OUR BELIEFS single out the main theological convictions of our church. At no time are these beliefs to ever be placed above the rule of Scripture. As such, each and every belief is subject to the authority of the Bible. Moreover, this list is not meant to be exhaustive. For a more comprehensive list of our beliefs, see the Baptist Faith in Message 2000.
1.) The Bible: We believe that the Bible is the written word of God; by which men, inspired by the Holy Spirit, wrote exactly what God intended them to write. We believe that God's inspiriation extends only to those 66 books found within the Old and New Testaments. As such, we believe that the Bible is inspired in all parts, inerrant in all matters, and infallible as our authoritative rule of faith and practice.
2.) God: We believe there is only one God, who exists in one essence and three persons as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. All of the essential characteristics or attributes of divinity are equally distributed to each person of the Trinity, so that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exists equally and eternally as one God. We further believe that each person of the Trinity has distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.
3.) We believe in God the Father, who sovereignly governs and directs all things according to his providence and good will; who initiates the redemption of believers by his sovereign choice in salvation. We believe that he is eternally Father, and that he has sent God the Son, in whom he is well pleased, to be our only propitiation for sin.
4.) We believe in God the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Who is one person in two natures: truly divine and truly human; who is God and was with God in the beginning, and through whom all things were made; who was born of a virgin, crucified on a cross as a substitute for our sins, was raised bodily by the Spirit on the third day, and has ascended unto the Father where he intercedes on behalf of every believer.
5.) We believe in God the Holy Spirit, who precedes from both the Father and the Son; who calls and convicts every believer of their sin, enabling them to positively respond to the gospel call. We believe that the Holy Spirit is now God's presence among the church, empowering them for ministry, enabling them to overcome sin, and uniting them under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
6.) We believe that the church of Jesus Christ is made up of all baptized believers, who are united in one body and in one Spirit, built upon the foundation of the prophets and the aposltes, with Jesus Christ as the chief cornerstone; living in one hope, one faith, one baptism, and under the one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. We further believe that the pattern for all believers in the New Testament was that every believer who confessed faith in Christ and was baptized, joined in covenant with a local church, whereby they submitted to its leadership and served one another in love and good works.
7.) Man: We believe that all men and women of every race were created in the image of God. We further believe that humans have fallen from their original state of perfection and are now by nature and choice sinful and lost, and do not possess any possible means to save themselves from their sins.
8.) Salvation: We believe that salvation is the work of God. Moreover, we believe that salvation is based upon God's sovereign choice, according to his free will and not according to the works of men. Salvation is obtained by grace through faith, as the Holy Spirit enables men and women to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ (Acts 16:14). By faith in Christ, all true believers have been baptized with the Holy Spirit at the moment of their conversion, by which they are now empowered to serve God by putting sin to death and by bearing spiritual fruit in keeping with their conversion (Galatians 5:22-26). They are further justified, adopted as sons and daughters of God, are being sanctified, and will be glorified when Christ returns.
9.) We believe in the priesthood of all believers. Because Jesus has paid for all of our sins once and for all, and now sits at the right hand of the Father interceding on behalf of all those who believe in his name, there is no longer any need for a mediator between God and man.
10.) Ordinances: We believe that there are two Scriptural ordinances given to the local church: the baptism of believers by immersion and the Lord's Supper.
a.) We believe that baptism is for believers only and that this one time ordinance is done properly by immersing the whole person under water. We believe this is the first act of obedience on the part of every believer and that it symbolizes the destruction of the old man and our being raised to live in newness of life.
b.) We believe that the Lord's Supper is a perpetual ordinance of the church, that it is only for those who have received Christ as Savior, who have been baptized by immersion, and who are not living in open and unconfessed and unrepentant sin. We further believe that the Lord's Supper signifies that the believer is in continual fellowship with both the universal and local church of Jesus Christ (see Grudem, "Lord's Supper").