Grace Baptist Church Statement of Faith
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Section 1: The Bible
We believe the Bible (containing the 66 books of the Old and New Testament) is the word of God, fully inspired by Him through the Holy Spirit in the original manuscripts. (2 Timothy 3:15-17).
Since God's word is both true and everlasting, it is our supreme authority for faith and conduct. His word is absolutely trustworthy,inerrant and infallible--it cannot be proven false, erroneous or mistaken. (Isaiah 40:8; Matthew 24:35; John 14:23-24, 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16; 1 John 2:4-5; 1 Peter 1:24-25)
Section 2: God
We believe that there is but one living, true, personal and sovereign (supreme, independent ruler) God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Psalm 24:1; 1 Thessalonians 1:9). His being is Spirit (John 4:24), and His attributes are those essential qualities which identify and describe His nature. Because God is perfect, He cannot and will not act contrary to His nature. (Matthew 5:48; Leviticus 19:2).
God is self-existent (John 5:26), truth (Numbers 23:19; Hebrews 6:18), infinite(Psalm 90:2), unchanging (Malachi 3:6; James 1:17), all-knowing (1 John 3:20), present everywhere at once(Psalm 139:7-10),all-powerful (Jeremiah 32:17; Matthew 19:26), righteous (Psalm 145:17),gracious, merciful and abounding in loving-kindness (Exodus 34:6), holy (1 Peter 1:15-16), just (1 John 1:9),faithful (2 Timothy 2:13), wise (Romans 16:27), and sovereign (Psalm 115:3; Acts 2:23; 17:24-27; Ephesians 1:11). God is, at least, all of these attributes at all times and does not lay aside any one of them in completing His plans and purposes.
We believe in the triune God (Isaiah 48:16; Matthew 3:16-17), one in essence (Deuteronomy 6:4), yet manifest in three persons--Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The Father is God (1 Corinthians 8:6), the Son is God (Hebrews 1:5-8; Matthew 1:23; 1 John 5:20) and the Holy Spirit is God. (Acts 5:3-4)
Section 3: Jesus Christ
We believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, God's only begotten Son, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. In the flesh, Jesus was one person, with two natures--true God and true man, yet without sin.
We believe, according to the Scriptures, in the historical, literal death, burial and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ. This act is the satisfaction for the sins of the whole world. We believe the resurrected Christ was taken into heaven where He is now and always lives to make intercession for the believers.He will appear two more times: at a time yet future, Christ will return and the believers will be caught up with Him in the air, to be with Him forever. In a separate event, Christ will also return from heaven and reign on Earth for 1,000 years before the final judgment of evil. (Matthew 1:18, 23; Acts 1:11;1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Ephesians 1:17; Philippians 2:5-8; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17; Hebrews 2:17-18, 4:14-15, 7:25; 1 John 2:2, 4:9; Revelation 1:7, 19:11-20:15)
Section 4: The Holy Spirit
We believe the person of the Holy Spirit is God, and given by God to convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment,guide into all truth, comfort, regenerate, sanctify and daily lead those who are in Christ. He also indwells forever, from the moment of regeneration, and desires to empower, fill and minister through the believer. (John 3:3-5, 14:16-17, 16:8, 13; Acts 1:8, 5:3-4; Romans 8:9, 14; 1 Corinthians 12:11-13; Titus 3:5-6; Ephesians 1:13-14, 5:1-8; 1 Peter 1:2)
Section 5: Salvation
We believe that man, in the person of Adam, was created in innocence, but by voluntary transgression entered into sin, thus plunging the whole human race into condemnation and death; so that now all mankind is, from conception, sinful and shaped in iniquity, and all become willful sinners with the first expression of personal choice and so are without excuse before God. (Genesis 3; Psalm 51:5; Romans 5:10-19).
We believe that the only escape from the condemnation of sin, and eternal punishment in hell is through the redemption effected by Jesus Christ. He voluntarily took upon Himself a human body and nature, yet without sin; and by His suffering, death, burial and bodily resurrection, made full justification before God for the sin of man. God has graciously chosen and called the believer. The free gift of salvation is given solely by grace to all who personally repent and believe/trust in Him. We believe that faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ is the only condition of salvation from sin, and that this salvation is wholly by grace; and that no works, however good, make this salvation more secure. (Matthew 25:46; Mark 9:43; John 1:12-13; Acts 16:30-33; Romans 2:5-6, 10:9-13; 2 Corinthians 7:10; Ephesians 2:1-10; Philippians 2:5-8; Titus 3:5-7; Hebrews 4:15, 10:4-14;1 Peter 1:18-19)
We believe that every Christian, as a new creation, will give some evidence of personal conversion. (2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 6:4; John 15:8; Colossians 1:10)
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept eternally secure by God's power and manifest the work of that power in their lives daily by refraining from sin and conforming to Jesus Christ. (John 6:37-40, 10:27-30; Romans 8:1, 8:38, 39; 1 Corinthians 1:4-8; I Peter 1:4-5)
The believer's security is a matter for rejoicing and motivation to maturity in Christ through daily obedience to God's Word, clearly forbidding the abuse of Christian liberty as an occasion to sin. (Titus 2:11-15; John 20:31; 1 John 5:13; Galatians 5:13; 1 Corinthians 8:13; 2 Peter 1:3-11)
Section 6: The Church
We believe that the Church was initially identified in the New Testament, having been a mystery to the Old Testament prophets, but established by Jesus Christ who is its sole Head. It is empowered and perpetuated by the Holy Spirit. It is Christ's "body" for service and His "bride" for glory, being completed at His return to Earth. (Matthew 16:18; 1 Corinthians 12:12-28; Ephesians 1:22-23, 5:23-33; Revelation 19:11-16)
We believe the "Church" is primarily manifest through local churches that are comprised of born-again believers who observe baptism and the Lord's Supper, are governed only by the word of God, and answer ultimately to Jesus Christ. (Matthew 18:15-17; 1 Corinthians 1:2, 7:17; 1 Timothy 3:1-15;Acts 2:41-47, 14:23; Ephesians 5:23,27)