Statement of Faith

OUR STATEMENT OF FAITH

1. The Scriptures

We believe that the entire Bible was written by holy men divinely inspired which extends equally and fully to all its parts including, but not only, the historical, poetical, doctrinal and prophetical as it appeared in the original manuscripts. The Bible is a perfect treasure of heavenly instruction. The Bible has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth without any mixture of error for its matter. The Bible reveals the principles by which God will judge us; and therefore is, and shall remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct is carried out. All opinions and beliefs should be tried by the principles found in the Bible. ( Mark 12:26,36; Luke 24:27,44; John 5:39; Romans 15:4; 1 Corinthians 2:13;10:11; II Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:20, 21)

2. The Godhead

We believe that there is one, and only one, living, and true God who is infinite and all knowing. His name is Jehovah, the Maker and the Supreme Ruler of heaven and earth. He is inexpressibly glorious in holiness, and worthy of all honor, confidence, and love. In the unity of the Godhead, there are three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. These are equal in every divine perfection and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the work of redemption. ( Genesis 21:33; Exodus3:14; Leviticus 11:44, 45; 2 Chronicles 12:6; Malachi 3:6; John 4:24; 17:3; James 1:7; )

3. The Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ was begotten of the Holy Ghost in a miraculous manner. He was born of Mary, a virgin, as no other man was ever born and can ever be born of woman. He is both perfect God and perfect man, the Son of God, and God the son. He has infinite love for the lost, and He voluntarily accepted His Fatherís will and became the divinely provided sacrificial lamb who takes away the sin of the world. He bore the holy judgments against sin which the righteousness of God must impose on the cross. His death was, therefore, substitutionary in the most absolute sense- the just for the unjust- and by His death He became the Savior of the lost. He arose from the dead, according to the Scriptures, in the same body, though glorified, in which He had lived and died, and that His resurrection body is the pattern of that body which ultimately will be given to all believers. He was accepted of His Father upon departing from the earth and His acceptance is a final assurance to us that His redeeming work was perfectly accomplished. He has become the Head over all things to the church which is His body, and in this ministry He ceases not to intercede and be the advocate for the saved. (Genesis 3:15; Psalm 2:7; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18-25; Mark 1:1; Luke 1:35; John 1:14, 29; 20:20; Romans 3:25-26; 1 Corinthians 15:47; 2 Corinthians 5:14; Galatians 4:4; Ephesians 1:22-23; Philippians 3:20; Hebrews 7:25; 10:5-14; 1 Peter 3:18; 1 John 2:1; 5:20)

4. The Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, equal with God the Father and God the Son and is of the same nature with them. He was active in the creation of the world. In His relation to the unbelieving world, He restrains the Evil One until God's purpose is fulfilled. He convicts the world of sin, of judgement and of righteousness. He bears witness to the truth of the gospel in preaching and testimony. He is the agent in the new birth. He seals, baptizes, empowers, guides, teaches, witnesses to, sanctifies and helps the believer in accordance with the Scriptures. (John 14:16,17, 26; 16:7-15; Romans 8:14-16; 1 Corinthians 6:19; 12:13; Ephesians 2:22; 4:30; 2 Thessalonians 2:7; Hebrews 9:14; 1 John 2:20-23)

5. The Angels, Fallen and Unfallen

We believe that God created an innumerable company of sinless, spiritual beings, known as angels. One of these called "Lucifer, son of the morning", the highest in rank, sinned through pride, thereby becoming Satan. A great company of the angels followed him in his moral fall, some of whom became demons and are active as his agents and associates in the advancement of his unholy purposes. Others who fell are "reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day." Satan is the originator of sin, and under the permission of God, he , through subtlety, led our first parents into transgression, thereby accomplishing their moral fall and subjecting them and their posterity to his own power. He is the enemy of God and the people of God, opposing and exalting himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped. In his warfare he appears as an angel of light, even counterfeiting the works of God by fostering religious movements and systems of doctrine, which in every case are characterized by a denial of the efficacy of the blood of Christ and of salvation by grace alone. Satan was judged at the cross, though not then executed, and as a usurper, now rules as the "god of this world." At the second coming of Christ, Satan will be bound and cast into the abyss for a thousand years, and after the thousand years he will be loosed for a little season and then be cast into the Lake of Fire where he shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. (Genesis 3:1-19; Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:11-19; Romans 5:12-14; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4; 11:13-15; Ephesians 6:10-12; Colossians 2:15; 2 Thessalonians 2:4; 1 Timothy 3:6; 4:1-3; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6; Revelations 20:1-3,10)

6. The Fall of Man

We believe that man was created in holiness, in the image of God, under the law of his Maker. Man by voluntary transgression fell from this holy and happy state. In consequence of this fall, all mankind are now sinners, not by constraint but choice, being by nature utterly void of the holiness required by the law of God. Man is positively inclined to evil, and therefore, under just condemnation to eternal ruin, without defense or excuse. (Genesis 1:26; Psalm 14:2, 3; 51:5; Jeremiah 17:9; John 3:6; 5:40; 6:53; Romans 3:10-19; 5:8-12; 8:6-7; Ephesians 2:1-3; 1 Timothy 5:6; 1 John 3:8)

7. The Way of Salvation

We believe that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace through the mediatorial office of the Son of God. Christ, by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon Him our nature, yet without sin; honored the divine law by His personal obedience; and by the shedding of His blood made a full atonement for our sins, "for without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin." Christ, being risen from the dead, is now enthroned in heaven and uniting in His wonderful person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfections. He is in every way qualified to be a suitable, compassionate, and an all-sufficient Savior. Thus, no work of man can add any value to Christís shed blood. The new birth of the believer comes only through faith in Christ. Repentance is a vital part of believing and is in no way a separate and independent condition of salvation. Other acts, such as baptism, Lordís Supper, prayers, faithful service, emotions, etc. cannot be added to believing as a condition for salvation. (Leviticus 17:11; Isaiah 64:6; John 1:12; 3:16,18,36; 5:24; 6:29; Acts 13:39; Romans 5:6-9; 10:17; 1 Corinthians 1:1,2; 2 Corinthians 5:17, 21; Galatians 3:13; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8, 9; Hebrews 9:22; 2 Peter 1:4)

8. The Justification of God

We believe that the great Gospel blessing which Christ secures to all who believe in Him is justification. This justification is the declaration by a Holy and Righteous Judge that any who believe are not guilty because of their personal acceptance of the atoning work of Jesus Christ. The promise of eternal life to believers is on the principle of righteousness. It is bestowed, not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer's blood, by virtue of which faith His perfect righteousness is freely imputed to us of God. This condition of righteousness brings us into a state of most blessed peace and favor with God and secures every other blessing needful for time and eternity. (Romans 3:24; 4:25; 5:1; Isaiah 53:6; 1 Peter 2:24; Titus 3:7; James 2:14)

9. The Freeness of Salvation

We believe that the blessings of salvation are made free to all by the Gospel of Christ. It is the immediate duty of all to accept it by a humble, penitent and obedient faith. Nothing can prevent the salvation of the greatest sinner on earth but his own inherent depravity and voluntary rejection of the Gospel. This rejection involves him in the condemnation of God. (Isaiah. 1:18; Ephesian 2:8, 9; John 3:17, 18, 36)

10. The Sanctification of the Believer

We believe that sanctification is a permanent state given by God upon salvation but is also a process by which, according to the will of God, we are made partakers of His holiness. This process is a progressive work. It is begun in regeneration and is carried on in the hearts of believers by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, the Sealer and Comforter, in the continual use of appointed means, especially the Word of God, self-examination, self-denial, watchfulness and prayer. Even in salvation man retains his sin nature which cannot be eradicated in this life. Therefore, while the standing of the believer is perfect in Christ, his present state is no more perfect than his experience in daily life. There is therefore, a progressive sanctification wherein the believer is to grow in grace and to be changed by the Holy Spirit of God. The child of God will be fully and completely sanctified when he shall see his Lord and shall be "like Him." (John 17:17; 2 Corinthians 3:18; 7:1; Ephesians 4:24; 5:25-27; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 10:10, 14; 12:10)

11. The Eternal Security given to Believers

We believe that the eternal purpose of God is to save completely and forever those who have trusted in the shed blood of Jesus Christ for their salvation. Because salvation is by grace alone, the believer (past, present, future) is completely and forever assured of heaven. He is kept by the Word of God. (Job 10:28, 29) Christ has the ability to keep every believer. He, who cannot fail, will in the end present every believer faultless before the presence of His glory and conformed to the image of His Son. (John 1:12; 2:1-2; 5:13; 10:28,29; Philippians 1:6; 2 Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 12:6-8; 1 John 5:13; Jude 24)

12. The Church

We believe that a visible church of Christ is a congregation of baptized believers associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the Gospel. These observe the ordinances of Christ, are governed by His laws, and exercise the gifts given to them by Christ. The churchís only Scriptural officers by name are bishops or pastors, and deacons, whose qualifications, claims and duties are defined in the Epistles to Timothy and Titus. The Church was established and is governed by Christ. The mission is to glorify Christ, to spread His Word throughout the world, to purify itself and to educate its constituency. (Matthew 16:18; 28:19, 20; Acts 2:42-47; 5:11; Romans 12:5; 15:6-9; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Ephesians 1:20-23; 4:11, 12; 5:25-27; Colossians 3:14-15; 1 Timothy 1:12; Titus 1:5-9;)

13. The Ordinances - Baptism and The Lord's Supper

We believe that Christian baptism is the immersion in water of a believer. This is done in the name of the Father, and Son, and Holy Ghost. This baptism is to show forth, in a solemn and beautiful emblem, our faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Savior with its effect in our death to sin and resurrection to a new life. Baptism is a prerequisite to the privileges of church membership. The Lord's Supper is given to believers to remember the dying love of Christ. The Lordís Supper should always be preceded by a solemn self-examination. ( Matthew 8:19; Luke 22:19-20; Acts 10:47; 16:32-33; Romans 6:3, 4; 1 Corinthians 11:26; Colossians 2:12)

14. The Pretribulation Return of Our Lord

We believe our Risen Lord will return for those who have put their faith and trust in Him. His return will be before the Tribulation Period. "So then worthy is the Lamb that was slain to take away the sin of the world, to receive power, and riches and wisdom and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing for ever and ever." (1 Corinthians 15:53-58; 1 Thessalonians. 4:13-18; 2 Thessalonians. 2:1-10; Revelations 5:12, 13)

15. The Eternal State

We believe that at death the spirits and souls of those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation pass immediately into His presence and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the glorified body when Christ comes for His own. It is at this time that the soul and body shall be reunited and associated with Him forever in glory. The spirits and souls of the unbelieving are immediately condemned to hell and are conscious of condemnation and in misery until the final judgment of the Great White Throne at the close of the millennium, when soul and body reunited shall be cast into the Lake of Fire. They will not be annihilated, but will be punished with everlasting fire from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power forever. (Luke 16:19-26; 23:42; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Revelations 20:11-15)