Concerning the Scriptures

We believe that God has revealed himself and his truth by both general and special revelation. General revelation displays his existence, power, providence, moral standard, patience, goodness, and glory; special revelation manifests his triune nature and his program of redemption through Messiah for humanity. This special revelation has been given in various ways, preeminently in the incarnate Word of God, Jesus Christ, and in the inscripturated Word of God, the Bible. We affirm that the sixty-six books of the Bible are the written Word of God given by the Holy Spirit and are the complete and final canonical revelation of God for this age. (Rom. 1:18-2:4; 2:14-16Psa. 19Acts 14:15-17; 17:22-31John 1:1- 181 Thess. 2:13Heb. 1:1-2; 4:12)

These books were written by a process of dual authorship in which the Holy Spirit so moved the human authors that, through their individual personalities and styles, they composed and recorded God’s Word which are inerrant in the autographs. These books, constituting the written Word of God, convey objective truth and are the believer’s only infallible rule of faith and practice. (2 Tim. 3:16-172 Pet. 1:19-20John 10:35; 17:171 Cor. 2:10-13)

The meaning of Scripture lies in the canonical text and is that which God intended to convey through the human authors. The Holy Spirit illumines the text, enabling the reader to embrace that which God has communicated and to see the glory of Christ in the Word of God. (Jn. 7:17; 16:12, 131 Cor. 2:14, 151 Jn. 2:20)

Concerning God

God the Father

God the Father, the first person of the Trinity, decrees and works all things according to his own purpose and for his own glory, being sovereign in creation, providence, and redemption. He created the universe out of nothing. He continually sustains, directs and governs all creatures and events, accomplishing this without being the author or approver of sin nor minimizing human responsibility. He has graciously chosen the elect from all eternity, he saves from sin all who come to him through Jesus Christ, and he personally relates to his children as their Father. (Ps. 145:8, 91 Chr. 29:11Ps. 103:19Jn. 1:18Rom. 11:331 Cor. 8:6Eph. 1:3 6Heb. 4:131 Pet. 1:17)

God the Son

Jesus Christ is the incarnation of the eternal second person of the Trinity. He is the Son of God and the virgin-born Son of Man. He came as the God-Man to reveal God, glorify the Father, redeem human beings, and will as Messiah rule over God’s kingdom. (Ps. 2:7 9Isa. 7:14; 9:6Jn. 1:1, 3, 18, 29; 10:36; 17:1-61 Jn. 1:3)

In the incarnation he is both fully God and fully human without sin, possessing two natures in one person. By his obedient life, miraculous ministry, and substitutionary death, he brings salvation to humanity. He rose bodily from the dead on the third day, the resurrection confirming the Father’s acceptance of his atoning work on the cross and bringing resurrection life to all believers. He ascended into heaven and sat down at the Father’s right hand, and he now performs the intercessory aspect of his high priestly work for believers. (Jn. 1:14, 29Rom. 3:24 262 Cor. 5:18-21Phil. 2:5-11Col. 2:9Heb. 1:3; 4:15; 7:25-26; 10:5-101 Pet. 2:21 241 Jn. 2:2; 4:10)

Christ is the only mediator between God and humanity, the head of his Body the Church, the coming Messiah and king, and the final judge of both believers and unbelievers. (Isa. 53:10Lk. 1:31 33Jn. 5:27 292 Cor. 5:10Eph. 1:22, 23Col. 1:181 Tim. 2:5Heb. 7:25Rev. 20:11 15)

God the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit, the eternal third person of the Trinity, is active in creation, the incarnation, the writing of Scripture, and the work of salvation. (Gen. 1:2Matt. 1:18Jn. 3:5 72 Pet. 1:20, 21)

Coming from the Father and the Son at Pentecost, he initiated the Church. He glorifies the Son, convicts the world of sin, righteousness and judgment, indwells all believers, regenerating them, and exercises his ministries of sealing, sanctification, instructing, transforming into the likeness of Christ, and empowering for service. He gives spiritual gifts which are to be used according to biblical guidelines to build up the Church for its mission in the world. He is the agent of Spirit baptism which incorporates believers into the Church at their conversion. (Jn. 14:16, 17; 15:26; 16:7 9Acts 1:5; 2:41 Cor. 12:132 Cor. 3:18Eph. 2:22)

Concerning Angels

We believe the angels are created as personal spirit beings who worship and glorify God, serve him, and minister to human beings. Although all angels were originally created holy by God, some followed the prideful lead of Satan and fell from their position. Demons attempt to subvert the work of God through such stratagems as temptation, accusation, and deception. (Ps. 148:2Jn. 8:442 Cor. 2:10-11; 4:3-4Eph. 2:2; 6:12, 16Col. 1:16Heb. 1:14;1 Pet. 5:82 Pet. 2:4Rev. 12:9-10)

Humanity & Sin

We believe God created the first humans, Adam and Eve, in his image, mandating a pattern for marriage and sexuality. God established them as persons with dignity from the time of conception to natural death, with the intention that they should glorify God, enjoy his fellowship, and fulfill his purpose on the earth. Created with integrity and without sin, our first parents fell into sin by disobeying the will of God. As a result of identification in Adamic sin and individual acts of sinning the human race is dead in sin, separated from God and subject to his wrath. While all people bear the image of God, they are inherently sinful and hopelessly lost apart from divine grace and salvation in Jesus Christ. (Gen. 1:26 28; 2:15 25; 3:1-19Jn. 3:36Rom. 3:23; 5:12-19; 6:231 Cor. 2:14Eph. 2:1 31 Jn. 1:8)

Concerning Salvation

We believe that the death of Jesus on the cross is the perfect sacrifice for sin. His substitutionary work satisfied divine justice and is the propitiation of the wrath of God for the sins of the whole world. (Isa. 53:1-13Jn. 10:27-29Rom. 3:24; 5:8, 9; 8:38, 392 Cor. 5:18-21Gal. 2:16Eph. 1:72 Pet. 1:31 Jn. 4:10)

Through his death and resurrection, we are redeemed from sin, reconciled to God, justified by grace alone through faith alone, adopted into the family of God, and regenerated by the Holy Spirit. Salvation is appropriated by personal conversion, consisting of repentance from sin and trust in God’s provision in Christ, resulting in full forgiveness of sin and new life with Christ. (Jn. 1:12; 3:5, 7, 16Acts 16:31Rom. 8:1-4, 29, 30; 10:8-13Eph. 1:4, 5; 2:8-102 Thess. 2:13, 14Heb. 11:6)

Believers are commanded to pursue sanctification, to grow in Christ-likeness as they keep in step with the Holy Spirit and live in obedience to the Word of God. They are kept by the power of God through faith and will persevere to the end, culminating in their glorification at Christ’s coming. (Jn. 5:24; 10:28Rom. 8:35-391 Cor. 6:19, 202 Cor. 3:18Gal. 5:16-26Eph. 2:10; 5:17-21Phil. 2:12, 13;Col. 3:162 Pet. 1:3-101 Jn. 3:2, 3)

Concerning the Church

The Church is the people of God, initiated at Pentecost and completed at the return of Christ who is its head. The mission of the Church is to glorify God by worshiping corporately, building itself up as a loving, faithful community by instruction of the Word, observing baptism and communion, communicating the Gospel and making disciples of all peoples. (Matt. 16:18Acts 1:4, 5; 11:15; 2:46, 471 Cor. 12:13Rom. 12:4-21Eph. 1:22, 23; 2:19-22; 3:4-6; 5:25-27Col. 1:18Rev. 5:9)

Believers should gather together in local assemblies. They are priests before God and to one another, responsible to serve God and minister to each other. The biblically designated officers serving under Christ and leading the assembly are elders and deacons. Although church and state are distinct institutions, believers are to submit to the government within the limits of God’s Word. (Matt. 18:15-18; 22:15-22; 28:19Acts 2:41, 42; 6:1-61 Cor. 14:40Eph. 4:11, 121 Tim. 3:1-13Tit. 1:5-9Heb. 10:251 Pet. 2:5-10, 13-17; 5:1-5)

Baptism is the immersion in water into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a biblically ordained confession of personal faith, portraying death to sin and resurrection to new life. The Lord’s Supper was instituted by Christ in remembrance of him. This portrays his death, unites believers in fellowship, and anticipates their participation in the marriage supper of the Lamb. (Matt. 28:16 20Luke 22:19, 20Acts 2:41; 10:47, 48Rom. 6:1-61 Cor. 10:16-18; 11:23-29)

Concerning the Second Coming

The Lord Jesus will personally return to the earth in bodily form, that return will be both visible and glorious. After this, judgment will ensue and all of humanity will enter into their respective eternal states. The righteous will experience everlasting life and blessedness with their God, but the wicked will experience everlasting shame, contempt, torment, and punishment away from the presence of the Lord. On that day, the church will be presented faultless before God by the obedience, suffering, and triumph of Christ, all sin purged, and its wretched effects forever banished. God will be all in all and his people will be enthralled by the immediacy of his indescribable  holiness, and everything will be to the praise of his glorious grace (2 Thess 1:7-10, Acts 1:11, Rev 1:7; Matt 24:30-31 Dan 12:2; Matt 25:34,46; Rev 21:3 Rev 5:1-14; Rev 21:1-22:21. Rev 20:5-6; Jn 5:29. Rev 14:11; Rev 20:15).