STATEMENT OF FAITH
(ARTICLE II of our Constitution and Bylaws)
 

1. The Word of God
We believe that the Bible, consisting of the 39 Old Testament books and 27 New Testament books, is the verbally and plenarily inspired or God-breathed Word of God, His written revelation to man, recorded by selected men without error in the original writings; and that it is, therefore, the supreme and final authority in all matters of doctrine, faith, and life, and that there are no other writings actually inspired by God.   (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21; John 16:12-13)

2. The Godhead
We believe in one Triune God, indivisible in essence and eternally coexistent in three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, having precisely the same nature, attributes, and perfections, and worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence, and obedience.  (Deuteronomy 6:4; Mark 12:29; 2 Corinthians 13:14; John 1:14; Acts 5:3-4)

3. 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. Further, we believe that as the impeccable (without sin) God-man, He accomplished redemption for humanity and propitiation before God through His death by the shedding of His blood as He hung on the cross as a substitutionary sacrifice; that our redemption is made sure to us by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead.
 (John 1:1-2, 14; Luke 1:35; Romans 3:24-25; I Peter 1:3-5; I John 1:1-2)
 
  We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is now in heaven, exalted at the right hand of God, where He is the High Priest for His people, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate.    (Hebrews 9:24; Romans 8:34)
 
4. The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead. He convicts the unsaved of sin, righteousness, and judgment; He regenerates, indwells, baptizes, and seals believers at the moment of salvation, and desires to control their lives to empower them for service and to manifest the life of Christ in them.
(Ephesians 1:13-14; John 16:8-11; Galatians 5:16-24)
 

5. The Nature and Depravity of Man
We believe that mankind was created in the image and likeness of God, but that in Adam's sin the race fell (being represented in Adam), inherited a sinful nature, became alienated from God, and is totally unable, by its own efforts, to please God or retrieve its former condition of peace with God. (Genesis 1:26-27; Romans 3:23-24, 5:12; Ephesians 2:12)

6. Salvation
We believe that because of universal death through sin, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he or she is born again. This spiritual rebirth is wholly a work of God and is not induced or aided by any attempts at moral reform or by participation in any ordinance or sacrament. Salvation is a gracious gift of God which is received by personally trusting in the death of Jesus Christ as an adequate substitute for the penalty of sin.
(Ephesians 2:8-9; John 1:12; Ephesians 1:7; John 3:5, 18; Romans 5:6-9; Titus 3:5; Acts 4:12)
 

7. Plan of God
We believe in the Genesis account of creation, and that it is to be accepted plainly, and not allegorically or figuratively; that mankind's creation was not a matter of evolution or evolutionary changes of species, or development through interminable periods of time from lower to higher forms; that all animal and vegetable life was made directly, and God's established law was that they should bring forth only "after their kind" (Genesis 1 - 2).

We believe that the creation of the world and all the things in it manifested the glory of God's power, wisdom, and goodness. By this sovereign power, He continues to sustain His creation and by His providence He orders the affairs of men and nations according to His own wise, eternal plan. (Colossians 1:15-17; 2 Peter 3:5)

We believe that God created human beings as uniquely male and female and uniquely in His own image. We believe human sexuality is a part of this creation, and that sexual intimacy is a wonderful gift of God that is only to be expressed between one man and one woman within the love and bonds of marriage as our Creator ordained at creation. Therefore, we believe that any other form of sexual intimacy or gratification is both immoral and a perversion of God’s gift.
 (Genesis 1:26-27, 2:24-25; Leviticus 18 & 20; Matthew 5:27-28; Romans 1:24-27; I Corinthians 6:9-20;
   I Thessalonians 4:3-5; Hebrews 13:4)
 

We believe that the purpose of all history is to bring glory to God. God does this by contrasting His own perfections with the failure of man. God has administered His plan for the ages in different ways in different ages, beginning with the innocence of unfallen humanity and culminating with the millennial kingdom in which Jesus Christ rules as Lord of Lords and King of Kings. We believe in particular that the three major ages of the Mosaic Law (Exodus 19 - Acts 1), the Church (Acts 2 - Rapture), and the Millennium (Revelation 19 - 20), do not distinguish three methods of salvation, but are three distinct rules of life and as such are not to be intermingled or confused.

We believe that though in every age salvation is always by grace through faith, the Word of God outlines a clear and different formula for meeting the requirements of the godly lifestyle in each age.
(Ephesians 1:10, 3:2-9; Colossians 1:25-27)
 

8. Security and Assurance
We believe that all who have placed their trust in Christ as Savior are kept secure forever. In other words, true Christians cannot lose their salvation. (John 6:37-40, 10:27-30, 17:9-12; Romans 8:1, 38-39; I Corinthians 1:4-8; I Peter 1:3-5)

We believe it is the privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation through the testimony of God's word that clearly forbids, however, the use of Christian liberty as an occasion to do evil. (Romans 13:13 - 14:23; Galatians 5:13; Titus 2:11-15)

9. The Church

A. The Universal Church: We believe that the Church, which began at Pentecost and is distinct from Israel, is the body and bride of Christ, a spiritual organism made up of all born-again persons of this present age without regard to their affiliation with Christian organizations (Ephesians 1:22-23, 5:25-27; I Corinthians 12:12-14).

B. The Local Church: We believe that God's basic organizational plan for the training, worship, and ministry of believers in this present age is the local church, made up of born-again individuals in a single locale, organized under New Testament leadership, called out to know Jesus Christ and to make Him known, thus proclaiming the excellencies of God (I Peter 2:9; Ephesians 1:22-33, 5:25-27; I Corinthians 12:12-14; Hebrews 10:25).

10. Ordinances
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ instituted the ordinances of water baptism and the Lord's Supper, to be observed by His Church until His return (Mark 1:9-11; John 1:28, 3:22-23; Matthew 28:19-20; I Corinthians 11:23-26). The practice of this Church is the baptism of believers by immersion.

11. The Christian Life
We believe that every born-again Christian (believer) in this Church age shares the same union with and position in Christ, effected once-for-all by the baptism of the Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation, and that it is the privilege and duty of each believer to be habitually controlled by the indwelling Spirit and to manifest a changed life consistent with his or her profession. (Galatians 5:16; Romans 8:1-11)

We believe that the basic conditions for the Spirit-controlled (or Spirit-filled) life are the attitude of moment-by-moment, conscious dependence on the Spirit to control every area of the believer's life (Ephesians 5:18) and obedience--again, in the power of God's Spirit--to the Word of God known to the believer at that time. Should the believer sin, the one and only means of restoration to fellowship with God is the confession or honest admission of that sin to the believer's Heavenly Father. (Psalm 32:5; I John 1:9)

We believe that each believer possesses at least one spiritual gift and should exercise that gift with spiritual power. This does not mean that the believer is freed from the obligation to obey Christ in the areas wherein the believer is not spiritually gifted. On the contrary, believers are to obey Christ in all that He commands. Hence, believers are to give to the church whether or not they have the spiritual gift of giving; they are to exercise faith whether or not they have the gift of faith; and so on. (I Corinthians 12:4-11, 28; Romans 12:6-8; Ephesians 4:11)

We believe that every believer is a priest unto God and has the privilege and responsibility of spiritual worship, offering spiritual sacrifices (these include self-surrender, Romans 12:1; praise and thanksgiving, Hebrews 13:15 and 1Thessalonians 5:18; good works, Hebrews 13:16; giving, Hebrews 13:16, and intercession, Ephesians 6:18-19).

We believe that every moment in the daily life of the believer is equally important to God and that the believer has been freed from the obligatory observance of holy days, holy seasons, and Sabbaths. (Galatians 4:9-11; Colossians 2:16-17; Romans 14:5-6)

We believe that every believer is to witness for the Lord Jesus Christ as directed by the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 1:8; I Peter 3:15)

12. Angels and Satan
We believe in the literal existence of angels as spirit beings created by God to serve Himself. We believe in the personality of Satan, formerly "Lucifer, son of the morning," who had been of the highest rank of angels but sinned through pride and now is the open and declared enemy of God and man. (Job 1:6-7; Isaiah 14:12-17; Matthew 4:2-11; Luke 15:10; Hebrews 1:14; Revelation 7:11)

13. The Rapture
We believe that the next great event in the fulfillment of prophecy will be the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ in the air to receive to Himself the dead "in Christ" (those believers who have died in the Church Age) and believers who are alive at His coming. This event is otherwise known as the Rapture of the Church.
 (I Corinthians 15:51-57; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)
 

14. The Tribulation
We believe that the Rapture of the Church will be followed by the fulfillment of Israel's seventieth week, the latter half of which is the time of Jacob's trouble, the Great Tribulation.

(Daniel 9:27; Jeremiah 30:7; Matthew 24:15-21; Revelation 6:1 - 19:21)

15. The Second Coming of Christ
We believe that the Great Tribulation will be climaxed by the (premillennial) return of the Lord Jesus Christ to earth to set up His kingdom and reign upon the earth for one thousand years

(Zechariah 14:4-11; Matthew 24:15 - 25:46; Revelation 20:6).

16. The Eternal State
We believe that the souls of those who have trusted in Christ for salvation at death immediately pass into His presence, there remaining in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at His coming, when soul and body reunited shall be with Him forever in glory; but that the souls of unbelievers remain after death in conscious 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, not to be annihilated, but to be punished with everlasting destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power

(Luke 16:19-26, 23:43; II Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; II Thessalonians 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Revelation 20:11-15)

17. Forgiveness of Sin
We believe that those who are redeemed are completely forgiven of all sins past, present, and future and that they shall never be held accountable for it. (Romans 8:1; Colossians 1:13-14)

18. Rewards
We believe that through the infinite faithfulness of God, the believer cannot come into judgment respecting the sins that Christ has borne. Yet it remains true that believers will be brought into judgment concerning their service for God; the use they made of the gifts, abilities, and opportunities that God has given them after they have been saved. The goal of this judgment is that suitable rewards may be bestowed on those who have served in faithfulness. Such works as have been performed in the flesh will be burned but with the assurance that, in spite of the burning of the works, the believer is saved. (1 Corinthians 3:9-15, 9:18-27; 2 Corinthians 5:10)

19. The Christian Home
We believe in the importance of the Christian home and that it is of primary importance to the church. We believe that God has instituted the home as the primary means of rearing children and instructing them in the faith, and that the quality of the home is instrumental in developing the national character, not to mention the character of the Church. We are firmly committed to assisting people to fulfill their responsibilities as husband and wife, child or parent, but we believe that the primary responsibility for instructing children in the things of God rests in the home (Ephesians 6:4; Deuteronomy 6:6-7).

We believe that God has ordained the husband to be the head of the home, that wives are to be subject to their husbands whether those husbands are saved or unsaved, and that children are to obey their parents. Husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the Church.     (Ephesians 5:21-6:3, I Peter 3:1-7)
 
20. Spiritual Gifts
We believe that some gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as the gift of speaking in tongues, the gift of miraculous healing, the gift of prophecy (in its foretelling aspect), and the gift of apostleship were temporary. We believe that speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary sign of the baptism nor of the control of the Holy Spirit, and that the deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection.
(Acts 4:8, 31; Romans 8:23; I Corinthians 12:29-30, 13:8; Hebrews 2:1-4)
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