OUR DOCTRINAL BELIEFS
Our Statement of Faith is Adapted from The New Hampshire Baptist Confession of Faith of 1853
We believe that the Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is a perfect treasure of heavenly instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth without any mixture of error for its matter. It reveals the principles by which God will judge us, and it therefore is, and shall remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and opinions should be tried.
The True God
We believe that there is one, and only one, living and true God, an infinite, intelligent Spirit, whose name is Yahweh, the Maker and Supreme Ruler of heaven and earth. He is inexpressibly glorious in holiness and worthy of all possible honor, confidence, and love. In the unity of the Godhead there are three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They are equal in every divine perfection and execute distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption.
The Fall Of Man
We believe that Man was created in holiness, under the law of his Maker, but by voluntary transgression fell from that holy and happy state. In consequence of which, all mankind are now sinners, not by constraint but choice, being by nature utterly void of that holiness required by the law of God and positively inclined to evil. Therefore, all are under just condemnation to eternal ruin, without defense or excuse.
The Way Of Salvation
We believe that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace, through the mediatorial offices of the Son of God, who, by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon him our nature, yet without sin. He honored the divine law by his personal obedience and, by his death, made a full atonement for our sins. Having risen from the dead, he is now enthroned in heaven. Uniting in his wonderful person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfections, he is every way qualified to be a suitable, a compassionate, and an all-sufficient Savior.
We believe that the great Gospel blessing which Christ secures to such as believe in Him is Justification. That Justification includes the pardon of sin and the promise of eternal life on principles of righteousness. That it is bestowed, not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer’s blood, and, by virtue of which faith, His perfect righteousness is freely imputed to us by God. It brings us into a state of most blessed peace and favor with God and secures every other blessing needful for time and eternity.
The Freeness Of Salvation
We believe that the blessings of salvation are made free to all by the gospel. It is the immediate duty of all to accept them by a sincere, penitent, and obedient faith. Nothing prevents the salvation of the greatest sinner on earth, but his own inherent depravity and voluntary rejection of the gospel, and that rejection involves him in an aggravated condemnation.
Grace In Regeneration
We believe that, in order to be saved, sinners must be regenerated, or born again. Regeneration consists in giving a holy disposition to the mind. It is effected in a manner above our comprehension by the power of the Holy Spirit, in connection with divine truth, so as to secure our voluntary obedience to the gospel. Its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance, faith, and newness of life.
Repentance And Faith
We believe that Repentance and Faith are sacred duties and also inseparable graces, wrought in our souls by the regenerating Spirit of God. Whereby, being deeply convinced of our guilt, danger, helplessness, and of the way of salvation by Christ, we turn to God with sincere contrition, confession, and supplication for mercy and at the same time heartily receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Prophet, Priest and King, and rely on Him alone as the only and all-sufficient Savior.
God’s Purpose Of Grace
We believe that Election is the eternal purpose of God, according to which He graciously regenerates, sanctifies, and saves sinners. We believe that being perfectly consistent with the free agency of man, it comprehends all the means in connection with the end. It is a most glorious display of God’s sovereign goodness, being infinitely free, wise, holy and unchangeable. It utterly excludes boasting, and promotes humility, love, prayer, praise, trust in God, and active imitation of his free mercy. It encourages the use of means in the highest degree. It may be discerned by its effects in all who truly believe the Gospel. It is the foundation of Christian assurance, and to discern it with regard to ourselves demands and deserves the utmost diligence.
We believe that Sanctification is the process by which, according to the will of God, we are made partakers of his holiness. It is a progressive work that begins in regeneration, and is carried on in the hearts of believers by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, the Sealer and Comforter, in the continual use of the appointed means - especially, the word of God, self-examination, self-denial, watchfulness, and prayer.
The Perseverance Of Saints
We believe that true believers are those who endure to the end. Their persevering attachment to Christ is the grand mark which distinguishes them from superficial professors. A special Providence watches over their welfare. They are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
The Harmony Of The Law And The Gospel
We believe that the Law of God is the eternal and unchangeable rule of His moral government. It is holy, just, and good. The inability which the Scriptures ascribe to fallen mankind to fulfill its precepts, arises entirely from their love of sin. One great end of the Gospel and of the Means of Grace connected with the establishment of the visible church is to deliver and to restore fallen mankind through a Mediator to sincere obedience to the holy Law.
A Gospel Church
We believe that a visible church of Christ is a congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the Gospel, observing the ordinances of Christ, governed by His laws, and exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by His word. Its only scriptural officers are Elders, or Pastors, and Deacons, whose qualifications, claims, and duties are defined in the Epistles to Timothy and Titus.
Baptism And The Lord’s Supper
We believe that Christian Baptism is the immersion in water of a believer, into the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Baptism shows in a solemn and beautiful sign, our faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Savior, with its effect, in our death to sin and resurrection to a new life. It is prerequisite to the privileges of a church membership and to the Lord’s Supper, in which the members of the church, by the sacred use of bread and the fruit of the vine, are to commemorate together the dying love of Christ, preceded always by solemn self-examination.
We believe that Civil Government is of Divine appointment, for the interests and good order of human society. Civil Leaders are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored, and obeyed, except in things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is the only Lord of the conscience, and the Prince of the kings of the earth.
The Righteous And The Wicked
We believe that there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and the wicked. Only those who are justified through faith in the name of the Lord Jesus, and sanctified by the Spirit of our God, are truly righteous in His esteem. All those who continue in unrepentance and unbelief are wicked in His sight, and under the curse. This distinction holds among men both in and after death.
The World To Come
We believe that the end of the world is approaching. At the last day, Christ will descend from heaven, and raise the dead from the grave to final retribution. A solemn separation will then take place. The wicked will be adjudged to endless punishment, and the righteous to endless joy. This judgment will fix forever the final state of men in heaven or hell, on principles of righteousness.