Creation – We believe that the physical universe, the realm of nature, is the visible creation of God. It declares God’s existence and gives a trustworthy revelation of God’s character and purpose. In Scripture, God declares that through His creation all humanity recognizes His existence, power, glory, and wisdom. An honest study of nature – its physical, biological, and social aspects – can prove useful in a person’s search for truth. Properly understood, God’s Word (Scripture) and God’s world (nature), as two revelations (one verbal, one physical) from the same God, will never contradict each other
Scripture – We believe the Bible (the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) is the Word of God, written. As a “God-breathed” revelation, it is thus verbally inspired and completely without error (historically, scientifically, morally, and spiritually) in its original writings. While God the Holy Spirit supernaturally superintended the writing of the Bible, that writing nevertheless reflects the words and literary styles of its individual human authors. Scripture reveals the being, nature, and character of God, the nature of God’s creation, and especially His will for the salvation of human beings through Jesus Christ. The Bible is therefore our supreme and final authority in all matters that it addresses.
God – We believe in one infinitely perfect, eternal and personal God, the transcendent Creator and sovereign Sustainer of the universe. This one God is Triune, existing eternally and simultaneously as three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. All three persons in the Godhead share equally and completely the one divine nature, and are therefore the same God, coequal in power, nature, and glory.
Person of Christ – We believe that Jesus Christ is both true God (the second Person of the Trinity) and true man (the Incarnate Son of God). We also believe in the great events surrounding Jesus Christ’s life and ministry, including: His eternal preexistence, His virgin birth, His attesting miracles, His sinless life, His sacrificial death on the cross, His glorious bodily resurrection from the dead, His ascension into heaven, and His present work in heaven as High Priest and Advocate. He will return in glory to resurrect and judge all mankind.
Person of the Holy Spirit – We believe that the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Trinity, is indeed a Divine Person, coequal with the Father and the Son. We also believe in the ministry of the Holy Spirit in salvation, a ministry which includes anointing and glorifying Christ, convicting men of their sin, bringing about the regeneration of lost sinners, and indwelling believers and empowering them for godly living and spiritual service.
Mankind – We believe God created mankind in His image and likeness (having rational, moral, relational, and spiritual capacities) to fellowship with Him and give Him glory. Human beings are therefore the crown of God’s creation (possessing inherent dignity and moral worth), and thus distinct in kind from all other life on earth. Adam and Eve, the first human beings, chose to rebel against God and go their own autonomous way. As a result, all of mankind became separated from God, the image of God in man distorted, and the sinful nature passed on to all their progeny. Because of original sin (which includes both corruption and guilt), unregenerate human beings are incapable of pleasing or commending themselves to God. The only remedy for mankind’s pitiful predicament is redemption through faith in Jesus Christ.
Redemption – We believe God has acted sovereignly to bridge the gap that separates people from Himself. He sent His Son, born of a virgin, attested by miracles and by a sinless life, to bear the full penalty for humanity’s sin. Jesus Christ suffered and died in the place of sinners, thus satisfying the Father’s just wrath against human sin, and effecting true reconciliation between God and mankind for those who believe. In the atoning death of Christ, both God’s love and God’s justice are fully manifested. The righteousness of Jesus Christ in perfectly fulfilling the law of God has been graciously credited to all believers. Redemption is solely a work of God’s grace, received exclusively through faith in Jesus Christ, and never by works of human merit.
Justification – We believe justification is a judicial act of God’s grace wherein He acquits a person of all sin and accepts that person as righteous in His sight because of the imputed righteousness of Christ. Justification is strictly a work of God’s grace, apprehended through faith alone, and solely on the account of Christ.
Resurrection – We believe Jesus Christ rose bodily from the dead, conquering sin, death, and all the powers of Satan. The resurrection is God’s historical affirmation and vindication of Jesus Christ’s unique identity, mission, and message. Historical evidence of the resurrection is manifest in Christ’s empty tomb, His many resurrection appearances, and in the emergence of the Christian church. Jesus Christ now resides at the right hand of the Father, and lives to indwell all who recognize their sinfulness, who repent, and who turn their lives over to His authority.
The Church – We believe the church is the spiritual body of Jesus Christ (its Founder, Head, and Shepherd) and that it encompasses all true believers at all times and places. The function of the church is to carry out the Lord’s expressed will through the power of the Holy Spirit. One of the central purposes of the church is to preach the Gospel (in both word and life), the good news that humankind can find salvation from sin through faith in Jesus Christ. All people who have placed their faith (confident trust) in Jesus Christ for salvation belong to the church and are, thus, the people of God. This community of believers is made up of people who are neither perfect nor sinless, but by grace their lives are coming more and more under the control of the Holy Spirit, expressing His love, joy, peace, and other Christ-like qualities.
Future Things – We believe the Lord Jesus Christ will return to this earth, personally, bodily, and visibly to establish his glorious reign in a kingdom that will never end. As the sovereign Lord, He will resurrect and judge all humanity. Those who have received His offer of life through the Gospel will go to eternal blessings in heaven; those who have rejected it, to eternal conscious torment in hell. We look forward to the blessed hope, Christ’s Second Coming in glory. Revelation 21
The Great Commission – We believe Jesus Christ is the only way to salvation. And since Christ has commissioned His people, the church, to go into all the world to disciple, to baptize, and to teach everyone everywhere to obey His Word, we desire, by His grace, to play our part in reaching the world with the Gospel of Christ.
General Rule of Hermeneutics
|1 Cor 2:14
|You must have a personal relationship with Christ
|2 Tim 3:16-17
|Accept the Bible as the authoritative Word of God
|Pray for and accept the Holy Spirit’s instruction in understanding Scripture
|2 Tim 2:15
|Read the Bible from the beginning to end. Organize and summarize what
you want to study
|2 Tim 2:7
|Read the Bible in a natural way as any book, believing that God says what
He means and means what He says
|Keep Christ at the center of the biblical message
dictionary – an
|You can prove anything by isolating verses. Maintain the integrity of the
text by considering its meaning in context. (adjective – the parts of a
discourse that surround a word or passage and can throw light on its
|The bible was written to be understood by anyone who comes earnestly to
learn from its message.
|Only the Holy Spirit can ultimately give understanding of Scripture
Inerrancy of The Bible
- We affirm that the Holy Scriptures are to be received as the authoritative Word of God. We deny that the Scriptures receive their authority from the Church, tradition, or any other human source.
- We affirm that the Scriptures are the supreme written norm by which God binds the conscience, and that the authority of the Church is subordinate to that of scripture. We deny that church creeds, councils, or declarations have authority greater than or equal to the authority of the Bible.
- We affirm that the written Word in its entirety is revelation given by God. We deny that the Bible is merely a witness to revelation, or only becomes revelation in encounter, or depends on the responses of men for its validity.
- We affirm that God who made mankind in His image has used language as a means of revelation. We deny that human language is so limited by our creatureliness that it is rendered inadequate as a vehicle for divine revelation. We further deny that the corruption of human culture and language through sin has thwarted God’s work of inspiration.
- We affirm God’s revelation in the Holy Scriptures. We deny that later revelation, which may fulfill earlier revelation, ever corrects or contradicts it. We further deny that any normative revelation has been given since the completion of the New Testament writings.
- We affirm that the whole of Scripture and all its parts, down to the very words of the original, were given by divine inspiration. We deny that the inspiration of scripture can rightly be affirmed of the whole without the parts, or of some parts but not the whole.
- We affirm that inspiration was the work in which God by His Spirit, through human writers, gave us His Word. The origin of Scripture is divine. We deny that inspiration can be reduced to human insight, or to heightened states of consciousness of any kind.
- We affirm that God in His work of inspiration utilized the distinctive personalities and literary styles of the writers whom He had chosen and prepared. We deny that God, in causing these writers to use the very words that He chose, overrode their personalities.
- We affirm that inspiration, though not conferring omniscience, guaranteed true and trustworthy utterance on all matters of which the Biblical authors were moved to speak and write. We deny that the finitude or falseness of these writers, by necessity or otherwise, introduced distortion or falsehood into God’s Word.
- We affirm that a confession of the full authority, infallibility and inerrancy of Scripture is vital to a sound understanding of the whole of the Christian faith. We further affirm that such confession should lead to increasing conformity to the image of Christ.
- We affirm the unity and internal consistency of Scripture. We deny that alleged errors and discrepancies that have not yet been resolved violate the truth claims of the Bible.
- We affirm that inspiration, strictly speaking, applies only to the autographic text of Scripture, which in the providence of God can be ascertained from available manuscripts with great accuracy. We further affirm that copies and translations of Scripture are the Word of God to the extent that they faithfully represent the original. We deny that any essential element of the Christian faith is affected by the absence of the autographs. We further deny that this absence renders the assertion of Biblical inerrancy invalid or irrelevant.
- We affirm that Scripture, having been given by divine inspiration, is infallible, so that, far from misleading us, it is true and reliable in all the matters it addresses. We deny that it is possible for the Bible to be at the same time infallible and errant in its assertions. Infallibility and inerrancy may be distinguished but not separated.
- We affirm that Scripture in its entirety is inerrant, being free from all falsehood, fraud, or deceit. We deny that Biblical infallibility and inerrancy are limited to spiritual, religious, or redemptive themes, exclusive of assertions in the fields of history and science. We further deny that scientific hypotheses about earth history may properly be used to overturn the teaching of Scripture on creation and the flood.
- We affirm the propriety of using inerrancy as a theological term with reference to the complete truthfulness of Scripture. We deny that it is proper to evaluate Scripture according to standards of truth and error that are alien to its usage or purpose. We further deny that inerrancy is negated by Biblical phenomena such as a lack of modern technical precision, irregularities of grammar or spelling, observational descriptions of nature, the reporting of falsehoods, the use of hyperbole and round numbers, the topical arrangement of material, variant selections of material in parallel accounts, or the use of free citations.
- We affirm that the doctrine of inerrancy is grounded in the teaching of the Bible about inspiration. We deny that Jesus’ teaching about Scripture may be dismissed by appeals to accommodation or to any natural limitation of His humanity
- We affirm that the doctrine of inerrancy has been integral to the Christian faith throughout its history. We deny that inerrancy is a doctrine invented by scholastic men, or is a reactionary position postulated in response to negative higher criticism.
- We affirm that the Holy Spirit bears witness to the Scriptures, assuring believers of the truthfulness of God’s written Word. We deny that this witness of the Holy Spirit operates in isolation from or against Scripture
- We affirm that the text of Scripture is to be interpreted by taking account of its literary forms and devices, and that Scripture is to interpret Scripture. We deny the legitimacy of any treatment of the text or quest for sources lying behind it that leads to relativizing, de-historicizing, or discounting its teaching, or rejecting its claims of authorship.
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