IN ESSENTIAL BELIEFS – WE HAVE UNITY.
“There is one Body and one Spirit…there is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of us all…” Ephesians 4:4-6
IN NON-ESSENTIAL BELIEFS – WE HAVE LIBERTY.
“Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters…Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls… So then each of us will give an account of himself to God…So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God.” Romans 14:1, 4, 12, 22
IN ALL OUR BELIEFS – WE SHOW LOVE (CHARITY).
“If I hold in my mind not only all human knowledge but also the very secrets of God, and if I have faith that can move mountains – but have no love, I amount to nothing at all.” 1 Corinthians 13:2 (Ph)
God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and are one God. Genesis 1:1, 26-27, 3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; 1 Peter 1:2; 2 Corinthians 13:14
Man is made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. He is the supreme object of God’s creation. Although man has tremendous potential for good, he is marred by an attitude of disobedience toward God called “sin”. This attitude separates man from God. Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6a; Romans 3:23; Isaiah 59:1-2.
Man was created to exist forever. After Death, one will either exist eternally united with God in Heaven or exist eternally separated from God in Hell. The gift of eternal life is offered to every individual. Heaven and Hell are places of eternal existence. John 3:16; 2:25; 5:11-13; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15; Matthew 18:8; Matthew 25:44, 46.
Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. Jesus was born of a virgin, lived a sinless human life, and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all men by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven’s glory and will return again to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Matthew 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5; John 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14-15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Romans 1:3-4; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Timothy 6:14-15; Titus 2:13.
Salvation is a gift from God to man. Man can never make up for his sin by self-improvement or good works. Only by trusting Jesus Christ as God’s offer of forgiveness can man be saved from sin’s penalty. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into his life by faith. Romans 5:1; 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 14:6, John 1:12; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26.
Because God gives man eternal life through Jesus Christ, the believer is secure in that salvation for eternity. Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self-effort of the Christian. It is the grace and keeping power of God that gives this security. John 10:28-29; Hebrews 7:25; Hebrews 10:10, 14; 1 Peter 1:3-5.
The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and Son as God. He is present in the world to make men aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. The Christian seeks daily to live under His control.
He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. He gives every believer gifts to be used in ministry to other Christians and to the world.
The Bible is God’s Word to all men. It is written by human authors, under supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is truth without any mixture of error. 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; 2 Timothy 1:13; Psalm 119:10-160, 12:6; Proverbs 30:5
It is the Pastor’s responsibility to lead the church and to equip the membership for ministry. Each member has the responsibility to discover and employ their gifts in the life of the church. Every Christian needs to discover and be faithful in their ministry for Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 12:7; Ephesians 4:11-13; Hebrews 13:17; 1 Peter 4:10-11.
PRAISE AND WORSHIP
The Christian exists to minister to the world, to other Christians, and especially to God through praise and worship. We exist for the praise of His glory. Worship is celebrative, reflective and inspirational. Psalm 100; Ephesians 1:12; Psalm 63:3-4; Psalm 150; Psalm 126:2-3.
Beliefs are not worth much unless they are translated into actions. Based on what the Bible teaches, we feel very strongly about the following seven practices:
BIBLE AS OUR SOLE AUTHORITY
“The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and make us realize what is wrong in our lives; it straightens us out and helps us to do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:15
Since God’s Word is the only completely reliable and truthful authority, we accept the Bible as our manual for living. Our first question when faced with a decision is “what does the Bible say?” We practice daily Bible reading, Bible study and Bible memorization. The Bible is the basis for all we believe.
AUTONOMY OF EACH LOCAL CHURCH
“Christ is the head of His Body, the church. He is the source of the Body’s life…” Colossians 1:18 (GN)
Christ is the recognized head of our church, not any person, group, or religious organization. While recognizing the value of associating and cooperating with other groups of Christians, we believe every local church should be self-governing and independent from any denominational control.
PRIESTHOOD OF EVERY BELIEVER
“Christ loves us, and by His death He has freed us from our sins and made us a kingdom of priests to serve God…” Revelation 1:6 (GN)
“You are…the King’s priests…God’s own people, chosen to proclaim the wonderful acts of God.’ 1 Peter 2:9 (GN)
The Bible teaches that every Christian is called to “full time” Christian service, regardless of his or her vocation. We practice the truth that every believer is a minister by encouraging every member to find a place of service and ministry. Every believer has direct access to God through prayer and Bible reading.
“Honor the Lord from your wealth, and from the first of all your produce; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10
“A tithe of everything you produce belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.” Leviticus 26:30
“Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7
“For when you were baptized, you were buried with Christ, and in baptism you were also raised with Christ…” Colossians 2:12 (GN)
We practice baptism by immersion under water, the way Jesus was baptized, and the way the Bible commands.
(Jesus said) “I am the Vine, you are the branches. If you abide in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; but apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5
We believe the only way possible to live the Christian life is by God’s power within us. So we seek to practice a daily dependence on God’s Spirit to enable us to do what is right. Philippians 2:13; Ephesians 5:18
TELLING OTHERS ABOUT CHRIST
“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks to give the reason for the hope that you have.” 1 Peter 3:15