What We Believe
We believe the Bible is God’s written revelation to man, and thus the 66 books of the Bible given to us by the Holy Spirit constitute the plenary (inspired equally in all parts) Word of God (2 Peter 1:20-21). We believe that God spoke in His written Word by a process of dual authorship. The Holy Spirit so super-intended the human authors that, through their individual personalities and different styles of writing, they composed and recorded God’s Word to man without error in the whole or in the part (2 Tim. 3:16). We believe that the Bible constitutes the only infallible rule of faith and practice (Matt 5:18; John 17:17; 2 Tim. 3:15-17). We adhere to the literal, grammatical-historical interpretation of Scripture, and affirm that the opening chapters of Genesis describe creation in six literal days (Genesis 1:31; Exodus 31:17).
We believe that there is but one living and true God, an infinite, all-knowing Spirit (Deut. 6:14, Isaiah 45:5-7, John 4:24), perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three Persons — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – each equally deserving worship and obedience (Matt 28:19, 2 Cor. 13:14).
We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, that He is coequal, coeternal, and cosubstantial with the Father (John 1:1-5, 10:30, 14:9). We believe in His Virgin birth (Isaiah 7:14, Luke 1:26-35), in His sinless life (2 Cor. 5:21), in His miracles (John 20:30-31), in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood (John 10:15, Rom. 3:24, 25; 5:8, I Pet. 2:24), in His bodily resurrection from the dead (Matt. 28; Mark 16, John 20, Luke 24:36-43), in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and His personal return in power and glory (Acts 1:9-11). We teach that Jesus Christ will first receive the church, which is His body, unto Himself at the rapture and then, returning with His church in glory at the end of the seven-year tribulation period, will establish His millennial kingdom on earth (1 Thess. 4:13-18; Rev. 20). We teach that Jesus Christ is the one through whom God will judge all mankind (John 5:22-23). As the mediator between God and man, the head of His body the Church, and the coming universal King who will reign on the throne of David (Isaiah 9:6-7, Ezekiel 37:24-28, Luke 1:31-33), He is the final judge of all who fail to place their trust in Him as Lord and Savior (Matt. 25:14-46; Acts 17:30-31).
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, eternal, underived, possessing all the attributes of personality and deity, including intellect (1 Cor. 2:10-13), emotions (Eph. 4:30), will (1 Cor. 12:11), eternality (Heb. 9:14), omnipresence (Ps. 139:7-10), omniscience (Is. 40:13, 14), omnipotence (Rom. 15:13) and truthfulness (John 16:13). He is coeternal, coequal and cosubstantial with the Father and the Son (Matt. 28:19; Acts 5:3-4; 1 Cor. 12:4-6). We recognize the activity of the Holy Spirit at creation (Gen. 1:2), in the incarnation (Matt. 1:18), in the written revelation of Scripture (2 Pet. 1:20, 21) and in the work of salvation (John 3:5-7). We recognize His unique activity in this age that began at Pentecost, as promised by Christ (John 14:16-17; Acts 2). His work includes leading, strengthening, teaching and comforting believers (John 14:16, 17), convicting the world of sin (John 16:7-9), and administering spiritual gifts to the church (1 Cor. 12:1-11). Every Christian believer possesses the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit, and it is the responsibility of every believer to be controlled (filled) by Him (Eph. 5:18).
We believe and teach that the working of sign miracles and speaking in tongues in the primitive church served the purpose of authenticating the apostles and their message, and were not intended to be characteristic of the lives of believers after the completion of the canon of Scripture (1 Cor. 13:8-10; 2 Cor. 12:12; Heb. 2:1-4).
We believe and teach that man was directly and immediately created by God in His image and likeness, free of sin, with intelligence, volition, and moral responsibility to God (Gen. 2:7, 15-25). We affirm that in Adam’s sin of disobedience to the revealed Word and will of God, man lost his innocence; incurred the penalty of spiritual and physical death; became subject to the wrath of God; and became inherently corrupt and utterly incapable of choosing or doing that which is acceptable to God apart from divine grace. In this condition, man is helplessly lost, and entirely dependent on God for salvation (Gen. 2:16, 17; 3:1-19, 6:5; John 3:36; Rom. 3:23; 6:23; Eph. 2:1-3; 1 Tim. 2:13-14). We affirm, therefore, that man’s salvation is wholly of God’s grace through the redemptive work of Jesus Christ.
We believe that salvation is wholly of God by grace on the basis of the redemption of Jesus Christ, the merit of His shed blood, and not on the basis of human merit or works (Eph. 1:4-7; 2:8-10; 1 Pet. 1:18, 19). We affirm that God, before the foundation of the world, and apart from any potential future human initiative, chose in Christ those whom He graciously regenerates, saves, and sanctifies (Rom. 8:28-30; Eph. 1:4-11; 2 Thess. 2:13; 2 Tim. 2:10; I Pet. 1:1-2). His choosing does not contradict or negate the responsibility of man to repent and believe in Christ and His work for salvation (John 3:18, 19, 36; 2 Thess. 2:10-12). All whom the Father loves will come to Christ in faith, and all who come in faith He will receive, and give them eternal life (John 6:37-40).
We believe and teach that all the redeemed once saved are kept by God’s power, and are thus eternally secure in Christ (John 5:24; 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 5:9-10, 1 Cor. 1:4-9; Heb. 7:25; 13:5; 1 Pet. 1:4-5; Jude 24).
We believe that physical death involves no loss of our immaterial consciousness (Rev. 6:9-11). The soul of the redeemed passes immediately into the joyous presence of the Lord (Luke 23:43; Php. 1:23), until the Rapture (1 Thess. 4:13-17) which initiates the first resurrection (Rev. 20:4-6), when the soul and resurrection body will be reunited to be glorified forever with Christ (1 Cor. 15:35-44; 50-54; Php. 3:21).
We believe that the souls of the unsaved at death are kept under punishment until the final resurrection (Luke 16:19-26; Rev. 20:13-15), when soul and resurrection body will be united (John 5:28-29). Following the great white throne judgment, they shall be cast into hell (Rev. 20:11-15; Matt. 25:41-46; 2 Thess. 1:7-9).
We believe that all who put their faith in Jesus Christ are immediately placed by the Holy Spirit into one united spiritual body, the church, the bride of Christ, of which Christ is the head (1 Cor. 12:12,13; 2 Cor. 11:2, Eph 1:22, 4:15; Col. 1:18). We believe that the formation of the church, the body of Christ, began on the day of Pentecost and will be completed at the coming of Christ for His own at the rapture.
We believe that Christ is the one supreme authority for His church (Eph. 1:22; Col. 1:18). We affirm that the biblically designated officers serving under Christ and over the local church are elders (males, who are also called bishops, pastors, and pastor-teachers; Acts 20:28, Eph. 4:11) and deacons. We affirm that elders and deacons must meet biblical qualification (1 Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9; 1 Pet. 5:1-5). We teach that these leaders lead, or rule, as servants of Christ, and have His authority in directing the church (Heb. 13:7, 17).
We believe in and are committed to the authority of the local church free from any external authority or control, with the right of self-government and freedom from the interference of any hierarchy of individuals or organizations (Titus 1:5). We affirm that it is scriptural and beneficial for true churches to cooperate with each other for the presentation and propagation of the faith. We further affirm, however, that the local church, through its elders, and interpretation and application of Scripture is the sole authority in determining the extent and methods of potential cooperation.