What We Believe
STATEMENT OF FAITH
A. The Holy Scriptures. We believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments of the Bible, as they are preserved in the Authorized King James Version, to be the inspired Word of God. The Scriptures are inerrant, infallible and God-breathed, and therefore are the final authority for faith and life. The sixty-six books of the Old and New Testament are the complete and divine revelation of God to man. The Scriptures shall be interpreted according to their normal grammatical-historical meaning. The King James Bible shall be the official and only English version of the Scriptures that will be recognized as authoritative within this Church, and the only English version to be used to teach doctrinal truth (2nd Tim. 3:16-17; 2nd Pet. 1:20-21).
B. The dispensations. We believe that Holy Spirit will guide sincere believers toward “rightly dividing the word of truth.” We endorse a dispensational approach to Bible interpretation, in which the enlightened believer may discern man’s particular responsibilities to God through successive ages of human history. By His sinless life, which enabled Him to become the perfect sacrifice for our sins, our Lord Jesus Christ fulfilled the demands of the Old Testament Law on behalf of all those who receive Him as personal Saviour. This has freed the born-again Christian from any requirement to fulfill the manifold demands of the Law as a condition of salvation. Our salvation in this dispensation is entirely of God’s grace; eternal life is freely provided as God’s gift to all who will call upon the name of the Lord Jesus for that salvation. Neither human good works nor religious rituals have any part in our salvation. During His earthly ministry, our Lord Jesus instituted the present church age. It is God’s will today for every believer to be baptized and faithfully involved in a local church. In the near future, the believers of all ages will be caught up to be with our Lord, leaving the world to the terrible rulership of Satan. After seven years of Great Tribulation on earth, Jesus will return with His saints to subdue the world. Our Lord will rule the world from Jerusalem for one thousand glorious years. His saints will share His authority and glory proportional to the degree of faithfulness they exhibited during their prior earthly life. We refer to this dispensation as the Millennial Kingdom of Jesus Christ. It will be followed by eternity to come, in which the saints will live with God, and the lost will suffer forever in the Lake of FIre. (Gen. 1:28; 1st Cor. 9:17; 2nd Cor. 3:9-18; Gal. 3:13-25; Eph. 1:10, 3:2-10; Col. 1:24-25, 27; 2nd Tim. 2:15; Rev. 20:2-6).
C. The Godhead. We believe in one Triune God, eternally existing in three persons — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit — with each being equally eternal, omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, and glorious (Deut. 6:4; Matt. 28:19; 2nd Cor. 13:14; John 14:10, 26).
D. The Person and Work of Christ
1) 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 men (Isaiah 7:14; 9:6; Luke 1:35; John 1:1-2, 14; 2nd Cor. 5:19-21; Gal. 4:4-5; Phil. 2:5-8).
2) We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as our perfect, vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice, and that our justification is made sure by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead (Acts 2:18-36; Rom. 3:24-25; 1st Pet. 2:24; Eph. 1:7; 1st Pet. 1:3-5).
3) We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven, and is now exalted at the right hand of God, where, as our High Priest, He fulfills His ministry of being intercessor and advocate, as well as the head of the church (Acts 1:9-10; ; Eph. 1:22, 5:23; Col. 1:18; Heb. 9:24; 7:25; Rom. 8:34; 1st John 2:1-2).
E. The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
1) We believe that the Holy Spirit is a member of the Godhead who is co-equal with God the Father and God the Son. It is He who convicts the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He indwells all who will believe on Jesus Christ for the saving of their souls, working the regeneration that produces eternal life. He baptizes all believers into the body of Jesus Christ, indwelling them and sealing them unto the day of redemption (John 16:8-11; Rom. 8:9; 1st Cor. 12:12-14; 2nd Cor. 3:6; Eph. 1:13-14).
2) We believe that the Holy Spirit is our divine teacher, and that He assists believers to understand and apply the Scriptures to the unique circumstances of their lives (Eph. 1:17-18; 1st John 2:20, 27).
3) We believe that it is the privilege and duty of all Christians to be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:18).
4) We believe that the sign gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues and the specialized gift of healing, were the temporary means whereby God sought to confirm to the Jewish mind the reality of the Gospel. Those sign gifts dissipated upon the completion of the canon of New Testament Scripture, which was approximately at the close of the first century A.D. We believe that speaking in tongues was never, and is not now, a prerequisite nor an indicator of the baptism or filling of the Holy Spirit. The ultimate deliverance of a believer’s body from temptation, sin, sickness, and death will be realized when the soul is called into the presence of God, either through death or the translation (commonly called the Rapture). We do not deny, however, that we serve a miracle-working God who is our sovereign Lord, and who may do as He will, when He will, where He will (1st Cor. 1:22, 13:8, 13:10, 14:21-22; Rom. 7:24-25).
F. The Utter Sinfulness of Man. We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but that in Adam’s sin the human race fell, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God; and that man is utterly sinful, and therefore unable to remedy his lost condition (Gen. 1:26-27; Ro. 3:22-23; 5:12; 6:23; Eph. 2:1-3; 4:17-19).
G. Salvation. We believe that eternal salvation has been purchased by the precious blood of Jesus, who died on the cross for the sins of the world. By God’s grace, the gift of eternal life is offered freely to all sinners. Being a gift, salvation must be received by the sinner as a personal act of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (John 1:12; Eph. 1:7, 2:8-10; 1st Pet. 1:18-19).
H. The Eternal Security and Assurance of Believers
1) We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1, 38-39; 1st Cor. 1:4-8; 1st Pet. 1:4-5).
2) 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, however, clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion to the flesh (Rom. 13:13-14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15).
I. The Church
1) We believe that the local church, which is the body and the espoused bride of Christ, is to be solely comprised of persons who have been born again through faith in the finished work of our Lord Jesus Christ (1st Cor. 12:12-14; 2nd Cor. 11:2; Eph. 1:22-23; 5:25-27).
2) We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures (Acts 14:27; 20:17, 28-32; 1st Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11).
3) We believe in the autonomy of the local church, which renders it free of any external authority or control, save that to which it voluntarily submits itself for the health and safety of its Members (Acts 13:1-4; 15:19-31; 20:28, Rom. 16:1,4; 1st Cor. 3:9, 16; 5:4-7, 13; 1st Peter 5:1-4).
4) We recognize water baptism and the Lord’s Supper as the Scriptural ordinances of obedience for the church in this age (Matt. 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42; 18:18; 1 Cor. 11:23-26).
J. Separation. We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner so as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord; and, that separation from all religious apostasy, as well as all pleasures, practices, and associations that could be construed as being worldly or sinful, is commanded of God (Rom. 12:1-2; 14:13; 2nd Cor. 6:14 - 7:1; 1st Thess. 5:22; 2nd Tim. 3:1-5; 1st John 2:15-17; 2nd John 9-11).
K. The Second Advent of Christ. We believe in the “blessed hope”, which is the personal, imminent return of Christ to catch His bride away prior to the seven terrible years of the Great Tribulation. The “blessed hope” is further enhanced by our knowledge that, at the end of the Tribulation, Christ will personally and visibly return to Earth with His saints, at which point He will put down His enemies and establish His earthly Messianic Kingdom, as He promised the nation of Israel in the Old Testament (Ps. 89:3-4; Dan. 2:31-45; Zech. 14:4-11; 1st Thess. 1:10; 4:13-18; Tit. 2:13; Rev. 3:10, 19:11-16; 20:1-6).
L. The Eternal State
1) We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men — the saved to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment (Matt. 25:46; John 5:28-29; 11:25-26; Rev. 20:5-6, 12-13).
2) We believe that, at the moment of physical death, the souls of the redeemed are instantly taken into the presence of the Lord, where in conscious bliss they await the first resurrection, when spirit, soul and body will be reunited to be glorified forever with the Lord (Luke 23:43; 2nd Cor. 5:8, Ph. 1:23; 3:21; 1st Thess. 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4-6).
3) We believe that the souls of unbelievers remain, after death, in conscious punishment and torment until the second resurrection, when with soul and body reunited they shall appear at the Great White Throne Judgment, and shall be cast into the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting conscious punishment and torment (Matt. 25:41-46; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 16:19-26; 2nd Thess. 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Rev. 20:11-15).
M. The Personality of Satan. We believe that Satan is an angelic being of immense power, known in the Scriptures as “the god of this world”, who is 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, Isa. 14:12-17; Matt. 4:2-11; 25-41; 2nd Cor. 4:4; Rev. 20:10).
N. Creation. We believe that God created the universe in six literal, 24-hour days. We reject all forms of evolution as unscriptural theories of origin (Gen. 1-2; Ex. 20:11).
O. Civil Government. We believe that God ordained the establishment of three basic institutions: the home, the church, and human government. Every person is subject to these authorities. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities, balancing their rights with the understanding that no institution may infringe upon the roles conferred upon the others. They are sovereign in their respective, Biblically-assigned spheres of responsibility. Each is governed by God’s Word, and those who exercise authority within their domains must ultimately answer to the Lord (Ro. 13:1-7; Eph. 5:22-24; Heb. 13:17; 1 Pet. 2:13-14).
P. Human Sexuality.
1. We believe that God has commanded that no sexual intimacy be permitted outside of the marriage of a male husband to his female wife. All forms of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery, and pornography are sinful perversions of God’s gift of sex. Any employee of the Church who is proven to have been engaged in any of these perversions since the day of employment by the Church will be immediately terminated from that employment, and relieved of all paid or volunteer ministry responsibilities (Gen. 2:24; 19:5; 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Ro. 1:26-29; 1 Cor. 5:1; 6:9; 1st Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4).
2. We believe that the only legitimate marriage is the lifelong union of one man to one woman (Gen.2:24; Ro. 7:2; 1st Cor. 7:10; Eph. 5:22-24).
3. We believe that men and women are spiritually equal in position before God but that God has ordained distinct and separate spiritual functions for men and women in the home and the church. The husband is to be the leader of the home and men are to be the leaders (pastors and deacons) of the church. Accordingly, only men are eligible for licensure and ordination by the church. The Scriptures are clear that women are forbidden to be disruptive in Church Services, teach the men of the Church, and usurp the male authority of the Church (1st Cor. 14:34-35; Gal. 3:28; Col. 3:18; 1st Tim. 2:8-15; 3:4-5, 12).
Q. Divorce and Remarriage. We believe that God disdains divorce, and intends every marriage to be maintained until one spouse dies. Nevertheless, people who have been divorced, and divorcees who have remarried, are welcome to visit our Church. A Church Member who has been divorced prior to joining our Church may with the Pastor’s approval be considered for Church Membership, and, as a Member, may with the Pastor’s approval hold any position of service within the Church, save only that no man who has been divorced will be considered for the offices of pastor or deacon. Should a Member of our Church be divorced while a Member of this Church, he or she may be removed by the Pastor from any or all offices, posts, or positions of service within the Church. This expulsion from office or suspension from Christian service may be permanent, or be set for a definite or indefinite probationary period, at the discretion of the Pastor. The divorce of a Church Member may also be considered grounds for Church disciplinary action, including removal from Church Membership.
R. Abortion. 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; Isa. 44:24; 49:1, 5: Jer. 1:5; 20:15-18; Lu. 1:44).
S. Missions. We believe that God has given the church a 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 will be saved by believing on the Lord Jesus Christ. To accomplish this monumental task, we will support missionaries who arise from within our Church, or those who are commended to us by likeminded churches. These missionaries will represent our Church on mission fields at home and abroad. We will also urge our Members to support missions financially and seek opportunities to provide practical, personal assistance to our missionaries (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2nd Cor. 5:20).
T. Lawsuits between Church Members. We believe that Christians are prohibited from resolving personal disputes by bringing civil lawsuits against other Members of the Church. We believe the Church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between its Members (1st Cor. 6:1-8; Eph. 4:31-32).
U. Giving. We believe that every Christian is a steward of that portion of God’s wealth that has been entrusted to him, and has been obligated by God to financially support his local church. We believe that God established the tithe as the basis for giving, but that every Christian should also cheerfully bring sacrificial offerings above the tithe to God through the Church. Once tithes and offerings have been remitted to the Church, the donor forfeits all rights to that money, and relinquishes all control of it. While the Members of our Church are welcome to designate their offering to specific ministries or projects of the Church, or to specific missionaries who are supported by the Church, the Pastor will make the ultimate determination as to where all Church funds will be disbursed (Gen. 14:20; Pro. 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; 1st Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:6-7; Gal. 6:6; Eph. 4:28; 1st Tim. 5:17-18; 1st John 3:17).
AUTHORITY OF STATEMENT OF FAITH
The 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 foregoing statement of faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, is binding upon all members. All literature used in the church shall be in complete agreement with the statement of faith.