God is Triune
We believe in one God, eternally existing in three equal persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:16-17; 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14). This divine community of one God (Isaiah 45:1) eternally knows, loves, and glorifies one another. This triune God is perfect in all his attributes (love, holiness, power, justice, etc.), he does not change (Psalm 102:25-27; Malachi 3:6). It is he who created all things, and apart from his creative work, nothing that exists would exist (Genesis 1:1; John 1:3). By his power he sustains all things (Hebrews 1:3), and it is he alone that can redeem people from their sins (Acts 4:12).
We believe that God has spoken and revealed himself and his purposes for humanity in the Bible, which is an unfolding story of redemption. We believe that all the sixty-six books of the Bible (39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament) are inspired of God (2 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 1:1-2), and preserved by him in order to reveal his plan of salvation (1 Peter 1:23-25), and show us how we are to live our lives (2 Timothy 3:17). The Bible is authoritative in all areas of life, for it alone is the inspired Word of God (2 Peter 1:20-21). It is through the lens of the Bible that man interprets all of life (Psalm 119:105).
We believe that God created the heavens and the earth, as the Bible teaches (Genesis 1:1-2:4). Thus there is a distinction between God (Creator) and everything else (Creation). Although God is distinct from his creation, he is actively involved in it. God created men and women in His own image (Genesis 1:27). He created Adam and Eve to tend and cultivate the created realm (Genesis 1:28; Genesis 2:15). Man and woman were given a complementing role one with another in marriage (Ephesians 5:33) and in the church leadership (1Timothy 3:8,11). Thus, we believe in marriage as the Bible defines in it, between one man and one woman (Matthew 19:4-5). God has great specific callings for both genders. The purpose of God’s creation is to bring glory to himself within the Trinity.
Although humanity was made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-28), Adam chose to make decisions apart from God in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1-14). This was an act of rebellion against our Creator (Genesis 2:16-17). The result of this act of rebellion was alienation from God (Genesis 3:8), thus all of Adam’s offspring (i.e. all of humanity) was also alienated from God because of what is known as Original Sin (Romans 5:12). We believe this sin (singular) is not mere activities (or sins (plural)), that one does (lie, cheat, murder), but is far deeper. What is the sin behind the sins? This sin is autonomy from our Creator (Romans 1:18). Thus the only hope for us is for God to restore us to himself (2 Corinthians 5:18-20).
We believe that all humanity is hopeless without Christ (Romans 3:23; Ephesians 2:12). In order to save people from their sins, God sent Jesus into the world who took on human flesh, in order to identify with humanity and our plight. He lived a sinless life (Hebrews 4:15) and died as a substitute for all who would repent and believe in him (1 Peter 3:18). Jesus came because of the love of God (John 3:16).
Gospel means Good News. We believe God’s good news is in the fact that God accomplishes our redemption (Ephesians 1:7). We are saved by grace and not by works (Ephesians 2:8-9). Although we all have repeatedly attempted saving ourselves through our good works, or even our bad works, the Gospel tells us that all our efforts to save ourselves are filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). This salvation was accomplished for us by Jesus two-thousand years ago on an instrument of execution (the cross), his lifeless body was then laid in a tomb, and on the third day, Jesus resurrected from the dead, showing that he is victorious over our sin (1 Corinthians 15:3-4, 24-26).
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We believe that God’s Spirit is active in the world today (John 16:8; Acts 1:8), and he enables the church to minister to one another (1 Peter 4:11). Spiritual enablings (gifts) continue for the church today (1 Corinthians 12:4-6), but the context of all spiritual enablings is love (1 Corinthians 13:1-10). These gifts are valid when they build up the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 14:12), magnifying our Triune God (1 Peter 4:10).
We believe that God is making a people for himself (Romans 9:24-26; 1 Peter 2:10). Those who are made alive in Christ (Ephesians 2:5) become part of a family (Romans 8:15) that is made up of every tongue, tribe, and nation (Revelation 5:9). Our unity is not ethnic, cultural, linguistic, generational, nor political (Galatians 3:28). We have unity because of Jesus (Ephesians 4:3-7).
God’s Restoration of Creation
We believe in the personal, visible, return of Jesus in glory (Titus 2:13). He will return establishing his kingdom (Revelation 11:15). There will be a great resurrection in which all will resurrect from the grave, some will resurrect to judgment before King Jesus who will judge those who rebelled against him (Revelation 20:11-15). Their judgment will be just, having sinned against an eternal and holy God, they shall suffer an eternal conscious torment of being separated from God and his goodness (Matthew 25:46). The Bible calls this place of torment hell. And those who trusted in God’s salvation will resurrect to life, and will enjoy the eternal union with Christ in a new heaven and new earth in which righteousness dwells (1 Peter 3:13).
Baptism and Communion
We believe that baptism and Communion (also known as the Lord’s Supper or Eucharist) were both commanded by the Lord Jesus (Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26). Baptism is a sign of entry into the covenant community (Romans 6:3-7; 1 Corinthians 12:13). We believe the model and command in Scripture is believe and be baptised. Faith (becoming a Christian) precedes baptism. We believe Communion is a sign of covenant renewal. As we partake of the bread and cup, these elements are symbols (reminders) of who we are because of Christ’s cross. Christ was crucified once for sinners (1 Peter 3:18), thus we do not believe in consubstantiation or transubstantiation.
Every week we pray over the text that we will be studying and ask God to lead us to worship music that reflects those truths. We believe this to be the true heart of worship: to exalt God, His character, works and promises, as revealed to us though His word.
We believe that singing together to worship and praise our Father in heaven is biblical (Ephesians 5:19) and is not only a blessing to us (Colossians 3:16) but also to Him (Hebrews 13:15-16).
In fact the bible tells us that not only is it right for us to sing to Him but that He Himself sings over his people (Zephaniah 3:17). What a beautiful thing, don’t you think?
It allows us to see singing as a joining of hands of emotion and mind. From God as an expression of joy and delight in His children, from us as gratitude and reciprocal love.