We believe that there is but one living and true God, who is
one in essence, while eternally existing in three distinct personalities:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Though each person of the Godhead possesses the
same nature, each functions differently in respect with God’s dealing with man
GOD THE FATHER
We believe the first person of the Trinity orders and directs
all things according to His own purpose, pleasure and grace. He created the
universe apart from any pre-existing materials and without any means other than
His own pure power. He has decreed all things that come to pass for His own
glory. He graciously involves Himself in the affairs of men, hears and answers
prayer, and saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ
(Matthew 6:9; John 5:19-24; Ephesians 1:3-6).
GOD THE SON
We believe Jesus Christ to be the eternally co-existing Son
of God who became fully man without ceasing to be fully God. We believe that He
is God’s only begotten Son (John 3:16) and our sole Mediator (1 Timothy 2:5).
We believe in His preexistence (John 1:1), substitutionary atonement (Romans
3:23-25), His bodily resurrection from the grave (Acts 2:24-27), and His bodily
return from heaven (Titus 2:13). We believe that He is now in heaven exalted at
the right hand of the Father, where, as High Priest, He fulfills the ministry
of intercession and advocacy for us (Hebrews 12:3).
GOD THE SPIRIT
We believe that God the Holy Spirit is that person of the
Trinity who restrains evil in the world and convicts men of sin, righteousness,
and judgment. He also regenerates those who receive Christ as Savior, baptizes
them into the Church, indwells them permanently, intercedes for them in prayer,
seals them unto the day of redemption, bestows one or more spiritual gifts on
each believer, and empowers those yielded to Him (Matthew 28:19, John 3:3-7,
The work of the Holy Spirit is to manifest the active presence of God in the world and especially in the church. We believe every Christian receives the Holy Spirit at conversion (1 Corinthians 12:13; 2 Corinthians 1:22; Ephesians 1:13). Subsequent to conversion, it is essential for every believer to thirst for fresh encounters with the person of the Holy Spirit (John 7:37-39). The Holy Spirit performs many necessary ministries in the believer’s life such as: Counselor (John 14:16), Teacher (John 14:26), Revealer of Jesus Christ as Lord (1 Corinthians 12:3), Empowerer (Acts 1:8), Guide (Romans 8:14), Intercessor (Romans 8:26-27), Giver of Spiritual Gifts (1 Corinthians 12:11; 1 Corinthians 14), and the One who brings conviction (John 16:8), Acts 7:51), and produces spiritual fruit (Galatians 5:22-25) and spiritual passion (Luke 3:16).
We believe the Bible is the Word of God; verbally inspired by
God and inerrant in the original writings, and that it is the supreme, final,
and infallible authority in doctrine and practice. By inspiration we mean God’s
superintendence of human authors so that using their own individual
personalities, they composed and recorded without error His revelation to man
in the words of the original autographs. We further believe that there is but
one method of Bible interpretation-the literal, or historical-grammatical
method. This method recognizes the fact that the authors of Scripture meant
what they said. Therefore, we consistently apply the rules of grammar,
literature, history, and culture to Scripture in order to unlock and understand
the author’s meaning (Matthew 5:16-18; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:20, 21).
We believe that man was created innocent and in the image and
likeness of God, for Cornerstone with
God, but that he sinned bringing forth both physical and spiritual death (which
is separation from God) to himself and his posterity. As a consequence, man is
now a sinner both by nature and by choice, is alienated from God, and apart
from salvation through Jesus Christ is eternally separated from God (Genesis
1:26, 27, 2:17, 3:6, 19; Romans 3:10-18, 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:1-3).
We believe that salvation is a gift of God and is received by
man only through personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. We believe
that man is justified by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, apart
from human merit, works, or ceremonies (Ephesians 2:8-10). We believe that all
true believers, “born again” by the Spirit through faith in Christ, are kept
secure in Christ forever and will exhibit the present evidence of a transformed
life (John 10:27-30; Romans 8:33-39).
We believe that the ordinances of the church are two in
number: baptism, by immersion, which is the public identification of the
believer with Christ; and the Lord’s Supper, a memorial of the atoning death of
Christ until He comes (Matthew 28:19; 1 Corinthians 11:23-24).
We believe the Universal Church, the Body and Bride of
Christ, is not an organization but a spiritual organism comprised of all who
have expressed saving faith in Jesus Christ as both Savior and Lord. We believe
the church began at Pentecost and that a believer is placed into the church by
the baptizing work of the Holy Spirit. We believe that the local church is an
assembly of professed 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, Christian Cornerstone , and equipping for
Christian service. We believe that the local church has the right under Christ
to decide and govern its own affairs through the leadership of elders. We
believe that it is God’s intention that all believers publicly identify with a
visible local assembly (Acts 2:1-4, 2:41-47, 4:19, 5:29; 1 Corinthians 1:1, 2,
5:3-8, 10:32, 12:12-13; Ephesians 1:22-23).
We believe that the terms “elder”, “bishop”, and “pastor” are synonymous in scripture and that
the church is to be led by a plurality of elders, and that none of these
elders is to be of higher “rank”, either in theory or in practice, than the
other elders. Some elders may have a teaching gift and may appear more visible,
but all authority is in Christ the head with the elders accepting the
stewardship of shepherding the flock. Some of these elders may receive
financial pay (1 Peter 5:1-2; Acts 14:20; Philippians 1:1, 1 Timothy 5:17).
We believe that the Holy Spirit gives gifts to every believer
to be used for the building up of the body of Christ. These gifts are to be
exercised according to biblical guidelines and priorities (Romans 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians
12, 14). We believe the Holy Spirit is sovereign and may give any gifts He wants
at any time He wants (1 Corinthians 12:11).
THE GIFT OF TONGUES
We believe the gift of tongues is a spiritual gift that may
be used for cross-cultural evangelism (Acts 2:1-11), private prayer (1
Corinthians 14:3, 14-19, 28), or for ministry to the body when an interpreter
is present (1 Corinthians 14:5). We do not believe everyone must speak in
tongues (1 Corinthians 12:30).