The following beliefs are the essentials with which we agree
Our creed is the Bible, the sole basis of our belief, composed of sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments. This scripture entirely originated with God, and it was given through the instrumentality of chosen men. Thus, scripture at one and the same time speaks with the authority of God and reflects the background, styles, and vocabulary of human authors. The scriptures are infallible and inerrant in the original manuscripts. They are the unique, full, and final authority on matters of faith and practice, and there are no other writings similarly inspired by God.
(Matthew 5:18-19; 2 Timothy 3:16-17)
There is one true, holy God, eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each of whom possesses equally all attributes of the Deity and the characteristics of personality. In the beginning, God created out of nothing the world and all the things therein, thus manifesting the glory of His power, wisdom, and goodness. By sovereign power He continues to sustain creation. By His providence He is operating throughout history to fulfill His redemptive purposes.
(1 John 5:7; Genesis 1-2)
The central purpose of God’s revelation of scripture is to call all people into fellowship with Him. Originally created to have fellowship with God, man defied God, choosing to go his independent way and was thus alienated from God. Man suffered the corruption of his nature, rendering him unable to please God. The fall took place at the beginning of human history, and all individuals since have suffered those consequences and thus are in need of the saving grace of God. The salvation of mankind is wholly a work of God’s free grace, not in any way the result of human works or goodness. Each person must personally accept Christ by repentance and faith. When God has begun a saving work in the heart of any person, He gives assurance in His Word that He will continue performing it until the day of its full consummation.
(John 3:16-18, 36; Luke 13:3 & 5; Romans 5:18; 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, 20-28; Ephesians 2:8-9)
Jesus Christ is the eternal second person of the Trinity. He was united forever with a true human nature by the miraculous conception of the Holy Spirit, being born of a virgin. He lived a life of perfect obedience to God the Father, wholly atoning for the sins of all mankind by dying on the cross as our substitute, thus satisfying divine justice and accomplishing salvation for all those trusting Him alone. He arose from the dead in the same body, though glorified, in which He lived and died. He ascended into Heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father where He, the only mediator between God and man, continually makes intercession for those belonging to Him. He shall come again to earth personally and visibly to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.
(Isaiah 7:14, 53:1-12; Matthew 1:20-23; John 3:16)
The Holy Spirit
The essential accompaniment of the genuine saving relationship with Jesus Christ is a life of holiness and obedience attained by believers as they submit to the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity. The work of the Holy Spirit is to apply to mankind the saving work of Christ. He enlightens the minds of sinners, awakens in them recognition of their need of a Savior, and regenerates them. At salvation, Christ permanently indwells believers, becoming their source of assurance, strength, and wisdom. He uniquely endows each believer with gifts for building up the body of believers. The Holy Spirit guides believers in understanding and applying the scriptures. His power and control are appropriated by faith, making it possible for the believer to lead a life of Christ-like character and to bear fruit to the glory of the Father.
(John 14:26, 16:8)
Death seals the eternal destiny for each person. For all mankind there will be a resurrection of the body into the spiritual world and a judgment that will determine the fate of each individual. Unbelievers will be separated from God by condemnation in Hell. God’s judgment will reveal His justice in consigning them to eternal retribution as a result of their own rejection of God. Believers will be received into eternal communion with God in Heaven and will be rewarded for their deeds done in this life.
(Hebrews 9:27; Revelation 21)
There is one true church universal composed of all those who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The scripture commands believers to gather together to devote themselves to worship, prayer, teaching the Word, observance of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper, fellowship, service to His church, and outreach to the world. Whenever God’s people meet regularly in obedience to His command, there is a local expression of the church. Its members are to work together in love and unity, intent on the ultimate purpose of glorifying God.
(Matthew 16:17-19; Colossians 1:24; Hebrews 10:24-25)
Perseverance of the Saints
Those who have received in faith Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord will never fall from grace and be lost, but shall persevere to the end. Though they may fall into sin through neglect and temptation, whereby they grieve the Holy Spirit, impair their Christian growth, bring reproach to the church and temporal judgment on themselves, they will not lose their saving relationship. God in Christ has given to His people eternal life, and they shall never perish. They are kept by the power of God through faith into salvation.
(Ephesians 1:13-14; Philippians 1:6; Romans 8:28-39; John 10:27-30)
Baptism is an ordinance of the Lord Jesus Christ in which the believer is immersed in water in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Baptism is a sign of the believer’s identifying with the death and resurrection of Christ and of his obedience to God to live and walk in newness of life.
(Matthew 3:13; 28:16-20; Mark 1:9; Luke 3:21-22)
The Lord’s Supper
The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of the Lord Jesus Christ, to be administered with the elements of bread and the fruit of the vine. It is to be observed by the Church until Jesus Christ’s return. In no sense is it a sacrament; rather, it is designed to commemorate His death on the cross for the sins of mankind. This observance is always to be preceded by solemn self-examination.
(Matthew 26:26-29; 1 Corinthians 5:6-8; 11:23-26)