statement of beliefs
The following is a statement of our position regarding basic Christian doctrines. We believe there are basic foundational Christian truths about which there must be agreement. On remaining doctrinal issues there should be liberty. In all things there must be a balance of truth and grace. We will not compromise on the following essential doctrines of the Christian faith, yet we pledge to protect the rights of our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ to hold differing views and perspectives on “secondary” doctrines.
We believe the Bible is the only inspired, infallible and authoritative Word of God. We do not accept any spiritual experience as having its source in the Holy Spirit that does not have a precedent in Scripture. Nor do we accept any revelation, vision, dream, prophecy, or discernment as truth which contradicts Scripture. We acknowledge our dependence on the Holy Spirit for accurate illumination, interpretation and application of Scripture. We do not believe any other writings have the same authority as the canon of Scripture.
We believe in: the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ; His virgin birth; His sinless life; His miracles; His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood; His bodily resurrection; His ascension to the right hand of the Father; and His future return in power and glory. Jesus Christ is the Word of God. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us. . . “ (John 1:1,14). He chose to sacrifice himself on the cross for the redemption of all mankind. Through His shed blood, all who believe in Him and His sacrifice have their sins remitted and are restored to fellowship with God. “There is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (I Timothy 2:5). All who seek restored fellowship with God must go through Jesus alone. “Jesus said unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.” (John 14:6)
We believe in the tangibility, and present ministry of the Holy Spirit, to equip the saints with power and authority, and by whose indwelling Christians are enabled to live a Godly life and to perform good works. We believe that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8) and that His ministry by the Holy Spirit has not changed from the beginning. We accept and acknowledge all of the biblical gifts and ministries of the Holy Spirit as vital for the Church.
We believe in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that those who have accepted the gift of salvation are called to worship and fellowship together in Spirit and in truth within a body of believers – the Church of Jesus Christ. We believe we are given freedom by Scripture to worship freely before our Lord - with song, dance, and the raising of hands. We believe that we are incomplete without truth, love, and unity operating within the Body. We believe that, as the Church, we are called to carry out the Great Commission and to share the gospel of Jesus Christ within our communities, our nation, and the world. We believe that we are called to minister to all people as Jesus did – particularly the poor, the needy, the orphans and the widows.
We believe that God is once again restoring passion for intercessory prayer in our land. We fully believe that prayer is not an option, or an assignment for a select few, but a mandate that must be acted upon by all believers for the healing and restoration of our land. In response to the call of Ezekiel 22:30, we are committed to the development of a prayer network - one that is linked and unified with other houses of prayer throughout the nations.
marriage (christian vs civil)
We believe that the essence of a Christian wedding is the worship of God, not a civil function.
We further believe that Christian marriage is comprised of three essential characteristics.
Marriage is available to all people. God instituted marriage as a natural common grace availabe to all people, at all times, in all places. It is availabe not only to Christians, but to all people. (Genesis2:24)
Marriage is a sacred covenant between one man and one woman. Biblical marriage is a lifelong covenant or sacrament between one man and one woman (Matthew 19:4-6). Biblical marriage promotes the bearing and rearing of children by a mother and a father, and the exercise of stewardship over creation (Genesis 2:27-28). Christian weddings bestow a divine blessing on the bride and groom as they exchange vows. During this sacred ceremony, God receives the worship of the congregation as they witness the marriage vows and offer God prayer and praise.
Marriage is also a legal or civil status licensed by the government. Throughout history, governments have given marriage special civil status in order to protect the orderly bearing and rearing of the next generation of citizens. During a traditional American wedding, a minister serves as a "double-agent"- performing both a religious function and a government function simultaneously.
We believe that sexual feelings, thoughts and behaviors were created by God and are good. Sexual intimacy was designed by God to be experienced between one man and one woman within the bond of marriage.
Outside of marriage, God's standard for sex is celibacy - abstaining from both heterosexual and homosexual acts (Matthew 5:27-30). Celibacy is a gift of God that allows an unmarried personto live a life of purity and contentment, so that a person does not have to engage in sex to have a full and satisfying life (1 Corinthians 7:7-9).
We further believe that same-sex attraction is not part of God's design and that homosexual behavior is sinful and unnatural (Romans 1:24-28). While God's grace is sufficient to forgive and cleanse us from all sexual sin, His grace does not guarantee that a forgiven and cleansed individual will not experience sexual desire or temptation. However, God has promised to provide us with a way of escape when we are tempted (1 Corinthians 10:3).
We assert that God condemns all forms of sexual perversion. Sexual practices that are affronts to God's holiness are sin, and sin requires the penalty of death (Romans 6:23). The following sexual practices are forbidden by God:
Sexual abuse of people and animals
While the Old Testament Law was fulfilled with the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, it remains God's standard for determining what is right or wrong, moral or immoral. Jesus Himself stated, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore, anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5:17-19)
We believe that gender is not a process of evolution, but originated through the creative will and design of God. We further believe that God created two distinct genders, male and female, which embody biological differences (Deuteronomy 22:5; 1 Corinthians 11:3-16). We believe that man and woman were created by God as distinct acts of creation, equal in value, yet different in design, function and attributes. We further believe that both male and female genders are aspects of God's own image (Genesis 1:27; 2:7, 18-19). We believe that both genders - male and female - are necessary to procreate and populate the earth according to God's instructions (Genesis 1:28), and that this purpose is accomplished through their respective biological differences.