A Biblical Doctrinal Statement

* There is only one God who manifests Himself in three co-equal persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

* The Word of God in the original manuscripts of the 66 books of the Bible, is without error and infallible truth to mankind.

* Because all men are sinners and have broken God's commandments they are alienated from God and are unable to restore a relationship with Him.

* Jesus Christ, God in human flesh, was divinely conceived by the Holy Spirit, was born of the virgin Mary, and lived a perfect, sinless life.

* Jesus Christ died a substitutionary death for sinners and was bodily resurrected from the dead to provide salvation.

* Those who by grace believe in Jesus Christ as personal Savior receive forgiveness of sins, a relationship with God and eternal life.

* Every believer is responsible by the power of the Holy Spirit to live a holy life according to the Scripture.

* There is a future, personal, bodily return of Jesus Christ who will set up His kingdom.

* A literal blissful heaven is the inheritance of all believers, and a literal hell is the horrible future for all unbelievers.

Further Explanation

THE DOCTRINE OF GOD

God is Spirit, infinite, eternal and unchangeable in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness and truth (1 Tim.6:15-16; Jas.1:17; Rev.4:11; 5:12; Jn.4:24; Acts 17:28,31; Ps.90:2; Ps.139; 1 Jn.1:5; Eph.2:4-5).

There are three persons in the Godhead: The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one God, the same in essence, equal in eternal character, perfections and glory (Jn.6:27; 1 Cor.8:6; Jn.1:1,18; 5:15-18; Heb.1:3,8; Acts 5:3-4; 2 Cor.13:14; Mt.28:19; Rom.8:9).

The decrees of God are His eternal purpose according to the counsel of His will, whereby, for His own glory he has foreordained whatsoever comes to pass (Eph.1:11; 3:11; Is.46:10-11).

THE HOLY SCRIPTURES

"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Tim.3:16), by which we understand that holy men of God "were moved by the Holy Spirit" to write the very words of Scripture (2 Pet.1:21). This divine inspiration extends equally and fully to all parts of the sixty-six books of the Bible as it appeared without error in the original manuscripts (Jn.10:35; Mt.5:18). God's revelation is completed in the sixty-six books of the Bible; and, therefore, there is no new revelation (Eph.2:20; 3:5; Heb.1:1-2).

CREATION

God, according to His sovereign will and for His own glory, in the beginning brought forth the whole visible and invisible universe without the use of pre-existent material and evolutionary processes and thus gave it an existence distinct from Him, yet always dependent on Him and predestined by Him according to the counsel of His own will (Gen.1 & 2; Acts 17:24-28; Eph.1:11; Col.1:15-17; Heb.1:1-3).

ANGELS, SATAN AND DEMONS

God originally created angels holy, but now they exist as unfallen or fallen spiritual beings. The unfallen angels are used by God as messengers and ministers of His plan for the world. Satan and demons exist as personal beings and fallen angelic creatures who are the declared enemies of God and adversaries of the household of the Faith (Col.1:16; Job 38:6-7; Jude 6; Rev.12:9; Heb.1:14; Rev.8,9,16; Job 1:6-12; Isa.14:12-17; Ezk.28:11-19; Mt.4:2-11; 12:43-45; 2 Cor.4:4; 11:14-15; Rev.20:1-10; Eph.6:10-12).

THE FALL AND MAN'S TOTAL DEPRAVITY

Man was originally created in the image and likeness of God; yet Adam being the head and root of all mankind sinned in the Garden of Eden and he lost his original righteousness and communion with God (Gen.1-3), resulting in spiritual deadness in trespasses and sins. This original guilt and corrupt nature has been transmitted to the entire human race, Christ Jesus alone being the only exception. Everyone that is born into the world has all the faculties of his nature corrupted by original sin, including his body, mind, heart and will.

All mankind is dead, blind and deaf to the spiritual understanding of the things of God; his heart is desperately corrupt; his understanding darkened; and his will is in bondage to his sinful nature. Therefore, although man is responsible to do so, the unregenerate man does not want, and indeed he is not able to repent and savingly believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ or do any good in the spiritual realm (Ps.14:1-3; 51:5; Jer.17:9; Jn.3:19; Rom.3:9-19; 5:12-21; 8:6-8; Eph.2:1-3; 4:17-18; 1 Cor.2:14).

THE PERSON AND WORK OF CHRIST

The eternal Son of God, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, being of one and the same essence, both co-equal and co-eternal with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit, came into world to manifest God to man, fulfill prophesy, and become the Savior of His people. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin. Christ took to Himself the likeness of human flesh and veiled His glory, but did not change His nature as full deity. He set aside His rights as deity and did not use them for the most part, but He never lost any attributes or authority as God. He was very God of very God and very man of very man (yet without sin).

"Christ died for our sins" and "He was buried and ... He was raised on the third day ..." (1 Cor.15:3-4). Christ's penal substitutionary death on the cross procured the believer's redemption, fulfilled and ended all the Mosaic Law Covenant and inaugurated the New Covenant. Now He has ascended into heaven and intercedes for believers while He waits His coming again to set-up His kingdom. Thus Christ alone is fitted to be the sole mediatory between God and man, serving as prophet priest and king (Lk.1:30-35; Jn.1:18; 3:16; Heb.4:15; Phil.2:5-8; Rom.8:3; Jn.17:5; Col.2:9; Heb.13:8; Acts.2:22-24; Heb.7:25; Acts 1:11; Jn.1:14; 1 Tim.2:5; 3:16; Heb.1:3; 8:1; Rom.10:4; Col.2:14-17; Gal.3:23-25; 2 Cor.3:1-18; Heb.8; 1 Cor.11:25; Lk.22:20; 1 Tim.2:6; Acts 1:6-7; 3:19-21; 1 Cor.15:23-25).

THE PERSON AND WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

We believe the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the Trinity, though omnipresent from all eternity, took up His abode in the world in a special sense on the Day of Pentecost (the birth of the Church) according to the divine promise. We believe that He indwells every believer, baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ at conversion, and is the source of all power and all acceptable worship and service. He never departs from the Church, nor from the feeblest of the saints, but is ever-present to testify of Christ (Gen.1:2; Acts 5:3-4; Jn.7:39; Jn.14:16-17; 16:7-15; Eph.1:22-23; 1 Cor.12:12-13; Acts 2:1-4; 11:15-17; Phil.2:12-13; Rom.8:9; 1 Cor.6:19; Gal.3:2,14).

Under the New Covenant certain well-defined ministries are committed to the Holy Spirit. The following ministries are found in Scripture: the restraining of evil according to His divine will; the convicting of the world respecting sin, righteousness and judgment; the regeneration of all the elect; the indwelling of all believers; the sealing of all believers unto the day of redemption; the baptizing of all believers into the one Body of Christ; the distribution to every saint of at least one spiritual gift; the filling of the Spirit; and the teaching and guiding of the Spirit to enable all saints to walk pleasing to the Lord (2 Th.2:7; Jn.16:7-11; 3:3-6; Tit.3:5; Rom.8:9; Eph.4:30; 1 Cor.12:11-13; Eph.5:18; Acts 6:3,5; 1 Jn.2:20-27; 1 Cor.2:11-13; Rom.8:14,16; 2 Cor.3:3-6; Eph.1:13; Rom.7:6; 8:4).

Some of the gifts of the Spirit were temporary gifts and were used as foundational gifts and sign gifts (apostles, prophets, knowledge, etc.). The foundational gifts were given to the Church in order to establish her until the writing of the New Testament. The sign gifts (healing, miracles, tongues & interpretation of tongues, etc.) were given to the Church in order to confirm God's message, messengers and mission; or as a sign of judgment to unbelieving Israel (i.e. tongues). The exercise of the permanent gifts of the Spirit are necessary for the spiritual life, growth and edification of the Body of Christ (1 Cor.13:8-12; 14:21-22; Is.28:11; Heb.2:3-4; Eph.2:20; 4:11-16; 1 Pet.4:10-11).

We do not believe that "tongues" are a sign of receiving the Holy Spirit or Spirit-baptism, nor do we believe that Spirit-baptism is a "second work of grace" after salvation to receive power to live the Christian life (1 Cor.12:13; Gal.3:2,14).

SALVATION

We believe that the salvation of sinners is totally a work of God and not man from start to finish. It is God who chooses, effectually calls, gives faith to believe and justifies the sinner. However, we believe that God holds man responsible to believe the gospel and He will hold him accountable for his unbelief and sins. Man may struggle with God's sovereignty and man's responsibility, but both are true and should be held in balance according to the Scripture (Rom.8:28-30; Jn.8:21,24; Rom.2:14-16; 3:19-20; Mt.11:27-28; Acts 13:46,48; Acts 17:30; Mk.16:15; Rom.1:14-16).

We believe that God's divine election is the eternal unchangeable purpose of God, whereby before the foundation of the world, He, out of mere grace, according to the sovereign good pleasure of His own will, chose certain individuals out of the fallen human race, not on account of any foreseen faith or good works but of His own mercy, to be the recipients of Christ's salvation (Rom.8:28-30; 9:10-23; Eph.1:4-5; 2 Th.2:13; 2 Tim.1:9; Acts 13:48).

We believe that the substitutionary voluntary death which Jesus Christ suffered upon the Cross was foreordained by God before the foundations of the world. We believe Christ's penal substitutionary death was a perfect propitiation which accomplished a genuine redemption, securing the salvation of many in all ages (Mt.20:28; 1 Tim.1:15; Jn.10:11,15,26; Acts 20:28; Eph.5:25-27; Rom.5:18; 8:32-35; Rev.5:9-10; 13:8; Jn.11:50-52; 1 Pet.1:18-20).

We believe that all whom God has chosen unto salvation are effectually called by the Holy Spirit out of their natural state of sin and death. These who are the recipients of God's special, effectual call, are dead in trespasses and sins and are altogether passive, until by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, their darkened minds are enlightened to understand the things of God, their hardened hearts are opened through the implantation of new life, and their rebellious wills are renewed and enabled by the free gift of faith to come to Christ. Though we confess that no man does attain unto faith by his own good will; yet we believe that the Spirit of God does not compel a man to believe against his will, but does powerfully and sweetly create in a man a new heart, and so makes him to believe and obey willingly. God thus working in us to will and to do of His good pleasure (Rom.8:30; Eph.2:1-3,8-9; Jn.1:12-13; 3:6-7; 5:24; 6:37-44,63-65; Ezk.36:25-28; Acts 16:14; 2 Cor.4:4-6; Phil.1:29; Heb.12:2; Jn.10:26; 1 Jn.5:1,20; Tit.3:5; Phil.2:12-13).

We believe that the essence of the gospel is the following: Jesus Christ died for sinners; and God the Father showed that He was well-pleased in Christ paying for their sins, for He raised Christ literally and physically from the dead the third day. We believe that the gospel should be proclaimed to every man, but that only those who rely upon Christ's finished work, and it alone may have their sins forgiven and receive eternal life. There is no degree of reformation, however great; no attainments in morality, however high; no culture, however attractive; no baptism or other ordinance, however administered that can help the sinner to take even one step toward his own salvation. "Salvation is by grace (unmerited favor) through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is a gift of God; not a result of works, that no one should boast." Therefore, the man who rejects the gospel will die in his sins and spend eternity in hell (Jn.3:16; Rom.5:8; 1 Cor.15:3-4; Rom.4:25; 1 Jn.4:10; Rom.3:24-25; Mk.16:15; Jn.8:24; Rev.20:12-15; Eph.2:8-9).

ASSURANCE, PERSEVERANCE AND SECURITY

We believe that God is the only One who can give the believer assurance of salvation. We believe God does this by the following: First, the Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to give us assurance; second, the Holy Spirit "bears witness with our human spirit that we are children of God." Finally, the Holy Spirit works within our lives to produce good works (1 Jn.5:9-13,20; Jn.17:3; Rom.8:16; 1 Jn.3:9-10; 2:29; 4:7; Eph.2:10)

We believe that a truly saved man is eternally secure because of the eternal purpose of God to save His elect and His infinite power and love guarantees it. The believer is secure in His salvation because Christ died for the believer's sins - past, present and future - and His resurrection secures the believer's resurrection. Also, we believe that a man who is truly saved is secure because Jesus Christ is the believer's Advocate and Intercessor. Finally, the believer's security is based upon the Holy Spirit's work of indwelling, sealing, and spiritual baptism. Though a man who is truly saved can never lose his salvation, he cannot persist in sin without God correcting him in infinite love (Rom.8:29-30; Jn.10:27-30; Eph.1:4-9; Jude 24-25; Rom.8:34; Heb.9:24; 1 Jn.2:1; Jn.17:9,11,15,20,24; Heb.7:25; 1 Jn.3:24; 4:13,15; Eph.1:13-14; 4:30; 2 Cor.1:21-22; Phil.1:6; 1 Cor.12:12-13; Heb.12:4-13; 1 Jn.3:9-10; Rom.5:10; 1 Pet.1:4-5; Eph.2:6; 1 Cor.15:20-23; Rom.4:25).

God demands righteousness, gives it to us (Rom.3:24-27; 4:1-5; 9:16), and enables us to want it, pursue it and live in it (Jn.1:12-13; 6:44,65; Rom.6:12-22; 8:3-4,12-13; 2 Th.1:11). If a believer sins and does not live in practical righteousness he is admonished by Scripture to repent (Lk.17:3-4; 2 Cor.12:21; Rev.2:5). If he continues in his sin after being constantly admonished by the Holy Spirit through the Word or fellow-believers (Mt.18:15-17; 1 Cor.5:1-13), then he should examine himself to see if he is truly a believer who is in the faith.(2 Cor.13:5; 1 Jn.3:6-10; Col.1:22-23). Though the believer may fall into grievous sins and for a time continue in them, he can neither totally or finally fall away from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere to the end and be eternally saved (Phil.1:6; 1 Th.5:23-24; 1 Pet.1:5-9; 2 Pet.1:10; Jn.10:28; 1 Jn.3:9-10; 1 Cor.3:10-15).

SANCTIFICATION

We believe that God is the One who sanctifies the believer. Sanctification is a fourfold process which God sets apart His elect from sin unto service and worship: (1) Preparatory Sanctification: is the effective work of the Holy Spirit that effectually brings a man to faith in Christ. (2) Positional Sanctification: is the believer's state before God which begins after one believes. Because a man has believed in Christ for salvation, he is placed in Christ, thereby having the same merit before God as Christ does. Yet, the believer retains his sinful nature, which he cannot eradicate in this life. Therefore, while the believer's position in Christ is perfect, his present state is a progressive battle against sin. (3) Progressive Sanctification: is the life-long process whereby the believer "grows in grace" and is being changed by the power of Holy Spirit and the Word of God so that he may be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. (4) Ultimate Sanctification: is when our sinless position in Christ will become our experience. This will happen when we receive our resurrected glorified bodies (2 Th.2:13; 1 Pet.1:2; 1 Cor.1:2; 6:11; Acts 20:32; Eph.5:26; 2 Cor.3:18; 2 Pet.3:18; 2 Cor.7:1; Jn.17:17; 1 Th.5:23-24).

THE CHURCH

We believe that the church, which began on the day of Pentecost is the Body of Christ and is formed by each believer being placed into the Body of Christ by the baptism of the Holy Spirit which occurs at the moment of conversion. We also believe the church exists in two aspects, universal and local. The universal church is all the elect company of believers who are part of the Body of Christ. The local church is a group of believers who are functioning and directing their devotion and conducted according to the New Testament (1 Cor.12:12-13; Acts 1:5; 11:16-17; 2:1-4; Eph.1:22-23; 2:20-22; 5:24-30; Acts 13:1)

CHURCH ORDINANCES

We believe that there are two ordinances of the Church: Baptism and the Lord's Supper. The participation in these ordinances does not give any merit toward the believer's salvation.

We believe the New Testament teaches believer's baptism by immersion (it follows personal faith in Christ) as the initial sign of a profession of faith in Christ. Baptism publicly identifies the believer with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection; therefore, we understand water baptism to be merely a picture which symbolizes the reality of our cleansing, identification with Christ and His Body, and the new life in Him. Even though baptism is not a requirement for one's salvation, it is the responsibility of each believer to be baptized (Mt.28:19; Acts 10:47-48; 16:31-34; 18:7-8; 1 Cor.12:12-13; Rom.6:1-6).

We believe that the Lord's Supper is the sign of the New Covenant which Christ instituted. It is not a sacrament that gives grace necessary for salvation, but is a memorial through which the believer testifies and celebrates his salvation and his fellowship with God and other believers (Mt.26:26-28; Mk.14:22-24; Lk.22:19-20; 1 Cor.10:15-22; 11:24-32).

FUTURE EVENTS AND THE ETERNAL STATE

The event that will precede the 70th week of Daniel (often called the 7 year tribulation period) will be the coming of Jesus Christ in the air (The Rapture) to receive the believers who have fallen asleep in Him, and those that are alive on earth (Jn.14:1-3; 1 Cor.15:51-52; 1 Th.4:13-18; Rev.3:10). After the translation of the Church, the seventieth week of Daniel will start. The whole period of the seven year tribulation will be a time of judgment (Dan.9:27; Rev.6; 16:19-21; Jer.30:7; Mt.24:15-21).

We believe that the great tribulation on earth will climax at the Second Coming of the Lord to the earth. Christ, in great glory, will personally and bodily return to earth, set-up His thousand year kingdom, bind Satan in the abyss, restore the creation from the curse and give the heirs of the covenants the promised land. After the end of the millennium Christ will give the kingdom to the Father and we will dwell in the new heavens and new earth in the New Jerusalem (Rev.19:19 - 20:1-6; Mt.24:29-31; Acts 15:14-17; Rom.8:19-25; 1 Cor.15:24; 2 Pet.3:10-13; Is.65:17; 66:22; Rev.21-22).

We believe that at death, the spirit and soul of the believer passes immediately into the presence of the Lord; and, at the appointed time, will be resurrected with a glorified body. The believer will be with Christ forever in glory. We believe that the spirit and soul of the unbeliever at death experiences condemnation and misery until the final judgment of the Great White Throne at the close of the thousand-year-kingdom. At the Final Judgment of the Great White Throne, the soul and spirit of the unbeliever is united with his body and cast into the lake of fire, not to be annihilated, but to be punished day and night with eternal destruction, forever banished from the presence of the Almighty Lord of Glory (Phil.1:21,23; 1 Cor.15:21-26,35-49; 2 Cor.5:9; Lk.16:19-26; 2 Th. 1:7-9; Mt.25:46; Rev.20:11-15).