What we believe

DOCTRINAL BASIS

The following statements are a summary of what we believe. They are all derived from the Bible, God's revealed word. What we know about God is what He has chosen to reveal to us. This he has done and still does through:

(a)       His Son, Jesus Christ,

(b)       His word, the Bible,

(c)        the continuing work of the Holy Spirit.

God

There is one God, who exists eternally in three distinct but equal persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. God is unchanging in his holiness, justice, wisdom and love. He is the almighty Creator, Saviour and Judge, who sustains and governs all things according to His sovereign will for His own glory.

The Bible

God has revealed Himself in the Bible, which consists of the Old and New Testaments alone. Every word was inspired by God through human authors, so that the Bible as originally given is in its entirety the Word of God, without error and fully reliable in fact and doctrine. The Bible alone is the complete, final, sufficient and authoritative revelation of God's will for mankind and for the belief and conduct of the Church and of the individual believer.

The Human Race

All men and women, being created in the image of God, have inherent and equal dignity and worth. Their greatest purpose is to obey, worship and love God. As a result of the fall, every aspect of human nature has been corrupted. Every person is therefore under the just condemnation of God and needs to be born again, forgiven and reconciled to God in order to know and please Him.

The Lord Jesus Christ

The Lord Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin, and lived a sinless life in obedience to the Father. He taught with authority and all His words are trustworthy. He demonstrates the power of God over sin, sickness, evil and death. On the cross He died in the place of sinners, bearing God's punishment for their sin, redeeming them by His blood. He rose from the dead triumphant and in His resurrection body ascended into heaven, where He is exalted as Lord of all. He intercedes for His people in the presence of the Father.

Salvation

Salvation is entirely a work of God's grace and cannot be earned or deserved. God in love chose His people before the world began so that they might be conformed to the image of His Son and receive all the blessings of eternal life. Salvation has been accomplished by the Lord Jesus Christ and is offered to all in the gospel. Those whom the Father chose are given new life through the Holy Spirit, who convicts them of their sin and grants repentance and faith. All who repent of their sins and who believe in Christ are forgiven, justified by faith alone, adopted into the family of God, sanctified, and finally glorified in heaven.

The Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit has been sent from heaven to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ. He applies Christ's work of salvation to sinners as He imparts spiritual life and gives a true understanding of the Scriptures. He lives in all believers, bringing assurance of salvation and producing increasing likeness to Christ. It is by His Spirit that Christ builds and sanctifies His Church, equipping and empowering its members to serve Him.

The Church

The universal Church is the body of which Christ is the head and to which all who are saved belong. It is made visible in local churches, which are congregations of believers who are committed to each other for the teaching of the Word of God, for fellowship, for the Lord's Supper and for prayer. To local churches is committed the defence and proclamation of the gospel, the recognition and use of spiritual gifts, and the care and discipline of the people of God. The unity of the body of Christ is expressed within and between local churches by mutual love, respect, care and encouragement.

Baptism and the Lord's Supper

Baptism by total immersion and the Lord's Supper have been given by Christ as visible signs of the gospel:

Baptism by total immersion is a sign of union with Christ and of entry into His Church. It does not impart spiritual life or wash away sin, but symbolises the cleansing that is received by faith alone.

The Lord's Supper is a commemoration of Christ's sacrifice offered once for all and a sign of continued union with Him and with His Church. Its benefits are received by faith.

The Future

The Lord Jesus Christ will return in glory. He will raise the dead and judge the world in righteousness. Those whose names are not written in the Book of Life will be sent to eternal punishment and the righteous will be welcomed into a life of eternal joy in fellowship with God. God will make all things new and will be glorified forever.