We believe the Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, to be the verbally inspired, inerrant, and the only infallible, authoritative Word of God. We believe the Bible is of supreme and final authority in faith and life. The sixty-six books of the Old and New Testament are the complete and divine revelation of God to man. The King James Version of the Bible shall be the official and only translation used by the church. (Matthew 24:35, II Peter 1:20-21, II Tim. 3:16-17).
We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – each co-eternal in being, co-identical in nature, co-equal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfections (Genesis 1:1, John 10:30, Matthew 28:19, Acts 5:3-4).
We believe that God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, is the Heavenly Father of all who have come to a saving knowledge of His only begotten Son (John 1:14; 20:17; Romans 4:11; I Peter 1:3-5).
The Person and Work of Christ
We believe that Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful men (Isaiah 7:14, 9:6; Matt. 1:18-25, Luke 1:35; John 1:1-2,14; II Cor. 5:19-21; Gal. 4:4-5; Phil. 2:5-8, Col. 2:9).
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as a representative, vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice; and that our justification is made sure by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead. All who place their faith in Him alone are justified on the ground of His shed blood (Acts 2:18-36; Rom. 3:24-25; I Pet. 2:24; Eph. 1:7; I Peter 1:3-5).
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God, where, as our High Priest, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate (Acts 1:9-10; Rom. 8:34; Heb. 7:25; 9:24; I John 2:1-2).
The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a personality and deity, and that it is He Who convicts the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; that He is the Supernatural Agent in regeneration, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ, indwelling and sealing them unto the day of redemption (John 16:8-11; Rom. 8:9; I Cor. 12:12-14; II Cor. 3:6; Eph. 1:13-14).
We believe that He is the Divine Teacher Who assists believers to understand and appropriate the Scriptures and that it is the privilege and duty of all the saved to be filled with the Spirit. By His endowment and enduement God’s people are enabled to serve the Lord acceptably. We believe that He is the Divine Witness, Seal, Earnest, Anointing, Guide, Teacher, and Administrator (John 14:26; 16:7-13; Acts 1:5,8; 2:4; Romans 8:14-27; 15:16; I Cor. 12:1-14,14:40; Eph. 1:13-14,17-18; 5:18; I John 2:20, 27).
We believe that God created the entire universe in six literal, 24-hour periods. We reject evolution, the Gap Theory, the Day-Age Theory, and Theistic Evolution as unscriptural theories of origin (Gen. 1-2; Ex. 20:11).
We believe Satan was originally created by God as a holy being, enjoying heavenly honors as the chief angel, Lucifer. However, through pride and selfish ambition to be as the Almighty, he chose to rebel and was cast out of Heaven by God and drew a host of angels with him. We believe that Satan is the agent of the fall of man, the prince and power of the air, “that old serpent, the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world,” he is the father of lies, the author of the powers of darkness, and the lord of the antichrist, he is the arch-enemy of God and man, and that in God’s own appointed time he will suffer ultimate defeat at the hands of the Lord Jesus and will be tormented throughout eternity in the Lake of Fire (Job 1:6-7; Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:12-17; Matt. 4:1-11, 25:41; John 8:44; I Pet. 5:8; Rev. 12:9-10; 20:1-2,7-10).
We believe that man was created in the image of God, that he sinned and thereby incurred not only physical death but also the spiritual death which is separation from God, and that all human beings are born with a sinful nature and are now sinners by birth and by choice, positively inclined to evil, and therefore under just condemnation to eternal ruin without defense or excuse. Man is totally depraved and, of himself, utterly unable to remedy his lost condition (Gen. 1:26-27; 2:17; Psalm 58:3; Rom. 1:20; 3:22-23; 5:12-21; 6:23; I Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:1-3; 4:17-19).
We believe in the universality and exceeding sinfulness of sin and that there is no remission of sins apart from the shedding of the blood of the Son of God and man’s repentance (Ezekiel 18:4; Luke 24:46-47; Rom. 3:10-26; 6:23; 7:13-14; Hebrews 9:22).
We believe that salvation is a gift of God the Father through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, Whose precious blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins.
We believe in the single substitutionary sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ for sinners, One for all, and once for all; that salvation is completely of divine grace apart from any works of merit of the sinner; that it is provided in the atonement of Jesus Christ, wrought by God, and is received by a sinner when he repents towards God and puts his trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as his own personal Savior; that all who receive the Lord Jesus Christ by personal faith as Savior, are thereby born again, and have eternal life through the indwelling Christ; and that unbelievers will suffer eternally for their sins. We reject the positions of Calvinism and Arminianism.
We believe that all sins, except blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, are forgivable (John 1:12; Romans 10:13; Eph. 1:7; 2:8-10; I Pet. 1:18-19; 3:9; Matt. 12:31-32; I John 1:9; 2:1-2).
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1,38-39; I Cor. 1:4-8; I Pet. 1:4-5).
We believe that it is the privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation through the testimony of God’s Word, which, however, clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion to the flesh (Rom. 13:13-14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15).
The Two Natures of the Believer
We believe that every saved person possesses two natures, with provisions made for victory of the spiritual nature over the carnal, fleshly, soulish nature through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, and that all claims to the eradication of the old nature in this life are unscriptural (Romans 6:13; 8:12-13; Galatians 5:16-25; Ephesians 4:22-24; Colossians 3:10; I Peter 1:14-16; I John 3:5-9).
We believe in the positional sanctification of each believer in Christ at the time of salvation, and a practical sanctification which is progressive, depending upon the believer’s appropria-tion of divine means; and all without a second work of grace (John 17:17; I Cor. 1:2,30).
Section 1 – The Body of Christ
We believe that the Church, the Body of Christ, His Bride, is a spiritual organism made up of all born-again believers of this present age; that it was constituted and empowered by the coming of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost; that it was purchased with the blood of Christ; that it was founded upon Christ; that its mission is to bear to the ends of the earth a Spirit-filled testimony to the judgment of God against sin and the salvation of sinners who repent towards God and exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Matt. 16:17-18; 28:18-20; Acts 2; I Cor. 3:11; 12:12-14; Eph. 1:2-23; 2:19-22; 5:25-27; Col. 1:18).
Section 2 – The Local Church
We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures; that a local New Testament church is a body of believers in Christ that have followed the Lord through the waters of baptism, associated together under the direction and government of the Holy Spirit for worship, instruction, fellowship, service, and the spread of the Gospel to the uttermost part of the earth; that it is absolutely sovereign, under the administration of the Holy Spirit, in the handling of its own affairs and in determining its own relationship; that its relationship with other ecclesiastical bodies is one of fellowship only (Matt. 16:17-18; 28:19-20; Acts 14:27; 20:17,28-37; I Cor. 3:9-17; Eph. 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 5:25,27; Col. 1:18; I Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11).
Section 3 – Spiritual Gifts
We believe that God is sovereign in the bestowment of spiritual gifts to every believer. God uniquely uses the offices of pastor-teacher and evangelist to equip believers in the assembly in order that they can do the work of the ministry (Rom. 12:3-8; I Cor. 12:4-11,28; Eph. 4:7-12).
We believe that the sign gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues and the gift of healing, were temporary. Prophesying and the giving of knowledge beyond that revealed in Scripture ceased as the New Testament Scriptures were completed and their authority became established; therefore, we will not allow the exercising of any so-called gift of speaking in tongues, extra-Biblical prophesying, or healing. Speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary sign of the baptism or filling of the Holy Spirit and that ultimate deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection, though God frequently chooses to answer the prayers of believers for physical healing (John15:17; I Cor. 1:22; 13:8; 14:21-22; Ephesians 2:19-22; 4:7-12; Hebrews 2:2-4; I John 5:14-15; James 5:13-18).
We believe that there are two Christian ordinances and that they are symbolical, not sacramental: Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.
We believe that baptism is the immersion of a believer into the water in the Name of
the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit; that it sets forth in picture the essential facts in redemption – the death and resurrection of Christ, the essential facts in the experience of the believer – death to sin and resurrection to walk in newness of life, and the essential facts in the hope of the believer – that should he experience physical death he will be raised from the dead to participate in the eternal glory of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (Matt. 28:18-20; Romans 6:4).
B. The Lord’s Supper
We believe that the Lord’s Supper is a commemoration of the Lord’s death to be observed till He comes; that the elements – the bread and the fruit of the vine – are only symbols of His broken body and shed blood, and that our observance of it is a pictorial testimony of the believer’s fellowship with the Crucified Savior and should be preceded by solemn heart-searching and self-judgment. Only those who have been saved through faith in His atoning blood and are walking in obedient fellowship with Him should partake of it. We do not believe in “closed communion.”
We believe that God has ordained and created all authority consisting of three basic institutions: 1) the home, 2) the church, and 3) the state. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves), are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home, the church, and the state are equal and sovereign in their respective Biblically-assigned spheres of responsibility under God (Matt. 22:21; Rom. 13:1-7; Eph. 5:22-24; I Tim. 2:1-6; Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 2:13-14).
We believe that all men everywhere are lost and condemned and that the command to go and preach the Gospel to the world is clear and unmistakable and that this commission was given to the church. The church is to obey this holy command so that there might be a great multitude from every nation, tribe, ethnic group, and language group believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. As ambassadors of Christ we must use all available means to present the Gospel locally as well as to foreign nations (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; II Cor. 5:20).
We believe music is a moral language given by God and governed by the rules of composition and harmony. It employs sounds with varied durations, dynamics, and timbre. Music strongly influences our character, thoughts, behavior, emotions and lifestyles. It has the power to change the way we view life as well as transform our senses and understanding. Therefore, we purpose to use only music that glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ and enhances the worship of Him – to be clear, Sacred Music. Our entire music ministry (including our congregational singing, special music and programs, choirs, offertories) and those involved therein are a reflection of our purpose. Because our purpose dictates our practices, musical styles such as Christian contemporary, rock or rap are neither Christian nor accepted. Musicians and/or musical styles which draw attention away from God, are also a violation of our purpose (Psalm 100:2; Col. 3:16,23; Eph. 5:10,19; Hebrews 2:12).
The Second Advent of Christ
We believe in the “Blessed Hope,” the imminent return of Christ for the pretribulation rapture of living church saints and resurrection of dead church saints – at which time both companies will meet the Lord in the air to forever be with Him (I Thess. 4:13-18; 5:9; Rev. 3:10).
We believe that all the Old Testament saints and the martyred Tribulation saints will be resurrected at the end of the Tribulation at the Second Advent of Christ (Daniel 12).
We believe at the end of the Tribulation, Christ will personally and visibly return with His saints to establish His earthly Messianic Kingdom which was promised to the nation of Israel (Ps. 89:3-4; Zech. 14:4-11; Rev. 19:11-16; 20:1-6).
We believe in the bodily resurrection of the dead; both of the just and unjust. We believe that the righteous dead will have part in the first resurrection which will issue in eternal life. We believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the body and present with the Lord, where in conscious bliss they await the first resurrection, when spirit, soul, and body are reunited to be glorified forever with the Lord.
We believe that the spirits of the unsaved at death descend immediately into Hades where they are kept under punishment until the final day of judgement, at which time their bodies shall be raised from the grave; they shall be judged according to their works at the Great White Throne Judgment, and cast into the place of final and everlasting punishment called the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting conscious punishment and torment (Matthew 25:41-46; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 14:14, 16:19-26; John 5:28-29; I Cor. 15:20-26; I Thess. 4:16-18, II Thess. 1:7-9; Jude 6,7,13; Rev. 20:11-15, 21:8, 22:4-6, 11-15).
We believe that eternity is composed of a literal Heaven and a literal Hell: that Heaven is a place of eternal blessedness and that Hell is a place of eternal suffering; that all true believers in Jesus Christ will be fully redeemed from sin’s penalty, power, presence, will be glorified with the Lord when He comes, and will enjoy the blessing of unbroken fellowship with God in Heaven forever; that all unrepentant sinners and rebels against God will be judged by the Lord Jesus Christ according to their deeds, without respect of persons, by the glorious Gospel of God, and will be cast out from God’s presence to suffer the torments of the Lake of Fire into which Hell itself will be cast forever (Matt. 25:46; Luke 16:19-31; Romans 2:1-16; II Cor. 5:1-10; Phil. 3:20; Rev. 20:1-15; 21:22).
Fort Eustis, Chetham Annex, Naval Weapons Station Yorktown, and Camp Peary.