Our Core Beliefs are intended to be a basis of fellowship among us (i.e., that we all speak the same thing, 1 Corinthians 1:10; Acts 2:42). There will always be doctrines that committed Christians disagree upon, but the core beliefs of Christianity are non-negotiable.
Below is a list of our core beliefs:
1. The Bible is the Inspired Word of God
The Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, are verbally inspired of God and are the only written revelation from God to man. The Bible is infallible and the authoritative rule of faith and conduct for mankind.
2 Timothy 3:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21
2. The One True God
God is called by many different names because of the different dimensions of His personality, but God is one (Deuteronomy 6:4). God is super-dimensional and eternally self-existent (Jn. 8:54-59). God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. He is the creator of the heavens and the earth.
Genesis 1; Luke 1:31; Luke 1:35
3. Jesus Christ is the Son of God
Jesus Christ is the second person of the Trinity, the eternal Son of God. The Scripture declares:
- His virgin birth,
- Matthew 1:18-23
- His sinless life,
- Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 2:22
- His miracles,
- Acts 2:22; Acts 10:38
- His substitutionary death on the cross,
- 1 Corinthians 15:3; 2 Corinthians 5:21
- His bodily resurrection from the dead,
- Matthew 28:6; Luke 24:39; 1 Corinthians 15:4
- His exaltation to the right hand of God.
- Acts 1:9; Acts 1:11; Acts 2:33; Philippians 2:9-11; Hebrews 1:3
4. The Fall of Man
Man was created in the image of God (Genesis 2:26). However, by a voluntary act of the will, Adam and Eve disobeyed God (Genesis 3:6). That first sin had several repercussions. Man was excommunicated from the garden of Eden (Genesis 3:23), a curse was pronounced (Genesis 3:14-19), the process of physical death began (Genesis 2:17), and man died spiritually (Romans 5:12-19). Sin separated humankind from God (Ephesians 2:11-18) and left man in a fallen or sinful condition (Romans 3:23).
Genesis 1:26,27; Genesis 2:17; Genesis 3:6; Romans 5:12-19
5. The Salvation of Man
- The only means of salvation is Jesus Christ
Acts 4:12 John 3:3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 2:8; Titus 2:11; Titus 3:5-7
- The Evidence of Salvation. The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit.
- The outward evidence is the fruit of the spirit. We become a new creation and are transformed into the image of Christ.
Galatians 5:22, 23; 2 Corinthians 5:17; 2 Corinthians 3:18
6. The Holy Spirit
The nine fruits of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23) are the by-product of a Spirit-filled life and evidence of spiritual maturity. The nine gifts of the Spirit are different manifestations of the Spirit to build up the body (I Cor. 12:1-11). We are instructed to diligently seek the gifts (I Cor. 12:31, 14:1), but they must be exercised in an orderly way (I Cor. 14:26-33) and in the context of love. (I Cor. 13:1-13).
7. The Ordinances of the Church
Baptism in Water
The Scripture teaches that all who repent and believe in Christ as Savior and Lord are to be baptized by immersion. Baptism is a public profession of faith in Christ. It is symbolic of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. It is a declaration to the world that we have died to sin and have been raised with Christ to walk in newness of life.
Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 10:47,48; Romans 6:4
The Lord's Supper consist of two elements --bread and the cup. Those elements are symbolic of the body and blood of Christ. Communion is a memorial of Christ's sufferings on the cross and a celebration of our salvation. It is an opportunity for a believer to examine himself and experience forgiveness.
1 Corinthians 11:26
8. The Church and its Mission
The Church is the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-27) and has four main purposes.
Hope Church's priority reason for being as part of the Church is to lead people to pursue:
- Fellowship with God. cts 1:8; Matthew 28:19,20; Mark 16:15,16
- Community with others. 1 Corinthians 12:13
- Service in ministry. Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Corinthians 12:28; 1 Corinthians 14:12
- Influence with those outside the faith. Acts 1:8; Matthew 28:19,20; Mark 16:15,16
9. The Final Judgment
There will be a final judgment in which the dead will be resurrected and judged according to their works. Everyone whose name is not found written in the Book of Life, along with the devil and his angels, will be sentenced to everlasting punishment in the lake of fire. Those whose names are written in the Book of Life will be resurrected and stand at the judgment seat of Christ to be rewarded for their good deeds.
Matthew 25:31-46; Mark 9:43-48; 1 Corinthians 4:5; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:11-15; Revelation 21:8