What We Believe

Below is our statement of faith, which is a little longer than most.  However, it has been our observation that most evangelical churches and organizations have statements of faith that are essentially identical. It has also been our observation that imbalance and error can sprout in a church that formally embraces a typical evangelical statement of faith. If you have read thus far, may we suggest that you not only read our statement of faith, but also the discussion which follows, which will give you a much better sense of where we are coming from.

STATEMENT OF FAITH

Faith Community of the Inland Empire

  1. We believe that the Old and New Testament Scriptures are the infallible Word of God. We believe in the absolute authority of the Bible in all matters of faith and conduct, and we believe that theology and doctrine, to be valid, must be exclusively Biblical in its origin and thoroughly Biblical in its application.

  2. We believe that the eternal God, Who is One in essence, has manifested Himself in three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each Person of the Godhead is all-powerful, all-knowing, and transcendent (not limited by space and time).

  3. We believe in the absolute Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that He, as the eternal Son, has pre-existed from eternity in communion with the Father and the Holy Spirit, and that He is co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit in all the attributes and powers of the Godhead.

  4. We believe in the Incarnation, defined as that act in which God Himself, in the Person of the eternal Son, became fully human in the Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth. We believe in the virgin birth of Christ, in His perfect and sinless life, and in His miracles as recorded in the Gospels.

  5. We believe in the atoning death of Christ, and in His literal, bodily resurrection. In His substitutionary death on the cross, our Lord provided atonement for all human sin, and healing for all the consequences of sin. In His resurrection, the Lord Jesus has demonstrated His complete victory and authority over sin and all Satanic power.

  6. We believe that all persons are sinners, and partake of a fallen, Adamic nature that is utterly incapable of attaining the righteousness required by God, except by God's grace, which is received by faith in Christ. We believe that no one can be saved and participate in eternal life except by a personal, committed faith in Jesus.

  7. We believe in the imminent, visible, and personal return of the Lord Jesus at the end of this church age to judge the world and to receive all believers into everlasting communion with Himself.

  8. We believe in the final judgment, at which time all persons who are unbelieving and disobedient will be consigned to everlasting punishment, along with Satan and all his angels. We believe that after the final judgment Christ will establish His eternal and universal kingdom, in which the Church will reign with Him forever.

  9. We believe in the Person and ministry of the Holy Spirit, Who leads the unconverted to repentance and faith, and Who enables the believer to lead a holy and fruitful life. Through His indwelling, the Spirit reveals Christ to the believer, and leads the believer into practical identification with Christ in His death and resurrection, resulting in progressive sanctification. The Holy Spirit also empowers believers with spiritual gifts and ministries, in order that the life of Christ might flow to the unconverted and that the Body of Christ might be strengthened.

  10. We believe that the observance of water baptism and the Lord's supper have been commanded by Jesus as a means of the believer's identification with His life, death, and resurrection. We practice baptism by immersion following confession of faith, and we believe that the Lord's supper is a powerful means of grace when received by faith, and should be practiced regularly.

  11. We believe in the spiritual reality of the Body of Christ, the Church, which is the worldwide fellowship of all who love the Lord Jesus, whose lives are purified by faith in Him, and who live in submission to His Word. In recognition that the reality of the Church transcends denominational distinctives and minor doctrinal issues, we stand in spiritual unity with all who confess and practice the fundamentals of Christian orthodoxy, as defined by the great historic credal statements of the Church. It is by the Church that the victory of Jesus is manifested over all the powers of darkness (Eph. 3:10). It is through the prayers of the Church that the authority of Jesus is expressed on earth (Matthew 18: 18-20). And it is to the Church, with Jesus as its Head, that ultimate rulership will be given in the age to come (Eph. 1: 22, 23; Rev. 3:21).

  12. We believe that the primary task of the Church is to disciple all the nations and people groups of the world. We also believe that each local church is called to evangelize its surrounding community. In this total process of evangelism, we include: 1) proclaiming the gospel and leading people to the new birth; 2) establishing converts in the basics of the faith, including baptism and commitment to a local church; and 3) discipling--the process by which believers are nurtured into maturity in the image of Christ, and by which they become effective witnesses and ministering members of a local church.

More discussion on doctrinal issues

 
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