We believe that the goal of the Biblical interpreter is to discover what the text of Scripture meant in the mind of its original author for his intended audience by applying a grammatical-historical approach to interpretation. The Bible uses figurative and poetic language, and these portions should be interpreted accordingly.
The Sufficiency of Scripture
We believe that God has provided us, in the Scripture, everything necessary to nurture and sustain spiritual life. That means we are committed to teaching and to counseling directly and exclusively from the Word of God.
Ps. 9:9, 11, 19:7-11; 2 Tim. 3:16-17, 4:2; 2 Peter 1:3
John 15:3; 17:17; 1 Thess. 2:13; 5:14; James 1:21
A Changed Life
We believe that all those whom God has genuinely saved by grace through faith alone are new creatures in Christ, and will demonstrate that new life by submission to Christ and obedience to God's Word; All Christians still sin and sometimes horribly, but a decreasing pattern of sin and an increasing pattern of holiness will characterize every Christian's life.
John 3:3; Rom. 6:4, 10:9-10; 2 Cor. 5:17
Matt. 7:21; Luke 6:46-49;
James 3:2; 1 John 1:8-10, 3:4-10
2 Sam. 11:26-12:15
John 15:1-11; Gal. 5:19-25; Eph. 2:10; Phil. 1:6; 2:12-13
Miraculous Spiritual Gifts
We believe that the miraculous sign gifts, including the gift of tongues (always the ability to speak in a previously unlearned, known language), along with the gift of healings, were temporary gifts, given by the Holy Spirit to validate both the apostles and their message before the close of the canon of Scripture and to establish the early church. We do not believe that these are active gifts today.
Acts 2:4-12; 8:15-17; 10:44-46; 14:3, 19:1-7;
1 Cor. 13:8-10, 14:5, 13, 22, 27; 2 Cor. 12:12; Heb. 2:3-4
The Role of Men and Women
We believe that both men and women bear the image of God and that those in Christ enjoy equal spiritual standing and status before God. Scripture also teaches that God has assigned different roles and responsibilities to men and women. God has designed order into society. There is a reason for this.
God’s ways are not like our ways. God’s ways are to bless us and glorify Himself. One of the ways He blesses us is the very basis of society and by providing us structures within institutions, including marriage. Why is this? God gave us a family unit to be the basis of a productive, prosperous economy as well as one that would maintain order and unity. If there is no family and no family structure, it is simple, we do not have a society that we as Christians would want to ever live in. So this is what God has designed and blessed us with, a family structure where every family member submits to God’s order of design. It starts with Ephesians 5:21 where we as husbands and wives, “submit to one another in the fear of God.” This is key. The success of the family starts with the husband and wife having a healthy fear (reverence) of the Lord. When this happens, the husband and wife submit to one another. The fear of the Lord should be our motives as husbands and wives to submit to one another. John MacArthur calls this Mutual Submission https://www.gty.org/library/blog/B150410/mutual-submission. MacArthur states that we as Christians (all of us) need to be fighting for the bottom and our life’s goal should be to serve others and this starts in the home.
However, mutual submission does not obliterate God’s design for order and hierarchy. Christ the son was even submissive to the Father. The Trinity actually provides us with the perfect model of submission (see the many verses below). God has designed the hierarchy of the home to look like this. The husband is to be the gracious, loving head of the family. The relationship between God and man sets the tone for our relationship with our spouses. A husband is to lovingly lead his family as Christ leads us through life. A husband is to be gentle in his leadership. He is to be the example of Christ in the home. He is to serve his wife and children and be supportive of his family. As a husband is to submit to a loving Christ, so then should the wife submit to her loving husband, “as to the Lord”. Eph 5:22 “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.” In the Biblical model of the home, there is no way around it. The model (a representative) of Christ in the home is the man and he must live out His command to live as Christ lived. When he does not, he sins and brings reproach on himself and strife into the home. As the man represents Christ, the woman therefore ultimately, needs to be in submission to the man “as to the Lord”. When both the husband and wife submit to one another in fear of the Lord and the man lives his life as Christ in the home, and the woman submits to her loving husband; they truly execute the God given purpose of marriage and family. When they do this, they truly glorify God. When this Biblical design for the family is lived out it produces harmony and joy in the family, glory to God, support for the wife, love for the children, a stable environment for the whole household and a model for society.
Gen. 1:26-27; 2:18, 21-23; 5:1-2; Mark 14:36; I Cor. 11:3, 7-15, 15:28; Gal. 3:28;
Eph. 5:22-33; Phil. 2:5-8; Col. 3:18-19; Titus 2:1-5; 1 Peter 3:1-7
We believe Genesis is a straightforward, literal presentation of the historical events it describes. We teach, therefore, that God created everything in six literal twenty-four hour days.
Gen. 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31; Ex. 31:17
Isaiah 44:24; 45:18; John 1:3; Rom 11:36; 1 Cor. 8:6; Col. 1:16
We believe that God created mankind in His own image. In two separate acts, He created only two distinct genders: male and female. The genders of Adam and Eve were established by God and defined by their physiological sex at creation. All attempts to redefine human sexuality beyond the physiological male-female distinction (whether framed biologically or culturally) and all attempts to change one’s birth gender are sinful rebellion against our Creator. As our Creator, God stipulates in His Word that the only legitimate and acceptable sexual desires and sexual acts are those between a man and a woman within the context of marriage. We also believe that every person should be treated with love, compassion, kindness and dignity. We embrace God's design for man, woman and sexuality, and lovingly share this with those who may disagree with us, as Jesus commands us.
Gen. 1:27, 2:7, 2:24, 5:1-2; 9:6, 18:10, 22; James 3:9
Matt. 5:28, 19:4; Mark 10:6
Lev. 12:2, 5, 7, 18:22; 20:13; 19:4-6; Rom. 1:26-27; 1 Cor. 6:9-11; 7:1-5; Gal. 5:19-21; 1 Thess. 4:3-8; 1 Tim. 1:10; Heb. 13:4
We believe marriage is a gift of God’s common grace to all mankind as a fundamental building block of society. In accordance with Scripture, we teach that God’s design for marriage is a public, formal, and official life-long covenant between one male and one female. God intends that the union between two believers be a loving illustration of the relationship between Christ and His church, when carried out in obedience to the Bible and through the enabling power of the Holy Spirit. Marriage is the remarkable outward display between two people of the love that God has for Christ, and that Christ has for His bride. This can only be displayed by the marital relationship of a man and a woman.
Gen. 1:28; 2:18-24; Ps. 127:3; Prov. 18:22; 31:10-11; Heb. 13:4