Doctrinal Statement

The Bible

We believe that “all Scripture is inspired by God,” (2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:20-21) every word of the Scriptures (verbal inspiration) in its entirety (plenary inspiration) and is without error (inerrant) in the original manuscripts. We believe that the Bible is the divinely authoritative Word of God (John 17:17) and the standard for every age and for every life (Matthew 5:17-18; Psalm 119:105; Hebrews 4:12).

Man

We believe that man is directly created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27), but that by Adam’s disobedience all men are born into sin (Romans 3:23, 5:12-19) and therefore liable to eternal punishment (John 3:14-18; Ephesians 2:3; 1 John 5:11-13).

God

We believe in one God (Deuteronomy 6:4 ; Mark 12:29) who is Creator (Genesis 1; Ps 24:1-2) and Sustainer of all things (Nehemiah 9:6; Acts 17:28; Job 34:14-15), existing eternally in three persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:18-19; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Mark 12:29; John 1:14; Acts 5:3-4; Hebrews 1:1-3) and is loving (Psalm 89:14; Psalm 145:17; Exodus 34:6-7; 1 John 4:7-9) and just (Deuteronomy 32:4; Isaiah 58:6-10; Romans 3:24-26; 2 Thessalonians 1:6-7) in all his relations.

Christ

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God (John 8:58; John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:16-17), became man (John 1:14, Philippians 2:5-8) without ceasing to be God (John 8:58; Colossians 2:9). He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary (Matthew 1:18-25), in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful man (Romans 3:21-26; Hebrews 10:1-10). We believe that He accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as a perfect substitutionary sacrifice (John 1:29, 3:16-17; Romans 3:23; Hebrews 9:12-14, 26-28) making salvation available to all men (John 3:16). We believe our redemption and salvation (1 Timothy 2:5-6, John 14:6) are guaranteed by His literal physical resurrection from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:3-4; 1 Peter 3:18-21). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is now in heaven, exalted to the right hand of God (Acts 1:9-11; Hebrews 8:1; 1 Peter 3:22), whereas High Priest He fulfills the ministry of intercession and advocacy for His people (Romans 8:34; Hebrews 9:24).

Holy Spirit

We believe that God the Holy Spirit unites every believer to Christ (1 Cor. 12:12-13; Ephesians 2:18-22, 4:4-5) at the moment of salvation (John 3:5,6; Titus 3:5-7) and that he permanently indwells every believer (Ephesians 1:13-14; Romans 8:9-17). The Holy Spirit came to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ (John 16:14), to empower victorious, fruitful Christian living (Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:18), to instruct the believer in godly living (John 16:12-15; 2 Peter 1:3), and to equip the believer for witness (Acts 1:8) and service (Ephesians 4:11-13; 1 Corinthians 12). We believe certain gifts of the Spirit were given for a period of time as signs to confirm the message of the Gospel (Heb. 2:3-4). With the completion of Scripture these “sign gifts” are no longer the practice of the church. For more information on The Bible Chapel’s position on gifts, please click here.

Salvation

We believe that salvation is a gift of God (Ephesians 2:8-9) and is received by man through personal faith in Jesus Christ (John 1:12) and His sacrifice for sin (1 Peter 2:24, Romans 3:23-26). We believe that man is justified by grace through faith apart from works (Ephesians 2:8-9). We believe that a true believer (John 3:16, 2 Corinthians 5:17) is eternally secure (Philippians 1:6, 2:12-13; 1 John 5:11-13), he cannot lose his salvation, but that sin may interrupt the joy of fellowship with God (Psalm 66:18, 1 Corinthians 11:30) and bring the loving discipline (Hebrews 12:4-6, Proverbs 3:11-12) of his heavenly Father (Hebrews 12:7-11).

The Church

We believe the church is composed of all true believers (Galatians 3:6-9) and that the Lord Jesus is the only Head of His church (Matthew 16:16-19, Ephesians 1:20-23, 5:22-24). We believe the local church is an assembly of believers in Jesus Christ who are voluntarily joined together in one locality for the purpose of worship, study of the Word of God, observance of the ordinances of believers’ baptism (Matthew 28:19; Romans 6:3-4) and the Lord’s Supper (1 Corinthians 10:16, 11:23-26), prayer (Matthew 6:9-15) and fellowship (Acts 2:42-47) and to be equipped for Christian service and witness (Ephesians 2:10, 4:12). The local church is under the direct authority of Jesus Christ, through His Word. Elders (1 Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:6-8) are raised up by the Chief Shepherd and the Holy Spirit (Acts 20:28) to shepherd God’s people (Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Peter 5:2-3).

The Return of Christ

We believe in the personal, imminent return (Acts 1:11, 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, Titus 2:13) of the Lord Jesus Christ for His church (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) and His return to earth to reign (Revelation 20:1-6; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9, 2:7-8). We believe in eternal blessing and glory for those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation and that they shall be forever with Him (Revelation 21:3-4). Those who reject the message of the Gospel are judged and eternally separated from God in conscious punishment (Revelation 20:7-15).

The Christian Life

We believe that believers live in the world under the mandate of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20; John 17:18; Acts 1:8) which calls us to bear witness to the Lord Jesus Christ and make disciples locally and in the entire world. The believer is called to a life of discipleship in which we grow in Christ through the Word (Colossians 3:17), faith (Colossians 2:6-7), the continuing work of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:18), fellowship (Hebrews 10:25), and the employment of our gifts in serving Christ (Ephesians 2:10; 1 Corinthians 12:27).

ORDINANCES

We believe that Scripture puts forth two ordinances for the New Testament church.

Communion

We seek to follow the simple pattern of the New Testament by taking the symbols of bread and cup in remembrance of the Lord Jesus and sharing together in worship. Jesus Christ commanded us to remember Him (Luke 22:19-20).

Baptism

Baptism is the other ordinance of the Church and is an important act of obedience. Jesus Christ commanded it (Matthew 28:19-20) and the early Church practiced it (Acts 2:41; Acts 8:36-38; Acts 10:47-48). We believe from these verses and others that the New Testament practice was for believers to be baptized by immersion on profession of their faith in Jesus Christ. Accordingly we do not baptize infants as our understanding of the New Testament is that baptism is only for believers. (We do encourage parents to publicly dedicate their children to the Lord.)

Baptism is not necessary for salvation (one is saved by grace through faith) but it is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer’s faith in the crucified, buried and risen Savior, and his union with Him in death to sin, and resurrection to a new life (Romans 6:1-11). It is also a public sign of fellowship and identification with the visible Body of Christ (Acts 2:41-42). For more information on The Bible Chapel’s position on baptism, please click here.