October 2017  
SMTWTFS
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    
     
Bible Search
Our BELIEFS

We endorse the Baptist Faith And Message of 2000 (listed below). 

In the areas where we believe it to be too generic, as opposed to the clear testimony of Scripture, we uphold the following doctrines:

Below is a brief, partial summary of the Baptist Faith and Message of 2000.

The full text on the issue discussed is also available.

 

The Scriptures
The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God's revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter.

God
There is one and only one living and true God. …The eternal God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

God the Father
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. …God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ.

God the Son
Christ is the eternal Son of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. …He honored the divine law by His personal obedience, and in His death on the cross, He made provision for the redemption of men from sin.

God the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God. …He exalts Christ. He convicts of sin, of righteousness and of judgment. …He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.

Man
Man was created by the special act of God, in His own image, and is the crowning work of His creation. …By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. … The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore every man possesses dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.

Salvation
Salvation involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, sanctification, and glorification.

God's Purpose of Grace
Election is the gracious purpose of God, according to which He regenerates, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. …All true believers endure to the end. Those whom God has accepted in Christ, and sanctified by His Spirit will never fall away from the state of grace, but shall persevere to the end.

The Church
A New Testament church of the Lord Jesus Christ is a local body of baptized believers who are associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel…and seeking to extend the gospel to the ends of the earth. …This church is an autonomous body. …The New Testament speaks also of the church as the body of Christ, which includes all of the redeemed of all the ages.

Baptism & the Lord's Supper
Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water. …It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer's faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, the believer's death to sin, the burial of the life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus.

The Lord's Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby members … memorialize the death of the Redeemer and anticipate His second coming.

The Lord's Day
The first day of the week is the Lord's Day. …It commemorates the resurrection of Christ from the dead and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion.

Last Things
God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. …Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly…the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to Hell. …The righteous… will receive their reward and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.

Evangelism & Missions
It is the duty and privilege of every follower of Christ and every church of the Lord Jesus Christ to endeavor to make disciples of all nations … to seek constantly to win the lost to Christ by personal effort.

Education
The cause of education in the Kingdom of Christ is co-ordinate with the causes of missions and general benevolence … there should be a proper balance between academic freedom and academic responsibility. …The freedom of a teacher in a Christian school, college, or seminary is limited by the pre-eminence of Jesus Christ, by the authoritative nature of the Scriptures, and by the distinct purpose for which the school exists.

Stewardship
God is the source of all blessings, temporal and spiritual; all that we have and are we owe to Him. Christians have a spiritual debtorship to the whole world, a holy trusteeship in the gospel, and a binding stewardship in their possessions. They are therefore under obligation to serve Him with their time, talents, and material possessions.

Cooperation
Christ's people should … organize such associations and conventions as may best secure cooperation for the great objects of the Kingdom of God. Such organizations have no authority over one another or over the churches. …Cooperation is desirable between the various Christian denominations.

The Christian & the Social Order
Every Christian is under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in his own life and in human society. ... The Christian should oppose in the spirit of Christ every form of greed, selfishness, and vice.

Religious Liberty
Church and state should be separate. The state owes to every church protection and full freedom in the pursuit of its spiritual ends. …A free church in a free state is the Christian ideal.

Family
God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. …Marriage is the unity of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. …The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God's image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. …Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord.

  

More specifically / precisely  . . .

GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT

 We believe that the Holy Spirit alone administers spiritual gifts to the Church (I Corinthians 12:11), not to glorify Himself or the gifts by ostentatious displays, but to glorify Christ (John 16:14) and implement His work of redeeming the lost (Acts 1:8) and building up believers in the most holy faith (II Corinthians 3:18).  We teach, in this  respect, that God the Holy Spirit is sovereign in the bestowing of all His gifts (I Corinthians 12:11) for the perfecting of the saints today (I Corinthians 14:12). We teach that the confirming sign gifts (speaking in tongues {intelligible languages}, nterpretation, healing, and working of sign miracles) were evangelistic gifts in the beginning days of the Church for the purpose of confirming the Gospel message (I Corinthians 14:22a; II Corinthians 12:12; Hebrews 2:3-4), and were not intended by God to be part of normative church worship and service.

 THE CHURCH

 We believe that all who place their faith in Jesus Christ are immediately baptized by the Holy Spirit into one united spiritual Body, the Church (I Corinthians 12:12-13), of which Christ is the Head (Ephesians 1:22; 4:15; Colossians 1:18), and which is His espoused Bride (II Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:23-32; Revelation 19:7-8). We teach that the formation of this Body began on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-21, 38-47) and will be completed at the coming of Christ for His own at the Rapture (I Corinthians 15:51-52; I Thessalonians 4:13-18).  We teach that the Church, then, is a unique spiritual organism designed by Christ (Matthew 16:18), made up of all born-again believers in this present age (Ephesians 2:11-3:6). The Church is distinct from Israel (I Corinthians 10:32), a mystery not revealed until this age (Ephesians 3:3-6, 9-10; 5:32).  We teach that the establishment and continuity of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures (Acts 14:21-23, 27; 20:17, 28; Galatians 1:2; Philippians 1:1; I Thessalonians 1:1; II Thessalonians 1:1), and that the members of this one spiritual Body are directed to associate themselves together in local assemblies (I Corinthians 11:18-20; Hebrews 10:25).  We teach that the one, supreme authority for the Church is Christ  Ephesians 1:22; Colossians 1:18), and that the order, discipline, and worship are appointed through His sovereignty. The biblically designated officers serving under Christ and over the assembly are elders (also called bishops, pastors, and pastor-teachers; Acts 20:28; Ephesians 4:11) and deacons, both of who must fit biblical qualifications (I Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9; I Peter 5:1-5).  We teach that these leaders lead as servants of Christ (I Timothy 5:17-22) in the most of the day-to-day affairs of the church with the congregation participating in the major decision making.  We teach the disciplining of sinning members of the congregation in accord with the standards of I Corinthians 5:1-13; II Thessalonians 3:6-15; I Timothy 1:19-20; Titus 1:10-16.  We teach the autonomy of the local church, free from any external authority or control, with the right of self-government and freedom from the interference of any hierarchy of individuals or organizations. We teach that it is scriptural for true churches to cooperate with each other for the presentation and propagation of the faith.  However, each local church through its elders and their interpretation and application of Scripture is the sole judge of the  measure and method of its cooperation as on all matters of membership, policy, discipline, benevolence, and government (Acts 15:19-31, 20:28; I Corinthians 5:4-7, 13; Titus 1:5; I Peter 5:1-4).  We teach that the purpose of the Church is to glorify God (Ephesians 3:21) by building itself up in the faith (Ephesians 4:13-16), by instruction of the Word (II Timothy 2:2, 15; 3:16-17), byfellowship (Acts 2:42; I John 1:3), by keeping the ordinances (Luke 22:19; Acts 2:38-42), and by advancing and communicating the Gospel to the entire world (Matthew 28:19; Acts 1:8).  We teach the calling of all saints to the work of the ministry (I Corinthians 15:58; Ephesians 4:12).  We teach the accomplishment of God’s purpose in the world. For the accomplishment of that purpose He has given the Church spiritual gifts.  First, He gives gifted men for the purpose of equipping the saints for the work of ministry (Ephesians 4:7-12). He also gives unique and special abilities to each member of the Body of Christ (Romans 12:5-8; I Corinthians 12:4-31; I Peter 4:10-11). At the moment of spiritual birth every believer receives such a gift or gifts.  These gifts are sovereignly bestowed and cannot be sought (I Corinthians 12:11). It is essential that every believer discover, develop and employ his or her spiritual gift or gifts for the edification of the Body and the accomplishment of the work of Christ in the world (Romans 12:3-8; I Peter 4:10-11).

SPIRITUAL GIFTS

 We teach that there were two kinds of gifts given to the early church: temporary confirming gifts and permanent edifying gifts. We teach that the temporary confirming gifts—healing, speaking in tongues (intelligible languages), interpretation and the working of ign miracles—were given temporarily in the apostolic era for the purpose of confirming the authenticity of the apostles’ message but gradually ceased as normative church practice as the New Testament Scriptures were completed and their authority became established (compare Acts 19:11-12; I Corinthians 13:8-10; II Corinthians 12:12; Hebrews 2:3-4).

GIFT OF HEALING:

We teach that no one possesses the gift of healing today but that God does supernaturally heal and answer the prayer of faith on the part of every believer (Luke 18:1-6; James  5:16b) and will answer in accordance with His own perfect will (I John 5:14-15) for the sick, suffering and afflicted (John 5:5-9; II Corinthians 12:6-10; James 5:13-15).

PRIVATE PRAYER LANGUAGES

We teach that private or personal prayer languages are a misunderstanding of the meaning of I Corinthians 13:1 (“tongues of angels”) and that such private prayer languages have no basis in Scripture. We teach that these private prayer languages are not a fulfillment of Romans 8:26 (“groanings too deep to be uttered”). We teach that based on Matthew 6:7, prayer should be intelligible and coherent conversation with God.

 LAST THINGS (ESCHATOLOGY)

THE RAPTURE OF THE CHURCH

We teach the personal, bodily return of the Lord Jesus Christ before the seven-year tribulation (Acts 1:11; I Thessalonians 4:16; Titus 2:13) to remove His Church from this earth (John 14:1-3; I Corinthians 15:51-53; I Thessalonians 4:16-17), and to reward believers according to their works (I Corinthians 3:11-15; II Corinthians 5:10), with sufficient time elapsing between this event and His glorious return with His Church to allow for the judgment of believers’ works. 

THE TRIBULATION PERIOD

We teach that immediately following the removal of the Church from the earth (John 14:1-3; I Thessalonians 4:16-17), there will be a time of great tribulation (Jeremiah 30:7; Daniel 9:27; 12:1; Matthew 24:21) during which the righteous judgments of God will be poured out (Revelation 16:1-21) upon an unbelieving world (II Thessalonians 2:7-12). These judgments will be climaxed by the return of Christ in glory to the earth (Matthew 24:15-31), at which time the Old Testament and Tribulation saints will be raised and the living will be judged (Daniel 12:2; Revelation 6:9-11, 20:4-6).

THE SECOND COMING AND THE MILLENNIAL REIGN

We teach that after the tribulation period Christ will come to earth to occupy the throne of David (Matthew 25:31; Luke 1:31-33; Acts 2:29-30) and establish His Messianic