What We Believe

The Bible

We believe God has chosen not to remain silent but to reveal Himself. He primarily reveals Himself to us through the Bible. Scripture is the inspired Word of God. The entire Bible is God-breathed. The Holy Spirit moved apostles and prophets to write the words of Scripture. This inspiration extends to all parts of Scripture. Scripture originates with God, and He has used human language to make Himself known. Because God never lies, His Word is completely true. This means that Scripture is without error (inerrant) to the degree it represents the original manuscripts. We believe that the original manuscripts are completely free of error, and God has preserved the Bible so that it remains authoritative. The Bible helps us know God and how to live a life pleasing to Him. Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10; 119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36; Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21.

God

We believe God is Trinity, which means that He is one God who has eternally existed in three persons, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Each one is fully God. God is completely unified in His diversity. All persons of the Trinity are equal in essence, nature, and substance, but they are different in persons. All things are from the Father, through the Son, and by the Holy Spirit. Each person of the Godhead shares all the attributes of God, including eternality, freedom, holiness, righteousness, immutability, omniscience, omnipresence, omnipotence, happiness, wisdom, sovereignty, perfection, goodness, and justice, grace, and mercy. God is holy, which means that he is transcendent over creation. He is the source of life. Nothing exists apart from His sustaining power. Matthew 28:18–19; Mark 12:29; John 1:14; Acts 5:3–4; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Hebrews 1:1–3; Revelation 1:4–6.

God the Father

We believe God the Father is the source and origin of all things; all things are from the Father and return to Him. All glory and honor is due Him. God the Father eternally begot God the Son and the Holy Spirit proceeds from Him. He has all the attributes of deity. God the Father has only one begotten Son, but anyone who trusts in Jesus can become an adopted son or daughter. God is the Father of creation in the sense that He is the source and sovereign over creation, and He cares for His creation as a perfect Heavenly Father. God hates sin and the effects of sin. God is eternally just, and His justice requires punishment for sin. He is patient toward sinners, because He desires everyone to come to repentance. Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; 15:11ff.; 20:1ff.; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; 1 Chronicles 29:10; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; 17:13; Matthew 6:9ff.; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1 Peter 1:17; 1 John 5:7.

God the Son

We believe Jesus is the eternally begotten Son of God and shares all the attributes of deity. He voluntarily assumed human nature when He was conceived by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mary. Jesus is fully God and man, without the two natures becoming mixed, diluted, or separated. He was tempted in every way, but He never sinned. Jesus’ mission on earth was to reveal the Father and to provide salvation for lost humanity. Jesus died on the cross in order to pay for our sin. He took the wrath of God as the propitiation for our sin, and He provided reconciliation and redemption. After three days, He rose from the dead. He appeared, rose to heaven, and will return one day. Christ’s death was substitutionary. He provides salvation to all who believe. There is salvation in no one except Jesus. Because of His resurrection, He is able to provide eternal life and resurrection for all believers. Jesus is the only Savior who can rescue us from Hell. Since He is Lord, he is worthy of our lifelong service and worship. Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; 53; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15; 5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.

God the Holy Spirit

We believe the Holy Spirit is the third member of the Godhead. He is personal and has all the attributes of deity. He is fully God. We cannot live like God wants us to live on our own, so the Holy Spirit was sent to help us. The Holy Spirit indwells all believers. He guides us and gives us strength. The more we trust and depend on Him, the more we will become like Jesus. He helps us love the unlovable. He develops in us the fruit of the Spirit. He teaches us how to understand the Bible, and he even helps us pray. He shows us when we do wrong. He comforts us when we are sad. He gives us spiritual gifts, so we can help other children of God. He gives us the power to tell others about God. The Holy Spirit guided the authors of Scripture to communicate God’s truth. He is active in the world, convicting of sin and drawing people to the Lord. Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13; 12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3; 7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.

Salvation

Salvation in the Scriptures, in the spiritual sense, can refer to salvation from the penalty of sin (justification), salvation from the power of sin (sanctification), or salvation from the presence of sin (glorification). Everyone is in need of spiritual salvation, because all have sinned. Sin is rebellion against God and justly deserves God’s wrath. We are unable to escape from our fallen condition on our own, so we need God’s grace. Because of God’s great love, He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross to pay for our sin. He took our punishment and died in our place. Three days after Jesus died, He rose again. He conquered death, and He’s offering us the free gift of eternal life. We receive eternal life by believing and putting our faith in Jesus. Repentance is a genuine turning to Christ for salvation. Jesus is the only way, because He alone can take away sin. When a person trusts in Jesus, he becomes a child of God. This is a permanent relationship that culminates in heaven. Genesis 3:15; Exodus 3:14-17; 6:2-8; Matthew 1:21; 4:17; 16:21-26; 27:22-28:6; Luke 1:68-69; 2:28-32; John 1:11-14,29; 3:3-21,36; 5:24; 10:9,28-29; 15:1-16; 17:17; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 15:11; 16:30-31; 17:30-31; 20:32; Romans 1:16-18; 2:4; 3:23-25; 4:3ff.; 5:8-10; 6:1-23; 8:1-18,29-39; 10:9-10,13; 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18,30; 6:19-20; 15:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-20; Galatians 2:20; 3:13; 5:22-25; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-22; 4:11-16; Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 1:9-22; 3:1ff.; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Timothy 1:12; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 2:1-3; 5:8-9; 9:24-28; 11:1-12:8,14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:2-23; 1 John 1:6-2:11; Revelation 3:20; 21:1-22:5.

The Church

We believe the Church is the worldwide community of believers in Christ united by the Holy Spirit who relate to God on the basis of the New Covenant and gather in local assemblies. The mission of the church is to glorify God and to be a visual expression of Christ to a lost world. As the body of Christ, the church strives to grow into the fullness of Christ. Each member has a part to play. The church is encouraged to meet on a regular basis, observe the ordinances, worship the Lord together, build one another up in the faith, and preach the Gospel. The purpose of baptism is to identify with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection and to identify as a member of the local church. The purpose of the Lord’s Supper is to remember and celebrate Christ’s sacrifice on the cross and to encourage believers to anticipate His return. The offices of pastor/elder and deacon are designed to serve the body. Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42,47; 5:11-14; 6:3-6; 13:1-3; 14:23,27; 15:1-30; 16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 9:13-14; 12; Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11,21; 5:22-32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 1 Timothy 2:9-14; 3:1-15; 4:14; Hebrews 11:39-40; 1 Peter 5:1-4; Revelation 2-3; 21:2-3.