Statement of Faith
Statement of Faith
1: THE BIBLE, GOD’S HOLY WORD
We believe in the verbal inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of the Old Testament and the New Testament Scriptures. We believe the Bible* reveals God, the fall of man, the way of salvation, and God’s plan and purpose in the ages.
*IMPORTANT NOTE: In the world of constant change and compromise of Biblical values and morals that we live in today, we feel the need to be specific as to the term “Bible” used throughout this Statement of Faith.
It is the conviction of Berean Baptist Church and of all the ministries of Berean Baptist Church that God, through the Holy Spirit, only communicated one Bible and not many different “versions” of His Word to mankind, and this “one” Bible, specifically being the Holy Bible which was translated and printed from the original manuscripts known as the Textus Receptus, and was then translated into the English language commonly known as the Authorized King James Bible of 1611. (This is not to be confused with the New King James Version which does not hold true to the doctrine and convictions of the Authorized King James Bible of 1611.) Any and all reference henceforth in this Statement of Faith will therefore refer to the 1611 King James Bible. Please refer to II Timothy 3:16-17 and II Peter 1:20-21.
The Scriptures are inerrant, infallible, and God-breathed, and therefore are the final authority for faith and life. The sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments are the complete and divine revelation of God to man. The Scriptures shall be interpreted according to their normal grammatical-historical meaning. Therefore the King James Bible (1611 Authorized King James Version) shall be the official and only Bible translation used by Berean Baptist Church and its ministries.
We believe that the Scriptures interpreted in their natural, literal sense reveal divinely determined dispensations or rules of life which define man’s responsibilities in successive ages. These dispensations are not ways of salvation, but rather are divinely ordered stewardships by which God directs man according to His purpose. Three of these dispensations, being the law, the church, and the kingdom, are the subjects of detailed revelation in Scripture as seen in Genesis 1:18, I Corinthians 9:17, II Corinthians 3:9-18, Galatians 3:13-25, Ephesians 1:10 and 3:2-10, Colossians 1:24-25 and Colossians 1:27, and Revelation 20:2-6.
3: THE GODHEAD
We believe in one Triune God, eternally existing in three persons, specifically, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, each co-eternal in being, co-identical in nature, coequal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfections as shown throughout Scripture as noted in Deuteronomy 6:4, Matthew 28:19, II Corinthians 13:14, John 14:10, and John 14:26.
4: THE PERSON AND WORK OF CHRIST JESUS
First of all, we believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit of God and born of the virgin Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful men as noted in Isaiah 7:14, Isaiah 9:6, Luke 1:35, John 1:1-2, John 1:14, II Corinthians 5:19-21, Galatians 4:4-5, Philippians 2:5-8, etc. Secondly, we believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through his death on the cross as a representative, vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice, and that our justification is made sure by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead as described in the Word of God in Acts 2:18-36, Romans 3:24-25, I Peter 2:24, Ephesians 1:7, I Peter 1:3-5, etc.. Lastly, we believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended bodily to Heaven, and is now exalted at the right hand of God, where, as our High Priest, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate as recorded in Acts 1:9-10, Hebrews 7:25, Hebrews 9:24, Romans 8:34, I John 2:1-2.
5: THE PERSON AND WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe that the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost of God is a Person who convicts the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; and, that He is the Supernatural Agent in spiritual regeneration, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ at the moment of salvation, indwelling and sealing them until the day of redemption as noted in John 16:8-11, Romans 8:9, I Corinthians 12:12-14, II Corinthians 3:6, and Ephesians 1:13-14.
We further believe that He, the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost of God, is the Divine Teacher who assists all believers to understand and appropriate the Scriptures and that it is the privilege and duty of all the saved to be filled with the Holy Spirit of God for His use and service as taught in Ephesians 1:17-18, Ephesians 5:18, and in I John 2:20 and I John 2:27.
We believe that God is sovereign in the bestowal of spiritual gifts to every believer. God uniquely uses evangelists, pastors, and teachers in this present Church age to equip believers in order that they can do the work of the ministry as stated in Romans 12:3-8, I Corinthians 12:4-11, I Corinthians 12:28, and Ephesians 4:7-12.
We also believe that the sign gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues and the gift of healing, were temporary. We believe that speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary sign of the filling or baptism of the Holy Spirit and that the ultimate deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection, though God frequently chooses to answer the prayers of believers for physical healing as is plainly taught in I Corinthians 1:22, I Corinthians 12:28-31, I Corinthians 13:8, and I Corinthians 14:21-22.
6: THE TOTAL DEPRAVITY OF MAN
We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but that in Adam’s sin all mankind fell, inherited a sinful nature, and became alienated from God; and, that man is totally depraved, and, of himself, utterly unable to remedy his lost condition as taught in Genesis 1:26-27, Romans 3:22-23, Romans 5:12, Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:1-3, and Ephesians 4:17-19.
We believe that salvation is the gift of God brought to sinful man by grace and is received by personal faith in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ, Whose precious blood was shed on the cross of Calvary for the forgiveness of sins as seen throughout the Bible, but especially in John 1:12, Ephesians 1:7, Ephesians 2:8-10, and I Peter 1:18-19.
8: THE ETERNAL SECURITY AND ASSURANCE OF BELIEVERS
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved by grace through faith in Christ Jesus, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Jesus Christ forever as shown to be true in John 6:37-40, John 10:27-30, Romans 8:1, Romans 8:38-39, I Corinthians 1:4-8, and I Peter 1:4-5.
We further believe that it is the privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation through the testimony of God’s Word, which, however, clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion to the flesh as shown in Romans 13:13-14, Galatians 5:13, and in Titus 2:11-15.
9: THE CHURCH
We believe that the local church, which is the body and espoused bride of Christ, is solely made up of born again persons as shown in I Corinthians 12:12-14, II Corinthians 11:2, Ephesians 1:22-23, and in Ephesians 5:25-27.
We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures as seen specifically in Acts 14:27, Acts 20:17, Acts 20:28-32, I Timothy 3:1-13, and in Titus 1:5-11.
We believe in the autonomy of the local church free of any external authority or control as noted in Acts 13:1-4, Acts 15:19-31, Acts 20:28, Romans 16:1, Romans 16:4, I Corinthians 3:9, I Corinthians 3:16, I Corinthians 5:4-7, I Corinthians 5:13, and I Peter 5:1-4 and that no religious hierarchy has any scriptural grounds to dictate and run the affairs of any local church.
We recognize water baptism and the Lord’s Supper as the Scriptural ordinances of obedience for the church in this age as noted in Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 2:41-41, Acts 18:18, and I Corinthians 11:23-26.
We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Saviour and Lord; and, that separation from all religious apostasy, all worldly and sinful pleasures, practices and associations is commanded of God as declared in Romans 12:1-2, Romans 14:13, II Corinthians 6:14 - II Corinthians 7:1, II Timothy 3:1-5, I John 2:15-17, and II John 9-11.
11: THE SECOND COMING OF JESUS CHRIST
We believe in the “blessed hope”, the personal, imminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ Who will rapture His Church out of this world prior to the seven-year tribulation period foretold in God’s Word, the Bible. At the end of the Tribulation, Jesus Christ Himself will personally and visibly return to Earth with His saints, to establish His earthly Messianic Kingdom which was promised to the nation of Israel as we read in Psalm 89:3-4, Daniel 2:31-45, Zechariah 14:4-11, I Thessalonians 4:13-18, Titus 2:13, Revelations 3:10, Revelation 19:11-16, and Revelation 20:1-6.
12: THE ETERNAL STATE OF THE SAVED AND THE UNSAVED
We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men, the saved resurrected to eternal life with Christ, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment in the Lake of Fire for their rejection of Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour as written in Matthew 25:41-46, John 5:28-29, John 11:25-26, Revelation 20:5-6, Revelation 20:12-13.
We also believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the physical body and present with the Lord in Heaven, where in conscious bliss they await the first resurrection, when spirit, soul, and body are reunited to be glorified forever with the Lord as stated in Luke 23:43, II Corinthians 5:8, Philippians 1:23, Philippians 3:21, I Thessalonians 4:16-17, and Revelation 20:4-6.
We further believe that the souls of unbelievers remain, after death, in conscious punishment and torment in Hell until the second resurrection, when with the soul and body reunited they shall appear at the Great White Throne Judgment, and shall be cast into the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting conscious punishment and torment as taught in Matthew 25:41-46, Mark 9:43-48, Luke 16:19-26, II Thessalonians 1:7-9, Jude 6-7, and Revelation 20:11-15.
13: THE PERSONALITY OF SATAN
We believe that Satan is a person, the author of sin and the cause of the fall of mankind; that he is the open and declared enemy of God and all mankind; and, that he shall be eternally punished in the Lake of Fire for his open rebellion against God as stated in Job 1:6-7, Isaiah 14:12-17, Matthew 4:2-11, Matthew 25:41, and Revelation 20:10.
We believe that God created the universe in six (6) literal, 24-hour days. We openly reject evolution, the Gap Theory, the Day-Age Theory, and Theistic Evolution as unscriptural theories of origin based upon Genesis chapters 1 and 2, and Exodus 20:11.
15: CIVIL GOVERNMENT
We believe that God has ordained and created all authority consisting of three (3) basic institutions:
1. The Home
2. The Church
3. The State
Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home, the church, and the state are equal and sovereign in their Biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God according to Romans 13:1-7, Ephesians 5:22-24, Hebrews 13:17, and I Peter 2:13-14.
16: MALE AND FEMALE SEXUALITY
We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between one man and one woman. We believe that any form of Sodomy, which includes homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, and incest, along with any form of fornication, adultery and other pornography are sinful perversions of God’s gift of sex as stated plainly in God’s Word in Genesis 2:24, Genesis 19:5, Genesis 19:13, Genesis 26:8-9, Leviticus 18:1-30, Romans 1:26-29, I Corinthians 5:1, I Corinthians 6:9, I Thessalonians 4:1-8, and Hebrews 13:4.
17: DIVORCE AND REMARRIAGE
We believe that God hates divorce and intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. Divorce and remarriage is regarded as adultery except on the grounds of fornication. Although divorced and remarried persons or divorced persons may hold positions of service in the Church and be greatly used of God for Christian service, they may not be considered for the offices of Pastor or Deacon as noted in Malachi 2:14-17, Matthew 19:3-12, Romans 7:1-3, I Timothy 3:2, I Timothy 3:12, Titus 1:6.
We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teachings that abortions of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental well-being of the mother are acceptable in the light of God’s Word, specifically Exodus 21:22-23, Exodus 23:7, Job 3:16, Psalm 51:5, Psalm 139:14-16, Isaiah 44:24, Isaiah 49:1, Isaiah 49:5, Jeremiah 1:5, Jeremiah 20:15-18, and Luke 1:44.
We believe that God has given the church a great commission to proclaim the Gospel to all nations so that there might be a great multitude from every nation, tribe, ethnic group, and language group who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. As ambassadors of and for Christ, we must use every available means to get the Gospel to every part of the earth, beginning in our own “Jerusalem” and taking that Gospel message unto the uttermost parts of the world through foreign missions. We are commanded to go to them and not wait for them to come to us as noted in the Great Commission found in Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:46-48, John 20:21, Acts 1:8, and II Corinthians 5:20.
20: LAWSUITS BETWEEN BELIEVERS
We believe that Christians are prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against other Christians or the church to resolve personal disputes. We believe the church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between members. We do believe, however, that a Christian may seek compensation for injuries from another Christian’s insurance company as long as the claim is pursued without malice or slander. Scriptures pertaining to this are found in I Corinthians 6:1-8 and Ephesians 4:31-32.
21: PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITY
We believe that children are the heritage of the Lord, that God has given parents the responsibility to rear their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and that God requires parents and the Church to diligently teach their children the Word of God and to provide them a Christ-centered education consistent in all respects with the beliefs and teachings of our faith as noted in Deuteronomy 6:6-25, Proverbs 19:27, Proverbs 22:6, and Ephesians 6:4.
22: AUTHORITY OF THIS STATEMENT OF FAITH
This Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the foregoing Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, is binding upon all the members of Berean Baptist Church and upon each faculty member of Berean Baptist Church and each of its Church related ministries.