The Historic Doctrines of the Church

The confessions or creeds below are taken from ancient creeds so that we remind ourselves that what we believe is not novel but a continuation of what the Christian Church has generally believed since the time of Christ.

We understand that at times the Church has gone astray from these truths but when she returns it is these beliefs that she returns too, and when she needs to be defined it is these truths that define her. These beliefs are what every Christian should grow to know and treasure. They are essential for unity in the church and for healthy Christian growth.

Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you about our common salvation,
I felt the necessity to write to you appealing that you contend earnestly for the faith
which was once for all delivered to the saints.
[Jude 1:3]

1. The Bible

“Sanctify them in the truth; Thy word is truth.” (The Bible, John 17:17)

“IV. The authority of the Holy Scripture, for which it ought to be believed, and obeyed, depends not upon the testimony of any man, or Church; but wholly upon God (who is truth itself) the author thereof: and therefore it is to be received, because it is the Word of God.” (Westminster Confession of faith, 1646)

“And for this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received from us the word of God’s message, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.” (The Bible, 1 Thessalonians 2:13)

“We believe that this Holy Scripture contains the will of God completely and that everything one must believe to be saved is sufficiently taught in it. For since the entire manner of service which God requires of us is described in it at great length, no one — even an apostle or an angel from heaven, as Paul says– ought to teach other than what the Holy Scriptures have already taught us. For since it is forbidden to add to or subtract from the Word of God this plainly demonstrates that the teaching is perfect and complete in all respects.” (The Belgic confession of faith, 1561)

“We affirm that a confession of the full authority, infallibility and inerrancy of Scripture is vital to a sound understanding of the whole of the Christian faith. We further affirm that such confession should lead to increasing conformity to the image of Christ. We deny that such confession is necessary for salvation. However, we further deny that inerrancy can be rejected without grave consequences, both to the individual and to the Church.” (The Chicago Statement on Inerrancy, 1978)

2. God

“Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, declaring the end from the beginning And from ancient times things which have not been done, saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’; calling a bird of prey from the east, the man of My purpose from a far country. Truly I have spoken; truly I will bring it to pass. I have planned it, surely I will do it.” (The Bible, Isaiah 46:9-11)

“I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.” (The Nicene Creed, 325)

“There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.” (The Baptist Faith and Message, 2000)

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” (The Bible, Matthew 28:19)

3. Man

“And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (The Bible, Genesis 1:27)

“Question 6. Did God then create man so wicked and perverse?
Answer: By no means; but God created man good, and after his own image, in true righteousness and holiness, that he might rightly know God his Creator, heartily love him and live with him in eternal happiness to glorify and praise him.
Question 7. Whence then proceeds this depravity of human nature?
Answer: From the fall and disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve, in Paradise; hence our nature is become so corrupt, that we are all conceived and born in sin.” (The Heidelberg Catechism, 1563)

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (The Bible, Romans 3:23)

“Man, by his fall into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as a natural man, being altogether averse from that good, and dead in sin, is not able by his own strength to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto.” (The Baptist confession of faith, 1689)

4. Christ

“And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins.” (The Bible, Matthew 1:21)

“I believe in one L ord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, begotten of his Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father; by whom all things were made; who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; he suffered and was buried; and the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures, and ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of the Father; and he shall come again, with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.” (The Nicene Creed, 325)

5. Salvation

“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved.” (The Bible, Acts 4:12)

“Christ, by his obedience and death, did fully discharge the debt of all those that are justified; and did, by the sacrifice of himself in the blood of his cross, undergoing in their stead the penalty due unto them, make a proper, real, and full satisfaction to God’s justice in their behalf; yet, inasmuch as he was given by the Father for them, and his obedience and satisfaction accepted in their stead, and both freely, not for anything in them, their justification is only of free grace, that both the exact justice and rich grace of God might be glorified in the justification of sinners.” (The Philadelphia confession, 1742)

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (The Bible, 2 Corinthians 5:21)

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.'” (The Bible, John 14:6)

What we believe about the Gospel

Our Local Church Distinctives