Doctrinal Statement

Scripture

The sixty-six books of the Holy Bible are fully inspired by God. As God inspired those books, He used the natural situations and personalities of the human authors. That inspiration is inerrant, verbal, and plenary. 1 Peter 1:10-12, 2 Peter 1:18-21, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, John 10:35

Scripture is sufficient for all of the needs of the believers: it is all the revelation that we need for us to live our lives thoroughly furnished for all that God wants us to accomplish. 2 Timothy 3:16-17, Matthew 4:4, John 14:26, 2 Peter 1:3

Although only the original manuscripts of the Bible were 100% without error, God has faithfully preserved His Word, so that it has maintained an accuracy which has not affected any significant portion of any doctrine. Matthew 5:17-19, John 17:17

The Triune God

God is One, as revealed in the three distinct persons of the Godhead (Father, Son, Holy Spirit). While they are equally the One true God, the Bible maintains the distinctness of the Godhead, and they may often function in different roles. This doctrine of the Godhead is most often descriptively called the “Triune God”, or the “Trinity.” Deuteronomy 6:4-5, Hebrews 1:8, John 6:27, Acts 5:3-4

God is, has always been, and always will be. His character is totally perfect, unchanging, holy, just, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, loving, truthful, and infinite. Exodus 3:14, Malachi 3:6, 1 Samuel 2:2, Genesis 18:14, Psalm 139:7-10, Job 37:16, 1 John 4:7-8, John 14:6, 1 Kings 8:27

God is the creator of all things, and all three persons of the Trinity were involved in this literal, physical, six day, ex nihilo creation. Genesis 1-2, Genesis 1:1-2, 5:1-2, 6:7, Deuteronomy 4:32, Psalm 74:17 Isaiah 45:18, John 1:3, 10, Colossians 1:16, Hebrews 1:2, Revelation 4:11; 10:6

The Father

As God, He has all of the attributes and character of the Godhead mentioned above. Although anthropomorphic qualities are used to describe God, He is Spirit. He does not have a body, although at times He may choose to reveal Himself through a body. John 4:24, Philippians 2:7-8

The Son, Jesus Christ

Jesus Christ is fully God who, without giving up any of His Deity, became fully man as well in order to save man from sin. Since He is God, He has all of the attributes and character of the Godhead. Since He was man he had the characteristics of man as well (All but a sin nature). John 1:14, Hebrews 1:6, John 8:58, John 10:30, Isaiah 9:6, Hebrews 4:15

Jesus was born of the virgin Mary: conceived by the Holy Spirit. He experienced all of the reality of humanity including the temptation of sin– yet maintained a perfect, sinless life. He was revealed unto man in order to provide a way of salvation for sinners through His sufficient, sacrificial death on the cross. He was raised from the dead on the third day, and is now seated at the right hand of the throne of the father interceding from His people. Philippians 2:6-11, Colossians 2:9, Luke 1:31-35, Hebrews 4:15, 1 Peter 2:24

The Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is God, and as such has all of the attributes and character of the Godhead. While the three persons of the Trinity are equal, the Holy Spirit is often seen as functionally obedient to the Father, as is Jesus. The Holy Spirit is a fully personal being with characteristics of emotions, intellect, and will. The Holy Spirit has always existed, and was active in creation, in the Old Testament, and in the New Testament. Acts 5:3-4, 2 Corinthians 3:17-18, Genesis 1:2, John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:13-14

Angels

Angels are spirit beings which were created by God after the heavens were made, but before the earth was created. They are powerful, personal beings created in great number with different ranks. Naturally they do not have physical bodies, or sexuality, and they do not die. They worship God and obey Him in carrying out many aspects of His plan. Hebrews 1:14, Job 38:6-7, Exodus 20:11, Genesis 1:1, Psalm 148:2-5, Colossians 1:16, 2 Peter 2:11, Luke 4:34, Revelation 12:12, 2 Timothy 2:26, Ezekiel 1:5-18, Isaiah 6:1-7, Jude 9, Daniel 10:13, Ephesians 6:12, Mark 12:25, Luke 20:36, Hebrews 1:6, Psalm 103:20-21

Satan and Demons

All angels were holy, but a large number became evil following Satan’s revolt. Satan was the highest and wisest angel who sinned in pride after creation, but before the fall of man. These fallen angels oppose God’s plan and seek to war against His people. However, they are only successful in what God permits them to do. These fallen angels are called demons, and there is no salvation for them. Ezekiel 28:11-17, Isaiah 14:12-14, 1 Timothy 3:6, Revelation 12:4, Genesis 1:31;Genesis 3, Ephesians 6:12, Job 1, 2; Matthew 12:22-26, 1 Peter 1:9-12, Hebrews 1:14, 2:14-18

Man

Man was created by God in untested holiness during His creation of the world. Adam and Eve were innocent and pure, but they were given the true capability of choice in order that their devotion was not the product of an automation, but rather of true love. Genesis 1, 2

Man was created in the image of God. This includes rational/thinking aspects, moral/valuing aspects, material/immaterial aspects, spiritual/worshiping aspects, and social/relational aspects. Genesis 1:26-28; 2:19-20; 2:17, 25, 3:7; 3:8, 10; Genesis 2:18, 23, 3:6-8

Man was created for the glory of God. Man was not created for himself, nor did God need to create man. God had, and has, a purpose for man’s existence. That purpose is to ultimately glorify Himself in ways in which He deserves to be glorified. Psalm 86:9, Isaiah 43:7, Revelation 4:11

Man fell into sin, thereby separating himself from God and causing his entire nature to be polluted, and condemned. This sin affects everything– the rest of creation, even the image of God in him. Even though the image of God remains present in him, it is deficient. This separation, pollution, condemnation, and deficiency requires salvation in order to be restored to the plan that God desires. Romans 3:23, 6:23, 8:29, 2 Corinthians 3:18, Ephesians 4:24, Colossians 3:10

Sin

Sin is moral autonomy; a lack of conformity to the laws of God. It is lawlessness against the character of God almighty. In other words, sin is anything short of God’s glory, or anything that trespasses against the specific written will of God. Romans 3:23, 1 John 3:4, Psalm 51:4

God is never the source of sin. Sin did not need to be created to be possible, or to be first committed. Sin was first committed by Satan. By mankind it was first committed in the garden of Eden by Adam and Eve. Deuteronomy 32:4, James 1:13, Revelation 12:9, 1 John 3:8, Genesis 3

People get original sin from Adam: they inherit corruption when they are born as sinners. Mankind is thus left totally guilty before God, totally depraved in sin, totally dead in sin, and completely unable to rescue themselves from it. Romans 5:12, Ephesians 2:3, Psalm 51:5, Job 14:4

The consequence of sin is separation from God. This is first manifested in spiritual separation/death, and then upon physical death, if the wages of sin have not been paid, it is manifested by eternal damnation in Hell. Sin thus effects eternal destiny. Sin also affects the will, the physical body, and other people. Romans 6:23, Revelation 20:13-14, John 8:44, 5:14, Luke 20:46-47

Salvation

The ultimate purpose of salvation is to bring glory to God. It was begun in eternity past by the sovereign election of almighty God as a means of rescuing man from the condemnation of sin, the dominion of sin, and the presence of sin. Freeing from the condemnation of sin happens at the moment of salvation, freedom from the dominion of sin happens during the lifetime of the believer, and freedom from the presence of sin will happen upon the full and final realization of our salvation in eternity. Titus 3:5, Hebrews 7:25, Romans 5:9-10, Ephesians 1:4-12

Having been under the just condemnation of the law, man is totally dead to spiritual things and unable to reach out to God for reconciliation. Salvation is the satisfying of God’s righteous wrath on sinners by Jesus’ substitutionary work for them. Jesus hereby allows man to be reconciled to righteous God through Himself. By salvation we are declared righteous before God: “justified” in His sight. Romans 3:25, 2 Corinthians 5:18-21, Hebrews 2:17, 1 John 2:2, 4:10, Romans 3:21-26

Salvation is received by faith (trust) alone in Jesus Christ (death, burial, resurrection on our behalf) alone by the grace (free gift) of God alone. Salvation is not earned, it is a free gift of God. An attempt to add works or merit of anyone or anything else destroys grace and makes the attempt a futile, hopeless, man-made effort. Salvation is on the basis of the atoning, substitutionary death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-9, 1 Peter 3:18, Mark 10:45, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Titus 3:4-7, Galatians 1:3-9; 2:16-21; 3:3-14

The general call of salvation goes out to all, and the specific call of the Holy Spirit in men’s lives brings them to Him as He works in their lives convicting them, regenerating them, and giving them faith. This is applied when the sinner believes on the Lord Jesus Christ and is born again as a new creation. John 7:37, Matthew 22:14, John 16:8-11, John 1:12-13, John 3:5, Acts 16:31, Ephesians 2:8-9

The Holy Spirit is the guarantor of the reality of our salvation, He is the proof in us that God will complete that which He has begun in us at the moment of salvation when we were regenerated, indwelt, baptized, and sealed. True salvation is eternal, and cannot be lost, renounced, negated, or (by implication) regained. 2 Corinthians 1:22, Philippians 1:6, 1 Corinthians 12:13, Ephesians 4:30, Jude 24, John 10:28-29

The Church

The purpose of the Church is to bring Glory to God, and it consists of, in universal scope, of all believers down through the ages. It is the gathering into one body of both Jews and Gentiles in relation to God that was a mystery in Old Testament times. Ephesians 5:25-30, 3:5-6, Colossians 1:26

The church was formed at Pentecost, and is separate and distinct from national Israel. Both have a plan in God’s dealing with man, and the church is to be God’s light amidst the world during “the times of the gentiles.” God has decided to use us as His instruments in bringing the gospel of salvation to the world, so that through the foolishness of preaching He may be further glorified by the process. Matthew 16:18, Acts 1:7, 1 Corinthians 12:13, Acts 11:16, 1 Corinthians 10:32, Luke 21:24, 1 Corinthians 1:21

Following in the Apostles’ doctrine, fellowship, breaking of bread, and prayer will lead to the proper praising God, evangelism, mutual support etc. The church is to fulfill the great commandment to love the Lord with its entirety, and it is to fulfill the great commission to make disciples of all nations. Acts 2:42-47, Matthew 22:37, Matthew 28:29-20

The structure of the corporate gatherings of believers is to include both elders/bishops/pastors/shepherds and deacons (two distinct offices). Everything is to be done decently and in order with no confusion, and church discipline is to be maintained for the repentance and benefit of the sinning believer, and for the purity and testimony of the church Titus 1, 1 Timothy 3, 1 Corinthians 14:33, Gal. 6:1, 2 Corinthians 2:6-8, Matthew 18:15-20

The two ordinances of the church are baptism by immersion and observance of communion, or the Lord’s table. Baptism is to be done by all believers in obedience to the command of Jesus as a way of proclaiming their faith in Jesus Christ and as public testimony of their turning from their sin. Communion is to be done by all believers with pure hearts as a way of remembering what Jesus has done in salvation. The body of Jesus is not physically present in the implements, but rather communion is done as a memorial of what was physically done on the cross. Neither ordinance in any way contribute to gaining forgiveness of sin. Matthew 28:19, Acts 2:38, 22:16, Romans 6:1-10, 1 Corinthians 11:20-32, Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:4-7

Eschatology

The church will be raptured from this earth before the beginning of Daniel’s 70th week (the 7 year tribulation period) in which God pours out His wrath on mankind and thereby ultimately brings all into subjection to Himself. While the last days will be characterized by apostasy, this rapture is imminent and could happen at any time. Nothing is required to occur before the rapture, thus the church should be spurred on to watchfulness and faithfulness. The church will not experience this wrath of God. During the rapture the trumpet shall sound and Jesus will come in the air and those believers who have died will be resurrected first and those who are alive will meet them in the air to return with Him to heaven. Daniel 9:24-27, 1 Thessalonians 1:10, 4:13-18, 5:1-10, 2 Timothy 3:1

During the 70th week of Daniel God will once again deal directly with Israel and He will fulfill His covenants to them. He will bring them to repentance, they shall recognize their Messiah, and at some point all Israel shall be saved. Genesis 15:18, 2 Samuel 7:12-16, Zechariah 12:10, Romans 11:26

At the end of the tribulation the second coming of the Lord will occur and as He comes to the earth He will inaugurate the literal physical millenial reign and kingdom of God on earth. This time will be characterized by the rule of God in which peace reigns and life will be greatly extended and blessed. Revelation 20:1-6, Isaiah 65:17-25

After the millenium, another rebellion of Satan will be defeated, and the great white throne judgment of all non-believers will occur. For those not found written in the book of life, eternal judgment in the lake of fire is their destiny, and for those in the book of life, a new heaven and a new earth will be the place of their abode with God for eternity. Revelation 20, 21

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Published on September 17, 2018 at 10:39 am  Comments Off on Doctrinal Statement  
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