be, existing from all eternity co-equal with the Father and the Spirit; that He never ceased to be God for one instant, and that His humiliation did not consist in laying aside His deity; that as man, He was miraculously begotten of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:26-38; John 1:1,2; 5:30). We believe that He voluntarily died as a substitute for sinful men, fully satisfying God’s wrath against sin (Rom 3:25; 2 Cor 5:21; 1 Pet 2:24); that He physically rose from the dead and ascended to the right hand of the Father, that His payment for man’s sins has reconciled man to God, and that He has become our continual Advocate and High Priest (Matt 28:6; Eph 1:20; Col 1:20-23; Heb 9:11-12; 1 John 2:1).
THE HOLY SPIRIT: We believe that the Holy Spirit is a Divine Person, co-equal with The Father and The Son, and of the same essence and nature, that He convicts of sin, righteousness, and judgment.; that He bears witness to the truth; that He is the Agent of the New Birth, and that He seals, endues, guides, teaches, witnesses to, sanctifies, intercedes during prayer, and helps the believer, indwelling every true child of God (John 14:16,17; Rom 8:14-17; Eph 1:13-14). Since Pentecost, He began the work of building the church in order to glorify Christ, administering spiritual gifts to the church for the sake of edifying the church, including miraculous sign gifts which ceased at the close of the apostolic age (John 15:26; 16:13-14; Rom 12:3-8; 1 Cor 12:7-28; Eph 4:11-13; Heb 2:1-4).
ANGELS: We believe that angels are beings created to serve and worship God (Heb 1:6-7;
Rev 5:11-14); that one angel, Satan, rebelled against God, taking many angels, now called demons, with him in the rebellion, and tempting Eve, leading the human race into sin (Gen 3:1- 15; Isa 14:12-17; Ezek 28:11-19; Rev 12:1-14); that Satan, together with his angels and demons, is active in opposition to God and His work (Eph 6:12); that Satan and his emissaries were defeated in the cross of Christ; that Satan will be bound throughout the thousand year period of the Millennial Kingdom; and that ultimately Satan and the demons will be cast into the Lake of Fire where they will be punished eternally (Matt 4:1-11; 2 Cor. 4:4; Rev 20:10).
CREATION: We believe that God created the heavens and the earth, including all life, “each after its own kind,” by direct act, and not by the false teachings of evolution, and that the six days of creation were literal 24-hour days (Gen 1:1; Psa 33:6,9; John 1:3; Col 1:16-17).
MAN: We believe that man, in the person of the first Adam, was created in the image of God as the crowning work of God’s creation, but by voluntary transgression fell into sin, thus plunging the whole race into condemnation and death, so that now all mankind is born in sin and shaped in iniquity; that men are sinners by nature and conduct, and so are without excuse before God (Gen 1:26-27, 3:1-24; Rom 1:18-23, 3:10-19; 5:10-17; 6:23).
SALVATION: We believe that personal faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ is the only condition of salvation from sin and this salvation is wholly by grace; that no works, however good, make that salvation more secure; that by Christ’s work on the cross, men are regenerated into a new creature and thereby justified legally before God, that God chose those whom He would save before the foundation of the world; and yet in God’s perfect plan, man is also responsible to believe and repent, evidenced by obedience to Scripture (Luke 13:3,5; John 3:3-7; 3:16; Acts 16:31; Rom 3:25-28; 8:28-31; 10:9-13; 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 1:4-11; 2:8-9; Titus 3:4-7; 1 Pet 1:1-2; Rev 22:17).
PERSEVERANCE OF THE SAINTS AND ASSURANCE OF BELIEVERS: We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom 8:1, 38-39; 1 Cor 1:4-8; 1 Pet 1:5). We believe that it is the privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation through the testimony of God’s Word. We believe that each one who is divinely saved will evidence that salvation through obedience to the Scriptures and by bearing fruit in keeping with righteousness (Rom. 13:13-14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15). We believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the body and present with the Lord, where, in conscious bliss, they await the first resurrection, when spirit soul and body are re-united, to be glorified forever with the Lord (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor 5:8; Phil 1:23; 3:21; 1 Thes 4:16-17; 5:23).
THE CHURCH: We believe that the Church, the Body of Christ, is a New Testament institution; unknown to the Old Testament prophets; established by Jesus Christ, who is its sole Head; that the Church was revealed through the Apostles; empowered and perpetuated by the Holy Spirit; and acts as His “body” for service and his “bride” for glory; that it began with the New Testament saints and will be caught up at the close of the Church Age (Matt 16:18; Acts 1:8; 2:1-13, 41-47; 15:14; 1 Cor 1:12-28; Eph 1:22, 23; 3:21; 5:23-33; 1 Thess 4:13-18). We believe that the Church, is manifest through the local church, which is a congregation of immersed believers, associated by covenant of the faith and fellowship of the Gospel; observing the ordinances of Christ; governed by His laws; that its officers are Elders and Deacons; that it has the absolute right of self-government directed by the Holy Spirit, and it is answerable only to Christ, and that in all matters of membership, policy, government, discipline, and benevolence, the will of the local church is final (Matt 18:15-19; 1 Cor 1:2; 6:4; 7:17; 2 Tim 3:1-15). Its purpose is to worship God, to teach believers, and to reach unbelievers for Christ at home and abroad (Matt 28:18-20; John 4:24).
ORDINANCES: We believe that there are only two church ordinances: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Baptism is the immersion of a believer in water providing public testimony of the believer’s identification and union with a crucified, buried, and risen Savior. The Lord’s Supper consists of the church’s public partaking of bread and the “fruit of the vine” together in a shared testimony of each believer’s faith in being saved through the death of Christ. These elements are memorial remembrances of the body and blood of Christ, and are in no way to be construed in any fashion as the actual body and blood of the Lord (John 3:23; Acts 8:26-39; 1 Cor 11:23-30).
RELIGIOUS LIBERTY: We believe that every man should have the right of soul liberty (Rom 14:5b) and freedom of conscience without coercion or molestation; along with the right to propagate his faith to others. We believe that the church and the state are decreed by God as separate institutions. God established both the church and the civil government, and He gave each its own distinct sphere of operation. Neither should control the other, nor should there be an alliance between the two. Christians in a free society can properly influence government towards righteousness , which is not the same as a denomination or group of churches controlling the government (Matt 22:15-22; Matt 28:19-20, Rom 13:1-7, Eph 4:11-16).
CIVIL GOVERNMENT: We believe that civil government is of divine appointment, for the interest and good order of human society, that magistrates are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored and obeyed, except only in things opposed to the will of the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is the only Lord of the conscience and coming Prince of the Kingdom of Earth ( Psa. 72:11; Dan. 3:17-18; Matt. 22:21; 23:10; Acts 23:5; Rom. 13:7; Phil. 2:10-11; Titus 3:1; 1 Pet. 2:13,14,17; ).
MARRIAGE AND PURITY: We believe that God ordained marriage exclusively as one man and one woman joined together in a lifelong legal union as the foundation of society, and His decreed means of propagating the race (Gen 1:28; 2:20-25; Matt 19:4-6; Eph 5:31-32). We believe that the only acceptable physical union is within the confines of marriage between one man and one woman (Heb 13:5). Sexual relations outside of marriage are contrary to God’s Word including adultery, fornication, incest, homosexuality, pedophilia, lascivious (lustful or lewd) behavior (Exod 22:19), gender modification, and pornography (Gen 19:5-13; Lev 18:22-23; 20:10-17; 1 Cor 6:9-11; Gal 5:19-21; Eph 5:5-7; 1 Tim 1:9-10). We believe that God has called the believer to live as a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17), to put off the old man (former conduct and lifestyle) and to put on the new man (Eph 4:22-24).
SEPARATION: We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner as to not bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord; and that God has commanded separation from all religious apostasy and separation from all sinful pleasures, practices and associations (Rom 12:1,2; 14:13; 2 Cor 6:14;7:1; 2 Tim. 3:1-5; 1 John 2:15-17; 2 John 9-11).
RETURN OF CHRIST: We believe in the bodily, personal, pre-millennial return of Jesus Christ; that He will come before the seven year tribulation period to snatch away His church, coming only into the air, and that He will come with His church at the close of the tribulation to judge the living nations and to set up His Kingdom on earth (Matt 25:31-46; 1 Thes 4:13-18; Rev 19:11-21).
RESURRECTION: We believe in the resurrection of the bodies of the dead; that believers who die in Jesus will be raised at the coming of Christ for His church and caught up with transformed living saints to meet the Lord in the air, and that the wicked dead will be raised at the close of the Millennial Kingdom, and stand in their bodies at the Great White Throne of Judgment to receive their final doom (John 5:21-30; 1 Cor 15:51-52; 1 Thes 4:16; Rev 7:9-17; 20:11-15).