Adopted January 19, 2014
1. God spoke to human beings in the Bible, both Old and New Testaments (Hebrews 1:1-2). He moved the authors to choose every word in their original writings (2 Peter 1:16-21) in order to reveal his plan for the world completely and without error (2 Timothy 3:15-17). Because the Bible comes from God, it is the authority over all human knowledge and behavior (John 12:47-50; Hebrews 4:12-13). We are called to believe what it teaches, obey what it commands, and trust what it promises.
2. God created everything (Genesis 1:1) and all life depends upon him (John 1:1-3). He is holy (Isaiah 6:3). God is not limited by space, time, or imperfection, and his knowledge is infinite (Psalm 139:1-12). He is the eternal, loving unity of three Persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (John 15:26). With all power and wisdom, God moves everything toward his goal (Isaiah 40): to live with human beings and to make everything new (Revelation 21:1-4). There is only one God (Exodus 20:3). We owe him our service (Romans 1:18-23).
3. God created Adam and Eve in his image so that human beings would live in relationship with him (Genesis 1:26-27). When Adam sinned by breaking God’s command, every human being’s relationship with God was broken and we all came under the power of Satan and the sentence of death (Genesis 3; Romans 5:12-14; Ephesians 2:1-3). We are sinners by nature. We can only be saved from sin by Jesus Christ (John 8:34-36).
4. Jesus Christ is God incarnate—one person with two natures (John 1:1-5, 14-18). He is fully God and became fully man, completing all God’s promises to Israel (Romans 1:1-7). He was conceived by the Holy Spirit when his mother Mary was a virgin (Luke 2:7-21). Though Jesus Christ never sinned (Isaiah 53:7-9), he was crucified as a criminal under Pontius Pilate (John 19:17-42). But the Father raised Jesus from the dead bodily (John 20:19-31). Jesus then ascended to heaven (Luke 24:50-53) and sat on heaven’s throne where he mediates for us (Hebrews 1:1-4; 2.17-18).
5. Jesus Christ took our place when he died on the cross (Romans 5:6-21). His blood is the perfect, complete payment for our sins (Mark 10:45), and his bodily resurrection gives us eternal life (1 Corinthians 15:49-57). His death and resurrection are the only way for human beings to be saved from sin (Acts 4:8-12). Therefore, God calls everyone to turn and believe this good news during their earthly lives (Acts 17:30-31).
6. The Holy Spirit glorifies Jesus Christ (John 16:14). He does this by showing human beings that they are sinners (John 16:8) and by giving new life in Christ’s death and resurrection to those who believe (John 3:1-21). The Holy Spirit also unites believers with Christ (Ephesians 2:19-22) and adopts them as heirs in God’s family (Romans 8:15-17). He lives in them (Romans 8:9), enlightening their minds (1 Corinthians 2:12-13), guiding their steps (John 16:13), equipping their work (1 Corinthians 12), and empowering their whole being with Christ’s strength (Romans 8:1-8).
7. God created the church to inherit Jesus Christ’s eternal kingdom (1 Peter 1:1-9). Through grace alone, God makes sinners righteous by faith alone in Christ alone (Romans 3:21-26). Christ is the head of the church (Colossians 1:15-20), and the Holy Spirit unites believers from every ethnicity as Christ’s body on earth (1 Corinthians 12:12-13). His church can be found in local gatherings of believers throughout the world (Colossians 1:3-8), devoting themselves to the Bible (Acts 17:10-12) and practicing the two ordinances Christ gave: baptism and communion (Matthew 26:26-29; 28:18-20).
8. God saved us in order to make us holy (1 Peter 1:13-21). He calls us to display the Holy Spirit’s transforming work (Galatians 5:16-24), to love one another (Romans 12), to care for the poor and oppressed (Matthew 23:23-24), and to spread the good news of Christ’s saving work throughout the world (Matthew 28:18-20). With these calls, God sets us in spiritual conflict with mainstream culture, a struggle that he equips us to endure through the Bible, prayer, and the power of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:10-20).
9. Jesus Christ will return to raise the dead and to establish his reign on earth (Revelation 20:1-6). Only God knows when he will return (Mark 13:32-37). At Christ’s coming, believers will receive immortal bodies and will live eternally in fellowship with God (1 Corinthians 15:50-57), while unbelievers will receive judgment and will be punished eternally in hell (2 Thessalonians 1:5-10). This day motivates us to serve and proclaim Christ right now (1 John 3:1-3), even as we long to live in the new world God creates in him (Romans 8:18-25).
All glory belongs to God in Christ. Amen.