The Gospel is the good news of God’s grace invading the darkness of this world through the life, death, resurrection and ascension of his Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Christ’s crucifixion is the heart of the gospel, his resurrection is the power of the gospel, his ascension is the glory of the gospel, and his future return is the blessed hope of the gospel. This good news is not only the means by which people are saved, but also the means by which followers of Christ continue to be formed into the image of Christ. Thus, we believe the gospel should be heralded as being of first importance and should be kept central in all areas of Christian life and ministry.
We affirm the Bible as the wholly sufficient and infallible written Word of God. Given by God himself, the Scriptures are divinely inspired and are, thus, free of error. We believe that the entire Bible is a unified story leading toward, and centered on, the person and work of Jesus Christ. Thus, no portion of Scripture is properly read or understood unless interpreted in light of Christ himself. The Bible is the final authority in all matters of conduct and doctrine.
We believe that there is only one living and true God, eternally existing in three distinct persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. These three, the Holy Trinity, are equal in essence and distinct in function.
GOD THE FATHER
We believe that God the Father, as the first person of the Trinity, is sovereign over all creation. He is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, eternal and immutable. While he is transcendent, he is also actively involved in his creation, graciously adopting and transforming sinners into beloved sons and daughters through his Son Jesus Christ.
GOD THE SON
We believe that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God and the second person of the Trinity. He is the eternal Word made flesh, supernaturally conceived by the Holy Spirit, and born of a virgin. He is fully God and fully man. All things were created by him and through him. He was before all things, and in him, all things hold together. He is the only Savior for the sins of the world, having lived a perfectly sinless life, and having shed his blood and died a vicarious death on the cross. Redeeming us from sin, he rose bodily from the grave on the third day, victorious over death and the powers of darkness. He ascended into heaven where, enthroned at the Father’s right hand, he intercedes for his people and rules as Lord over all. He is actively uniting all things to himself – things in heaven and things on earth. He is the head of his body, the Church, and should be loved, served and obeyed by all.
GOD THE SPIRIT
We believe that God the Holy Spirit, as the third person of the Trinity, executes the will of God in this world through humanity, by leading, guiding, filling, teaching and convicting. Through regeneration, he indwells and equips true believers upon conversion by giving them gifts to be used for the building up of the Church and sanctifies all Christians by continually growing them into the image of Christ.
We believe that humanity was created in the image of God to enjoy an intimate relationship with our Creator. However, because of Adam and Eve’s willful sin in the garden, sin and death entered into the world, and has infected all of humanity. Therefore, because of our inherent sinful nature passed down from Adam, we are all separated from God, spiritually dead, unable to save ourselves, and destined for physical death and eternal separation from the grace of God.
We believe that because humanity is wholly infected by sin, we are utterly incapable of saving ourselves through any works of our own.Thus, salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ alone. The substitutionary death of Christ on the cross was the only sufficient sacrifice, offering atonement for sins and imputing his righteousness to all who truly repent and believe. Those who have trusted in Christ for salvation have been born again to a living hope and are adopted into God’s family. As a result of our new relationship with God through his Son, we are now called to a life of submission and service to Christ, thus showing the spiritual fruit of true heart transformation.
We believe that all who truly repent and believe in the gospel of Jesus Christ are brought from death to life and can enjoy the assurance of salvation and eternal life. Once a person has been graciously redeemed by Christ, they are also graciously retained by Christ.
We believe that everyone who has been reconciled back to God through faith in Jesus Christ is part of the universal body of believers known as the Church. The Church is the bride of Christ, and it is the body of which Christ is the head. The Church is also the vehicle through which God chooses to reconcile people back to himself, by means of faithful gospel proclamation. In addition to the believer’s inclusion in the universal Church, we believe God calls all Christians to belong to, and serve in, a local church body. The members of the local church are to live their lives in humble, spirit-led submission to Christ, to one another, and to the God-appointed leaders of the church.
We believe that every local church body is to regularly observe the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. We believe that Christian baptism is for believers in Jesus Christ, in which the believer is immersed in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It is an act of outward obedience symbolizing and confessing the believer’s faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Savior. It also symbolizes and communicates our own death to sin, burial of the old self, and resurrection to walk in newness of life in Jesus Christ. We believe the Lord’s Supper is an act of worship and obedience whereby believers, through partaking of the bread and the fruit of the vine, memorialize the death of the Redeemer and look forward to his glorious return.
THE GREAT COMMISSION
We believe the Church has been given a clear Biblical commission to make disciples of Jesus Christ, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; and teaching them to obey all that Christ has commanded. This means we are called to look beyond ourselves – to the neighborhoods, cities, and nations around us, and to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ through words of grace and works of grace. Thus, we believe an obedient church does not only gather on Sundays, but also scatters on mission to our neighborhoods and communities Monday through Saturday to build God’s kingdom by making disciples of Christ.
THE LAST THINGS
We believe that God, in his own time and in his own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. According to his promise, Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly in glory to the earth. The dead will be raised, and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. Those who have denied Christ will be consigned to everlasting punishment. Those who have trusted in Christ will dwell with the Lord forever.
THE NEW CREATION
We believe that Jesus Christ will one day make all things new. He will create the new heavens and new earth in which righteousness dwells. The new creation will be eternally free from sin, death, mourning and pain; for the former things will pass away. God and his people will dwell together forever in perfect harmony and ever-increasing joy.