Our Map: The Bible
The Bible is the foundation of our belief, informing us of all we strive to be and do. We believe that both the Old and New Testament are inspired by God and without errors in the original manuscripts. We believe that all the Scriptures center about the Lord Jesus Christ in His person and work in His first and second coming, and hence that no portion, even of the Old Testament, is properly read, or understood, until it leads to Him. We also believe that all the Scriptures were designed for our practical instruction (Luke 24:27,44; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21).
The Human Condition
We believe that mankind was originally created in the image and after the likeness of God, and that we fell through sin, and, as a consequence of our sin, lost our spiritual life, becoming dead in trespasses and sins, and that we became subject to the power of the devil. We also believe that this spiritual death has been transmitted to the entire human race, the Man Christ Jesus alone being excepted; and hence that every person is both bearer of God’s image while also born into the world with a nature which is essentially and unchangeably broken apart from divine grace (Gen. 1:26; 2:17; 6:5; Pss. 14:1–3; 51:5; Jer. 17:9; John 3:6; Rom. 3:10–19; 8:6–7; Eph. 2:1–3)
The Trinity: Our Everything
We believe that the Godhead eternally exists in three persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—and that these three are one God, having precisely the same nature, attributes, and perfections, and worthy of precisely the same adoration, confidence, and obedience. We believe all three Persons of the Trinity were involved in Creation and are directly involved in its Redemption. (Acts 5:3–4; 2 Cor. 13:14; Heb. 1:1–3; Rev. 1:4–6).
Jesus Our Hope
We believe that the eternal Son of God came into this world that He might manifest God to men, fulfill prophecy, and become the Redeemer of a lost world. To this end He was born of the virgin, and received a human body and a sinless human nature (Luke 1:30–35; John 1:18; 3:16; Heb. 4:15). We believe that no one can enter the kingdom of God unless through a personal and saving relationship with Jesus; and that no degree of reformation however great, no attainments in morality however high, no culture however attractive, no baptism or other ordinance however administered, can help the sinner to take even one step toward heaven; but a new nature imparted from above, a new life implanted by the Holy Spirit through the Word, is absolutely essential to salvation, and only those thus saved are sons of God. We believe, also, that our redemption has been accomplished solely by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, who was made to be sin and was made a curse for us, dying in our room and stead; and that no repentance, no feeling, no faith, no good resolutions, no sincere efforts, no submission to the rules and regulations of any church, nor all the churches that have existed since the days of the Apostles can add in the very least degree to the value of the blood, or to the merit of the finished work wrought for us by Him who united in His person true and proper deity with perfect and sinless humanity (Isa. 64:6; John 3:7–18; Rom. 5:6–9; 2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 3:13; 1 Pet. 1:18–19).
The Christian Journey
We believe that we are called with a holy calling, to walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit, and so to live in the power of the indwelling Spirit that we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh. But the flesh with its fallen nature, which in this life is never eradicated, being with us to the end of our earthly pilgrimage, needs to be kept by the Spirit constantly in subjection to Christ, or it will surely manifest its presence in our lives to the dishonor of our Lord (Rom. 6:11–13; 8:2, 4, 12–13; Gal. 5:16–23; Col. 2:1–10; 1 John 1:4–7; 3:5–9).
The church is the body of Christ. The members are those who, by faith, trust in the finished work of Jesus on the cross for their sins. The purpose of the church is to glorify God while making Him known to the world. (Acts 2:42-47; 1 Cor. 12:14-27; Eph. 1:22-23; 4:11; Col. 1:18; Heb. 10:25)
We believe that it is the explicit message of our Lord Jesus Christ to those whom He has saved that they are sent forth by Him into the world even as He was sent forth of His Father into the world. We believe that, after they are saved, they are divinely reckoned to be related to this world as strangers and pilgrims, ambassadors and witnesses, and that their primary purpose in life should be to make Christ known to the whole world (Matt. 28:18–19; Acts 1:8)
We believe we are called to be like Jesus in how we love God the Father, in how we walk by the Holy Spirit, and in how we love our neighbor. We are called both to proclaim and to incarnate Jesus’ message of repentance, love, and redemption. When invited to do so, we share the Message from a place of love and submission to the Father. When not invited, we still strive to love our neighbor as Jesus has loved us. We do not serve others conditionally. We tend to others’ hurts and pains, their relationships, their mental illness, not only as a means to proclaim the gospel, but also as issues that are dear to God’s heart and that have value in and of themselves.