We believe the Bible is the inspired word of God. It is a God-breathed book that was recorded by holy men of old as they were borne along by the Holy Ghost. We believe the words are inspired and not just the thoughts or ideas. We believe the Bible is the source of divine truth and, when rightly divided according to a historical/grammatical interpretation, it contains no error in its teachings. We further believe that God has preserved his word and the King James Bible is the preserved word of God for the English-speaking world. We reject other translations as having been translated from inferior texts.
We believe in one God revealed in three persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost. We believe God is the creator and sustainer of all things. We believe the God of the Bible is eternal; without beginning or ending. God is self-existent and independent of any outside source for his existence. The God of the Bible is ever-present, all-knowing, and all-powerful. His most prominent attribute is his holiness which is extolled by the angels in his presence day and night. God is also just, righteous, immutable, faithful, wrathful, and loving. Everything that God is he is to infinity in respect to both degree and time. He is infinitely unified in his character and attributes. He is the Sovereign of the universe and there is no God beside him!
We believe that Jesus Christ is both the Son of God and God the Son. We believe He was, as prophesied, born of a virgin in the city of Bethlehem. He is the eternal Son of God. He is the Word of God. The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us. God the Son humbled himself, made himself of no reputation, and was made in the likeness of sinful men. He was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. In every way, both in thought and deed, he was blameless and sinless. His sinless life was offered as a sacrifice for sinful men. Though he had no sin of his own he was made sin for us. He bore our sins to the cross. He paid the sin debt in full. He suffered the full measure of divine, omnipotent wrath forsaken by the Father laying down his life as an offering for our sins. After three days and three nights in the tomb, he was raised from the dead conquering sin, death, and hell. After being seen alive for forty days by many infallible proofs, He ascended back to heaven and is presently seated at the right hand of the Father interceding for those who believe in Him. According to his promise, "I will come again" we anticipate his return when the saints will be caught up to meet him in the air and so shall we ever be with the Lord!
We believe the Holy Ghost is equal to and one with the Father and the Son. We believe the Holy Ghost convicts men of sin, judgment, and righteousness and seeks to bring them to salvation in Christ. We believe that when the sinner repents and believes the gospel, the Holy Ghost comes to live in them. It is the Spirit that bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. The Spirit is the seal and earnest of our salvation. It is the Spirit of God that renews the soul and makes sinners new creatures in Christ Jesus. The Holy Ghost produces the fruit of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, and meekness in the life of the believer. The Holy Spirit is our great teacher and guides the believer into all truth. We do not accept the continuation of the sign gifts that are commonly embraced by the modern-day charismatic movement. We believe that the sign gifts such as speaking in tongues and healing ceased with the completion of the canon of scripture.
We believe that man is conceived in sin and as a result, all men are sinners by nature and by choice. Man in his natural state is separated from God because he is a sinner and God is holy. We believe man, in his natural state, is at enmity with God, spiritually blind and ignorant. We believe his understanding is darkened and that his heart is desperately wicked. We believe he is by nature and choice a transgressor of God's law and as a result is rightly condemned already. We believe that man, in his natural state, is in bondage to sin and self. We believe the testimony of scripture that there is "none righteous, no, not one." We believe that in man's natural state any good work he might offer up as evidence of righteousness has already been condemned by the words of the prophet, "all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags." We believe there is nothing a man can do to gain favor with God, there is no good work sufficient to atone for past and future sins.
Because man is a great sinner he needed a great Savior! Therefore God provided himself a sacrifice in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus lived the life we could not live in order to die in our place. We believe Jesus took our sin upon himself, was made sin for us, and bore our sin to the cross. The testimony of scripture is that he tasted death for every man! We believe the blood he shed was provided as an atonement for our soul. We believe Jesus died in the sinner's place and in the transgressor's stead. We believe that Jesus was forsaken by the Father when he bore our sins and died on the cross in order that sinners might be reconciled to God. We believe that he was buried and was in the tomb for three days and nights. We believe on the first day of the week (Sunday) he was resurrected and that his resurrection is the most powerful witness to his claim to be the Son of God. We believe he ever lives to make intercession for us. We believe he was delivered for our offenses and raised for our justification!
Repentance and Faith
We believe in order for a man to benefit from the sacrifice of Jesus on his behalf he must repent and believe the gospel (death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ). To repent means to turn from sin! We believe everyone who turns to Christ for salvation must of necessity turn from sin. The call to repentance comes to us across the pages of the Old Testament and finds a strong voice in John the Baptist, Jesus, the Apostles, and the early church! We believe the scripture when it admonishes all men everywhere to repent! We believe the call to repentance remains valid and an invitation that does not include repentance is incomplete.
We also believe that when the heart repents in the biblical sense that it also believes. If we turn from sin we must be turning to, in this case, someone. Men must believe in Jesus Christ and the gospel in order to be reconciled to God. We believe men must be placing their complete confidence and trust in the gospel. To introduce anything else into the equation corrupts the gospel. It is not faith in the gospel and baptism, or communion, or any other good work. It is faith in the gospel and that alone that saves men and delivers them from the wrath to come! Jesus himself claimed to be THE WAY! He clearly stated that no man cometh unto the Father but by me!
We believe that when men humble themselves and accept that they are a sinner worthy of condemnation before a holy God; and upon recognizing their perilous condition repent of sin and place their trust in the gospel of Jesus Christ they are saved and eternal life is their inheritance and heaven is their home! We believe when a man repents and believes the gospel he is declared righteous by God. We believe he is born again, adopted into the family of God, redeemed, reconciled, and made a new creature. We believe when a man is saved his life is changed. A changed life is the surest evidence of true conversion. Faith that does not produce a changed life is, according to the scripture, a dead faith and no better than that which the devils possess. We believe when a man is saved that he becomes the workmanship of God in Christ Jesus unto good works, we believe that he has spiritually died to his old life and goes forth to walk in newness of life. We believe while men perform no work of merit for salvation they certainly produce works of love because of salvation.
We believe the New Testament church was organized during Jesus' earthly ministry, commissioned after his resurrection, and empowered on the day of Pentecost. We believe Jesus called unto him whom he would and of them, he chose twelve that they might be with him. We believe in doing so Jesus established the first New Testament assembly. It consisted of himself and the twelve apostles. Jesus personally trained the twelve apostles. The Great Commission was given to the church he established during his earthly ministry. It was not given to the apostles as individuals but to them in the corporate existence as the church Jesus started. We believe the church was already in existence on Pentecost and that it was added to on that day. The church was empowered to be a witness by the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost. We believe that from that single church other congregations were established across Judea, Samaria, and Galilee; and eventually as far as Antioch of Syria from which the apostle Paul engaged in his missionary endeavors starting local assemblies all across the Roman Empire. We believe Jesus promised his church as an institution a perpetual existence. We believe that promise has been fulfilled and since then the sun has never set on a day when the Lord did not have his true churches somewhere in the world. Even in the darkest spiritual centuries, there were bright lights of hope and truth scattered across the known world. Oftentimes their testimony was sealed with their blood!
We believe the only kind of church the New Testament presents is a local church. That is the kind Jesus started. It was that church that reproduced itself. We believe Acts is a historically accurate account of the church planting ministry of the first century. We believe that many of the epistles are written to local churches in specific locations. It is the local church that is metaphorically the Building, Body, and Bride of Christ. We believe the churches of the New Testament were independent and autonomous. We believe Christ is the head of each local church. We believe the Holy Ghost is the administrator of each local church. We believe the New Testament church is self-governing and is subject to no human hierarchy and should be independent of all conventions, associations, and fellowships. We believe that each New Testament church is the final appeal in all spiritual matters under their jurisdiction. We believe that it is right to cooperate with churches of like faith and practice in church planting and other efforts to preach the gospel and equip the saints. Each church retains the sole right to determine which churches and to what degree they will cooperate with other churches. We believe the Bible is the rightful standard of faith and practice for each local church. We believe the Holy Ghost sets pastors over each local church.
We believe the New Testament church was given two ordinances to preserve and propagate gospel truth.
We believe for a baptism to be scriptural it must meet four requirements. We believe baptism is only for believers. We believe baptism is to be by immersion as it symbolizes the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We believe baptism is for the purpose of bearing testimony that one is a follower of Christ and that they have died to their old way of life and are now walking in newness of life. We believe baptism must be administered by an authorized institution. We believe the authorized institution is a New Testament (Baptist) church.
We believe the Lord's Supper is a memorial supper and it has no saving merit and conveys no grace. The Lord's supper is for the purpose of remembering the broken body and shed blood of Jesus Christ for sin. It is the Lord's supper. It belongs to him. We believe it should be administered according to the pattern set forth by the Lord. Therefore we believe in a closed supper. We believe when Jesus instituted his supper he did so with his church (the twelve apostles). Therefore when we come to the Lord's table we extend the invitation to only those members of our church that are in good standing. We believe that Jesus instituted his supper during the Passover season. The gospels tell us when Jesus sat down to eat with his church that evening that they had made ready the Passover. A major component of making ready the Passover was removing all leaven from the home. Therefore the bread and cup that Jesus used to institute his supper were unleavened. We believe the proper elements for observing the Lord's Supper are unleavened bread and unleavened fruit of the vine (grape juice).
We believe that God created one man and one woman in the garden and he brought them together and they became husband and wife. It was then that Adam knew his wife Eve and she conceived and bore children. We believe this is the divinely sanctioned order and cannot be changed by the whims of man. Anything outside the context of Holy Matrimony is rightfully considered a perversion of God's plan. Therefore, we believe that fornication, adultery, homosexuality, bisexuality, polygamy, pornography, beastiality, and incest are all perversions condemned by the word of God. We believe that marriage is honorable and the bed undefiled. We believe that only one arrangement constitutes marriage. That is one man entering into a covenant relationship with one woman. We believe what God hath joined together let not man put asunder. Any departure from this pattern is a perversion.
Heaven and Hell
We believe in a literal heaven and hell (lake of fire). We believe heaven is the abode of God, it is there where he sits on his throne governing his creation. We believe heaven will be a place of eternal bliss to which all those who have repented of their sins and believed the gospel will spend eternity. We believe that ultimately there will be no evil or wicked thing there. There will be no crying, sickness, sorrow, or death. We believe that narrow is the way and straight is the gate that leads to life and few there be that find it.
We believe hell was prepared for the devil and his angels but has enlarged itself to receive all those who live in rebellion against God and his law and refuse to repent and believe the gospel. We believe that hell is a pit of eternal flame and outer darkness. It will be the abode of every foul spirit and the wicked ungodly. It will be a place of eternal weeping and gnashing of teeth. A place where the worm dieth not and the fire is not quenched. It is the rightful destiny of all who refuse to repent and reject the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that broad is the way and wide is the gate that leads to destruction and many there be which go in thereat.
We believe that the events of the last days are for the purpose of unveiling Jesus Christ as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We believe the next thing on the prophetic calendar is what is commonly referred to as the rapture of the saints. It is when all believers will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. This shocking event will commence the Tribulation period here on earth. For a period of seven years, the world and its inhabitants will undergo an increasingly destructive series of judgments. We believe that during the first half of the seven-year period that the antichrist will rule in conjunction with the harlot church. After three and half years the antichrist will wage war against this church and establish himself as God. At the beginning of the seven years of tribulation, the antichrist will make a covenant with Israel which he will break after three and half years. At that time he will set himself up as God in the Most Holy Place in the Jewish temple that will have been rebuilt on the ancient Temple sight. The antichrist will for the last three and half years persecute the nation of Israel who will flee to the wilderness and there be protected by God. At the end of the seven years of tribulation, the kings of the earth will be gathered together to wage war. We believe that it is at this time that the Lord Jesus will return from heaven with all the Saints and will destroy the armies of the world and establish his own earthly kingdom in which Jesus will sit on the throne of David. The Lord's earthly kingdom will last for a thousand years at which time Satan will be released from the lake of fire and he will go forth and deceive the nations of the world for one last show of rebellion. The rebellion will be put down and Satan will for ever be restrained in the lake of fire. We also believe that during this time the saints in heaven will stand before the judgment seat of Christ to be rewarded for their faithful service. The degree of reward to each believer will be determined by how they lived their Christian life and the faithfulness of their service to Christ. Some will suffer great loss of reward at this judgment because of their unfaithfulness. We also believe that at the conclusion of the thousand year earthly reign of Christ that all unbelievers will stand before the Great White Throne judgment. It is there the books will be opened and all unsaved men will be judged according to their works. Their names will be sought for in vain in the Lamb's book of life and they will be sentenced to eternity in the lake of fire which is the second death. With these events finished time will be no more and the believers will live and serve God for ever and ever while the unbelievers will forever be separated from God.