What We Believe
1. The Scriptures
We believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the verbally inspired word of God, the final authority and fully sufficient for faith and life, inerrant in the original writings, infallible, and God-breathed (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:20, 21; Matthew 5:18; John 16:12, 13).
2. The Trinity
We believe in one Triune God, eternally existing in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—co-eternal in being and nature, co-equal in power and glory, having the same attributes and perfections (Deuteronomy 6:4; 2 Corinthians 13:14) and loving and glorifying one another.
3.1 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 purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. (Romans 8:28-30; John 1:12)
3.2 The Person and Work of Christ
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful man (John 1:1–2, 14; Luke 1:35). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as a representative, vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice, and that our justification is made sure by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead (Romans 3:24; 1 Peter 2:24; Ephesians 1:7; 1 Peter 1:3–5). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God where, as our High Priest, He fulfills the ministry as Representative, Intercessor, Mediator, and Advocate (Acts 1:9, 10;4 Hebrews 7:25; Hebrews 9:24; Romans 8:34; 1 John 2:1–2). We believe Jesus is coming again to judge the living and the dead (1 Peter 4:5; Romans 14:9; 2 Timothy 4:1).
3.3 The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a person who convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment; He is the Supernatural Agent in regeneration, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ, indwelling, filling, guiding, empowering, and sealing them unto the day of redemption (John 16:8–11; 2 Corinthians 3:6; 1 Corinthians 12:12–14; Romans 8:9; Ephesians 5:18).
We believe that human beings were created – male and female – in the image and likeness of God, but that through Adam's sin the race fell, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God; man is totally depraved and of himself utterly unable to remedy his lost condition (Genesis 1:26, 27; Romans 3:22, 23; 5:12; Ephesians 2:1–3, 12). Because of the image of God and death of Jesus for man, every person has dignity, is worthy of respect, and deserves to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ. The supreme need of every human being is to be reconciled to God.
We believe that from all eternity God determined in grace to save a great multitude of guilty sinners from every tribe, language, people, and nation. We believe that salvation is the gift of God brought to man by grace and received by repentance and personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, whose precious blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins (Ephesians 2:8–10; John 1:12; Ephesians 1:7; 1 Peter 1:18–19). We believe that God, in grace, elects, justifies, regenerates, sanctifies, and will ultimately glorify every believer.
6. The Gospel
We believe that the gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ – His life, death, and resurrection (1 Cor. 15:1-7). We believe the gospel is the power of God for salvation and results in a changed life and society (Rom 1:16-17). We believe it is the duty and privilege of every follower of Christ and every church to proclaim the gospel and make disciples of all nations (Matt 28:18-20).
7. Eternal Security and Assurance of Believers
We believe that all the redeemed are kept by God's power and are thus secure in Christ forever (John 6:37–40; 10:27–30; Romans 8:1, 38, 39; 1 Corinthians 1:4– 8; 1 Peter 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, which clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion for the flesh (Romans 13:13, 14; Galatians 5:13; Titus 2:11–15).
8. The Ministry and Spiritual Gifts
We believe that God is sovereign in the bestowing of spiritual gifts. It is, however, the believer's responsibility to attempt to develop his spiritual gifts. The baptism of the Holy Spirit occurs at conversion and is the placing of the believer into the Body of Christ. We also believe that particular spiritual gift(s) are neither essential, nor prove the presence of the Holy Spirit, nor are an indication of deep spiritual experience (1 Corinthians 12:7, 11, 13; Ephesians 4:7–8). We believe that God does hear and answer the prayer of faith, in accordance with His own will for the sick and afflicted (John 15:7; 1 John 5:14-15). We believe that it is the privilege and responsibility of every believer to minister and evangelize according to the gift(s) and grace of God that is given to him (Romans 12:1–8; 1 Corinthians 13; 1 Peter 4:10–11).
9. The Church
We believe that the church, which is the body and bride of Christ, is a spiritual organism comprised of all born-again persons (Ephesians 1:22, 23; 5:25–27; 1 Corinthians 12:12–14; 2 Corinthians 11:2). We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures (Acts 14:27; 18:22; 20:17; 1 Timothy 3:1–3; Titus 1:5–11). We believe in the autonomy of the local church, free of any external authority and control (Acts 13:1–4; 15:19–31; 20:28; Romans 16:1,4; 1 Corinthians 3:9, 16; 1 Corinthians 5:4–7, 13; 1 Peter 5:1–4). We believe the local church is to be led by a plurality of godly men. We recognize believer's baptism and the Lord's Supper as scriptural means of testimony for the church (Matthew 28:19, 20; Acts 2:41, 42; Acts 18:8; 1 Corinthians 11:23–26).
10. The Restoration of All Things
We believe Jesus will return, exercise His role as final Judge, and consummate His kingdom. We believe in the bodily resurrection of both the just and the unjust – the unjust to judgment and eternal, conscious punishment in hell and the just to eternal blessedness in the presence of God Himself in heaven. We believe all things will ultimately end in the praise of His glorious grace.
11. Marriage and Family
We believe, based on the teaching of the Scriptures, that marriage involves the union of one man and one woman in a permanent, sacred covenant. Though various cultures and customs have evolving definitions of marriage, it is God alone who has ultimate authority to prescribe and describe the marital relationship (Genesis 2:24, Matthew 19:1-9, Mark 10:1-12).
Furthermore, sexual intimacy is to be exercised and pursued only within the confines of this marital relationship. Sexual immorality, defined as any sexual activity outside of the boundaries of marriage between one man and one woman, is clearly and expressly prohibited by our Lord (Matthew 15:19, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, 1 Thessalonians 4:3, Hebrews 13:4).
Though sinful sexual expression is grievous to God (as is all sin), the gospel provides redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 6:9-11, Ephesians 2:1-10, Titus 3:3-7). We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect and dignity. Hateful, bullying or harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated as sinful and are to have no place among God’s people (1 Peter 3:15).
Approved by the congregation Dec, 2014.