ARTICLES OF FAITH
"We also believe, and therefore speak."-2 Cor. 4:13.
I. THE GODHEAD.
We believe in one Triune God, as revealed in the Bible, eternally existing in three persons–Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These three are identical in nature (one in essence), but distinct in person and function. They have the same attributes and perfections. (Deut. 6:4; II Cor. 13:14, Gen. 1:26, Isaiah 6:8; 48:16-17, Matt. 3:16-17, John 14:16-17)
2. THE SCRIPTURES.
We Believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the Word of God, fully inspired, without error and are the infallible rule of faith and practice. We believe that God preserved His Word without error in the King James Bible for English speaking people. (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:20-21)
3. VIRGIN BIRTH.
We Believe Jesus Christ was born of the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:35), and truly man. (I Tim. 2:5)
4. TOTAL DEPRAVITY.
We Believe man was created in the image of God (Gen. 1:27); but he sinned, and thereby incurred, not only physical death, but also that spiritual death which is separation from God; consequently all human beings are born with a sinful and depraved nature. (Psa. 51:5; Rom. 3:23; 5:12)
5. JUSTIFICATION BY FAITH.
We Believe the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures (I Cor. 15:3) as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice; and all who believe on Him are justified on the single ground of His shed blood. (Rom. 3:24, 25)
6. PERSON AND WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.
We Believe the Holy Spirit is a Person who reproves the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8-11); who regenerates and baptizes all believers into the Body of Christ (I Cor. 12:12-13); and who indwells, enlightens, and guides the individual believer. (l Cor. 6:19; Jn. 16:13)
7. EVERLASTING LIFE.
We Believe all who receive by faith the Lord Jesus Christ are born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby become children of God (John 1:12, 13; Rom. 8:16), and are the recipients of everlasting life. (I Peter 1:3-5)
We Believe in resurrection of the crucified body of our Lord (Acts 2:32), in His ascension into Heaven (Acts 1:9-10), and in his present life there as High Priest and Advocate for the saved. (Heb. 4:14; I John 2:1-2)
9. SECOND COMING OF CHRIST.
We Believe the saved will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air (I Thess. 4:13- 18), and in the personal, visible, and glorious return of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. (Acts 1:11; Rev. 19:11-16)
We Believe in the bodily resurrection of the just and of the unjust (John 5:28-29; I Cor. 15:44), the everlasting blessedness of the saved (Rom. 6:5), and the everlasting, conscious punishment of the lost. (Rev. 14:9-12; 21:8)
We Believe that old serpent called the Devil and Satan is a real person who deceives the whole world. (I Pet. 5:8; Rev. 12:9; 2 Cor. 4:4; Job 1:6-7)
12. SEPARATION FROM THE WORLD.
We Believe all Christians are called into a life of separation to the Lord and to His joyous service and from all worldly and sinful practices. (I Thes. 1:9-10; 2 Cor. 6:17-18; 7:1; 1 John 2:15-16)
We Believe all Christians are obligated to witness by word and deed to these truths and to proclaim the Gospel to all the world. (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15)
14. BAPTISM AND THE LORD'S SUPPER.
We Believe Christian Baptism is the immersion of the believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The act is a symbol of our faith in a crucified, buried and risen Saviour. The members of the church by the use of bread and fruit of the vine commemorate the Lord's death “till He come”. (Mat. 3:13-17; 28:19-20; 26:26-27; Mark 1:9- 11; Luke 22; 19,30; John 3:22-23; Acts 8:38-39; Rom. 6:3-5; I Cor. 10:16- 17; 1 Cor. 11:23-26)
15. THE LORD'S DAY.
We Believe the first day of the week is the Lord's Day. It is a Christian institution for regular observance. It commemorates the resurrection of Christ from the dead and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion, both public and private. (Matt. 28:1:6; John 20:1; Acts 20:7; I Cor. 16:1-2; Rev. 1:9-11)
16. THE RIGHTEOUS AND THE WICKED.
We Believe there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and wicked. Those only who are justified through the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and sanctified by the Holy Spirit are truly righteous in his sight. Those who continue in impenitence and unbelief are in his sight wicked and under condemnation. This distinction between the righteous and the wicked holds in and after death, and will be made manifest at the judgment when final and everlasting awards are made to all men. (Matt. 25:31-46; Marie 9:48; Luke 23:43; John 3:36 Rom. 9:22-24; 1 Cor. 15:45-53; 2 Cor. 5:1-10; Phil. 3:20-21; 1 Thess. 4:16- 17; Rev. 20:10-15)
17. RELIGIOUS LIBERTY.
We Believe God alone is Lord of the conscience, and he has left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men which are contrary to his Word or not contained in. Church and state should be separate. The state owes to the church protection and full freedom in the pursuit of its spiritual ends. In providing for such freedom no ecclesiastical group or denomination should be favored by the state. Civil government being ordained of God, it is the duty of Christians to render loyal obedience thereto in all things not contrary to the revealed will of God. The church should not resort to the civil power to carry on its work. The Gospel of Christ contemplates spiritual means alone for the pursuit of its ends. The state has no right to impose penalties for religious opinions of any kind. The state has no right to impose taxes for the support of any form of religion. A free church in a free state is the Christian ideal, and this implies the right of free and unhindered access to God on the part of all men, and the right to form and propagate opinions in the sphere of religion without interference by the civil power. (Matt. 22:17-21; Rom. 13:1-7; 1 Pet. 2:17)
18. SOCIAL SERVICE.
We Believe every Christian is under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ regnant in his own life and in human society; to oppose in the spirit of Christ every form of greed, selfishness, and vice; to provide for the orphaned, the aged, the helpless, and the sick; to seek to bring industry, government, and society as a whole under the sway of the principles of righteousness, truth and brotherly Love; to promote these ends Christians should be ready to work with all men of good will in any good cause, always being careful to act in the spirit of love without compromising their loyalty to Christ and His truth. All means and methods used in social service for the amelioration of society and the establishment of righteousness among men must finally depend on the regeneration of the individual by the saving grace of God in Christ Jesus. (Ex. 20:16; 22:9-15; Lev. 6:1·5; Deut. 4:41-42; Deut. 15:1 2; Duet 27;17; Ezek. 18:5-9; Zech. 8:16-17; Lk 10:25·37, 6:27-36; Rom. 12:14-21; Col. 3:12-17; Jam 2:8)
19. EVANGELISM AND MISSIONS.
Believe it is
the duty of every Christian and every church of Christ to seek to extend the
gospel to the ends of the earth. The new birth of man's spirit by God's Holy
Spirit means the birth of love for others. Missionary effort on the part of all
rests thus upon a spiritual necessity of the regenerate life. It is also
expressly and repeatedly commanded in the teachings of Christ. It is the duty
of every child of God to seek constantly to win the lost to Christ by personal
effort and by all other methods sanctioned by the gospel of Christ. (Matt.
I0:5-15; 13:1-23; 22:8-10; 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16,19-20; Luke 24:46-53; Acts
1:4-8; 2:1-4; 21:39; 8:1-40; 10:42-48; 13:1-3; 30:33; 2 Cor. 5:19-21)