Doctrinal Statement

Statement of Beliefs
of
Reasoning Through the Bible

Article I—The Scriptures

We believe the sixty–six books of the Old and New Testament Scripture alone to be verbally and fully inspired by God and inerrant in the original text, and that they alone are of supreme and final authority in faith and life.

We believe that “all Scripture is given by inspiration of God,” by which we understand the whole Bible is inspired in the sense that holy men of God “were moved by the Holy Spirit” to write the very words of Scripture. We believe that this divine inspiration extends equally and fully to all parts of the writings—historical, poetical, doctrinal, and prophetical—as appeared in the original manuscripts. We believe that the whole Bible in the originals is therefore without error. We also believe that all the Scriptures were designed for our practical instruction (Mark 12:26, 36; 13:11; Luke 24:27, 44; John 5:39; Acts 1:16; 17:2–3; 18:28; 26:22–23; 28:23; Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 2:13; 10:11; 2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21).

Article II—The Godhead

We believe in one and only one God, revealed in scripture as YHWH, who is Creator of heaven and earth, who is infinite Spirit, light, love, and truth; eternal, almighty, infallible in all things, including His foreknowledge of all future events as well as all free choices; that He is unchangeable, all wise, just, set apart, and holy; and that the triune God eternally exists in one essence and three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and that these three are one God, having precisely the same nature, attributes, and perfections, and worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence, and obedience (Matt. 28:18–19; Mark 12:29; John 1:14; Acts 5:3–4; 2 Cor. 13:14; Heb. 1:1–3; Rev. 1:4–6).

We believe in Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Trinity, the Eternal Word manifested in the flesh. We believe that He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, and that He is true God and true man, having two distinct natures co–joined in one Person, with the natures neither combined nor divided, by nature unchangeable, the property of each nature distinct and preserved, not parted nor divided into two persons. Jesus was the unique Son of the Father from before all ages, co-equal with the Father.

We believe that, on the human side, Jesus became and remained a perfect man, sinless throughout His life; yet He retained His absolute deity, being at the same time very God and very man, and that His earth-life sometimes functioned within the sphere of that which was human and sometimes within the sphere of that which was divine (Luke 2:40; John 1:1–2; Phil. 2:5–8).

We believe that the Holy Spirit, the Third Person of the blessed Trinity, though omnipresent from all eternity, took up His abode in the world in a special sense on the day of Pentecost according to the divine promise, dwells in every believer, and by His baptism unites all to Christ in one body, and that He, as the Indwelling One, is the source of all power and all acceptable worship and service. We believe that the Holy Spirit convicts people of sin, regenerates, indwells, baptizes, seals, and sets believers apart to a holy life; that He keeps and empowers believers day by day. We believe that He is the Teacher of the Word of God through which He guides us in our daily lives.

We believe that God can and does perform miracles as He wills in all ages. We believe that miraculous sign gifts such as speaking in tongues were never the common or necessary sign of the baptism nor of the filling of the Spirit, and that while God may divinely heal today as He wills, the full deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection (Acts 4:8, 31; Rom. 8:23; 1 Cor. 13:8).

Article III:  Creation & Mankind

We believe in the ex-nihilo creation of the universe, the special creation of Adam and Eve as the literal progenitors of all people, the literal fall, and resultant real separation from God and divine curse on creation. We reject any interpretation of the fall as a description of purely natural forces.

We believe that man was originally created in the image and after the likeness of God, and that he fell through sin, and, as a consequence of his sin, lost his spiritual life, becoming dead in trespasses and sins, and that he became subject to the power of the devil. We also believe that this spiritual death has been transmitted to the entire human race of man, the Man Christ Jesus alone being excepted; and hence that every child of Adam is born into the world with a nature which is essentially and unchangeably sinful apart from divine grace (Gen. 1:26; 2:17; 6:5; Pss. 14:1–3; 51:5; Jer. 17:9; John 3:6; 5:40; 6:35; Rom. 3:10–19; 8:6–7; Eph. 2:1–3; 1 Tim. 5:6; 1 John 3:8).

We believe in the historicity of the biblical record of creation, but recognize well-meaning Christians differ on the age of the earth.

Article IV:  Salvation

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died as a representative, sufficient, and substitutionary sacrifice for the sins of every human being and thus offers salvation as a free gift based on grace alone.

We believe that, owing to universal death through sin, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless born again. We believe that only those who receive the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior on the condition of faith alone, apart from all good works, are thereby born again of the Holy Spirit, are justified once and for all, and have become children of God. We believe that saving faith is not a work of righteousness but rather the belief in, trust in, and acceptance of the sole work of Jesus on the cross and His blood to atone for sin.

We believe in the eternal security and everlasting blessedness of the saved, and the eternal conscious punishment of the lost.

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ arose from the dead in the same physical body, though glorified, in which He had lived and died, and that His resurrection body is the pattern of that body which will be given to all believers at the return of Christ.

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven in the same glorified physical body in which He arose, was seated at His Father’s right hand, assuring us of the perfection of His work of redemption, and that He now, as Head over all things to the Church, is engaged on behalf of the saved as their only Advocate.

We believe in the personal, imminent, and premillennial return of the Lord Jesus Christ for His redeemed ones followed by His millennial reign on earth.

Article V:  Ordinances

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ instituted only two ordinances: water baptism by full immersion and the Lord’s Supper, to be observed until He comes. We believe that water baptism is not necessary for salvation but that it is an outward symbol of salvation and a sign of our obedience to Him.

Article VI:  Eternal State

We believe that at death the spirits and souls of those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation pass immediately into His presence and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the glorified body when Christ comes for His own, whereupon soul and body reunited shall be associated with Him forever in glory; but the spirits and souls of the unbelieving remain after death conscious of condemnation and in misery until the final judgment of the great white throne at the close of the millennium, when soul and body reunited shall be cast into the lake of fire, not to be annihilated, but to be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power (Luke 16:19–26; 23:42; 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23; 2 Thess. 1:7–9; Jude 6–7; Rev. 20:11–15).

We believe that there is a personal devil, a being of great cunning and power, who is “the prince and the power of the air,” “the prince of this world,” and “the god of this age.” We believe that he can exert vast power but only as far as God permits him to do so; that he shall ultimately be cast into the lake of fire and brimstone and shall be tormented day and night forever.

Article VII:  Human Sexuality, Life, and Justice

We believe that marriage is a conjugal, covenantal, and non-incestual union ordained by God, of one adult biologically born male and one adult biologically born female, and historically understood by the Church to be the most basic societal institution and the exclusive institution appointed by God for sexual intimacy. We affirm that sexual intimacy is designed by God to be expressed solely within a marriage between one adult biologically born male and one adult biologically born female.  Sexual relations of any kind outside the confines of marriage between one man and one woman are inconsistent with the teaching of Scripture.

We believe primary human identity lies in being made in God’s image (Gen. 1:26-27) and this bestows intrinsic dignity that is worthy of Christian compassion and justice. Sin is the ultimate problem and Christ’s redemption the ultimate solution. Redeemed people should promote genuine Social Justice within a biblical framework (Col. 2:8). So-called Critical Social Justice is corrupted by a focus on power and privilege rather than truth as the way to understand human relationships. “Social Justice” corrupted in this way misconstrues justice, grace, and compassion, and ultimately undermines the mission of the church and its gospel. We reject as anti-biblical any interpretation of Social Justice as a metanarrative inspired by the false components of Critical Theory (or Cultural Marxism). We reject viewing human identity in terms of opposing oppressor/oppressed groups along the axes of race, class, sexuality, gender, etc., granting special knowledge found only in the “lived experience” of the oppressed.