Our Beliefs > Basic Doctrinal Beliefs
BIBLIOLOGY (The Doctrine of the Bible)
We believe God's revelation of Himself in creation is authority for His existence and judgment (Romans 1:19-20). The written revelation of God, the Holy Scriptures, has complete authority for faith (Romans 10:17) and practice (James 1:25; 2 Timothy 3:15-17), and is spoken of by God as having authority to accomplish His purpose (Matthew 5:17-18, Isaiah 55:11). Since Jesus Christ is God, the living Word, He is the source of authority (John 1:1-3). We accept only the 39 Old Testament books and 27 New Testament books as Scripture, rejecting any apocrypha or other writings as such.
We Believe that God has chosen to reveal Himself to man generally through nature (Romans 1:18-20) which demonstrates His presence and authorship (Psalms 19:1-6). He has revealed Himself through His written Word, the Holy Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:15-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21) which were given at different times and in various ways (Hebrews 1:1-2; 2 Peter 1:20-21), and recorded by holy men of God (Daniel 12:4; Revelation 1:11). He has also revealed Himself through His Son, Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:1-4; John 1:14-18).
We believe that the Bible was given by inspiration of God (2 Tim.3:16). We believe that God the Holy Spirit moved Holy men to record God’s Holy Word. (2 Pet. 1:21) When we speak of inspiration we must ask what did God “inspire” - words, thoughts, ideas? The whole tenor of the Bible speaks to the importance of words. (Ps. 12:6-7, Prov. 30:5, Matt. 4:4, Lk. 4:4)
God's Word cannot be understood without the illuminating work of God (Luke 24:45; 1 Corinthians 2:14). Illumination is the act of God imparting spiritual truth to the human understanding. This is primarily done by the Spirit of God (John 16:13; 1 Corinthians 2:10, 13).
We believe that God promised to preserve His holy Word. (Psalm 100:5), (Psalm 119:89), (Psalm 119:152), (Isaiah 40:8), (Matthew 24:35), (1 Peter 1:25) As with inspiration, the Bible is very clear that preservation extends to every word not merely the thoughts or ideas. (Luke 16:17), (1 Peter 1:23)
Often inerrancy is defined something like “without error” which is not the original usage of this word. Errancy and inerrancy came into the English language as technical terms in the science of astronomy where the terms still are current and used correctly to this day. Basically any star or planet that moves through the sky on a fixed and undeviating path is inerrant, while any unpredictable object such as a comet or shooting star is errant. These terms were also used in medieval writings and legend where we read of “knights errant.” These were not knights prone to make errors but rather “free lance” knights who wandered about, typically rescuing damsels and slaying dragons, as opposed to knights loyal to a lord or king who remained at his side and in his service. Historically, the Reformers and Puritans carefully selected and employed the concept of inerrancy to describe the Bible’s movement and transmission through time along a fixed and unchanged path by God’s preserving, providential care. This brings us to two intertwined truths: (1) the Bible is infallible, meaning it is without error, and (2) the Bible is inerrant, meaning it has been brought down to our time without turning aside or being corrupted.
“Higher critics” and modern revisers have endeavored to change the meaning of inerrancy and collapse it back into infallibility. This is because when they talk of an inerrant Bible, they are speaking only of the originals. Thus they deny that God has preserved His Word in current printed editions of the Bible. Therefore, when we speak of the Bible being inerrant, it is crucial that we carefully define what we mean.
CHRISTOLOGY (The Doctrine of Jesus Christ)
The Person of Christ
We believe Jesus Christ has from eternity been God (John 1:1-2; Micah 5:2; John 10:30; Isaiah 9:6-7; 1 Timothy 3:16). In His incarnation He took the form of man (John 1:14; Hebrews 1:6-9; 1 Timothy 3:16; Philippians 2:7), and was human in all aspects as we are, yet without sin (Hebrews 4:15). Therefore, He was fully man and fully God, the union of two natures in one person. His deity was never limited by His humanity; neither did He minister to His humanity out of His deity. Christ was tempted with sin (Luke 4) yet did no sin (Hebrews 4:15; 2 Corinthians 5:21). He was tempted in His humanity because God cannot be tempted with sin (James 1:13).
The Completed Work of Christ
We believe Christ's predetermined death on the cross (Acts 2:14) was the ransom (redemption) paid for the sinner which satisfied (propitiation) God's Holy demands (Titus 2:14; Colossians 2:14; Romans 3:25). He took the sinner's sin upon Himself and the sinner's place in judgment before God (Colossians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 5:21). His death is the basis for: Justification (Romans 3:24-25), no condemnation (Romans 8:1; John 3:16-18) and no penalty for sin (Romans 6:23).
In His death, provision was made for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2). Therefore reconciliation was provided for all. (2 Corinthians 5:15, 19). After Christ's death, He was raised from the dead, insuring the believer's own resurrection (Romans 1:4; 1 Corinthians 15:3-5, 12-23). Christ also created all things (Colossians 1:16; John 1:3).
The Present Work of Christ
We believe all mankind must come through Jesus Christ to be saved (John 14:6). Those who are saved through Him are presently indwelt by Him (2 Corinthians 11:10, 13:5; Ephesians 3:17). In the believer, He is the source of strength (Philippians 4:13) and the ground of our hope (Colossians 1:27).
He is our High Priest seated at the right hand of the Father (Hebrews 2:17-18, 4:15). As priest, He is our advocate and intercessor before the Father (1 John 2:1; Romans 8:34). He is in the process of building His Church (Matthew 16:18) and is its head in authority and example (Ephesians 1:22, 5:23). As head and example, He is the Great Shepherd (1 Peter 5:4; Luke 15:3-9) caring for and leading His sheep (John 10:1-16). He is presently sustaining His creation by His Word (Colossians 1:17) and is also preparing a place in Heaven for those who believe in Him (John 14:2-3).
The Future Work of Christ
We believe Christ will come and claim His bride, the Church, in what we call the Rapture of the Church which is separate and distinct from His second coming (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17). At that time, He will purify the Church by conforming believers to His image (1 John 3:2). All believers must appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ to receive the things done in the body, whether good or bad (2 Corinthians 5:10). In His second coming, He will judge unbelievers in battle (Revelation 19:11) and the gentiles (Matthew 25:31-32). He then will reign as king over the whole earth for a thousand years (Revelation 20:4). Finally, He will judge all unbelievers at the Great White Throne Judgment and cast them into the Lake of Fire (Hell) (Revelation 20:11-15; John 5:22).
PNEUMATOLOGY (The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit)
The Person of the Holy Spirit
We believe the Holy Spirit is one in essence with the Father and the Son and is not a power of God or an attribute, but God Himself. He is called God in Acts 5:3-4. He also possesses the attributes of God such as omnipresence (Psalms 139:7), truth (1 John 5:6) and omniscience (1 Corinthians 2:11-12). He is equated with God (Isaiah 6:1-13; Acts 28:25) and He proceeds from the Father as having His being and origin in Him (John 15:26).
The Holy Spirit is a person having emotion - He can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30). He has intellect (1 Corinthians 2:10-11) and has His own will (1 Corinthians 12:11).
The Work of the Holy Spirit in:
We believe that the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin. The Holy Spirit imparts new birth or regenerates the unsaved man at the time of salvation and gives him life (John 3:5-6; Titus 3:5). At the time of salvation the Holy Spirit baptizes the believer (1 Corinthians 12:13), placing him in the body of Christ and indwells him for he is the Spirit's temple (1 Corinthians 6:19). He is also the earnest and seal of the believer's salvation (2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 4:30).
We believe He is our Comforter, called alongside to help us (John 14:16, 26). He gives us continuous assurance of salvation by bearing witness with our spirit that we are saved (Romans 8:14-16). He intercedes for us when we don't know how to pray (Romans 8:26). He is our teacher, leading the believer into truth (John 14:26, 16:12-15; 1 John 2:27). He imparts spiritual gifts to the believer according to His will (1 Corinthians 12:11). Believers are to be filled with and walk in the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18; Galatians 5:16).
We believe The Holy Spirit gave creation order (Genesis 1:2) and gave it life and breath (Genesis 2:7). He was involved in creation's planning (Isaiah 40:12-13) and its beauty (Job 26:13). He sustains and replenishes the life therein (Acts 17:24-25; Psalms 104:24-30; Job 33:4).
ANTHROPOLOGY (The Doctrine of Man's Origin)
We believe that God created man in His own image (Genesis 1:26) from the dust of the earth and breathed into him the breath of life and he became alive (Genesis 2:7). God created man different from all creation making him a tricotomy of three parts: Body, soul and spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:23; Mark 12:30; Hebrews 4:12). God created woman as a help meet for the man in his work (Genesis 2:18) and gave them dominion over creation (Genesis 1:26, 28). Man was created without sin and with a free will to obey or disobey God's specific command (Genesis 2:16-17, 3:6, 11).
HAMARTIOLOGY (The Doctrine of Sin)
We believe Man's original sin was disobedience to the command of God not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17, 3:6). Sin brought shame and recognition of guilt (Genesis 3:10) and curses upon the man, woman and the earth (Genesis 3:15-19). Adam's sin brought consequences upon all men, spiritual death and physical death (Genesis 2:17; Ephesians 2:1; Romans 5:12-14), and an inherited sin nature (Romans 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:3). Man is also an individual sinner (Romans 3:9-12, 23, 5:12). Therefore man in his condition is unable to produce a righteousness that will give him merit in God's eyes (total depravity) (Romans 3:23; John 3:19). This does not mean man is as evil as he could be for he can get worse (Matthew 7:11).
SOTERIOLOGY (The Doctrine of Salvation)
We believe that the clear message of salvation is "repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts 20:21). We believe that salvation is "by grace" plus nothing minus nothing. We believe that men are justified by faith alone and are accounted righteous before God only through the merit of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-10; John 1:12; I Peter 1:18-19).
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved are kept by God's power and are thus secure in Christ forever. We believe that eternal life is the present possession of every believer (John 6:37-40, 10:27-30; Romans 8:1, 38-39; I Corinthians 1:4-8; I Peter 1:4-5; Jude 1, 2).
ANGELOLOGY (The Doctrine of Angels)
We believe that angels witnessed the creation of the earth (Job 38:4-7). They were created beings for God's glory (Revelation 4:1). They are said to be spirits (Hebrews 1:14) and differ in rank, power and form (Ephesians 6:12; Revelation 5:2, 10:1, 4:6-8). They are personal beings possessing intellect (1 Peter 1:12), feelings (Luke 2:13) and a will (Jude 6). They minister to believers (Hebrews 1:14), to nations (Daniel 12:1), to unbelievers (Acts 12:23) and before God's throne (Revelation 4). The unfallen angels are called elect, or holy angels (Matthew 25:31; 1 Timothy 5:21).
The fallen angels are those who followed Satan in his rebellion against God (Revelation 12:3-4) and are demons (Matthew 12:24). Satan's sin was that of pride (1 Timothy 3:6), wanting to be God (Isaiah 14:13-14). His fallen nature is everything contrary to God (John 8:44; Ephesians 6:12). Satan has been judged at the cross (John 12:3, 16:11), and will be cast into the lake of fire to be tormented forever (Revelation 20:10).
ECCLESIOLOGY (The Doctrine of the Church)
We believe that the local church, which is the body and the espoused bride of Christ, is solely made up of born-again persons. (I Corinthians 12:12-14; II Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 1:22-23; 5:25-27)
We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures. (Acts 14:27; 20:17, 28-32; I Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11)
We believe in the autonomy of the local church, free of any external authority or control. (Acts 13:1-4; 15:19-31; 20:28; Romans 16:1, 4; I Corinthians 3:9, 16; 5:4-7, 13; I Peter 5:1-4)
We recognize water baptism and the Lord’s Supper as the Scriptural ordinances of obedience for the church in this age. (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42; 18:18; I Corinthians 11:23-26)
ESCHATOLOGY (The Doctrine of Future Things)
We believe God has a plan for national Israel in the future. Their purification will take place during the time of Jacob's trouble, or the Great Tribulation (Daniel 12:1; Zechariah 13:8-9, 14:1-3) followed by national salvation (Zechariah 12:9-13; Daniel 12:1-3; Matthew 24:29-31; Romans 11:26). After their national salvation, Israel will enjoy an earthly kingdom with Christ as their King (Psalm 2; Isaiah 9:6-7, 11:1-10; Ezekiel 34:11-31).
We believe the time of Jacob's trouble, the seventieth week of Daniel, or the Great Tribulation, is a period of seven years divided into two parts of three and one half years each (Daniel 9:27, 12:7; Revelation 12:6,14). This period follows the rapture of the Church and begins with the revealing of the man of sin, (2 Thessalonians 2:3-6) making peace with Israel (Daniel 9:27). The middle of the tribulation is marked out with the Man of Sin defiling God's temple (Daniel 9:27; Matthew 24:15). The Man of Sin has Satan as his head (Revelation 13:4), exalts himself as God (2 Thessalonians 2:4) and causes no one to buy or sell save they have his mark, the number of his name (Revelation 13:16-18). This is also a period of Divine wrath which will be poured out upon the earth (Revelation 6, 8-9, 16-19). It ends with the second coming of Christ in battle and the setting up of His kingdom (Matthew 24:29-30; Revelation 19:11-21).
At the end of the tribulation the Old Testament saints and the tribulation saints will be resurrected (Daniel 12:13) and reign with Christ 1,000 years in His kingdom (Revelation 20:4-8).
We believe following the tribulation, the beast and the false prophet are cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 19:20) and Satan is bound for one thousand years (Revelation 20:1-3). Christ will literally reign on earth for one thousand years (Isaiah 9:6-7; Ezekiel 34:11; Revelation 20:4), from a literal Jerusalem (Ezekiel 44:1-4; Isaiah 9:7). During the millennium, the creation will be restored to its original order (Isaiah 11:1-10, 65:18-25; Ezekiel 47:10-12). At the end of the millennium, Satan will be loosed for a short season to deceive the nations and bring them against Christ (Revelation 20:7-9). Fire comes down from heaven and devours them and the Devil is cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:8, 10). Then the final judgment of the unsaved, called the Great White Throne Judgment takes place (Revelation 20:11-15). The unsaved of all time are judged according to their works, "and whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire" (Revelation 20:15) where they are tormented forever (Isaiah 66:24; Revelation 20:10).
We believe God will create a new heaven and a new earth (Revelation 21:1; Isaiah 66:22), the old being destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:10, 12). The believer will be saved from sin's presence (2 peter 3:13; Revelation 21:27) where they shall consciously enjoy God and serve Him forever (Revelation 21:1-4).