What we believe

Excerpted from Our Constitution:  

Section 1: THE SCRIPTURES 

We believe in the authority and the sufficiency of the Holy Bible, consisting of the sixty-six (66) books of the Old and New Testaments, as originally written; that it was verbally and plenarily inspired and is the product of Spirit controlled men, and therefore is infallible and inerrant in all matters of which it speaks.

We believe the Bible to be the true center of Christian unity and the supreme standard by which all conduct, creed and opinions shall be tried. (II Tim. 3:16-17; II Peter 1:19-21).


 

Section 2: THE TRUE GOD

We believe that there is one and only one living and true God, an infinite Spirit, the maker and supreme Ruler of heaven and earth; inexpressibly glorious in holiness, and worthy of all possible honor, confidence and love; that in the unity of the Godhead there are three persons - the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit - equal in every divine perfection, and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption. (Ex. 20:2-3; Isa. 44:6; Matt. 3:13-17; I Cor. 8:6; II Cor. 13:14; Col. 1:16-17; I Tim. 2:5; I John 5:7; Rev. 4:11).

We believe in the absolute Deity of the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ; that He is both the Son of God and God the Son, existing from all eternity, coequal with the Father and the Spirit; that He was begotten of the Holy Spirit in a miraculous manner, born of Mary, a virgin, as no other man was ever born or can be born of woman; that His humiliation did not consist of laying aside His Deity; that He was crucified, buried, and risen bodily from the dead, and is ascended into Heaven, where He now sits at the right hand of the Father as our High Priest; interceding for us. (John 1:14; I John 5:20; Gen. 3:15; Isa. 7:14; 9:6; John 8:58; 17:5; Micah 5:2; Gal 4:4; Matt. 28:6-7; Mark 16:6; Luke 24:2-6,39; John 20:27; I Cor. 15:3-4; Mark 16:19; Luke 24:51; Acts 1:9-11; Heb. 2:17; 5:10; 7:25; 8:6; 12:2; I Tim. 2:5; I John 2:1).

We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, equal with God the Father and God the Son; that He was active in the creation; that He convicts of sin, of righteousness and of judgment; that He bears witness to the Truth; that He is the Agent in the new birth; that He seals, endues, guides, teaches, witnesses to, sanctifies, and helps the believer, indwelling every true child of God from the moment of salvation. (John 14:16,17,26; Matt. 28:19; Heb. 9:14; Luke 1:35; Gen 1:1-3; John 16:7-11; John 3:5-6; Eph. 1:13; John 15:26; Rom. 8:9)

Section 3: THE DEVIL, OR SATAN

We believe in the reality and personality of Satan, the Devil; that he was created by God as an angel, but through pride and rebellion became the enemy of his Creator; that he became the unholy god of this age, and the ruler of all the powers of darkness, and the adversary of every Christian; and is destined to the judgment of an eternal justice in the lake of fire. (Job 1:8,12; 2:1-3,5; Eph. 6:11; II Cor. 2:11; Isa 14:12-15; Ezek. 28:11-17; II Cor. 4:4; Matt. 4:1-3; I Peter 5:8; Rev. 20:10; John 14:30; 16:11; Eph. 2:2.

Section 4: CREATION

We believe the Biblical account of the creation, of the physical universe, angels, and men; that this account is neither allegory nor myth, but a literal, historical account of the direct immediate creative acts of God and not from previously existing forms of life; and that all men are descended from the historical Adam and Eve, first parents of the entire human race. (Gen. 1; 2:7,18; Col. 1:16-17; John 1:3; Psa. 33:6,9; Heb. 11:3; I Tim. 6:20).

Section 5: THE FALL OF MAN

We believe that man, in the person of the first Adam, was created in innocence (in the image and likeness of God), but by voluntary transgression fell from this sinless and happy state, (and all men sinned in him) in consequence of which all men are totally depraved, are partakers of Adam's fallen nature, and are sinners by nature and by conduct, and therefore are under just condemnation without defense or excuse. (Gen. 1:26,27,31; 2:16-17; 3:1-6, 8;12; Rom. 3:10-19,23; 5:10-19; 1:18-32; Psa. 51:5; John 3:6; Rom. 7:18; Eph. 2:3,4,18; Jer. 16:12; I Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:1; Col. 2:13; Gal. 3:22; John 3:19; I John 5:19).

Section 6: SALVATION

We believe that the salvation of sinners is divinely initiated, and wholly of grace through the mediatorial offices of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Who, by the appointment of the Father, voluntarily took upon Himself our nature, yet without sin, and honored the divine law by His personal obedience, thus qualifying Himself to be our Savior; that by the shedding of His blood in His death He fully satisfied the just demands of a holy and righteous God regarding sin; that His sacrifice consisted not in setting us an example by His death as a martyr, but was a voluntary substitution of Himself in the sinner's place, the Just dying for the unjust, Christ the Lord bearing our sins in His own body on the tree; that having risen from the dead He is now enthroned in Heaven, and uniting in His wonderful Person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfection, He is in every way qualified to be a suitable, compassionate and all-sufficient Savior.

We believe that faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is the only condition of salvation. Repentance is a change of mind and purpose toward God, prompted by the Holy Spirit, and is an integral part of saving faith.

(Jonah 2:9; Isa. 53:4-7; Eph. 1:4; 2:8-9; John 6:37; Acts 13:39,48; Acts 15:11; Rom. 3:24-25; John 3:16; Matt. 18:11; Phil. 2:7-8; Heb. 2:14-17; I John 4:10; I Cor. 15:3; II Cor. 5:21; I Pet. 2:24; Acts 16:30-31; Rom. 10:9-11; Titus 3:5-7).

Section 7: GRACE AND THE NEW BIRTH

We believe that in order to be saved sinners must be born again; that the new birth is a new creation in Christ Jesus; that it is instantaneous and not a process; that in the new birth the one dead in trespasses and in sins is made a partaker of the divine nature and receives eternal life, the free gift of God; that the new creation is brought about by our sovereign God in a manner above our comprehension, solely by the power of the Holy Spirit in connection with divine Truth, so as to secure our voluntary obedience to the gospel; that its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance, faith and newness of life. (John 3:3-8; II Cor. 5:17,19; II Pet. 1:4; Rom. 6:23; Eph. 2:1,5; Col. 2:13; I John 5:1; Acts 16:30-31).

Section 8: JUSTIFICATION

We believe that justification is that judicial act of God whereby He declares the believer righteous on the basis of the imputed righteousness of Christ; that it is bestowed, not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer's shed blood. (Acts 13:39; Rom. 4:5,24; 5:1,9; Gal. 2:16; Phil. 3:9, Isa. 64:6).

Section 9: SANCTIFICATION

We believe that sanctification is the divine setting apart of the believer unto God, accomplished in a threefold manner; first, an eternal act of God, based upon redemption in Christ, establishing the believer in a position of holiness at the moment he trusts the Savior; second, a continuing process in the saint as the Holy Spirit applies the Word of God to the life; third, the final accomplishment of this process at the Lord's return. (Heb. 10:10-14; 3:1; John 17:17; II Cor. 3:18; I Cor. 1:30; Eph. 5:25-27; I Thess. 4:3-4; 5:23-24;I John 3:2; Jude 24-25; Rev. 22:11).

Section 10: THE SECURITY OF THE SAINTS

We believe that all who receive Christ as their personal Savior are born from above and are eternally secure in Christ in a relationship forged by God, which He will not break, and which cannot be broken by anyone, including ourselves. The Christian has no license to sin (Rom. 6:1-4). The presence of sin will break the fellowship, but not the relationship between the Christian and God, and may bring the Christian under divine chastisement. (Phil. 1:6; John 10:28-29; Rom. 8:35-39; Jude 1).

Section 11: THE CHURCH

We believe that a local church is an organized congregation of immersed believers, associated by covenant of faith and fellowship of the gospel; observing the ordinances of Christ; governed by His laws; and exercising the gifts, rights and privileges invested in them by His Word; that its officers are pastors and deacons, whose qualifications, claims and duties are clearly defined in the Scriptures. We believe that the true mission of the church is the faithful witnessing of Christ to all men as we have opportunity. We hold that the local church has the absolute right of self-government, free from the interference of any hierarchy of individuals or organizations; and that the one and only Superintendent is Christ through the Holy Spirit; that it is Scriptural for true churches to cooperate with each other in contending for the faith and for the furtherance of the gospel; that each local church is the sole judge of the measure and method of its cooperation; that on all matters of membership, of polity, of government, of discipline, of benevolence, the will of the local church is final. (Phil. 1:1; I Cor. 11:2; Acts 2:41-42; 20:17-28; 6:3-8; I Tim. 3:1-13; Acts 15; Acts 8:4).

We believe in the unity of all New Testament believers in the church which is the body of Christ. (I Cor. 12:12-13; Eph. 1:22-23; 3:1-6; 4:11; 5:23-24; Col. 1:18; Acts 15:13-18).

Section 12: ORDINANCES

We believe that there are two church ordinances: Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

Baptism is the single immersion of a believer in water, and is properly called believer's baptism. It sets forth in a beautiful and solemn emblem our identification with the crucified, buried and risen Savior, through Whom we died to sin and rose to a new life. We believe that baptism is to be performed under the authority of the local church; and that it is prerequisite to the privileges of church membership. Those professing saving faith in Jesus Christ as personal Savior shall, by the pastor, or some person designated by the church, be immersed in water in accordance with the Scriptural teaching. Immersion shall be a prerequisite to church membership. (Acts 8:36,38,39; John 3:23; Rom. 6:3-5; Matt. 3:16; Col. 2:12).

The Lord's Supper is the commemoration of our Lord's death until He comes and our continual fellowship with Him, and should always be preceded by careful self-examination. We believe that the Biblical order of the ordinance is baptism first, then the Lord's Supper (that participants in the Lord's Supper should be immersed believers) and that it is open communion. The Lord's Supper (communion) shall be served to the assembled church by the pastor, or some person designated by the church, and the deacons on the first Sunday evening of each month, or at the discretion of the deacons. Since it is the Lord's Table none who are His shall be barred, but the pastor shall frequently state the Scriptural order, which places obedience in matters such as baptism as a prerequisite to the Lord's Supper, and shall explain the meaning of the ordinances. (I Cor. 11:23-32; Matt. 28:18-20; Acts 2:41-42).

Section 13: SEPARATION

We believe in obedience to the Biblical command to separate ourselves, unto God, from worldliness, modernism, apostasy, and any individual or group that threatens or interferes with the church's ministry to glorify Jesus Christ as the Son of God, in His person and work. (II Chron. 19:2; Matt. 7:15-20; Acts 20:28;31; Rom. 16:17-18; II Cor. 6:14- 7:1; I Thess. 1:9-10; II Thess. 3:6,14; I Tim. 4:1-2; 6:3-5; II John 7-11; Rev. 18:4-5).

Section 14: STEWARDSHIP

We believe it is the responsibility of all believers to remember the work of the Lord in prayer and to support it with their means as the Lord has prospered them and to faithfully attend the services of their church. (I Cor. 16:2; I Cor. 4:1-2).

Section 15: 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 in those things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is the only Lord of the conscience and the coming King of kings. (Rom. 13:1-7; II Sam. 23:3; Ex. 18:21-22; Acts 23:5; I Tim. 2:1-3; Matt. 22:21; Acts 4:19-20; 5:29; Dan. 3:17-18).

Section 16: THE RETURN OF CHRIST

We believe in the imminent, bodily, personal, pretribulational return of Christ at the Rapture, an event which can occur at any moment, and that at that moment the dead in Christ shall be raised in glorified bodies, and the living in Christ shall be given glorified bodies without tasting death, and all shall be caught up to meet the Lord before the seven years of the Tribulation. (I Thess. 4:13-18; I Cor. 15:42-44, 51-54; Phil. 3:20-21; Rev. 3:10).

We believe that the Tribulation, which follows the rapture of the church, will be culminated by the revelation of Christ in power and great glory to sit upon the throne of David and to establish the millennial kingdom. (Dan. 9:25-27; Matt. 24:29-31; Luke 1:30-33; Isa. 9:6-7; 11:1-9; Acts 2:29-30; Rev. 20:1-4,6).

Section 17: THE RIGHTEOUS AND THE WICKED

We believe that there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and the wicked; that only those who are justified by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ and sanctified by the Spirit of our God, are truly righteous in God's esteem; while all who continue in impenitence and unbelief are in His sight wicked and under the curse, and therefore stand condemned before God; and that this distinction holds among men both during life and after death, in the everlasting conscious joy of the saved, and the everlasting conscious suffering of the lost in a literal hell. (Mal. 3:18; Gen. 18:23; Rom. 6:16-23; 7:7; I John 5:19; Prov. 14:32; Luke 16:25-26; Matt. 25:34-41; John 3:18; 8:21; Rev. 20:14-15).

Section 18: GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

We believe that the gifts of evangelist, pastor/teacher are sufficient for the perfection of the saints today, that apostolic sign gifts, including tongues, disappeared as the scripture was completed and its authority recognized. (I Cor. 12:4-11; Eph. 4:7-12; I Cor. 13:8).