Statement of Faith
This Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the following Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible and, therefore, is binding upon all members.
The Word of God
The Bible is the inspired and inerrant Word of God (II Timothy 3:16, II Peter 1:20, 21; Psalms 119:89). Inspiration refers to the process whereby God breathed out the words of holy Scripture by moving holy men of God to speak and/or record His words accurately with the final product being an inerrant Bible (Galatians 1:11-12). The Bible is true not only as it speaks of salvation, but also as it speaks of history, science, and philosophy. It is truth without any mixture of error. It is the sole basis of authority for the believer in faith and practice. The King James Version of the Bible shall be the official translation used by this Church in a teaching/preaching capacity. (Psalms 12:6-7; Matthew 5:18; Isaiah 55:10-11)
God is three Persons, all equal One to the Others, and existing in One Being (Matthew 28:19; II Corinthians 13:14; Deuteronomy 6:4). The three Persons of the Godhead are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God is the Creator of the universe and its inhabitants (Genesis 1:1-2:5). He created the universe and its inhabitants by direct action, the word of His mouth, not by the means espoused by the theories of theistic evolution or evolution. He is eternal, sovereign, holy, just, immutable, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, true, merciful, and loving.
The Father -- He is the Father of the nation of Israel (Isaiah 63:16), of the Lord Jesus Christ (John 17), and of believers in Christ (Matthew 10:32-33). Though Creator of heaven and earth, He is not the Father (as in family relationship) to all humans (John 8:42-44).
The Son -- The Son of God is the Word (Logos), which was made flesh (John 1: 1-14), born of a virgin and conceived of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:18-25). He is both all God and all man (God -- John 1:1; Romans 9:5; Man -- Romans 1:3, 4; both God and man -- John 1:1-14; Romans 9:5). He is the Savior of all those who place their trust in Him to forgive their sins (John 3:16). He is the Head of the Church, which is His body (Ephesians 5:23, 30; 4:12).
The Holy Spirit -- The Holy Spirit is the Person of the Trinity Who reveals to men their need of Christ as well as reveals Christ Himself to men (John 16:7-15). He is the One Who moved holy men of God to speak the Word of God (II Peter 1:20, 21). He baptizes believers into the body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:13). He indwells (I Corinthians 6:19), seals (Ephesians 1:13), fills (Ephesians 5:18), guides (Romans 8:14), assures (Romans 8:16), and intercedes for believers (Romans 8:26).
In his original state in the Garden of Eden, man was sinless (Romans 5:12). Through the sin of Adam, man fell from that original state, thus becoming sinful by nature and choice (Romans 5:12). Man continues today as totally depraved, without any inherent righteousness or the ability to produce such righteousness of himself which could merit God's favor. Man became subject to the curse of sin and its consequences which include spiritual death immediately (Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:1), suffering (Romans 8:22, 23), physical death (Hebrews 9:27), and eventually the second death (Revelation 20:11-15). By faith in Christ alone man is able to be restored to the original creation of man in part now (II Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 3:10), and eventually in whole at the resurrection (Romans 8:19-23; I Corinthians 15:51-54; Philippians 3:21).
Salvation is granted to people upon the basis of grace and faith alone (Ephesians 2:8, 9). Biblical faith involves repentance, having a change of mind toward sin (particularly the sin of rejecting Christ) and the Savior (Luke 13:3; 24:47; Acts 26:20). The natural response of the person who has been truly saved is public confession of Christ (John 4:29; cf. Matthew 10:32, 33). Christ is recognized as Lord at the point of salvation (Romans 10:9), but with the allowance of gradual growth in Christ. Salvation results in a life of good works (Ephesians 2:10; I John 3:24). God gives assurance of salvation to the believer (John 10:28, 29; II Timothy 2:13; I John 5:12, 13). There is no reason for the believing person to fear the loss of his salvation, for he is secure in Christ (John 10:28, 29). To reject Christ's salvation is to, upon physical death, embrace a literal hell and eventually the lake of fire (Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 20:11-15). Salvation is both initiated by God's calling and received by man’s choice (John 1:12; Ephesians 1:7-11).
The local church is a group of baptized believers organized for the purposes of edification (through preaching, teaching, and fellowship) (Ephesians 4:11-13), evangelism (II Corinthians 5:18-21), keeping the ordinances, and fulfilling the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20). The primary leader of the church (local) is the pastor whose duties are to “Feed the flock of God" (I Peter 5:2), be an example to the "flock" (I Peter 5:3), and protect the "flock" (people) from false teachers and sinning brethren (Acts 20:28-32; I Timothy 4:16; also see next paragraph). The deacons are to serve with the pastor in leading the church. The ordinances of the church are baptism (performed by the pastor, or someone the church may designate under the pastor’s direction, by immersion in water for the purpose of obeying the Lord's
command [Matthew 28:19] and identifying him with Christ [Romans 6:3-5]) and the Lord's Supper (in which the cup and bread are distributed and consumed by obedient believers for the purpose of symbolically commemorating and remembering the broken body and shed blood of Jesus Christ on the cross and looking forward to the Lord's return [I Corinthians 11:17-34]). Neither of the ordinances are a means of saving grace.
The church faces the particular problems of growing apostasy and compromise due to the toleration of, and cooperation with, false teachers by some true Christians. Liberal and Neo-Orthodox leaders are false teachers and are to be withdrawn from by believers (Galations 1:8-12; I Timothy 6:3-5; II John 9-10).
Not all issues concerning the doctrine of future happenings are crystal clear. What we do know beyond question is that both dead and living saints will be changed into glorified bodies to live in the presence of the Lord (I Corinthians 15:51-57; I Thessalonians 4:13-18), and that after the world has been thoroughly scourged by a just God (Revelation 4-19), the unbelievers and Satan will be cast into a place called the “lake of fire” to remain eternally (Revelation 20:11-15). The chronology of future events, as detailed in the Bible, is as follows: (1) the rapture of the Church up to Heaven to the Judgment Seat of Christ for the judging of lives for rewards, not retribution, and the subsequent "Marriage Supper of the Lamb" (I Corinthians 3:13-15; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 19:1-10), (2) the seven-year tribulation period upon the earth in which the Gentiles and Jews are punished for their rejection of Christ and during which the Jews through suffering are prepared for the second advent of their Messiah, Jesus Christ (Revelation 4-19), (3) the ending of this seven-year period with the battle of Armageddon, during which God conquers the nations of the earth and forces of darkness (Revelation 19:11-12), (4) the one thousand year reign of Christ upon the earth (Revelation 20:1-7), (5) a final rebellion of Satan and men against God, which is put down and ends in Satan being cast into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:7-10), (6) the Great White Throne Judgment in which God judges sinners and casts them into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:11-15), and (7) the appearance of a new Heaven and new Earth and the heavenly city of New Jerusalem for the abode of the saved (Revelation 21:1-22:5).
The Personality of Satan
We believe that Satan is a created angel, the author of sin and the cause of the fall of man; that he is the open and declared enemy of God and man; and, that he shall be eternally punished in the Lake of Fire (Job 1:6-7; Isaiah 14:12-17; Matthew 4:2-11, 25:41; Revelation 20:10).
We believe that God created the universe in six literal, 24-hour periods. We reject evolution, the Gap Theory, the Day-Age Theory, and Theistic Evolution as unscriptural theories of origin (Genesis 1-2; Exodus 20:11).
We believe that God has ordained and created all authority consisting of three basic institutions: (1) the home, (2) the Church, and (3) the state. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home, the Church, and the state are equal and sovereign in their respective biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God (Romans 13:1-7; Ephesians 5:22-24; Hebrews 13:17; I Peter 2:13-14).
Statement on Marriage and Sexuality
We believe the term “marriage” has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God, which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union as delineated in Scripture. We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other. We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engage in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of sexual immorality, such as homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery, pornography, or any attempt to change one’s sex, or disagreement with one’s biological sex, are sinful offenses to God. (Genesis 2:24, 19:5, 13, 26:8-9; Leviticus 18:1-30; Romans 1:26-29; I Corinthians 5:1, 6:9; I Thessalonians 4:1-8; Hebrews 13:4).
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of the church as a local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by the church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, should abide by and agree to this Statement on Marriage and Sexuality, and conduct themselves accordingly.
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with scripture nor the doctrines of the church.
Divorce and Remarriage
We believe that God intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. Although divorced and remarried persons or divorced persons may be considered for positions of service in the Church and be greatly used of God for Christian service, they may not be considered for the offices of pastor or deacon (Malachi 2:14-17; Matthew 19:3-12; Romans 7:1-3; I Timothy 3:2, 12; Titus 1:6).
We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teaching that abortions of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental well-being of the mother are acceptable (Job 3:16; Psalms 51:5, 139:14-16; Isaiah 44:24, 49:1, 5; Jeremiah 1:5, 20:15-18; Luke 1:44).
We believe that God has given the Church the Great Commission to proclaim the gospel to all nations so that there might be a great multitude from every nation, tribe, ethnic group, and language group who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. As ambassadors of Christ we must use all available means to go to foreign nations and not wait for them to come to us (Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; II Corinthians 5:20).
Lawsuits Between Believers
We believe that Christians are scripturally prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against other Christians or the Church to resolve personal disputes. We believe the Church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between members. We do believe, however, that the Christian may seek compensation for injuries from another Christian's insurance company as long as the claim is pursued without malice or slander (I Corinthians 6:1-8; Ephesians 4:31-32).
We believe that God has established the tithe as a basis for giving, and that every Christian should also give other offerings sacrificially and cheerfully to the support of the Church, the relief of those in need, and the spread of the Gospel. We believe that a Christian relinquishes all rights to direct the use of the tithe or offering once the gift has been made (Genesis 14:20; Proverbs 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; I Corinthians 16:2; II Corinthians 9:6-7; Galatians 6:6; Ephesians 4:28; I Timothy 5:17-18; I John 3:17).