Statement of Faith
We believe that the basis of truth is found in the Triune God and His infallible Word. Our core beliefs are based on principles established in Scripture, and are explained in three historic doctrinal standards: the Heidelberg Catechism, the Belgic Confession of Faith, and the Canons of Dordt. A short summary of what we believe is as follows:
We believe that there is one true God, and that He is eternal, invisible, unchanging, infinite, omnipresent, indivisible, almighty, perfectly wise, just, gracious, and the overflowing fountain of all good.
We believe that this God, though one in essence, has revealed Himself in three distinct and coequal Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
We believe that in these present times, God reveals Himself to man only by two means: first, by general revelation through His creation, His providence, and man’s conscience; secondly, by special revelation through His Word, the Holy Bible.
We believe that in ancient days, holy men of God were inspired and moved by the Holy Spirit in writing the Bible. The Bible is the only complete, perfect and infallible Word of God delivered to mankind, essential to know His salvation.
We believe that our one aim in life and death should be to glorify God and enjoy Him forever; and that God teaches us how to glorify Him and enjoy Him in His holy Word, that is, the Bible, which He has given by the infallible inspiration of His Holy Spirit in order that we may certainly know what we are to believe concerning Him and what duty He requires of us.
We believe that the Word of God provides clear instruction not only for the way of salvation, but also for man’s everyday life in the world. We believe that all spheres and domains of life must be subject to the ordinances and glory of God.
We believe in the true deity and full humanity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His sacrificial death, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of God the Father, and in His personal return in power and glory.
We believe that God has redeemed His people unto Himself through Jesus Christ our Lord; who, though He was and ever continues to be the eternal Son of God, yet was born of a woman, born under the law, that He might redeem them that are under the law: we believe that He bore the penalty due to our sins in His own body on the tree, and fulfilled in His own person the obedience we owe to the righteousness of God, and now presents us to His Father as His purchased possession, to the praise of the glory of His grace forever; wherefore renouncing all merit of our own, we put all our trust only in the blood and righteousness of Jesus Christ our Redeemer.
We believe that Jesus Christ our Redeemer, who died for our offenses was raised again for our justification, and ascended into the heavens, where He sits at the right hand of the Father Almighty, continually making intercession for His people, and governing the whole world as head over all things for His Church: so that we need fear no evil and may surely know that nothing can snatch us out of His hands and nothing can separate us from His love.
We believe that the redemption wrought by the Lord Jesus Christ is effectually applied to all His people by the Holy Spirit, who works faith in us and thereby unites us to Christ, renews each one of us in the whole man after the image of God, and enables us more and more to die unto sin and to live unto righteousness; until, this gracious work having been completed in each one, we shall be received into glory: in which great hope abiding, we must ever strive to perfect holiness in the fear of God.
We believe that God created man perfect and upright, and after His own image in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness.
We believe that man willingly subjected himself to sin and fell from his holy state. Consequently all are born in sin and will die in sin, unless regenerated by the Spirit of God to find complete salvation in the one Mediator, Jesus Christ.
Radical Fallenness: Because of Adam and Eve’s sin, man has become spiritually dead to the things of God, and is therefore unable of his own will to choose spiritual good and determine his eternal destiny.
Sovereign Choice: God’s choice of certain individuals for salvation before the foundation of the world was not based on any foreseen response of obedience on their part, but was based solely in His own good and sovereign will.
Purposeful Atonement: Christ’s death secured and actually accomplished the salvation of all God’s chosen people. God has determined that all for whom Christ sacrificed himself will be saved.
Effectual Call: The Holy Spirit graciously regenerates every one of God’s chosen people, creating within them a new heart and enabling them to freely and willingly believe in Christ as Savior and Lord.
Preservation of the Saints: All who are chosen by God, redeemed by Christ, and regenerated by the power of the Holy Spirit, are eternally saved. They are kept in faith by God, and therefore continue to persevere in faith, as evidenced by their consistent walk with God.
We believe that God requires us, under the Gospel, first of all, out of a true sense of our sin and misery and apprehension of His mercy in Christ, that we should turn with grief and hatred from sin and receive and rest upon Jesus Christ alone for salvation; that, so being united to Him, we may receive pardon from our sins and be accepted as righteous in God’s sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us and received by faith alone: and thus only do we believe we may be received into the number and have a right to all the privileges of the children of God.
We believe that, having been pardoned and accepted for Christ’s sake, it is further required of us that we walk in the Spirit whom He has purchased for us, and by whom love is shed abroad in our hearts; fulfilling the obedience we owe to Christ our King; faithfully performing all the duties laid upon us by the holy law of God our heavenly Father; and ever reflecting in our lives and conduct the perfect example that has been set us by Christ our Leader, who has died for us and granted to us His Holy Spirit just that we may do the good works which God has prepared before that we should walk in them.
We believe that believers should strive to keep God’s moral law, which is summarized in the Ten Commandments, not to earn salvation, but because they love their Savior and want to obey him. God is the Lord of the conscience, so that men are not required to believe or do anything contrary to, or in addition to, the Word of God in matters of faith or worship.
We believe that the church is the body of believers and their children, who by true faith are partakers of salvation through Jesus Christ. The church is distinguished by the pure preaching of the Word of God, the proper administration of the sacraments, and the faithful exercise of Christian discipline.
We believe that God has established His Church in the world and endowed it with the ministry of the Word and the holy ordinances of Baptism, the Lord’s Supper and Prayer; in order that through these as means, the riches of His grace in the Gospel may be made known to the world, and, by the blessing of Christ and the working of this Spirit in them that by faith receive them, the benefits of redemption may be communicated to His people: wherefore also it is required of us that we attend on these means of grace with diligence, preparation, and prayer, so that through them we may be instructed and strengthened in faith, and in holiness of life and in love; and that we use our best endeavors to carry this Gospel and convey these means of grace to the whole world.
We believe the highest duty and privilege of the church is to worship the Triune God through Jesus Christ our Lord, by the presence and power of His Spirit and Word.
We believe in corporate, covenantal worship in Jesus Christ that reflects these Scriptural principles:
- The parties in worship are two: God and His Church. Therefore the liturgy of worship consists of God speaking and His people responding.
- The church is one, a covenantal body. The church consists, as it did in both Old and New Testaments, of believers and their families. Therefore she must worship as that body. We reject, therefore, any devices that would separate portions of that body from unified worship.
- The Lord has shown us in His Word how He is to be worshipped. Therefore we reject innovations in worship that is not clearly stated in Scriptures.
We believe that there are two “sacraments,” viz., baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Sacraments are means (or vehicles) of grace, by which, through sensible signs (i.e., symbols which can be seen, touched, etc.), Christ and the benefits of the new covenant are represented, sealed, and applied to believers.
- Baptism is a sign of God’s covenant which is applied, by sprinkling or pouring of water, to professing Christians who have never been baptized, as well as to the children of believers. This sacrament symbolizes the work of the Holy Spirit in regenerating the elect, in cleansing them, and in setting them apart for God’s service. Baptism, which is the initiatory rite of the covenant, is but once to be administered to an individual.
- The Lord’s Supper (also known as “communion”) is a perpetual ordinance in the church, to be observed until Jesus comes again for His bride, the church. Also known as the Eucharist (from the Greek word for “thanksgiving”), the Lord’s Supper symbolizes, through bread and wine, the broken body and shed blood of Jesus. The Lord’s Supper is done generally once per month. Those who meet the formal requirements of valid Trinitarian baptism (that is, baptism in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, administered in a true manifestation of the church) and membership in some evangelical church; and the vital requirements of a genuine faith in Jesus Christ and a life of repentance, are invited to partake of this holy meal.
We believe that in addition to growing in our own understanding of the faith, the Scriptures exhort us to share it with those outside the church. We must not only be prepared to give to everyone an answer for the hope that we have, but we must be zealous to see that our non-Christian friends, families and neighbors hear the message of Christ crucified with the prayerful and confident expectation that God will be pleased to call many to faith in His dear Son through our ministry.
We believe that as Jesus Christ has once come in grace, so also He is to come a second time in glory, to judge the world in righteousness and assign to each his eternal award: and we believe that if we die in Christ, our souls shall be at death made perfect in holiness and go home to the Lord; and when He shall return in His majesty we shall be raised in glory and made perfectly blessed in the full enjoyment of God to all eternity: encouraged by which blessed hope it is required of us willingly to take part in suffering and hardship here as a good soldier of Christ Jesus, being assured that if we die with Him we shall also reign with Him.