TEACHING THE WORD OF GOD
The sixty-six canonical books of the Old and New Testament, as originally given, are inerrant in all that they affirm and are the final authority for the church in all matters of faith and practice (John 10:35, 2 Tim 3:16-17, Matt 4:4).
There is only one true God, who is the Creator and Ruler of all things. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, ever-present, eternal, and perfect in character. God is one Being eternally existing as three distinct personas: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Deut 4:35, 32:4, Jer 23:24, Isa 40:28, 1 Pet 1:2, John 14:26, 1 Cor 8:4).
Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. He was begotten by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, died for the sins of humanity, and was bodily resurrected after three days. He is the Head of the church and the High Priest of all believers (Col 1:18, 2:9, Matt 1:18, Heb 4:15, Luke 24:39, 1 Cor 15:3-4).
The Holy Spirit is God. He is distinct from the Father and the Son and yet is the Spirit of both. He is the effective agent in our regeneration, sanctification, and glorification. He is responsible for the inspiration of Scripture, the illumination of believers, and the giving of spiritual gifts for the edification of the church (Act 5:3-4, Rom 8:9, 11, Tit 3:5, Gal 5:22-23, 2 Pet 1:20-21, John 16:13, 1 Cor 12:7, 11).
God created humanity in His image, but because of Adam’s sin, humanity became spiritually corrupt, cut off from God, and doomed to death. Apart from Jesus Christ, every human being shares this fate and stands in need of God’s grace and salvation (Gen 1:26, Jer 17:9, Isa 59:1-2, Rom 5:12, 6:23).
Satan is a fallen angel, who rebelled against God and was cast out of heaven. Together with the demons, he seeks to deceive, tempt, accuse, and destroy all of humanity. They will be cast into the lake of fire and suffer eternal damnation (2 Pet 2:4, Eph 2:1-2, 1 Pet 5:8, Rev 12:9-10, 20:10, Matt 25:41).
The church is composed of all true believers who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit. The church exists to proclaim the gospel, nurture disciples, and glorify God in all things. The elders of the church are responsible for doctrine, administration, and discipline (1 Cor 12:13, Matt 5:16, 28:19-20, Act 20:28, 1 Tim 5:17, Tit 2:15).
Christians are saved by grace, justified by faith and judged according to their works. Grace cannot be earned by works but can be lost through deliberate sin because works are simply the visible evidence of faith or unbelief. Thus, faith and repentance are necessary for salvation (Eph 2:8-10, Heb 10:26-27, James 2:17).
Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins is a sign and seal of the New Covenant. It is performed by an agent of the church upon repentance and confession of faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. It is followed by the laying on of hands with prayer for the anointing of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38, 8:18, 38, 10:44, 48, 19:5-6).
The Mosaic Law
The Mosaic Law is an important revelation of moral and spiritual truth that was incorporated into the Old and New Covenants. While many stipulations apply only to Israelites living in the Promised Land, others are binding on all humanity. Therefore, the Mosaic Law has abiding significance as a guide to proper living for God's people (Jer 31:33, Matt 5:17-20, Rom 3:31).
The Sabbath and Holy Days
God alone has the power to sanctify time for holy purposes. He enjoined the observance of the seventh day Sabbath on all humanity at Creation and has never abrogated that command. He expects His people to observe the annual Sabbaths and Festivals in this age and in the millennial kingdom of His Son (Gen 2:3, Lev 23, Mark 2:27, Zech 14:16-17, 1 Cor 5:7-8).
Tithing is an act of faith and worship to the Creator God who gives us life and provides for our every need. God’s work in every age has been supported by contributions from His people; therefore, tithes and offerings are given to the church to accomplish the Great Commission given by Jesus Christ (Deut 8:18, Prv 3:9-10, Gen 14:20, Num 18:21, 1 Cor 9:14).
God has determined which items are acceptable as food for His people. Animals were classified as clean or unclean before the Flood, and these designations continued after Christ’s death and resurrection (Lev 11:2, Gen 7:2, 2 Cor 6:17, Rev 18:2).
Anointing the Sick
The anointing of the sick by the elders of the church is an act of faith and intercessory supplication to the great God who is able to deliver us from every distress (Ps 103:3, Eph 3:20, James 5:14-15).
Christians should not try to establish the kingdom of God through armed conflict. To avoid potential ethical conflicts, Sabbath-keeping Christians should choose alternative, civilian service (in lieu of military enlistment) as a way to serve God and country with a clear conscience (John 18:36, Php 3:20, 1 Cor 7:23, 2 Cor 6:14, 10:3-4).
The Intermediate State
The dead are unconscious until the resurrection of the body. They do not suffer pain or loneliness and are not aware of the passing of time (Ps 6:5, 115:17, Eccl 9:5, 10).
The Second Coming
The return of Jesus Christ will be personal, visible, and pre-millennial. He will come again to set up His earthly kingdom and judge the living and the dead (Act 1:11, Rev 1:7, 11:15).
God will resurrect everyone who has ever lived according to a set plan. Those who belong to Christ will be resurrected to eternal life at His return and reign with Him on the earth for a thousand years. After the Millennium, all of the remaining dead will be restored to physical life (Ezek 37:13-14, Dan 12:2-3, John 5:28-29, 1 Cor 15:22-23, 50-52, 1 Thes 4:16-17, Rev 20:4-6, 11-12).
After the second general resurrection, every human being will stand before Jesus Christ and be judged according to their works. Those not listed in the Book of Life will be destroyed by a second death in the lake of fire from which there will be no resurrection (John 12:32, Mal 4:1, Matt 10:28, 2 Cor 5:10, Rev 20:13-15).