STATEMENT OF FAITH

About the Trinity

We believe there is only one true God, eternally existing in three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each is equal in every divine attribute, executing distinct but harmonious roles in the work of creation, providence and redemption.

About God the Father

We believe in God the Father, who is infinite, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, immutable and perfect in holiness, wisdom, justice and love. We believe He is a personal God and sovereignly in the affairs of humanity and that, in His grace and mercy, He saves men and women from sin and death.

About Jesus Christ the Son

We believe in Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, who became a man without ceasing to be God, was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin. His life was sinless, and His death provided substitutionary atonement for the sins of humanity. We believe in His bodily resurrection, ascension into heaven, and priestly intercession for all believers.

About the Holy Spirit

We believe in the Holy Spirit, who illuminates, indwells, sanctifies and empowers all believers until the day of redemption, providing each with various gifts for service and who is an abiding helper, teacher, guide and comforter. We believe He convicts the world concerning sin, righteousness and judgment.

About the Bible

We believe the Bible is the divinely-­‐inspired Word of God, wholly truthful and trustworthy, pointing to life in God through Jesus Christ. God’s Word is our supreme authority and sufficient for understanding all matters of faith, doctrine and conduct. Our only resource for critical discernment in this world is the illuminating work of the Holy Spirit as He helps us understand the Bible, our source of truth. Therefore, we view Scripture as foundational for all we do. It is a resource God has graciously provided us, containing the message to humanity that He Himself put forth. It is inerrant in the original documents as God inspired men to write its contents, and infallible in the sense that it contains nothing that would lead to error, falsehood, or untruth when soundly interpreted through the Holy Spirit.

About Angels and Satan

We believe in angels of God as well as fallen angels (demons) including Satan, who fell from favor with God to become the enemy of both God and humanity. We believe Satan, who is the temporary ruler of this world, is wholly evil and is a tempter and deceiver of humanity, blinding the unregenerate with spiritual darkness. We believe believers have power through Christ over Satan and his host of demons who will eventually be judged and punished forever.

About Humanity

We believe all humanity, male and female alike, is created in the image of God, but, due to disobedience against God’s good and just authority, has incurred a sinful nature. Since the Fall of man through Adam, humanity has been sinful by nature and by choice, as well as subject to the power of Satan. We believe humanity has no power to change its fallen state, but can only be redeemed by the power of God, through Jesus Christ.

About Marriage and Leadership

We believe both the image and roles of men and women flow from the essence of God’s Trinitarian identity. There is mutual submission within the Trinity even though there are differing roles within the Trinity. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are all equally and fully God, but each with different roles. Jesus submits to the Father and the Holy Spirit submits to both the Father and Jesus. We believe both Adam and Eve were created in God’s image being equal before God as persons and that the role distinctions within biblical manhood and womanhood were ordained by God as part of His creation before the Fall, and were not a result of sin. We believe both the Old Testament and the New Testament reveal the equally high value and dignity created by God in the distinct roles of men and women within marriage and the church.

About Salvation, Sanctification and Manifestation

We believe salvation is the work of spiritual regeneration obtained only by the sovereign grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ as a result of His bodily death and resurrection where He paid the penalty for sin. He offers forgiveness and eternal life to those who repent from their sin and confess Jesus as Lord and Savior. Furthermore, there is no meritorious effort of any kind that anyone can do to receive God’s gift of salvation. We believe the Holy Spirit illuminates the heart of an unbeliever to seek God, and at the time of conversion, He indwells and seals the believer, guaranteeing the believer’s eternal inheritance as a child of God. We believe it is the work of the Holy Spirit to sanctify and fill/empower the believer as the believer learns to live in/by the Holy Spirit for lifelong spiritual growth. We believe even though a believer experiences the indwelling work of the Holy Spirit at conversion, they do not necessarily experience the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit or the filling/empowering work of the Holy Spirit at conversion. The sanctifying and filling/empowering work of the Holy Spirit is experienced as one pursues the fullness of life in the Holy Spirit. We believe the initial filling of the Holy Spirit and the ongoing pursuit of more filling should manifest itself through the fruit of the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. We believe all the gifts of the Holy Spirit are for the church today as they were for the early church.

About the Church

We believe the church, called the body of Christ, is made up of all true believers worldwide. We believe in the local assembly of believers for the purpose of community, commission and compassion. We believe each member of the body is responsible to submit to Christ’s headship, as well as to one another, striving to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, loving one another and seeking to be used of God in service, employing their spiritual gifts to further the cause of Christ.

Community Celebrations

We believe Jesus Christ instituted two celebrations that all believers are to observe: water baptism and communion, which flow from a healthy community committed to prayer and to worship of the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe church is to be a house of prayer and worship going after God’s heart and presence so the church can be empowered to accomplish the mission God has given it. We believe water baptism symbolizes and identifies believers with Christ’s death, burial and resurrection, bearing public testimony of their belief in Him. We believe in baptism by immersion after conversion. We believe communion is a celebration of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross where the bread symbolizes His sacrificed body and the cup symbolizes the new covenant in His blood. As we partake in communion we celebrate His active presence while longing for His future return.

About Last Things, the Church and Israel

We believe in the personal, imminent, earthly return of the Lord Jesus Christ to establish His kingdom forever. We believe in the bodily resurrection and judgment of all humanity, believers to eternal life in the presence of God, and unbelievers to everlasting punishment and separation from God. We believe the gracious free gift of salvation that comes through Jesus is equally offered to all Gentiles and Jews, and that all who belong to Christ are Abraham’s children and heirs to God’s promises. We believe the church neither is separate from Israel nor does it replace Israel, but that the church is made up of the remnant of Christ followers who are Jews and Gentiles. We believe in a future hope for the nation of Israel and that the church should show mercy to Jews and Israel, while not necessarily supporting all political positions of the nation Israel.