ARTICLES OF FAITH
The Bible IS THE INSPIRED Word of God, giving a true history of creation of the heavens and the earth, and of mankind, and containing a correct prophecy of the ages to come regarding the heavens and the earth and the destiny of man. Furthermore, there is no salvation outside of that which is contained within its pages (Acts 4:12). It is the final authority in all scriptural matters.
THE ONE TRUE GOD
We believe in the one everlasting, eternal God: infinite in power, Holy in nature, attributes and purpose; and possessing absolute, indivisible deity. This one true God has revealed himself as Father, through His Son, in redemption; and as the Holy Ghost, by emanation (1 Cor. 8:6; Eph. 4:6; II Cor. 5:19; Joel 2:28). The Scripture does more than attempt to prove the existence of God; it asserts, assumes and declares that the knowledge of God is universal. (Romans 1:19, 21, 28, 32; 2:15). God is invisible, incorporeal, without parts, without body and therefore free from all limitations. He is Spirit (John 4:24), and “…a spirit hath not flesh and bones…” (Luke24:39). “…The first of all the commandments is: Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord” (Mark 12:29; Deut. 6:4). “One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all” (Eph. 4:6). This one true God manifested Himself in the Old Testament in divers ways; Jehovah-Rapha (Isaiah 53:5); Jehova-Shammah (Matt. 18:19, 20); Jehovah-Jireh (Genesis 22:7-14); Jehovah-McKaddesh (Leviticus 11:44); Jehovah-Shalom (Judges 6:23, 24); Jehovah-Tsidkenu (Jeremiah 33:16); Jehovah-Nissi (Exodus 14:13, 14; Exodus 17:15); in the Son while he walked among men (II Corinthians 5:19); as the Holy Ghost after ascension (Acts 1:8).
THE SON OF GOD
The one true God, the Jehovah of the Old Testament, took upon himself the form of man (John 1:14), and as the Son of Man, was born of the virgin Mary (Matt: 1:23; Luke 2:11). As Paul says, “and without controversy great is the mystery of Godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up unto glory” (1 Timothy 3:16). “He came unto his own, and his own received him not” (John 1:11). This one true God was manifest in the flesh, that is, in His Son Jesus Christ. “…God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them…” (2 Cor. 5:19). We believe that, “in Him (Jesus) dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2:9). For it pleased the Father that in Him should all fullness dwell” (Cor. 1:19). Therefore, Jesus in his humanity was man; in his deity was and is God. His flesh was the lamb (John 1:29), or the sacrifice of God (Hebrews 9L12, 26). He is the only mediator between God and man. “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5) Jesus on His Father’s side was DIVINE (Matt. 1:18), on His Mother’s side, HUMAN (Luke 1:30, 31); Thus, He was known as the Son of God and also the Son of man, or the God-man. “For He hath put all things under his feet. But when He saith all things are put under Him, it is manifested that He is excepted, which did put all things under Him” (1 Cor. 15:27). “And when all things shall be subdued unto Him, then shall the son also himself be subject unto Him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all” (1 Cor. 15:28). “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty” (Rev. 1:8).
God used different titles, such as “God Elohim”, “God Almighty”, “El Shaddai”, Jehovah”, and especially “Jehovah Lord”, the Redemptive name in the Old Testament. “…unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given:… and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor; the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father; The Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6). This prophecy of Isaiah was fulfilled when the Son of God was named, “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for he shall save His people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21). "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12; Col. 2:9; John 10:30; John 14:6; 1 John 5:20).
REPENTANCE AND CONVERSION
Pardon and forgiveness of sins is obtained by genuine repentance, a confessing and forsaking of sins. We are justified by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Roman 5:1), John the Baptist preached repentance, Jesus proclaimed it, and the Apostles emphasized it to both Jews and Gentiles. (Acts 2:38, 11:18, 17:30). The word “repentance” comes from several Greek words which mean, change of views and purpose, change of heart, change of mind, change of life, to transform etc. Jesus said, “…except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3). Luke 24:47 says, “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”
The scriptural way of baptism is immersion, and is only for those who have fully repented, having turned from their sins and a love of the world. It should be administered by a duly authorized minister of the Gospel, in obedience to the Word of God. We believe that the correct formula for water baptism is in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ upon the confession of faith. (Matthew 28:19, Acts 2:38, Acts 19:5, Colossians 2:12).
THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY GHOST
John the Baptist, in Matthew 3:11, said, “… He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire.” Jesus, in Acts 1:5, said, “… Ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.” Luke tells us in Acts 2:4 “…they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues” (languages as the spirit gave them utterance). The terms “Baptized with the Holy Ghost and fire”, “filled with the Holy Spirit”, and the “gift of the Holy Ghost” are synonymous terms used interchangeably in the Bible. It is scriptural to expect all who receive the gift, filling, or baptism of the Holy Ghost to receive the physical sign of speaking with other tongues The speaking with other tongues, as recorded in Acts 2:4, 10:46 and 19:6, and the gift of tongues, as explained in I Corinthians, chapter 12 and verse 12, are the same in essence, but different in use and purpose. The Lord, through the Prophet Joel, said“…I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh;…”(Joel 2:28). Peter, in explaining this phenomenal experience, said, “…having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, He (Jesus) hath shed forth this which you now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33). Further, “…the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:39).
(1) SPEAKING IN OTHER TONGUES as the SPIRIT OF GOD GIVES UTTERNACE is the manifestation God has given as a definite, undisputable supernatural WITNESS or SIGN of the BAPTISM of the HOLY GHOST. It was prophesied by the Prophet Isaiah as the “rest and the refreshing (Isa. 28:11, 12) foretold by Jesus as a SIGN that would follow every believer of the Gospel (Mark 16:16, 17); and pour first upon the Jews at Pentecost (Acts 2:4); then upon the Gentiles at Caesarea (Acts 10:44-46), thus fulfilling the prophecy of Joel, that it should be poured out upon all flesh (Joel 2:28, 29; Acts 2:15-18). (2) THE GIFT OF TONGUES, OR unknown languages, mentioned by Paul in I Corinthians 12:1, 10 and concerning which he gives regulations in I Cor. 14:1-40 is that GIFT given by God to only some believers to be used for self edification (I Cor. 14:27, 28), except when there is an interpreter present (I Cor. 13:3) and therefore needs proper regulations (I Cor. 14:23-28). This is entirely different and separate from that which God gives as a witness of the Baptism of the Holy Ghost. Paul said, “Forbid not to speak with tongues (I Cor. 14:39), and “I THANK MY GOD I SPEAK WITH TONGUES MORE THAY YE ALL” (I Cor. 14:18). Who dares to preach or teach to the contrary?
We believe tithing is God’s financial plan to provide for his work and has been since the days of Abraham. Tithing came with faith under Abraham. Mosaic law enjoined it, and Israel practiced it when she knew that it was right with God: Jesus endorsed it (Matt 23:23); and Paul said to lay by in store as God has prospered you. Do not rob God of his portion, in tithes and offerings (read Mal. 3). God’s plan for Christian prosperity is based upon His natural law of seed-time and harvest.
The first covenant that the Lord (Jehovah) made with the children of Israel after they were brought out of Egypt was a covenant of healing. The Lord said “…if thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord (Jehovah-Rappa, the Lord that healthy) thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statues, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians; for I am the Lord that health thee” (Exodus 15:26). Some translators reason: “For I am Jehovah thy physician”, he being our physician or doctor, we have the most capable in the whole-world. Our Lord Jesus Christ went about Galilee preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom and healing all manner of sickness and disease among the people. (Matt. 4:23, 24) “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). The vicarious suffering of the Lord Jesus Christ paid for the healing of our bodies, the same as for the salvation of our souls, for “…with his stripes we are healed.” (Isaiah 53:5, Matt. 8:17 reads: “…Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” (See also I Peter 2:24). We see from this that divine healing for the body is in the atonement. That being true, then it is for all who believe. Jesus said of believers, “…they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.” Later, James wrote in his epistle to all the churches: “Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. Confess your faults one to another and pray one for another; that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” (James 5:14-16)
All of these promises are for the church today.
THE GRACE OF GOD
“For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ” (John 1:17). A Christian, to keep saved, must walk with God and keep himself in the love of God (Jude 21) and in the grace of God. The word “grace” means “favor”. When a person transgresses and sins against God, he loses favor. If he continues to commit sin and does not repent, he will eventually be lost and cast into the lake of fire. (Read John 15:2,6; 2 Peter 2:20-21). Jude speaks of the backslider of his day, and their reward. (also, read Hebrew 6:4-6). “For by grace are you saved by faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.” (Ephesians 2:87).
RESTITUTION OF ALL THINGS
We understand the scriptures to teach the restitution of all things which God hath spoken by the mouth of his Holy Prophets since the world began. (Acts 3:21). However, the devil, his angels, and all sinners will be eternally damned.. (See Rev. 20:10).
TRANSLATION OF SAINTS
We believe that the time is drawing near when our Lord shall appear; then the dead in Christ shall rise, and we who are alive and remain shall be caught up with them to meet our Lord in the air. (I Thess. 4:13-17; I Cor. 15:51-54; Phil. 3: 20-21). We, therefore, observe the “Feast of Atonement” as we see the day approaching (Hebrews 9:20-28).
SECOND COMING OF JESUS
That Jesus is coming again the second time in person, just as he went away, is clearly set forth by the Lord Jesus himself, and was preached and taught in the early Christian church by the Apostles; hence, the children of God today are earnestly, hopefully, looking forward to the glorious event. (Matt. 24; Acts 1:11, 3:19-21; I Cor. 11:26; Phil. 3:20-21; I Thess. 4:14-17; Titus 2:13-14).
When the thousand years are finished, there shall be a resurrection of all the dead, who will be summoned before the great white throne for their final judgment. All whose names are not found written in the Book of Life shall be cast into the lake of fire, burning with brimstone, which God hath prepared for the Devil and his angels, Satan himself being cast in first. (Matt. 25:41; Rev. 20:7, 15:, 21:8).