The Bible is the inspired Word of God, the product of holy men of old who spoke and wrote as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. The New Covenant, as recorded in the new Testament, we accept as our infallible guide in matters pertaining to conduct doctrines (2 Timothy 3:16close2 Timothy 3:16 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, (ESV) ; I Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21close2 Peter 1:21 21 For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (ESV) )
Our God is one, but manifested in three persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, being co-equal (Phil. 2:6closePhilippians 2:6 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, (ESV) ). God the Father is greater than all; the sender of the Word (Logos) and the Begetter (John 14:28closeJohn 14:28 28 You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. (ESV) ; John 16:28closeJohn 16:28 28 I came from the Father and have come into the world, and now I am leaving the world and going to the Father.” (ESV) ; John 1:14closeJohn 1:14 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (ESV) ). The Son is the Word flesh-covered, the One Begotten, and has existed with the Father from the beginning (John 1:1closeJohn 1:1 The Word Became Flesh 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (ESV) ; John 1:18closeJohn 1:18 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known. (ESV) ; John 1:14closeJohn 1:14 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (ESV) ). The Holy Spirit proceeds forth from both the Father and the son and is eternal (John 15:26closeJohn 15:26 26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me. (ESV) ).
Man, His Fall and Redemption
Man is a created being, made in the likeness and image of God, but through Adam’s transgression and fall, sin came into the World. “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” “As it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one.” Jesus Christ, The Son of God, was manifested to undo the work of the devil and gave His life and shed His blood to redeem and restore man back to God (Rom. 5:14closeRomans 5:14 14 Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come. (ESV) , Rom. 3:10closeRomans 3:10 10 as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; (ESV) , Rom. 3:23closeRomans 3:23 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (ESV) ; 1 John 3:8close1 John 3:8 8 Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. (ESV) ).
Salvation is the gift of God to man, separate from works and the law, and is made operative by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, producing works acceptable to God (Eph. 2:8closeEphesians 2:8 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, (ESV) ).
Eternal Life and the New Birth
Man’s first step toward salvation is godly sorrow that worketh repentance. The New Birth is necessary to all men, and when experienced produces eternal life (2 Corinthians 7:10close2 Corinthians 7:10 10 For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. (ESV) ; 1 John 5:12close1 John 5:12 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. (ESV) ; John 3:3-5closeJohn 3:3-5 3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. (ESV) ).
Baptism in water is by immersion, is a direct commandment of our Lord, and is for believers only. The ordinance is a symbol of the Christian’s identification with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection (Matthew 28:19closeMatthew 28:19 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, (ESV) ; Romans 6:4closeRomans 6:4 4 We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. (ESV) ; Colossians 2:12closeColossians 2:12 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. (ESV) ; Acts 8:36-39closeActs 8:36-39 36 And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” 38 And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. (ESV) ).
The following recommendation regarding the water baptismal formula is adopted, to wit: “On the confession of your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and by His authority, I baptize you in the Name of the father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost, Amen.”
Baptism in the Holy Ghost
The Baptism in the Holy Ghost and fire is a gift from God as promised by the lord Jesus Christ to all believers in this dispensation and is received subsequent to the new Birth. This experience is accompanied by the initial evidence of speaking in other tongues as the Holy Spirit Himself gives utterance (Matthew 3:11closeMatthew 3:11 11 “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. (ESV) ; John 14:16,17closeJohn 14:16 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, John 14:17 17 even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. (ESV) ; Acts 1:8closeActs 1:8 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (ESV) ; Acts 2:38,39closeActs 2:38 38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:39 39 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” (ESV) ; Acts 19:1-7closeActs 19:1-7 Paul in Ephesus 19:1 And it happened that while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the inland country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. 2 And he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” And they said, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” 3 And he said, “Into what then were you baptized?” They said, “Into John's baptism.” 4 And Paul said, “John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying. 7 There were about twelve men in all. (ESV) ; Acts 2:4closeActs 2:4 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. (ESV) ).
The Bible teaches that without holiness no man can see the Lord. We believe in the Doctrine of Sanctification as a definite, yet progressive work of grace, commencing at the time of regeneration and continuing until the consummation of salvation of Christ’s return (Hebrews 12:14closeHebrews 12:14 14 Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. (ESV) ; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 2close1 Thessalonians 5:23 23 Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:2 2 For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. (ESV) Peter 3:18; 2 Corinthians 3:18close2 Corinthians 3:18 18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. (ESV) ; Philippians 3:12-14closePhilippians 3:12-14 Straining Toward the Goal 12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (ESV) ; I Corinthians 1:30close1 Corinthians 1:30 30 And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, (ESV) ).
Healing is for the physical ills of the human body and is wrought by the power of God through the prayer of faith, and by the laying on of hands. It is provided for in the atonement of Christ, and is the privilege of every member of the Church today (Mark 16:18closeMark 16:18
18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.” (ESV)
; James 5:14-15closeJames 5:14-15
14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. (ESV)
; 1 Peter 2:24close1 Peter 2:24
24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. (ESV)
; Matthew 8:17; Isaiah 53:4,5closeIsaiah 53:4
4 Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted. Isaiah 53:5 5 But he was wounded for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his stripes we are healed. (ESV) ).
Resurrection of the Just and the Return of Our Lord
The angels said to Jesus’ disciples, “This same Jesus shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” His coming is imminent. When He comes, “…the dead in Christ shall rise first; then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air…” (Acts 1:11closeActs 1:11 11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.” (ESV) ; 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17close1 Thessalonians 4:16 16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. 1 Thessalonians 4:17 17 Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. (ESV) ).
Following the tribulation, He shall return to the Earth as King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, and together with His saints, who shall be kings and priests; He shall reign a thousand years (Rev. 20:6closeRevelation 20:6 6 Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years. (ESV) ).
Hell and Eternal Retribution
The one who physically dies in the Lake of Fire and, therefore, has no further opportunity of hearing the Gospel or repenting. The Lake of Fire is literal. The terms ‘Eternal” and “Everlasting” used in describing the duration of the punishment in the Lake of Fire, carry the same thought and meaning of endless existence as used in denoting the duration of joy and ecstasy of saints in the presence of God (Hebrews 9:27closeHebrews 9:27 27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, (ESV) ; Revelations 19:20closeRevelation 19:20 20 And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. (ESV) ).