Our beliefs are organized under six headings: God, revelation, gospel, humans, Jesus, and the church. Each section begins with a simple, precise statement, describing what we believe. Each section is supported with Scriptural references, and concludes with a brief sentence surveying ideas our beliefs exclude us from (technical terminology is used for short-hand and definitions can be found at the end of this page). In general, we see ourselves as part of the Reformed theological tradition and have a great appreciation for confessions such as the Westminster Standards and the Three Forms of Unity.
We believe God is a Trinity, one unified being existing as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Deut 6:4; 2 Cor 13:14). We believe God is wholly sovereign (Acts 17:26). As such He is all-powerful, all-knowing, all-good, all-present, all-beautiful and holds all other greatest attributes (Ps 139). Thus, we are not polytheists, pantheists, pluralists, or open theists which excludes us from other world religions, eastern philosophies and cults.
We believe God makes himself and his will known in two ways, through creation and through the Bible. Creation reflects God’s beauty and existence as designer and uncaused source of all things including matter and morality (Rom 1:19-20). The Bible reflects God’s history of revelation to humans of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We believe the Bible is inerrant as the verbally inspired word of God in the original writings and as such is the final and supreme authority for Christians (2 Tim 3:16-17; 2 Pet 1:16-21). Thus, we are not relativists, demythologists, or papists.
We believe God is chiefly about his gospel, creating and saving a people for himself (Is 43:7) through the person and work of his son, Jesus Christ (Lk 24:27). Thus, we are not humanists, nihilists, naturalists, or theological postmodernists.
We believe humans were created in the image and likeness of God but through the sin of the first human, Adam, the race fell (Rom 5:12) and ever since individually and collectively sins which offends and alienates humans from God (Rom 1:21-25). The result is total moral depravity and inability of humans (Rom 3:1-12) to rectify their condition and the just response from the all-good God is the eternal wrath of hell (Rom 2:15; Mt 10:21; 24:51). Thus, we are not Pelagians, libertarians, or annhilationists.
We believe God created space and time and entered into it in the person of Jesus Christ at the beginning of the first century as the eternal son of God in order to save humans. We believe Jesus is fully God and fully man, never was not so, and yet took on humanity without ever subtracting from his divinity (Jn 1:1-3,14; Phil 2:6-8). He was born of the virgin Mary (Mt 1:18-21), lived a sinless life (1 Pet 2:22) perfectly fulfilling the law (Mt 5:17), preached the gospel, died on a cross when he was 33 and rose again three days later and began appearing to hundreds of people for forty days (1 Cor 15:3-8). Thus, we are not monarchians or Arians, or revisionists who merely follow Jesus as a good teacher.
We believe on the cross Jesus satisfied God’s just demands of eternal payment for sin since he was the eternal son of God (Rom 3:25). We believe on the cross Jesus substituted himself for all humans who believe in his person and work since he was the only human who never sinned (2 Cor 5:21). We believe all humans who put faith in Jesus are justified before God because of the imputed righteousness of Jesus and are therefore saved from the eternal wrath of hell (Rom 4:24-25). Thus, we are not moralists, universalists, diabolic ransomists, or new perspectivists.
We believe this salvation for humans is a gift from God planned before the foundation of the world (Eph 1:4; 2:8-9; Jn 15:16). We believe the Holy Spirit convicts of sin and unrighteousness (Jn 16:8), draws people to hear the gospel (Jn 6:44), and grants faith in Jesus’ person and work to all types of peoples (Jn 3:16). After justification, we believe personal faith in Jesus is kept by the Holy Spirit through sanctification (Jn 10:29; 1 Pet 2:9; 1 Jn 2:19) until the time we die or Jesus returns to consumate the eternal glory of God (1 Thess 4:16-17; Rev 22:16-17). We believe Jesus is currently sitting on the throne of God and is the head pastor of his church (Heb 12:2; Eph 5:23). Thus, we are not Arminians, hyper-Calvinists, dispensationalists, perfectionists, or eschatological nationalists or theonimists.
We believe the Church is the invisible spiritual body of believers in Jesus throughout all time (Eph 5:4-16). We believe the Church has many local expressions and is not a business or a building but a viceroy of the kingdom of God (Rev 1:4-6). We believe in the autonomy of local churches and in a government of male plurality for the leadership of local churches (Acts 20:28; 1 Pet 5:1-5; 1 Tim 3:2). Thus, we are not ecumenicists, egalitarians, or mono-episcopists.
We believe the Holy Spirit gives different spiritual gifts to different individuals for the mutal edification of the person, the Church and the city (Rom 12:3-8; 1 Cor 12:4-11). We believe no gifts other than the Bible are essential (2 Pet 1:3-4), no gifts have expired (Jn 16:7-14) and individuals are responsible to exercise their gifts and moral liberties according to the instruction of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:16). Thus, we are not Pentecostals, cessationists, or moral fundamentalists.
We believe water baptism (Mt 28:19), the Lord’s supper (1 Cor 11:23-26), and missional evangelism (Mk 16:15; Acts 1:8; 1 Cor 9:19-23) are the means of confession and expression for those who believe in Jesus. (Rom 10:9) We believe those who believe in Jesus will be actively involved in the ministry of his Church (1 Pet 4:10-11; Heb 10:24-25). Thus, we are not sacramentalists, isolationists, or individualists.
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BRIEF DEFINITIONS OF TECHNICAL TERMINOLOGY USED
Annhilationists – Those who believe all humans not believing in Jesus, will cease to exist at death.
Arians – Those who believe Jesus became God.
Arminians – Those who believe saved humans are not predetermined by God.
Cessationists – Those who believe supernatural gifts and miracles ceased when the apostles died.
Demythologists – Those who believe the Bible is a combination of myth and history.
Diabolic Ransomists – Those who believe Jesus death payed a debt to the devil.
Dispensationalists – Those who believe God saves people in different ways at different times.
Ecumenicists – Those who believe all churches ought to set aside their differences for the sake of unity and become one big church.
Egalitarians – Those who believe men and women are the same in every way and therefore either gender may equally occupy any role in life or leadership.
Eschatological Nationalists or Theonimists – Those who believe that in the end Christians will take over human governments and institute God’s law.
Humanists – Those who believe humans are the highest beings and can save themselves.
Hyper-Calvinists – Those who believe God does not use means in saving humans and believe evangelism is not needed.
Individualists – Those who believe our individual selves are our chief and primary concern.
Isolationists – Those who believe Christianity is best lived out in separation from other people(s).
Libertarians – Those who believe humans have a will which is free to make uncaused decisions.
Monarchians – Those who believe Jesus was not fully human.
Mono-Episcopists – Those who believe there should only be one pastor of a local church.
Moral Fundamentalists – Those who believe Christians ought to refrain from practices that could be abused and lead one into sin.
Moralists – Those who believe doing good deeds earns one salvation.
Naturalists – Those who those who believe reality is purely sensual (see, feel, hear, taste & touch).
New Perspectivists – Those who believe Jesus death was not a legal transaction before God satisfying the just demands of God’s wrath which is imputed to believers and instead was merely a demonstration of God’s faithfulness to his covenant.
Nihilists – Those who believe in nothing.
Open Theists – Those who believe God is changing and/or evolving with the open future.
Pantheists – Those who believe everything is god.
Papists – Those who believe the pope is the final and ultimate spiritual authority.
Pelagians – Those who believe humans are essentially good and can earn their salvation.
Pentecostals – Those who believe all Christians need to have their own experience of Pentecost where they begin speaking in tongues.
Perfectionists – Those who believe humans can become perfect before death or Jesus’ return.
Pluralists – Those who believe all ways or religions lead to the same god.
Polytheists – Those who believe there are many gods.
Relativists – Those who believe truth is relative to the person, place, or situation.
Revisionists who merely follow Jesus as a good teacher – Those who believe the only accounts of Jesus we should accept as history are ones not presenting him as deity.
Sacramentalists – Those who believe partaking of the sacraments saves a person.
Theological Postmodernists – Those who believe there is no objective truth because we are in a post-modern and supposed post-truth era.
Universalists – Those who believe all humans will be saved in the end.