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As A.W.Pink so rightly says “Here we enter a realm which transcends the finite mind, and where speculation is profane”. Because God is infinite, and the human mind is finite (as well a fallen) we cannot possibly adequately define God. We can however give a definition of God insofar as we know Him, and what we know about Him from scripture. I have not been able to find a better summary of the doctrine of God than that taught in the Westminster Shorter Catechism which I will quote here: ” God is spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in His being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, and truth”. Strong’s definition is also very good; “God is the infinite and perfect Spirit in whom all things have their source, support, and end”.
God is the Creator and Sustainer of all things, both visible and invisible. God is eternally existent in three persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, co-equal in power and glory.
I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure”. Isaiah 46:9-10
We believe in the deity of Christ. Jesus Christ is co-equal and co-eternal with the Father (John 1:1-3). Our belief in the deity of Christ is drawn from the testimony of the New Testament itself. This has been the belief of the true Church from the first century onward. The first church counsel; the Counsel of Nicea in A.D. 325, stated that Jesus is begotten, not made, and that His divine nature is of the same essence(homo ousios) with the Father. Jesus Christ is the second person of the Godhead, but He is also human. Very God of very God, and very man of very man. As the Council of Chalcedon in A.D. 451 affirmed that Jesus is truly man and truly God and the the two natures of Christ are so united as to be without mixture, confusion, separation, or division, each nature retaining its own attributes. He was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, was crucified upon a cross, died, was buried, and rose from the dead on the third day. He ascended to the right hand of the Father, and there makes intercession for the saints.
I and my Father are one. John 10:30
The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead. The Bible clearly ascribes the attributes of deity to the Holy Spirit. He is not a force, or influence, or merely power, He is a divine person. As Jesus Christ is the Son of God, so the Spirit is the Spirit of God. Just as the Council of Nicea in A.D. 325 affirmed the doctrine of the deity of Christ, so the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381 affirmed the doctrine of the deity of the Holy Spirit. The scriptures tell us that the Holy Spirit was active in the work of creation, that He was active in the life of Christ, and that He is active in the work of regeneration. He restrains evil. The Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit indwells and fills believers. He guides, and seals, and teaches, and empowers those who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him, for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. John 14:16-17
The Bible is the Word of God. It is God’s revelation to us. We do not know God by speculation, we know God by revelation, and He has revealed Himself to us in His word (The Bible) and through his son Jesus Christ. The Bible reveals the heart of God, His character, His love, His holiness, and His wrath. It also reveals what is in the heart of man; his sinfulness, his fallen state, his inability to save himself. And it reveals God’s remedy for sin; the glorious gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible is a book for sinners. It shows the way of salvation, bridging the gap between God and all mankind. The Bible is a supernatural book. It is living, and it is powerful. It is divinely inspired and without error. It is our final authority.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Heb.4:12
All men are sinners both by nature and by choice. All men are guilty before God, and deserving His wrath. Man is born spiritually dead in trespasses and in sin, and is totally helpless to save himself.
But God in His infinite grace and mercy, has given His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, as a sacrifice for our sins, and all who place their trust in Him as Saviour can know the joy and peace of their sins forgiven.
The Bible teaches that salvation is a miraculous work of God in the heart of a person. Where the Holy Spirit prepares the heart, there is an acknowledgement and confession of sin, that is genuine repentance (Godly sorrow for sin and a turning away from it, a complete surrender to God). It is by an act of faith that a person lays hold upon the Lord Jesus Christ, for salvation. When one places their trust in the promises of God, and by faith appropriates to themselves personally the provisions of God’ grace, resting only and completely in the atoning merit of Christ’s sacrifice, God forgives their sin and imputes Christ’s righteousness to their account.
Ye must be born again. John 3:7
The term “church” is used in two senses in the scriptures. There is the universal sense and there is the local sense. In the universal sense the church is made up of all those who have been born again of the Spirit of God, and have by that same Spirit been baptized into the body of Christ (I Cor.12:13; I Pet,1:3,22-25). Christ said ‘I will build my church’ (not churches) Mat.16:18. The Apostle Paul was grieved because he had persecuted ‘the church’ (I Cor 15:9; Gal.1:13; Phil.3:6). In these examples the Greek word that is used is ekklesia, which simply means ‘the called out ones’. The church is also called the ‘bride of Christ’. And in that sense she is espoused to Christ, and is to be faithful to Him. The church has been called out from the world, separated from sin, and united to Christ her Head and Sovereign Lord.
In the ‘local’ sense the word church is used of a group or body of professing believers in a particular locality. We read of the church in Jerusalem in Acts 8:1. We read of the church in Ephesus in Acts 20, the church in Corinth, and many other examples. And though on a smaller scale the local church is to be a replica of the larger universal church.
The purpose of the church is to meet together at regular scheduled times for worship, teaching from the Word, and fellowship of the saints. It also meets together for the observance of the ordinances, prayer, and when necessary discipline. The church is to preach the gospel to those that are lost.
The governing of the local church is to be by oversight of a group of appointed elders. No where in scripture do we read of a hierarchy of clergy, only elders. There is no separate priestly class, but one body, a priesthood of all believers, with Christ as the head.
For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. Matt.18:20
Baptism is one of the two ordinances instituted by the Lord Jesus Christ for His church.
We believe in baptism by immersion to those who have been born again by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Before a person is baptized there must be evidence of the genuineness of their salvation.
Believers baptism by water is symbolic of one’s union by faith with Christ in death, burial, and resurrection. It is an act of obedience to Christ, and a public confession to the world of spiritual realities.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Matt.28:19
The Lord’s Supper was instituted by Christ Himself on the night of His betrayal. Each Lord’s Day morning we gather around the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ to remember His life, death, and resurrection. The emblems of bread and wine represent His body and His blood given for us. It is to be observed, and open to, only those who are true believers in Jesus Christ.
For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord’s death till he come. I Cor.11:26
As the scriptures teach, Heaven is a real place. It is the eternal dwelling of all who place their trust in Jesus Christ. It is a definite place where believers will enjoy the presence of God and behold His glory. We will behold, enjoy, and know the physical presence of our Lord Jesus Christ himself. And we will have resurrected bodies like that of Christ. There will be no tears, pain, sorrow, or sin there. We will also enjoy the fellowship and company of all the glorified saints made perfect, from all ages past. Heaven is the future home of those who are in Christ, and it is beyond anything that what we are presently able to even imagine.
In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you; I go to prepare a place for you. John 14:2
Hell is a real, definite place. The Bible says that it is the eternal abode of all who reject God’s free offer of salvation through Jesus Christ. It is a place of sorrow and torment, a lake of fire and brimstone that will never be quenched, where the worm dieth not. Hell is the place of God’s wrath, and those that go there have no rest day nor night. Oh dear reader, please heed this solemn warning, and turn to Christ. If you know not Christ as your saviour please read the section on salvation before it is forever to late.
Whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire. Rev.20:15