There are a few over‐arching principles that help guide us through doctrinal discussions: In our essential beliefs: We have unity. “There is one body and one Spirit… one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all…”
In all our beliefs: We show love. “… If I hold in my mind not only all human knowledge but also the very secrets of God, and if I have the faith that can move mountains ‐ but have no love, I amount to nothing at all.”
I Corinthians 13:2
The Bible, being fully inspired by God in its entirety, is His perfect word and is the authority for all faith and life. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction.
God – The Trinity
God exists in the Trinity: The Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit.
There is one God who is intelligent, spiritual, personal, infinite, and perfect, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all‐powerful and all‐knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.
God, as 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 – HE IS GOOD!
God, as Jesus Christ
The second person of the Trinity, the true God and true man, was born of a virgin, Mary, lived a sinless life, died in our place to pay for our sin, and rose bodily from the grave. Jesus Christ is the only ground for man’s legal standing before God which includes both forgiveness of sin and the gift of the Holy Spirit.
God, as the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls men to the Savior, and effects regeneration. At the moment of regeneration He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church.
Man is the special creation of God, made in His own image. He created them male and female as the crowning work of His creation. The gift of gender is thus part of the goodness of God’s creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by his Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan man transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original innocence. Therefore we, his descendants, inherit a nature and an environment inclined toward sin. As soon as we are capable of moral action, we become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore, every person of every race possesses full dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.
Salvation is a free gift of God brought to man by grace and received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ whose precious blood was shed for the forgiveness of our sins. “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Jesus Christ is the head of the Church, and every local church has the right under Christ to govern itself. All those who have experienced salvation are His Bride, members of the Lord’s Church, which is His body, and are therefore eligible for membership in a local fellowship and baptism. We operate under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes. In such a congregation each member is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. The New Testament speaks also of the church as the Body of Christ which includes all of the redeemed of all the ages, believers from every tribe, and tongue, and people, and nation.
Matthew 16:15‐19; 18:15‐20; Acts 2:41‐42,47; 5:11‐14; 6:3‐6; 13:1‐3; 14:23,27; 15:1‐30; 16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4‐5; 7:17; 9:13‐14; 12; Ephesians 1:22‐23; 2:19‐22; 3:8‐11,21; 5:22‐32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 1 Timothy 2:9‐14; 3:1‐15; 4:14; Hebrews 11:39‐40; 1 Peter 5:1‐4; Revelation 2‐3; 21:2‐3
The Gifts of the Holy Spirit
In the life of the believer , upon his acceptance of Jesus Christ, he is instantaneously indwelt, baptized, sealed and filled with the Spirit of God. It happens at the moment of the spiritual salvation. The Holy Spirit indwells the believer, which affects His spiritual birth and union with Jesus Christ, baptizes him, which is his immersion into the Body of Christ, seals him, which makes him spiritually secure for all eternity and fills him, empowers him for Christian service. The Holy Spirit is a person, just as Jesus is a person, and as such the believer receives, is filled with, the whole person at once. We believe that the Holy Spirit sovereignly bestows gifts upon all genuine believers at the moment of salvation. The Bible recognizes greater and lesser gifts.
John 7:39; Acts 2; Romans 5:5; 8:9; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19, 12:13‐14; 2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13; 4:30; Galatians 4:6; 1 John 3:24; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; I Peter 4; Hebrews 2:1‐4
We believe in the reality of Satan, who is the open and declared enemy of God and God’s people, the one who steals, kills, and destroys, and whose destiny is eternal punishment.
Job 1:6‐7; John 10:10; Ephesians 6:10‐20; Revelation 20:10
The Second Coming of Jesus Christ
We believe in the second coming of Jesus Christ when He will establish His millennial kingdom on earth. God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. According to His promise, Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly in glory to the earth; the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to Hell, the place of everlasting punishment. The righteous in their resurrected and glorified bodies will receive their reward and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.
Isaiah 2:4; 11:9; Zechariah 14:4‐11; Matthew 16:27; 18:8‐9; 19:28; 24:27,30,36,44; 25:31‐46; 26:64; Mark 8:38; 9:43‐48; Luke 12:40,48; 16:19‐26; 17:22‐ 37; 21:27‐28; John 14:1‐3; Acts 1:11; 17:31; Romans 14:10; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 15:24‐28,35‐58; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:20‐21; Colossians 1:5; 3:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:13‐18; 5:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:7; 2; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:1,8; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:27‐28; James 5:8; 2 Peter 3:7; 1 John 2:28; 3:2; Jude 14; Revelation 1:18; 3:11; 20:1‐22:13
All people will experience the resurrection: believers to the state of eternal life and unbelievers to the state of eternal punishment.
Luke 16:19‐26, 23:43; II Corinthians 5‐8; Philippians 1:23; II Thessalonians 1:7‐9; Judges 6‐7; Revelations 20:11‐15
Baptism is an outward symbol of our union with Christ, the forgiveness of our sins, and our reception of the Holy Spirit. Baptism is performed by the use of water as the symbol of cleansing and is contingent on an affirmation of faith in Jesus and repentance of sin. It follows instruction in the Holy Scriptures and acceptance of their teachings.
Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:28, 16:30-33, 22:16; Romans 6:1-6; Colossians 2:12-13
We believe that communion is the partaking of the bread and cup in accordance with our Lord’s command.
We believe Marriage was divinely established in Eden and affirmed by Jesus to be a loving and respectful union between a man and a woman.
Genesis 2:18–25; Ephesians 5:21–33