[What I Believe | Core Christian Beliefs]
The Bible is God’s word. The Holy Spirit inspired the original manuscripts, which are error-free. The Lord has not given any other accepted testaments beyond the 66 books of the Bible. Only the Bible contains God’s timeless truths and principles for living for people of all generations and nationalities.
God is the only eternal Supreme Being. He has always existed, nor is He created. There are no other gods that exist alongside of Him. The God of the Bible is the Creator, is Omniscient, and Omnipresent. He is the eternal God, existing outside of the confines of time and space. God is loving, merciful, faithful, and long suffering. He is Holy and Just, demanding righteousness and perfection from all. He is the source of all goodness and truth. All worship and fame are due to Him alone.
There is only one God, in Him exist three co-equal, distinct persons: the Father, the Son (Jesus Christ), and the Holy Spirit. They are not different modes or forms of each other, but they are still of one essence and each fully God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit each possess a unique title and job description. God the Father is the sovereign Creator and Judge. Christ stands as the advocate, the mediator for repentant sinners before the Holy God. The Holy Spirit is responsible for conforming the Christian into Christ’s image in sanctification, enlightening Believers to understand spiritual things including God’s word, and empowering Christians to serve and live in obedience to God.
Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man. He was born of a virgin and lived a sinless life. Jesus died by crucifixion. His death satisfied God’s wrath towards our sin. Jesus resurrected from physical death three days later. He commissioned His disciples to share the gospel, and ascended to Heaven where He is now seated at the right hand of God the Father, functioning as the head of the church and an advocate on behalf of believers. At His second coming, Jesus will return visibly and in the flesh to establish His millennial kingdom on earth.
Christ’s death on the cross was God’s gracious provision for the forgiveness of our sins. All those who repent for their sin, and place their trust in Jesus Christ are completely forgiven by God and put in right standing with God on the basis of what Christ did. God’s grace through Jesus is the only basis for salvation, or receiving God’s forgiveness for sins. The traditional church practices of communion and baptism, along with doing good works and church membership are powerless to save us. We do these things in response to being saved, not in order to be saved. The Jesus Christ of the Bible is the only way to God.
Christians never lose their salvation, once they have been saved they are eternally secure. (Keep in mind, the modern ideal of what a Christian is has been distorted by culture and man-centered traditions. According to the scripture, it is fair to say that those who abandon the faith were never of the faith in the first place. The book 1 John was written so that believers may have confidence that they have been saved. It’s perfect for examining yourself and your walk with God.) At the moment of their salvation, Christians are sealed with the Holy Spirit, who turns their affections from sin to pleasing God so that they may press forward towards spiritual maturity in Jesus Christ.
Though Christians are declared righteous because of Christ’s work on the cross, they will still make mistakes. Sin does not “unsave” a Christian, but it definitely interrupts their personal relationship with God, and incurs his fatherly discipline. This is why it is still necessary to confess our sin to God, so that relationship – in terms of communing and prayer, not salvation- may be restored.
After death, the spirit of the Christian will join Christ, while the spirit of the non-Christian will be sent to a place of torment. At the resurrection, believers will receive glorified bodies and join God in Heaven eternally, while those who reject God will be condemned to conscious, torment in Hell eternally.
The goal of the Christian life is to find his or her satisfaction in God and to bring Him glory. Each Christian should pursue spiritual maturity through the study of and application of God’s word in their daily lives, and through submission to Holy Spirit who makes it possible for believers to please the Lord. This involves active membership and service within a local church body, because fellowship with other believers helps believers grow in the faith and pursue others with the love of Christ. Every disciple should seek to glorify God by being themselves, within the context of obedience to His Word; using his or her unique personality and gifting to the advantage of the Lord and the church.