Statement of faith

The Bible: We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Word of God. God moved holy men in Biblical times to write exactly what He wanted them to. This does not mean He did so through mechanical dictation. Rather, through the use of their individual personalities, they wrote with distinct styles the exact words God wanted (2 Pet 1:21, Gal 3:16).
The Bible is inerrant, infallible and the final authority for life and practice. The Bible does not contain the Word of God, it is the Word of God (Matt 4:4, 2 Tim 3:16, Prov 30:5-6). There are no errors in the Bible as originally given in the autographa (original writings). It is entirely sufficient and reliable for every aspect of life (2 Pet 1:3, 2 Tim 3:16-17). It does not have to be supplemented or modified by humanistic philosophy, psychology, evolution or history. We believe the way to interpret Scripture is literally, grammatically, contextually and in harmony with other Scripture.

The Godhead: We believe the Bible assumes, and never seeks to prove, the existence of God (Gen 1:1). God is the Supreme Lord and Maker of heaven and earth (Gen 1:1, Col 1:16-17). God as revealed in Scripture is One Being, consisting of three Persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit – 2 Cor 13:14). The three Persons are co-equal, and co-eternal (John 10:30). Each Person is God (John 6:27, Phil 2:6; Acts 5:3-4), but they are one God, not three gods. They are not different modes of one Person, but three Persons making up one Being (John 10:30, Matt 28:19). The Son is eternally begotten by the Father, and the Spirit eternally proceeds from the Father and Son. In all things, the Trinity act as one (creation, resurrection, salvation). We believe God’s priority is His glory (Is 48:11, John 17:24), and to that end, we are commanded to love Him with all our heart, soul and mind (Matt 22:36-38).

Jesus Christ: We believe Jesus Christ is, from eternity past, God the Son. He pre-existed (Micah 5:2, Is 9:6, John 1:1, 14, John 8:58). He is recorded as being the Creator (Col 1:16, John 1:3). He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary (Matt 1:16, Luke 1:35). He was undiminished deity and perfect humanity united in one Person forever. Christ, in His humanity, was not able to sin. God the Son, in His incarnation, voluntarily submitted to the non-use of some of His divine attributes and prerogatives, and veiled His preincarnate glory (Phil 2:7) At no time did Christ give up any of His divine attributes. Christ’s life, as He was sinless and very God, was infinitely valuable. His life, represented by His blood (Lev 17:11), was valuable enough to ransom us from the debt of offending the glory of God (Rom 3:23, Mk 10:45). He paid the price for our sin (I Tim 2:6), perfectly fulfilled the Law and paid its penalty (Gal 3:13). God was satisfied with Christ’s offering of Himself (I John 2:2). Christ died in the place of the sinner (2 Cor 5:21), effecting reconciliation (2 Cor 5:18-19). Christ rose bodily from the tomb on the third day (John 20:20-29). Christ ascended to heaven to be the head over the church, where He continues His High Priestly Ministry on behalf of believers (Acts 1:9-11; Heb 4:14-16, Rom 8:34). Christ will return personally and visibly to rule the earth as King for at least 1000 years. (Rev 19-20:6).

The  Holy Spirit: We believe the Holy Spirit is the third Person of the Trinity, God the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is clearly a Person, not a force. The Spirit’s main ministry is revealing Jesus Christ, to glorify Him (John 16:14, 15:26). To that end, we see He does a number of works: Conviction (John 16:8-11), Regeneration (Titus 3:5, John 3:3-7), Baptising (I Cor 12:13, Rom 6:1-14), Indwelling (I Cor 6:19, Rom 8:9), Anointing(I John 2:27), Sealing (Eph 4:30), Illuminating (I Cor 2:9-16), Guiding (Rom 8:14), Filling (Eph 5:18) and Gifting (I Cor 12-14) Certain gifts were used to authenticate a young church, and to supplement its revelation (I Cor 13:8-11). As it matured in love, and as the New Testament circulated, the need for these sign gifts diminished, until they ceased altogether by the end of the apostolic era.

Angels: We believe angels are created beings (Col 1:16) Angels were created to serve God and as such are not to be worshipped (Col 2:18, Rev 22:8-9).. Certain angels sinned and joined Satan in his rebellion, and became what the Bible calls demons or unclean spirits (Jude 6, Rev 12:4-7).

Satan: We believe Satan is acknowledged through Scripture as a person, not simply the personification of evil. Satan is a creature, one who was created perfect (Ezek 28:14-15). Satan is not omniscient, omnipotent or omnipresent. He has limitations, and God places limits on him (Job 1:12). He will ultimately be cast into the lake of fire (Rev 20:10).

Man: We believe man was created by special creation of God on the sixth, literal solar day of creation. Atheistic evolution and theistic evolution are to be rejected as explanations for the existence of man. Man was created innocent, and in the likeness of God. That is, he was without the moral knowledge of sin, and without a sin nature. Man was given a test of obedience to the revealed will of God. Having failed, he died spiritually that moment – and was separated from the life of God. Since that day, a sinful nature is transmitted to every descendant of Adam and Eve (Rom 5:12, Ps 51:5).

Sin: We believe sin is anything contrary to the glory of God (Rom 3:23, Jer 2:12-13). v Man is now totally depraved. This does not mean man is as evil as he can be; it means sin affects every part of him (Rom 3:10-18). The penalty for sin is death: spiritual, physical and ultimately, eternal death in the lake of fire.

Salvation: We believe salvation is when God, for His glory, and our good, saves us from our sinful rebellion and its just penalties, and enables us to be His children and future Bride. God elected from eternity past those who would be saved. This election is based on foreknowledge (I Pet 1:2, Rom 8:29-30). Election is unconditional from God’s point of view, but salvation is conditional from man’s point of view (John 6:37). The Holy Spirit, using the Word of God, effectually persuades men to become voluntary participants in His saving grace (2 Thes 2:13, John 6:37, 44-45, 64-65, Rom 10:13-17). Salvation is achieved through the atoning work of Christ. His perfect life, substitutionary death and vindicatory resurrection combine to provide the means for salvation. There is nothing a man can do to save himself – no works can save (Eph 2:8-9, Tis 3:5, Rom 3:28). The condition for salvation is clearly given as repent and believe (Acts 20:21, Mk 1:15). A believer is eternally secure. This is based on the completeness of God’s saving grace, and on the fact that it depends on God’s grace, not on works (Rom 8:38-39, Heb 7:25, Rom 8:34, Phil 1:6, Jude 24, I Pet 1:5). Assurance of salvation is the believer’s experience of laying hold on the promises of eternal security by faith.

The Church: The church is a spiritual organism, composed of all regenerated people.
The local church is a group of baptised believers under Christ’s headship that follow the New Testament pattern for a local church. The local church is to be organised (I Cor 14:40; I Tim 3:15). It is to have officers. The officers are to be pastors (also called elders and overseers in Scripture) and deacons (I Tim 3:1-13). The church is to have ordinances – that is, an outward ceremony to be performed by the local church. These are to be believers’ baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper. The purpose of the church is to glorify God by bearing fruit. The church is to make disciples of Christ, baptise them, and train them in righteousness (Matt 28:19-20). It is to care for its own (I Tim 5) as well as outsiders (Gal 6:10). It is to praise God (Acts 2:47), be the repository of truth (I Tim 3:15), and be a righteous influence in the world (Matt 5:13-16). The church as a ‘called-out assembly’ is to keep herself separate from corrupting influences (I John 2:15-17, 2 Cor 6:14-18, Rom 16:17). The church is authorised to discipline unrepentant believers in its midst (Matt 18:15-20, 1 Cor 5:3-7, 2 Thes 3:6-15). The local church is autonomous and reports to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Last Things: We believe that the end of the world is approaching (1 Pet. 4:7; 2 Pet. 3:3-13)  that soon Christ will descend from heaven with His saints and raise the believing dead from the grave, along with living believers (Acts 1:11; Rev. 1:7; 1 Thess. 4:13-18  1 Cor. 15:12-59)  that He will later rule and reign on the earth for at least a thousand years (Rev 20:4-6). We believe that after this time the final resurrection and judgement will then take place, where the wicked will be adjudged to endless punishment, and the righteous to endless joy  and that this judgment will fix forever the final state of men in heaven or hell, on principles of righteousness   (2 Thess. 1:9;  Rev. 22:11-15;  2 Pet. 2:9)

Christian Conduct – We believe that spiritual growth is the natural and expected result of receiving spiritual life. The Bible admonishes each believer to live a life of increasing holiness, becoming more and more like our Lord Jesus Christ, through obedience to the Word of God and the enabling power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. Each believer should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon his/her Saviour and Lord. Leviticus 20:7; Acts 17:11; Romans 8:29; Galatians 5:22,23; Ephesians 2:10; 1 Peter 2:2.

Religious Liberty– We believe that each church is independent and must be free to operate and discharge its God given responsibilities without the control of any ecclesiastical or political authority. God has given both the Church and the State specific biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities so that neither institution has the right to control the other. Both of these authorities are answerable to God and governed by His Word. Matthew 22:21; Romans 13:1-7; 1 Timothy 2:1-3; Acts 5:29.

Church Cooperation– We believe that loyalty to Christ and the biblical principle of holiness require separation from groups and organizations that do not uphold and contend for the truth of God’s Word. True spiritual fellowship is the result of a common faith and practice. Romans 16:17; Ephesians 4:13-15; 2 Thessalonians 3:6,7; 1 John 1:6,7; Jude 3.

Statement of Faith – The Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the foregoing statements accurately represent the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, are binding upon all members. Acts 20:27; 2 Timothy 3:16,17; 4:1,2; 1 Peter 2:9,10.