Statement Of Faith
We believe the book commonly referred to as the Bible to be the inspired Word of God. We further believe that inspiration extends to both the Old and New Testament, and that as a whole it is inerrant in its writing and is the final authority upon any matter which it speaks.
- This can be defined as meaning that the Spirit of God moved upon chosen men who were prepared from their mother’s womb for the task God had prepared for them. It was this preparation and the control of the Holy Spirit that allowed these men to record without error that which God wanted recorded. We further believe that inspiration extends to the very words of Scripture and reject the idea that inspiration was merely directed at the ideas or concepts contained in Scripture.
We believe that God has preserved His Word intact for each generation. We further acknowledge that the Received Text of the Greek New Testament and the Masoretic Hebrew Text of the Old Testament faithfully represent the original documents, and that the King James Version of the Scriptures at this time represents the only English translation that is faithful to the Received Text. For that reason, we use only the King James Version and consider it the final authority in all issues.
We believe that the only proper way to interpret the Scripture is using a literal, historical, and grammatical method of understanding the written text. While we acknowledge the use of signs, metaphors, similes, and allegories by the scribes who recorded the Scriptures we reject the notion that there is some unknown spiritual message or some great allegory (which can only be found by a select few) in the Scriptures.
Because of our dedication to a literal hermeneutic and the commandment to rightly divide the word of truth, we find it necessary to establish a systematic theology. We believe that only a dispensational approach to understanding the Scriptures makes it possible for us to understand the Scriptures literally and to divide them in a logical fashion. While we consider ourselves dispensationalists, we also acknowledge that like any system made by man it is not perfect. There are many things that are not revealed to us at this time and even with all knowledge we are not capable of taking an infinite God and His plan and defining it in finite terms. There is disagreement among dispensationalists over some issues and I am very careful not to make these items of contention or the basis for fellowship.
We believe in the triune Godhead revealed in the Scriptures. We believe in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Three persons of the same essence, equal in knowledge, power, and glory; constituting one God.
• We believe in God the Father who causes all things by an act of His will.
We believe in God the Son who existed eternally with the Father and was incarnate as a man thru the Virgin birth. Christ lived a perfect sinless life for thirty three years, which made Him a perfect sacrifice to provide a propitiation for the sins of the world. We believe that He died and was buried and rose again on the third day. We believe that He ascended into Heaven as recorded in the Scriptures and that He will soon return to recover His Church, to judge the world, and to establish the Davidic Kingdom in Jerusalem as plainly taught in the Scriptures.
We believe in the Holy Spirit who was present in Creation and is currently moving in the world, first as a Comforter to the Believer; but secondly to convict the world of sin in order that men might hear the Gospel. In addition, the Holy Spirit baptizes the new believer into the body of Christ and seals that believer for eternity. He further indwells each individual believer, providing the necessary illumination for understanding the Word of God and as He is permitted by the believer will cause the individual to grow in the grace and knowledge of God.
We believe that God literally created the heavens and the earth and all that is contained therein as recorded in the first three chapters of Genesis. We completely reject any form of evolutionary teaching regarding the creation of any aspect of the universe.
• We believe that man was created on the sixth day out of the dust of the earth in a state of innocence, and that subsequently out of the side of man God created woman. These two were commanded to procreate and fill the earth. This lays the Biblical foundation for marriage, and any deviation from the concept of one man, one woman, is not Biblical and does not fulfill the Biblical requirements for matrimony. Because of this, we reject as sinful and damaging the idea of polygamy or the so-called marriage of sodomites. Also, any act of procreation outside the bounds of matrimony is to be considered sinful and condemned by God.
All plant and animal life were created on the day specified and there is no room for interpretation which would lead to the acceptance of any of the modern evolutionary theories. Dinosaurs, cattle and man were all created on the sixth day and lived together on this planet.
We further acknowledge that events such as the universal flood of Noah and the confusion of tongues at Babel in the plains of Shinar were real historical events and were faithfully recorded in the Scriptures.
We believe that man was created on the sixth day out of the dust of the earth. We further believe that at some subsequent time God took flesh from man and fashioned woman. These two were created in a sinless state referred to as innocence. Neither Adam nor his wife had any knowledge of good or evil. In this state of innocence man was placed in a garden referred to as Eden and given specific instructions concerning his conduct. He was forbidden to eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and clearly told that to violate this commandment would bring death. Adam violated the commands of God, fell from innocence, died and became a sinner. He begat offspring in his own likeness and passed to them the nature to sin and reject God and His truth.
• All men born of Adam have a nature to sin and will of their own volition commit sin, bringing them under the condemnation of God.
Total depravity. Sin is so pervasive in man that it affects every aspect of his existence. Even when he is perceived as doing good, the motives of his heart will be that of self-interest and not based in devotion to God. There is no thought or deed of which man is capable to restore his position with his Creator. Note: we are not taking the position that man is a corpse incapable of responding to outside stimulus. If that were true, not only would he fail to respond to God he would fail to respond to the sinful urges of the world. Instead, man will not seek God and His righteousness. This is clearly brought out in Romans 3:9-18.
Redeemed man. This individual has received thru the work of the Holy Spirit and by the will of God the Second Birth. His sins are forgiven and paid for. He no longer has any debt before God and is now declared by the imputed righteousness of Christ to be just. This individual is indwelt by the Holy Spirit and is empowered to understand the Scriptures and do those works which are acceptable to God. The Bible shows that among the redeemed there are two classifications of people; those which are carnal, and those which are spiritual. The carnal man while understanding spiritual things refuses to let go of the things of the world. The spiritual man on the other hand is one who thru a process of growth leaves behind the lusts and desires of this world to seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. It can be said that each individual will have periods of time in his life in which he exhibits the traits of both the carnal and the spiritual.
THE ETERNAL STATE
We believe that man is an eternal being and that upon his death in this world his soul proceeds to the presence of God where he is received as a son or he is cast into a prison currently referred to as Hell which was prepared for the Devil and his angels.
• The fate of the Believer is to spend eternity at peace in a state of perfect contentment with Christ. At some point after the Resurrection every Believer will stand before the Bema Seat of Christ and his works will be judged as to whether or not they were of eternal value. That which survives the testing is compared to gold, silver, and precious stones. Those works which do not glorify God are compared to wood, hay, and stubble and will be totally consumed. At no point in time is sin judged at the Bema Seat. Those issues were settled at Calvary on the cross and have no place in the judgment of service.
The Lost. The Lost at the end of the Millennium will be resurrected to face the Judgment Seat of God where their sins and all the works of their lives will be brought into judgment, their guilt will be established, and they will be bound and cast eternally into the Lake of Fire.
In the final judgment, Satan and all angels that followed him in rebellion will be cast with him into the Lake of Fire, along with the Antichrist, False Prophet, and lost men and women of all ages.
The Church is a body of Believers called out of all mankind based on the New Covenant which God promised to the people of Israel thru the prophet Zechariah. Although Israel rejected her Messiah and refused to accept the kingdom that God had promised them, thru grace God extended the free gift of salvation to all men apart from the Jews and their temple. The Church came into being on the Day of Pentecost and its membership will be closed at the moment of the Rapture. We utterly reject the concept of a universal church as promoted by Roman Catholicism and most subsequent Protestant creeds. We do acknowledge that at some point in the future after the Rapture all Believers will constitute what is referred to as the Church or the Bride of Christ. We will be present in the Kingdom, but the Church does not constitute the Kingdom.
• As it exists at this time, the Church is any local body of baptized believers. This body has two offices; pastor and deacon. This body has two ordinances; the Lord’s Supper and Baptism. Each body is to remain autonomous and to seek to fulfill the ministry of the evangelization of the world, starting in their own city and extending from there as God makes provision.
The office of pastor is a calling of God and cannot be conferred by man. The office of deacon while conferred by man is to meet the requirements laid out in the Scriptures. These individuals will be responsible for overseeing the spiritual condition of the church and maintaining doctrinal purity in the church. Further, these individuals would be responsible for managing and properly assigning the material goods of the church as provided by God.
The ordinances of the Church.
Baptism. Baptism is to be by immersion and is purely symbolic. In baptism the believer is publically declaring that by faith he is affiliating himself with the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ for the remission of his sins. We reject the notion that any water can cleanse a man of sin or provide the means by which someone has added in a real sense to the body of Christ. Also, while it is possible to be saved and be unbaptized that individual should not be permitted membership in a local church because of his refusal to follow that simple commandment.
The Lord’s Supper. This table was instituted by Christ on the night before His death and is a commemorative service in which we remind ourselves of the cost of our salvation and that our Lord is soon to return. We reject the notion that there is any mystical occurrence during communion or that the performance of this ordinance can be an act which will bring us greater acceptance with God.
We believe that Israel, or those people commonly referred to as Jews, constitute an entirely separate entity in the outworking of the plan of God. Israel constitutes the chosen people of God to whom He made specific promises which include; an eternal state as a nation, a specific land grant, and an eternal throne upon which a descendent of David would sit and rule forever.
• To be classified as a member of the chosen people one must trace his lineage from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob and then through one of Jacob’s thirteen sons. While Abraham had several sons, and Isaac had two, their descendents do not constitute the children of the promises found in the Old Testament.
God will fulfill all the promises made to Israel in a literal fashion during the Millennial Kingdom found in the Old Testament and the book of Revelation.
We believe in the imminent physical return of Jesus Christ. We believe in the premillennial, pretribulation rapture of the Church. We believe that after the Rapture there will be a period of at least seven years of tribulation and judgment known as the Time of Jacob’s Trouble. We believe at the end of the Great Tribulation Christ will return physically with His Saints. He will destroy the armies of the Lost, and the nation of Israel will be converted in a day. Christ will then proceed to Jerusalem; restores Israel to her land, establish the Davidic throne and the temple of God, and rule for 1000 years. We believe that the Kingdom ends in apostasy and the rebellion of men who will be destroyed by God out of Heaven. At this time the lost of all the ages will be judged, this current creation will be destroyed, and God will create a new Heaven and a new Earth which will be the home of the righteous forever.
We believe in the existence of angelic beings. We believe they were created enmass before God laid the circle of the earth. They are male in nature and form and were created as eternal beings in a state of righteousness.
• Satan was originally created as Lucifer, a member of the highest order of angelic beings. He was referred to as the Anointed Cherub. In this position he was the literal king of the angelic hosts. He became Satan when he challenged God and fell from righteousness into sin. He is a real person and while exalted in beauty and power he is still a created being and incapable of defeating God.
The angelic host currently consists of fallen and unfallen angels. Up to one third of the angelic host of Heaven chose to follow Satan and his rebellion, and they now constitute his army as he attempts to rule this world and destroy man. The rest of the angelic host remained faithful to God and kept their estate. They currently serve as ministers to the heirs of salvation with a few specifically named beings (such as Michael and Gabriel) having other duties.
We acknowledge the existence of demons and their activities in the lives of men today. We believe it is possible that demons can and do possess the lost and that when sin is present are capable of oppressing the Redeemed. While we should not fear Satan, his angels, or the demonic, we must be respectful of it and remember that only in the power of the Holy Spirit and our submission to the Word of God are we capable of dealing with these entities.