There is one living and true God, the creator of the universe (Exodus 15:11; Isaiah 45:11; Jeremiah 27:5). He is revealed in the unity of the Godhead as God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, who are equal in every divine perfection (Exodus 15:11; Matthew 28:19; II Corinthians 13:14).
God the Father –
The supreme ruler of the universe. He providentially
directs the affairs of history according to the purposes of His grace (Genesis 1; Psalm 19:1; 104; Hebrews 1:13).
God the Son –
The Savior of the world. Born of the virgin Mary (Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:26-35). He declared His deity among men (John 1:14, 18; Matthew 9:6), died on the cross as the only sacrifice for sin (Philippians 2:6-11), arose bodily from the grave (Luke 24:6, 7, 24-26; I Corinthians 15:3-6), and ascended back to the Father (Acts 1:9-11; Mark 16:19). He is at the right hand of the Father, interceding for believers (Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:25) until He returns to rapture them from the world (Acts 1:11; I Thessalonians 4:16-18).
God the Holy Spirit –
The manifest presence of deity. He convicts of sin (John 16:8-11), teaches spiritual truths according to the written Word (John 16:12-15), permanently indwells believers (Acts 5:32; John 14:16, 17, 20, 23), and confers on every believer at conversion the ability to render effective spiritual service (I Peter 4:10, 11).
The Scriptures are God’s inerrant revelation, complete in the Old and New Testaments, written by divinely inspired men as they were moved by the Holy Spirit (II Timothy 3:16; II Peter 1:21). Those men wrote not in the words of human wisdom, but in words taught by the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 2:13).
The Scriptures provide the standard for the believer’s faith and practice (II Timothy 3:16, 17), reveal the principles by which God will judge all (Hebrews 4:12; John 12:48), and express the true basis of Christian fellowship (Galatians 1:8, 9: II John 9-11).
The World –
God created all things for His own pleasure and glory, as revealed in the Biblical account of creation (Genesis chapter 1; Revelation 4:11; John 1:2, 3; Colossians 1:16).
God created man in His own image. As the crowning work of creation, every person is of dignity and worth and merits the respect of all person (Psalm 8; Genesis 1:27; 2:7; Matthew 10:28-31).
Although man was created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26, 2:17), he fell through sin and that image was marred (Romans 5:12, James 3:9). In his unregenerate state, he is void of spiritual life, is under the influence of the devil, and lacks any power to save himself (Ephesians 2:1-3; John 1:13). The sin nature has been transmitted to every member of the human race, the man Jesus Christ alone being excepted (Romans 3:23, I Peter 2:22). Because of the sin nature, man possesses no divine life and is essentially and unchangeable depraved apart from divine grace (Romans 3:10-19; Jeremiah 17:9).
The Meaning of Salvation –
Salvation is the gracious work of God whereby He delivers undeserving sinners from sin and its results (Matthews 1:21, Ephesians 2:8, 9). In justification, He declares righteous all who put faith in Christ as Savior (Romans 3:20-22), giving them freedom from condemnation, peace with God, and full assurance of future glorification (Romans 3:24-26).
The Way of Salvation –
Salvation is based wholly on the grace of God apart from works (Titus 3:5; Ephesians 2:9). Anyone who will exercise repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ will be saved (Acts 16:30-32; Luke 24:47; Romans 10:17).
The Provision of Salvation –
Christ died for the sins of the whole world (John 1:29; 3:16; I John 2:1, 2). Through His blood, atonement is made without respect of persons (I Timothy 2:4-6). All sinners can be saved by this gracious provision (Hebrews 2:9; John 3:18).
The Purpose of Salvation –
God’s sovereignty and man’s freedom are two inseparable factors in the salvation experience (Ephesians 2:4-6). The two Bible truths are in no way contradictory, but they are amazingly complementary in the great salvation so freely provided. God in His sovereignty purposed, planned, and executed salvation in eternity while a man’s freedom enables him to make a personal choice of time, either to receive his salvation and be saved, or to reject it and be damned (Ephesians 1:9-12; 1:13, 14; John 1:12, 13).
All believers are set apart until God (Hebrews 10:12-14) at the time of their regeneration (I Corinthians 6:11). They should grow in grace (II Peter 1:5-8) by allowing the Holy Spirit to apply God’s Word to their lives (I Peter 2:2), conforming them to the principles of divine righteousness (Romans 12:1, 2; I Thessalonians 4:3-7) and making them partakers of the holiness of God (II Corinthians 7:1; I Peter 1:15, 16).
All believers are eternally secure in Jesus Christ (John 10:24-30; Romans 3:35-39). They are born again (John 3:3-5; I John 5:1; I Peter 1:23), made new creatures in Christ (II Corinthians 5:17, II Peter 1:4), and indwelt by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:28; I Corinthians 10:13), and they are kept by the power of God (Philippians 1:6; 2:12, 13; I peter 1:3-5; Hebrews 13:5).
The Nature of the Church –
A New Testament church is a local congregation (Acts 16:5; I Corinthians 4:7) of baptized believers in Jesus Christ (Acts 2:41) who are united by covenant in belief of what God has revealed and in obedience to what He has commanded (Act 2:31, 42).
The Ministry of the Church –
Her mission is evangelizing sinners by preaching the gospel (Matthew 28:19; Luke 24:45-47), baptizing those who believe (Acts 2:41; 8-12, 35-38), and maturing them by instruction (Matthew 28:20; Acts 2:42) and discipline (Matthew 18:17, 18; I Corinthians 5:1-5).
The Fellowship of the Church –
She is free to associate with true churches in furthering the faith (II Corinthians 11:8; Philippians 4:10, 15, 16) but is responsible to keep herself from those who hold doctrines or practices contrary to Holy Scripture (Galatians 1:8, 19; I John 2:19). In association with other churches, each church is equal and is the sole judge of the measure and method of her cooperation (Matthew 20:25-28). In all matters of polity and practice, the will of each church is final (Matthew 18:18).