What We Teach

As a church we unite in our basic beliefs of what the Scriptures teach. Such teachings, or doctrines, are valid only as they are based on the Word of God. No other source is an acceptable authority--no individual, no tradition, no religious writings or church dogma. This section lists the topics of our shared doctrine, and the short summary accompanying each topic contains the scripture on which we base that statement.


#1 God, The Father

A. God the Father is the first Person of the Trinity God as the Trinity consist of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. God is three distinct personalities, yet one God, often referred to as God, the Three in One (Matthew 3:16-17; 28:19). Note that whatever the Bible teaches about God applies to the Godhead and God the Father equally.

B. God is the creator of the entire universe. He is the creator of man, all creatures, and of the universe itself (Genesis 1).

C. God is omnipotent. He is all-powerful; He is Almighty (Genesis 17:1; Jeremiah 32:17-18,27).

D. God is omnipresent He is present everywhere at once (Psalm 139: 7-10).

E. God is omniscient. He knows all things, and nothing is hidden from Him (Psalm 139: 1-6; Hebrews 4:13).

F. God is eternal. He has neither beginning or ending. He is the first cause of all things, and all things derive from Him (Deuteronomy 33:27; Psalm 90:2; Habakkuk 1:12).

G. God is holy and just. In the Old Testament alone He is called the Holy One of Israel over 30 times (Psalm 89:18; Isaiah 1:4). He is the just God (Deuteronomy 32:4;
Psalm 89:14). His holiness is just, and His justice is holy (Genesis 18:25; Exodus 32:5-7).

H. God is loving and merciful. His love and mercy extends to all His creatures (John 3:16; I John 4:8,12).

I. God is worthy of our total trust and submission. Because he is all wise and loving, we should submit our wills to Him and trust Him implicitly (Job 13:15; Psalm 37:3,5; Proverbs 3:5; II Corinthians 1:9; II Timothy 1:12).


#2 God the Son, Jesus Christ

A. Jesus Christ is God. He is one with the father and the Holy Spirit. All that has been said of the Father may be said of the Son (John 1:12).

B. Jesus Christ was man. For the redemption of humanity He became man. He was born of the virgin Mary, having conceived by the Holy Ghost (Matthew 1:18-21; Luke 1:26-35. He lived a sinless life, having been born without sin though in all things He shared humanity (John 8:46; Hebrews 4:15; 7:26-28).

C. Jesus Christ is our Savior Of his own free will and volition He laid down His life and was crucified for our salvation. He as our substitute went to the cross. He actually died for us (Romans 5:6-8; I Peter 2:24; 3:18)

D. Jesus Christ is alive. The third day He rose from the grave and showed himself to more than 500 witnesses (Matthew 28: 5-6; Mark 16:6; Luke 24:5-6; John 20; Acts 2:22-24; I Corinthians 15: 1-9). Forty days later He ascended to heaven in the presence of many believers and is now sitting at the right hand of the Father interceding for us (Luke 24:50-51; Acts 1:9-11; Hebrews 4:14-16).

E. Jesus Christ will return to earth. At the ending of this age the coming of Jesus will be in two phases (Acts 1:11). First, He will come to translate the Church to heaven and to himself (John 14:1-31; I Thessalonians 4:14-17; I John 3:1-3). Second, He will come to judge the existing nations and set up His millennial kingdom of 1,000 years; therefore , His second coming will be premillennial (Matthew 25: 31-46; Revelation 20:1-6).

F. Jesus Christ will be our judge. He will finally judge mankind and all fallen spirits at the end of time (John 5:22-29; Revelation 20:7-15).


#3 God, The Holy Sprit

A. The Holy Spirit is God. He is one with the Father and with the Son, and all that has been said of the Father may be said of the Holy Ghost.  

B. The Holy Spirit is a person. He is not a mere influence (John 16:13-14).

C. The Holy Spirit is the source of conviction. He is the agent of the Godhead in the convicting of sin (John 16:7-11).

D. The Holy Spirit is the administrator of God’s grace. He is active in converting and regenerating those who repent (John 3:5-6) and in sanctifying the lives of the believers (Acts 15:8-9).

E. The Holy Spirit is the indwelling sustainer. He dwells within believers giving them comfort, aid, council, and ability to live victoriously in this life (John 14:16-17; Acts 9:31).


F. The Holy Spirit is the source of our understanding about Christ. He magnifies Christ within the vision and life of the Christian (John 16: 13-15).


#4 The Bible

A. The Bible is God’s inspired Word. Holy men of God were moved by the Holy Spirit to write God’s message for us. The Bible is inspired in a sense distinctly different than any other book. The Word which He inspired has also been preserved by Him, and that preservation is in itself a verification of the claim of inspiration (II Timothy 3:16; II Peter 1:21).

B. The Bible is infallible. God has provided a totally accurate and dependable record of His message (Deuteronomy 32:4; II Samuel 7:28). It is infallible in every detail, especially in the original languages, Hebrew and Greek.

C. The Bible is the only rule of faith and practice. As the only rule, the Bible is a sufficient authority on which to base our faith and behavior (Galatians 1:8). The practice of imposing on believers any rules or regulations, other than those contained in the Bible, is to be rejected and shunned.

D. The Bible is the gospel which is the power of God unto salvation (Romans 1:16). If this gospel is faithfully and dynamically proclaimed with simplicity and prayer, the Spirit of God will use it to draw unbelievers to God and to give direction and light to Christians for their daily lives.


#5 Man

A. Man is a created being. Man was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27; 5:1). He is, therefore, unique among all that God created. He has the ability to make rational choices as well as the ability to relate to God, the Creator. He is a person, and his personhood links him to the Person who made him. His choice or will, however, is that which relates him to God (Deuteronomy 30:19). Man was created a spiritual being (Job 32:8). It is his spirit which enables man to be aware of, as well as communicate with God, and God with him (Proverbs 20:27) Man was created a physical being. Man’s physical body must not be abused or misused (I Corinthians 6:15). The body is valued by us because it is valued by God as both worthy sacrifice or offering to Him and an object of His own care (Romans 12:1; I Thessalonians 5:23).  

B. Man bears great worth. As an object of God’s love, man’s worth is more than all else in God’s eyes. God was willing to give His Son to redeem man (John 3:16) and even consider him as a son (John 1:12). Since Christ died for all, all men are created equal. There is no room for prejudice and bigotry in the lives of God’s people (Proverbs 22:2; Acts 10:28).

C. Man is entrusted with great responsibility. God has purposed that man should care for the rest of God’s creation (Genesis 1:28; 2:15, 19; Psalm 8:6). Christians should seek to care for, protect, and preserve our world for the glory of God. God has placed man (redeemed man, in this case) at a strategic point in His plan to redeem all mankind (Matthew 28:18-20). Only as men of God proclaim the message of God will others be able to come to Him (Romans 10:14).

D. Man is a sinner by nature and by choice. Because of Adam’s disobedience man is by nature a sinful being (Genesis 3: 1-7; Romans 3:23). The image of God has been marred by this original sin which all have inherited (Romans 5:12). Even so, the image of God remains, marred as it may be, waiting to be restored. But man also commits acts of sin and thus is in need of forgiveness (Roman 6:23). God has in love provided full salvation for all men for both pardon and cleansing. That provision is accepted or rejected only by man’s choice.


#6 Salvation

A. Salvation meets man’s need. Man’s need to be saved is derived from the fact that he is a fallen creature. He is a sinner by nature, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). The book of Genesis records the fall of man (Genesis 3). Adam, as the first parent, is the head of the human race. Although created in a state of perfection, which included his will, he exercised that will in “disobedience.” The penalty of sin, death, has been passed on to the whole human race. All men are born into a slavery to sin (Romans 6:6,12,16-18). Sin is a part of all men’s lives, both as acts of disobedience as well as the nature that produces those actions (I John 3:4; Romans 6:12;8:5-8). Both the act and the principle are addressed by God’s provision of salvation.


B. Salvation is the result of God’s love. Though man is a sinner, he is the subject of God’s love, “For God so loved the world...”(John 3:16). He manifested His love for man by giving his son for his redemption and salvation from sin. Salvation begins with man’s need plus God’s love and willingness to meet that need, which He does through the death of His Son, Jesus Christ.

C. Salvation is conditional. The Bible makes it clear that there are two definite things that man must do before he can experience God’s pardon for the sins of the past. The first is repentance. Repentance is a godly sorrow for sin and consequently a turning from sin to righteousness. Repentance may be accompanied by act or restitution, as God may reveal to the penitent that which needs to be and can be restored (Acts 17:30; 2 Peter 3:9). The second, all inclusive condition is faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Faith is an act of trust in the merits of Jesus Christ. It is believing that God, for Christ’s sake, forgives the penitent sinner. John 1:12-13 makes clear that to receive Christ and believe in His name are one act which leads one to become “born of God” (I John 3:9)

D. Salvation may be said to be in three stages. Salvation is fully expressed in the following terms: “regeneration,” “sanctification,” and “glorification” in heaven.


#7 Regeneration

A. Regeneration is an act of God. Regeneration, or the new birth, is that act of God whereby we are made children of God in response to faith. We are given new life, we are resurrected from the death of sin (Ephesians 2:1,5).

B. Regeneration is verified by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit bears witness to the fact that we are now the children of God (John 3:1-8; Romans 8:10,15).

C. Regeneration enables us to live righteously. We are, therefore, enabled to live righteous lives, even though we may have previously been exceeding wicked. This takes place at the same time that God pardons our sins. This is when the mighty miracle of human salvation takes place.


Conclusion

No church consists of members who see everything alike in Scripture. While the Holy Spirit may enlighten one member to embrace something which another may not embrace, such variations of understanding are the result of the responsive care and direction of God in the light of each person’s needs and state of maturity. The emphasis in this section, however, has been on the common bonds of our faith, as indeed it should always be. This statement of faith is a summary of our core beliefs. For more information please contact the Pastor.