Essential Beliefs: In essential beliefs – we have unity (Acts 2:44; Eph. 4:4-6; Phil. 2:1-5) Non-Essential Beliefs: In non-essential beliefs – we have freedom (Romans 14: 1,4,12,22) All Beliefs: In all our beliefs – we show love (1 Corinthians 13:2)
About the Bible
The Bible is God's written Word to all mankind. It was written by human authors, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is the truth without any mixture of error and completely relevant to our daily lives. (Deuteronomy 4:1-2; Psalm 119:105; 160; 12:5; Isaiah 40:8; Proverbs 30:5; 2 Timothy 1:13, 3:15-17; 1 Peter 1:24-25)
There is one God, the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in a triune relationship with Himself as one substance in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal, co-existent and co-eternal. (Genesis 1:1, 26-27; Deuteronomy 6:4; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; John 5:21-23, 14:10; 2 Corinthians 13:14)
About the Father
God is our heavenly Father, full of greatness. He is all powerful, all knowing, ever present, unchanging, completely worthy of our trust, and above all, holy. He concerns Himself in the affairs of mankind, and intends for human beings to live in fellowship with Himself. He is good, compassionate, slow to anger, abounding in love and is faithful, and He works all things together for good to those who love Him. In His unfathomable grace, He gave His Son, Jesus Christ, for mankind’s redemption. It is in Him that we live, move and exist. (Exodus 3:14; Numbers 23:19; Leviticus 11:44-45; 19:2; Psalm 11:4-6; Malachi 3:6; John 3:16; 4:24; 5:26; 14:1; Acts 17:28; Romans 3:3-4)
About the Son (Jesus Christ)
Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. He is the Word of God manifest in human form - completely human, but at the same time, completely God. In His incarnational form, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven's glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. (Matthew 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; Luke 4:18-19; John 1:1-5, 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14-15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-5; Romans 1:3-4; Acts 1:9-11, Colossians 1:15-16)
About the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and the Son. He is present in the world to guide all believers in truth, to exalt Christ, to bring comfort, and to make mankind aware of their sin and their need for a Savior. He comes to abide in every Christian (by Christian, we mean Christ-follower or disciple of Jesus) from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, guidance in doing what is right, and ultimately makes us more like Christ. His presence assures us of our relationship with Christ. Furthermore, He gives spiritual gifts to the Christian for works of ministry and service. (Genesis 1:2; 2 Corinthians 3:17; John 16:7-13; 14:16-17; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:12; 3:16; Ephesians 1:13; 5:18; Galatians 5:22-25)
Man was made in the image of God, created to reflect and share in God’s glory. But all of mankind is marred by an attitude of disobedience toward God called "sin." This attitude separates people from God and causes them to be in rebellion against Him and His ways. Only the grace of God brings human beings into holy fellowship with Him. The sacredness of human life is evident in that God created mankind as the crown of His creation; therefore, every human being possesses dignity and is worthy of respect and love. (Genesis 1:26-30; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6, 59:1-2; Acts 17:26-31; Romans 3:10-18, 23; Ephesians 2:1-22)
Salvation is God's free gift to us, but we must accept it. We can never make up for our sin by good works. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ as God's offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sin's penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to our Christ-ruled life in faith, we are saved. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Christ by faith. (Romans 5:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 14:6, 1:12; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26; Acts 2:21, 4:12; Romans 5:1, 10:9-10)
About Eternal Security
Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the true believer is secure in that salvation for eternity. If you have been saved, you cannot "lose" it. Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self effort of the Christian (by Christian, we mean Christ-follower or disciple of Jesus). It is the grace and keeping power of God that gives us this security in Christ. (John 6:39,10:28, 30; 2 Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 7:25, 10:10, 14, 13:5; 1 Peter 1:3,5)
Mankind was created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation. Those that are separated from God will ultimately spend eternity in Hell. Those that have received God's salvation will spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence. (John 3:16; 1 John 2:25; Colossians 1:5; John 14:1-4; Luke 12:5; Luke 16:2-25; Revelation 20:15)
Our Beliefs On The Church
It is our belief and desire that the church be a community of authentic, meaningful relationships and a movement of restoration and hope in the world. Therefore, our heart is to be church (not do church) through an atmosphere of love, relationships and service; and it is our hope that through our church-community, the love and acceptance of God would be experienced in a real , fresh and unique way. We value the teachings and the Way of Jesus, whom we profess to be the Son of God. And though we may fail at times to live a life truly reflective of who Jesus is, we are committed to being a community on a spiritual journey together, learning what it means to live life as a Jesus-follower (disciple).
The Greek word for church is “Ecclesia” or assembly. The church, therefore, is the assembly of believers who collectively have been called to be the physical manifestation (flesh and blood) of Jesus Christ and agents of His redemptive mission in the world today. The local church is not a building or a program, but rather a group of imperfect people who have been redeemed and are being restored who desperately want to know God and follow Him, and who are called into a community for the sake of His mission. (Matthew 16:18, 28:18-20; Acts 14:27)
In the Scriptures, the Church is often referred to as the body of Christ (I Corinthians 12:27) This comes from our understanding of the sacrifice of Jesus’ body, who paid the price for our sins and restored our relationship with God. Once we accept this sacrifice we are ushered into “His body.” We are made heirs and co-heirs of God’s kingdom, a royal-priesthood of believers. The body of Christ, therefore, refers to the universal group of people who have accepted this sacrifice and who follow Him – “You are the body of Christ.” Everyone who follows Jesus forms a community that is called the church. (Titus 3:7; Romans 8:17; 1 Peter 2:9)
Baptism is the Christian act of immersing a believer in water and then bringing him/her forth out of the water. It is a symbolic, practical representation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as the person being baptized is immersed beneath the waters and brought forth, symbolic of Jesus' death, burial and resurrection on their behalf for the forgiveness of their sins (Romans 6:1-10; Colossians 2:12). Baptism identifies a Christian with Jesus (Acts 10:48; Romans 6:3; Galatians 3:27), the universal church (1 Corinthians 12:13), and the local church (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:41).
In ancient times, baptism was a purification ritual. To be submerged in water and then brought back up was a sign that you were washed clean. It was an act of repentance. When we are baptized today, it is also symbolic of repentance. We are saying that the work of Jesus to free humanity from sin has freed us as well. In actuality, we are being submerged with Jesus in His death and raised with Him in His life. Baptism is a symbolic act of the repentance that unites us with the death and resurrection of Christ. It is important to note that one's baptism does not "save" an individual nor secure eternal life. Baptism is an outward confession of our inward beliefs. It is a way to announce to the world that we are dedicated to God's will and to His ministry. Jesus commanded that disciples should be baptized (Matthew 28:19). His apostles also commanded that that all Christians be baptized (Acts 2:38). Therefore, Christians should be baptized because their God and His servants command it. (Matthew 3:13-17; Acts 8:12-13, 35-39).
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Communion is an act of remembrance. We pause in the midst of our busy lives to reflect on the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. It reminds us of His death because of our sin. But it does not leave us there; it is also an act of celebration because Jesus was raised from the dead. We take communion on a regular basis to thank Jesus for His actions and remember the saving effect this sacrifice has on our lives. We remember that just as Jesus’ body was broken and poured out so that we might have life, we too as His followers and His Body (the Church) are called to be broken and poured out so that the world around us might know Jesus and claim life through Him. (Matthew 26:26-28; John 6:22-59; 1 Corinthians 11:23-29)
The early church gathered daily for prayer, worship, teaching, and communion. The Apostle Paul warned the future church not to forsake meeting together. Our times together are meant to lead followers of Christ into deeper walks with Christ and to lovingly draw people outside our community to Him. We live this out primarily through our home gatherings and our weekend worship celebrations, as well as other gatherings, whereby we recognize that meeting together is an essential practice of the church. (Acts 2:42-47; Hebrews 10:23-25)