In essential beliefs – we have unity.
“There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” Eph. 4:4-6 (NKJV)
In non-essential beliefs – we have liberty.
“Receive one who is weak in the faith, but not to disputes over doubtful things…Who are you to judge another's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. Indeed, he will be made to stand, for God is able to make him stand.. So then each of us shall give account of himself to God... Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves.” Rom. 14:1, 4, 12, 22 (NKJV)
In all our beliefs – we show charity.
“And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.” I Cor. 13:2 (NKJV)
THE ESSENTIALS WE BELIEVE:
God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three personalities: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They are three co-equal and are one God.
(Genesis 1:1, 26, 27; 3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; I Peter 1:2; II Corinthians 13:14)
Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. Jesus lived in a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven’s glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
(Matt. 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5, 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14,15; I Cor. 15:3,4; Acts 1:9-11; I Timothy 6:14,15; Titus 2:13)
THE HOLY SPIRIT
The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and the Son of God. He is present in the world to make men aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. He gives every believer a spiritual gift(s) when they are saved. As Christians we seek to live under his control daily.
(II Cor. 3:17; John 16:7-13; Acts 1:8; I Cor. 2:12, 3:16; Eph. 1:13, 5:18; Galatians 5:25)
The Bible is God’s Word to us. It was written by human authors, under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is the truth without any mixture of error.
(II Timothy 3:16; II Peter 1:20,21; II Timothy 1:13; Psalm 119:105,160, 12:6; Proverbs 30:5)
People are made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. People are the supreme object of God’s creation. Although every person has tremendous potential for good, all of us are marred by an attitude that separates people from God and causes many problems in life.
(Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6a; Romans 3:23; Isaiah 59:1,2)
Salvation is God’s free gift to us but we must accept it. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvement or good works. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ as God’s offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sin’s penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith we are saved. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into his life by faith.
(Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8,9; John 14:6, 1:12; Titus 3:5;Galatians 3:26; Romans 5:1)
Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the true believer is secure in that salvation for eternity. Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self-effort of the Christian. It is the grace and keeping power of God that gives us this security.
(John 10:29; II Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 7:25; 10:10,14; I Peter 1:3-5)
People were created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation. To be eternally separated from God is Hell. To be eternally in union with Him is eternal life. Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence.
(John 3:16; John 2:25; John 5:11-13; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15; Matthew 1:8; Matthew 2:44,46)