What We Believe
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. -Ephesians 2:8-9 (NASB)
Every church has a statement of belief or creed; it is simply a matter of whether or not they forthrightly express it. Saying "We believe the Bible" is certainly true; however, further definition and summary of what the Bible teaches is tremendously important, especially in an age of confusion and departure from the truth.
We purposely and confidently affirm the historical stream of biblical Baptist faith and practice as seen in many of the wonderful confessions of faith that point back to Scripture. We see this doctrinal stream in such documents as the Baptist Faith & Message, the 1859 Abstract of Principles, the 1742 Philadelphia Confession, and the 1689 2nd London Baptist Confession of Faith.
We affirm the 1689 2nd London Baptist Confession as the definitive/clarifying church statement of faith.
The following is a snapshot of our church doctrine--we are a historical, biblical Southern Baptist church in confessed faith and practice:
God: We believe that the true, living God is One, but reveals Himself in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit with distinct attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.
The Scriptures: We believe the Bible contains the very words of God. It was written by men under the guidance of God. It is without any form of error and is God’s revelation for man in this day and is the standard by which all conduct, creeds, and opinions should be tried.
Man: We believe man is the special creation of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man, male and female, in His own image, and that Christ died for man. Therefore, every person possesses dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.
Sin: We believe that any conduct or attitudes that are contrary to the nature of God or outside of the teaching of Scripture are immoral and therefore sin. Man was created in innocence, but entered into sin voluntarily and fell from his place of holiness, and the unfettered presence of God. The Scriptures declare that, by that original sin, all are born with a sin nature and totally depraved without the redemptive work of Jesus Christ.
Regeneration: Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace. Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Saviour.
Salvation: We believe in redemption through the forgiveness of sin by the substitutionary work of Jesus Christ for any person who repents of their sin and accepts, by faith, Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior.
God's Purpose of Grace: Election is the gracious purpose of God, according to which He regenerates, justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. It is consistent with the free agency of man, and comprehends all the means in connection with the end. It is the glorious display of God's sovereign goodness, and is infinitely wise, holy, and unchangeable. It excludes boasting and promotes humility.
Perseverance/Preservation: All true believers endure to the end. Those whom God has accepted in Christ, and sanctified by His Spirit, will never fall away from the state of grace, but shall persevere to the end. Believers may fall into sin through neglect and temptation, whereby they grieve the Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, and bring reproach on the cause of Christ and temporal judgments on themselves; yet they shall be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
Christology – We believe in the incarnation of Jesus in the form of a human through the virgin birth to fulfill God’s purposes of grace. We believe that Jesus has perfectly fulfilled His role as the Savior through His substitutionary death on the cross, His bodily resurrection from the dead, and His ascension to the right hand of the Father.
Last Things – We believe God, in His own time and way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. We believe, according to the words of Jesus, that He will return personally to the earth. At that time the dead will be raised and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to everlasting punishment in hell. The righteous, in their resurrected and glorified bodies, will dwell eternally with the Lord.
The Church – We believe the church of the Lord Jesus is a local, autonomous assembly of baptized believers. The church is a body made up of many members. Each member is valuable and vital to the life of the body. Each member is responsible for their stewardship of time, opportunity, talents, influence, and material possessions for the purpose of glorifying God.