Confession of Faith
The Bible, as the Word of God, is the final and only authority in all matters of faith and practice. The Revised New Hampshire Confession of Faith, including the premilliennial and other revisions, has been adopted as expressive of our faith. That complete and referenced confession is included in our Church Constitution and is available to all members. Below is a summary overview of our doctrinal beliefs and practices.
1. The Scriptures. We believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God; written by holy men who were born along by the Spirit of God. Consequently, the Bible is both inspired and inerrant in all of its parts. It is the supreme standard by which we should live and by which we will be judged. It is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness and is our rule of faith and practice.
2. The One True God. We believe that there is one, and only one, living and true God, Who is eternal in His existence, glorious in His holiness and worthy of our praise. In the perfect unity of the Godhead, there are three distinct persons; the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, equal in every divine perfection while performing distinct and harmonious offices within the work of Redemption
· Jesus Christ is the pre-existent Son of God, coequal with God the Father. In His role as the "Word" He is the Creator. He is the virgin born Son of God, Who humbled Himself and took upon Himself human flesh in order to die for the sins of the world as the sinless Lamb. Jesus was simultaneously perfectly God and perfectly man.
· The Holy Spirit is coequal with God the Father and God the Son and His function is to convict of sin and of righteousness and judgment; and to regenerate, empower, guide and teach the believer.
3. The Sinfulness of Mankind. We believe that man was created in holiness, in God's image, but in a voluntary act of rebellion and disobedience against God, fell into sin. The consequence of that fall is that all of mankind are now sinners by nature and choice. In that sinful state, mankind is incapable of pleasing God or meeting the demand for holiness and is condemned to an eternity separated from God.
4. The Way of Salvation. We believe that individual sinners can be saved by God's free gift of grace, through faith in the substitutionary blood atonement of Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary; and that having risen from the dead He has become the only mediator between God and man that can be the adequate propitiation and Savior.
· Justification. The declaration of God upon those who believe that they are righteous through Christ, though they are guilty. The righteousness and pardon for sin that is imputed to the believer is not on the basis of works, but by grace through faith.
· Freeness of Salvation. The blessings of salvation are available to all and it is the duty of man to believe and accept the Gospel.
· Regeneration. The power of the Holy Spirit brings about, in a fashion above our comprehension, an enlivening of our minds in order that we can respond in a voluntary way to the Gospel in faith and repentance and be born again.
· Repentance and faith. Being deeply convicted of our guilt, sinfulness and helplessness by a work of God's grace in our heart, we turn from our sin and in faith, accept Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior.
· Sanctification. Initially, at regeneration, we are separated from the world and called to be children of God. Progressively, the Holy Spirit brings about continual change as we conform more perfectly to the image of Christ. Eventually we will be free from the presence of sin and will be glorified in the presence of God.
· Perseverance of the Saints. True believers in Jesus Christ are kept by the power of God and will endure in that faith to the end. They are eternally secure and are distinguished from those who are simply "professors."
5. The Church. We believe that a visible church is a body of immersed believers who have entered into covenant relationship for the cause of the Gospel, the edification of the saints, the observance of the ordinances and the exercise of the Great Commission. Its only scriptural offices are pastors and deacons.
6. The Ordinances. We believe in baptism by immersion following salvation as an expression of obedience and identification with the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord and that it is a prerequisite for church membership. We further believe in the Lord's Supper as a regular memorial of the Lord's death on Calvary.
7. The Righteous and the Wicked. We believe that there is a radical difference between the redeemed and the lost. The lifestyle of the redeemed should, of necessity, be radically different from those who are rebels against God and condemned to a destiny apart from Him.
8. Satan and Angelic Beings. We believe Lucifer, the archangel, rebelled against God, becoming Satan, and was cast out of heaven with a host of angels who rebelled with him. Those fallen angels have become his demons and are active as Satan's agents to oppose God and believers. Satan presently rules as the "god of this age." He will eventually be chained during the millennial reign of Christ, will be loosed for a while and then cast into the Lake of Fire. There are a vast multitude of angels who did not leave their first estate who are before the throne of God and are ministering spirits.
9. The Rapture and Return of Christ. We believe in the personal, imminent, premillennial coming of Christ for His church, followed by the great tribulation, after which Christ will return with His saints to rule and reign on the earth for a thousand years. Following the millennial reign, will be the Great White Throne judgment of the damned, which will initiate the confirmed eternal state of the redeemed and the lost.
10. Practical Theology.
- The Sacredness of Life. Since we believe that God is the giver and taker of life; that we are created in God's image; that life begins at conception; and that all life is sacred and to be protected; we, therefore, are opposed to abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.
- The Definition of Marriage. Since we believe that God's plan for marriage is exclusively heterosexual (between one man and one woman), and that His judgment is upon those who practice a deviant sexual lifestyle; we, therefore, are opposed to the "gay rights" movement and homosexual or lesbian marriages. We reserve the right to restrict those whom we enjoin or retain into Church membership or employ or utilize in areas of ministry to those who are consistent with these beliefs.