Thursday, May 25, 2017
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ARTICLES OF FAITH

"But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine." Titus 2:1

WHAT WE BELIEVE:

 1.  OF THE SCRIPTURES - We believe that the Holy Bible as originally written was verbally inspired and the product of Spirit-controlled men, and therefore, has truth without any admixture of error for its matter. We believe the Bible to be the true center of Christian union and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and opinions shall be tried. (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:19-21)

2.  OF THE TRUE GOD - We believe there is one and only one living and true God, an infinite Spirit, the Maker and Supreme Ruler of heaven and earth; inexpressibly glorious in holiness, and worthy of all possible honor, confidence and love; that in the unity of the Godhead there are three persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, equal in every divine perfection, and executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption. (Exodus 20:2-3; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Revelation 4:11)

3.  OF THE HOLY SPIRIT - We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, equal with God the Father and God the Son and of the same nature; that He was active in the creation; that in his relation to the unbelieving world He restrains the evil one until God's purpose is fulfilled; that He convicts of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; that He bears witness to the truth of the Gospel in preaching and testimony; that He is the agent in the New Birth; that He seals, endues, guides, teaches, witnesses, sanctifies and helps the believer. (John 14:16-17; Matthew 28:19; Hebrews 9:14; John 14:26; Luke 1:35; Genesisl :1-3; John 16:8-11; Acts 5:30-32; John 3:5-6; Ephesians 1:13-14; Mark 1:8; John 1:33; Acts 11:16; Luke 24:49; Romans 8:14,16, 26-27)

4.  OF THE DEVIL, OR SATAN - We believe in the personality of Satan, that he is the unholy "god of this age," and the author of all the powers of darkness, and is destined to the judgment of an eternal justice in the lake of fire. (Matthew 4:1-3; 2 Corinthians. 4:4; Revelation 20:10)

5.  OF CREATION - We accept the Genesis account of creation and believe that man came by direct creation of God and not by evolution. (Genesis 1,2; Colossians. 1:16-17; John 1:3)

6.  OF THE FALL OF MAN - We believe that man was created in innocence under the law of his Maker, but by voluntary transgression fell from his sinless and happy state, in consequence of which all mankind are now sinners, not only by constraint, but of choice; and therefore under just condemnation without defense or excuse. (Genesis 3:1-6, 24; Romans 5:10-19; Romans 1:18, 32)

7.  OF THE VIRGIN BIRTH - We believe that Jesus was begotten of the Holy Spirit in a miraculous manner, born of Mary, a virgin, as no other man was ever born or can ever be born of woman, and that He is both the Son of God and God the Son. (Genesis 3:15; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:35; John 1:4)

8. OF THE ATONEMENT FOR SIN - We believe that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace; through the mediatorial offices of the Son of God, who by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon. Him our nature, yet without sin, honored the divine law by His personal obedience, and by His death made a full and vicarious atonement for our sins; that His atonement consisted not in setting us an example by His death as a martyr, but was a voluntary substitution of Himself in the sinner's place, the Just dying for the unjust; Christ, the Lord, bearing our sin in His own body on the tree; that having risen from the dead, He is now enthroned in Heaven, and uniting in His wonderful person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfection, He is in every way qualified to be a suitable, a compassionate and an all-sufficient Savior. (Eph.2.8; Acts 15:11; Romans 3:24; John 3:16; Matt. 18:11; Phil. 2:7; Hebrews 2:14; Isaiah 53:4-7; Romans 3:25; 1 John 4:10; 1 Corinthians 15:3; 2 Corinthians 5:21)

9.  OF GRACE IN THE NEW CREATION - We believe that in order to be saved, sinners must be born again; that the new birth is a new creation in Christ Jesus; that it is instantaneous and not a process; that in the new birth the one dead in trespasses and in sins is made a partaker of the divine nature and receives eternal life, the free gift of God; that the new creation is brought about in a manner above our comprehension, solely by the power of the Holy Spirit in connection with divine truth, so as to secure our voluntary obedience to the gospel; that its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance and faith and newness of life. (John 3:3-8; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 John 5:1; John 3:6-7; Acts 16:30-33; 2 Peter 1:4; Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:1; 2 Corinthians 5:19; Colossians 2:13)

10.  OF SEPARATION We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord; and that separation from all religious apostasy, all worldly and sinful pleasures, practices, and associations is commanded by God. (2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1; 2 Timothy 3:1-5; Romans 12:1-2; Romans 14:13; 1 John 2:15-17)

11.  OF JUSTIFICATION We believe that the great gospel blessing which Christ secures to such as believe in Him is Justification; (a) That Justification includes the pardon of sin, and the gift of eternal life, on principles of righteousness; (b) That it is bestowed not in consideration of any works or righteousness which we have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer's blood, God's righteousness is imputed to us. (Acts 13:39; Isaiah 53:11; Zechariah 13:1; Romans 8:1; Romans 5:9; Romans 5:1)

12.  OF FAITH AND SALVATION - We believe that faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is the only condition of salvation. (Acts 16:31; John 3:16; John 1:12; Ephesians 2:8-9)

13.  OF THE CHURCH We believe that the church, which is the body and espoused Bride of Christ, is a spiritual organism made up of all born again believers of this present age. (Ephesians 1:22-23; Ephesians 5:25-27; 1 Corinthians 12:12-14; 2 Corinthians 11:2)

We believe that the local church is a congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant of faith and fellowship of the Gospel; observing the ordinances of Christ; governed by His laws; and exercising the gifts, rights and privileges invested in them by His Word; that its officers are Pastors and deacons, whose qualifications, claims and duties are clearly defined in the Scripture. We believe the true mission of the church is the faithful witnessing of Christ to all men as we have opportunity. We hold that the local church has the absolute right of self-government, free from the interference of any hierarchy of individuals or organizations; and that the one and only superintendent is Christ through the Holy Spirit; that it is scriptural for true churches to co-operate with each other in contending for the faith and for the furtherance of the gospel; that each local church is the sole judge of the measure and method of its co-operation; on all matters of membership, of policy, of government, of discipline, of benevolence, the will of the local church is final. (Acts 2:41-42; 1 Corinthians 11:2; Colossians 1:18; Ephesians 1:22-23; Ephesians 4:11; 5:23-24; Acts 20:17-28; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Acts 15:13-18)

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14.  OF BAPTISM AND THE LORD'S SUPPER - We believe that Christian Baptism is the immersion of a believer in water to show forth in a solemn and beautiful emblem our faith in the crucified, buried and risen Savior with its effect in our death to sin and resurrection to a new life; that it is prerequisite to the privileges of a church relation. We believe that the Lord's Supper is the commemoration of His death until He come, and should be preceded always by solemn self-examination. (Acts 8:26, 39; John 3:23; Romans 6:3-5; Matthew 3:16; Colossians 2:12; 1 Corinthians 11:23-28)

15.  OF THE SECURITY OF THE SAINTS - We believe that all who are truly born again are kept by God the Father for Jesus Christ; that they are sealed by the Holy Spirit unto "the day of redemption." (Philippians 1:6; John 10:28-29; Romans 8:35-39; Ephesians 4:30; Jude 24)

16.  OF MISSIONS - We believe that it is the obligation and privilege of the saved to witness by life and by word to the truths of the Holy Scripture and to seek to proclaim the gospel to all mankind. (Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; 2 Cor.5:19-20)

17.  OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT - We believe that civil government is of divine appointment for the interests and good order of human society; that magistrates are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored, and obeyed, except in things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the only Lord of the conscience, and the coming Prince of the Kings of the earth. (Romans 13:1-7; 2 Samuel 23:3; Exodus 18:21-22; Acts 23:5; 5:20; 4:19-20; Matthew 22:21; Daniel 3:17-18)

18.  OF THE ETERNAL STATE - We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men, the saved to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment. (Matthew 25:46; John 5:28-29; John 11:25,26; Revelation 20:5-6,12-13)

We believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the body and present with the Lord, where in conscious bliss they await the first resurrection when spirit, soul, and body are reunited to be glorified forever with the Lord. (Luke 23:43; Revelation 20:4-6; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; 3:21; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

We believe that the souls of unbelievers remain, after death, in conscious misery, until the second resurrection, when with soul and body reunited they shall appear at the Great White Throne Judgment; and shall be cast into the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting conscious punishment. (Luke 16:19-26; Matthew 25:41-46; Jude 6-7; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Mark 9:43-48; Revelation 20:11-15)

19.  THE RESURRECTION, ASCENSION AND PERSONAL RETURN OF CHRIST;

We believe in the bodily resurrection of Christ. (Matthew 28:6-7; Luke 24:39; John 20:27; 1 Corinthians 15:4; Mark 16:6; Luke 24:2-6)

A.  We believe in the ascension of Christ. (Acts 1:9-11; Luke 24:51; Mark 16:19; Revelation 3:21; Hebrews 12:2)

B.  We believe in Christ's present ministry as our High Priest. (Hebrews 8:6; Hebrews 2:17; Hebrews 4:14-16; Hebrews 5:9-10; Hebrews 7:23-25; Hebrews 9:24; 1 Timothy 2:5; Romans 8:34; 1 John 2:1)

C.  We believe in the second coming of Christ, which includes:

1.  His premillennial appearance in the air to catch away His Church (commonly spoken of as the "rapture," our imminent hope) (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18: 1 Corinthians 15:42-44); the resurrection of the righteous dead (1 Thessalonians 4:16); the change of the living in Christ (1 Corinthians 15:51-52; Philippians 3:20-21)

2.  His return to the earth with His saints. (Acts 1:11; Revelation 1:7; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-8; Matthew 24:30; Zechariah 14:4)

D. We believe in the Millennial Reign of Christ on the Throne of David. (Luke 1:32; Isaiah 9:6-7; Acts 2:29-30; 1 Corinthians 15:25; Isaiah 32:1; Isaiah 11:4-5; Revelation 20:14; Revelation 20:6; Psalms 72:8)