I believe God miraculously recorded His special revelation though providentially prepared men by verbal plenary inspiration, thus guaranteeing its accuracy and authority. God providentially preserved this completed and recognized canonical record throughout history to enable believers of every generation to have access to His Word. Through dependence on the illumination of the Holy Spirit, and careful study of the Scripture by a normal/plain exegetical interpretation, we can understand and apply the Bible to every need of faith and practice.
I believe there is one God, unified in essence, yet in the unity of the Godhead there are three coeternal and coequal persons, the same in substance but distinct in subsistence and referred to as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This Triune God has revealed Himself, both generally to all men (via creation, history, and conscience) and specifically through some men in various ways at various times, so that all would come to an understanding of His supreme and unchanging spiritual nature that is unlimited, infinite, and perfectly moral. This loving God desires such knowledge to bring all men to salvation and an eternal relationship with Himself.
I believe that Jesus is the pre-existent and eternal Second Person of the Godhead, Who took on flesh and, in one person, was entirely divine and completely human. I believe that His virgin birth and entire sinless life authenticated His claims and that His death on the cross fulfills prophecy, is essential to the Gospel message, satisfies the demands of the Law, and removes all barriers to a right relationship with God and man. I believe that His bodily resurrection is also necessary to the Gospel, that it authenticates Jesus’ Deity and ministry, and it assures our present and eternal victory from all our enemies. I believe that the exaltation of Jesus confirms the satisfactory nature of His sacrifice, emphasizes His authority, and provides for our joint exaltation in and with Him. I believe that Jesus is actively involved in both the oversight of the Church and the lives of each Believer, and that He will one day call both the living and dead to judgment or reward as the Eternal King.
I believe that angels are spiritual beings, possessing all the attributes of personality, created by God for His service and glory, and that they are actively involved in the life of believers. I believe that Satan and demons are fallen angels that are actively involved in opposing God and His work in this world. I believe that God has provided the believer with everything needed to discern and withstand their evil work now, and that He will judge both Satan and the fallen angels for their pride and rebellion in the future.
I believe that sin is anything that is in opposition to the character of God. It is universally a part of man’s nature from birth and manifests in actions of commission and omission done both willfully and in ignorance. I believe that sin originated in Satan but was not a part of humanity until Adam’s active rebellion, which subsequently polluted and made guilty the entire race. I believe that the remedy for sin is found only in the blood of Christ, and that belief is necessary for justification, and confession is necessary for restoring fellowship with God after salvation. I believe that the Christian has the ability to resist this sin nature and walk in obedience to God in light of the Word and under submission to the Spirit.
I believe the church is both the called together assembly of all believers and the local assembly of Christians, diverse but unified, for the primary purposes of doctrine, mutual edification, and growth. I believe that God began this unique entity at Pentecost, and that its local administration is by two offices, the pastor and the deacon. I believe that baptism and the Lord’s Supper, while not salvific, are to be ordinances of every local assembly in obedience to Christ.
I believe that the Holy Spirit is a distinct Person of the Trinity, having the characteristics of deity and personality, and that He is involved in all the works of God. The Holy Spirit was involved in the work of creation, in enabling and saving in the Old Testament, and active in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ and His Apostles. Today, He is essential to the salvation of men, sanctification, and in building the Church by joining believers to it and by providing all things necessary for the mutual edification and maturity of the Body of Christ.
I believe that God created man by a direct and special act on the sixth day of creation. I believe that man bears the image of God in some degree in both the physical and psychical aspects, and that man is a unified whole and reproduces after his kind. I believe that both the material and immaterial aspects of man will either spend an eternity with God or be separated from God, and that man, while sinful, has both the ability and responsibility to choose either life or death. I believe that God established marriage between one man and one woman until death and desires it to be a complete union benefiting the couple both physically and spiritually.
I believe that man is in a just state of condemnation and punishment for his sin nature and rejection of God’s way. I believe that God, in the crucifixion and resurrection, provided the necessary satisfaction for the complete redemption of every person. I believe that God is the initiator and sustainer of our salvation, and that man is responsible to trust in the finished work of Christ alone for salvation. I believe that salvation forgives man’s sins completely, gives victory over sin, promises resurrection, and provides eternal life. I believe that salvation provides perfect standing before God, and that this standing is to daily motivate obedience and growth. I believe that salvation is eternally secure, in spite of how a believer feels due to sin or doubt.
I believe in a literal, normal, interpretation of prophecy that exalts Jesus Christ. I believe that believers in Christ, both dead and living, will be gathered together to Jesus Christ and that there is a time of great tribulation on this Earth in which God demonstrates His justice and longsuffering. I believe at the end of this time of tribulation, Jesus will return and establish a literal kingdom, and the first one thousand years will have several unique aspects. I believe that both believers and unbelievers will be evaluated before God and the former given reward and the latter punished. I believe in a literal Heaven, Hell, and Lake of Fire, and that every person will either be in the presence of God or in a place of torment forever.