Statement of Faith
ARTICLE IV - CONFESSION OF FAITH
Section 1 - THE SCRIPTURES
We believe that the Holy Bible is that collection of sixty-six books from Genesis to
Revelation which, as originally written, was verbally and plenarily inspired, the product of
God through Spirit controlled men; that it not only contains and conveys the Word of God,
but is the very Word of God; that it is and shall remain to the end of the age the only
complete and final revelation of the will of God to man; that it is the true center of Christian
unity and the supreme and only authority by which all human conduct, creeds and opinions
shall be tried. Psa.119:7-12; Psa.119:89; Psa.119:105; Psa.119:130; Psa.119:160; Prov.30:5-6;
Isa.8:20; Luke 16:31; Luke 24:25-27; 44-45; John 5:39, 45- 47; John 12:48; John 17:17; Acts 1:16; Acts
28:25; Rom.3:4; Rom.15:4; Eph.6:17; 2 Tim.3:16-17: 1 Pet.1:23; 2 Pet.1:19-21; Rev.22:19.
Section 2 - THE GODHEAD
We believe that there is one and only one living and true God, and infinite Spirit, the Maker
and Supreme Ruler of Heaven and earth; inexpressibly glorious in holiness and worthy of
all possible honor, confidence and love; that in the unity of the Godhead there are three
persons, the Father, the Son, and the Spirit, equal in every divine perfection, and
executing distinct but harmonious offices in the great work of redemption. (I Cor.8:6; Rev.4:11;
Dt.6:4; I John 5:7)
A - THE FATHER: We believe that the Father concerns Himself, mercifully and in justice, in
the affairs of men; that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from death and
hell all who come to Him through Christ. (Romans 3:26; Ps.30:4; John 14:6; Hebrews 7:25)
B - THE SON: We believe that the Son was co-existent, co-eternal and co-equal with the
Father and the Spirit in eternity past and continues to sustain that identification as God;
that He was miraculously begotten by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary and that,
as a man, He was true man and true God; that he is the only sufficient mediator between
God and man; that He lived a sinless life, was crucified, dead, buried and rose again the
third day, and was glorified in the same body in which He suffered and died; that He
ascended into heaven where He now appears as our High Priest and Intercessor in the
presence of the Father. (Isa.53:5,6; John 1:1-3, 14; Luke 1:35; Romans 3:2) We believe that He
will literally return to this earth according to His promise. (John 14:3; I Thess.4:16,17) We
further believe that Jesus Christ alone is the way of salvation. (John 14:6; Acts 4:12)
C - THE HOLY SPIRIT: We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, equal with God
the Father and God the Son and of the same nature; that He was active in the creation
and the affairs of men in ages past (Gen.1:1-3; 6:3). We believe that, in this age, certain
well-defined ministries are committed to the Holy Spirit and that it is the duty of every
Christian to understand them and to be adjusted to them in his own life and experience.
These ministries are: the restraining of evil in the world to the measure of the divine will;
the convicting of the world respecting sin, righteousness and judgment; the regenerating of
all who are saved, thereby sealing them unto the day of redemption; the baptizing into one
body of Christ of all who are saved; and the continuing filling for power, teaching and
service of those among the saved who are yielded to Him and who are subject to His will.
(John 3:6; 16:7-11; Rom.8:9; I Cor.12:13; Eph.4:30; 5:18; II Thess.2:7; I John 2:20-27; Titus 3:5).
We believe that some gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues and miraculous
healings, were temporary; that speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary
sign of the baptism nor of the filling of the Spirit, and that the deliverance of the body from
sickness awaits consummation of our salvation in the resurrection. (Acts 4:8,31; Rom.8:23; I
Section 3 - ANGELS AND SATAN
We believe that God created an innumerable company of angels, sinless spiritual beings;
that one, Lucifer, "son of the morning", sinned through pride; that a great company of
angels followed him in his moral fall, some of whom became demons and are active as
Satan's agents and associates in the prosecution of his unholy purposes, while others who
fell are "reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great
day". (Isa.14:12-17; Ezk.28:11-19; I Tim.3:6; II Peter 2:4; Jude 5,6).
We believe in the reality and personality of Satan, the Devil; that he became the enemy of
God through the fall; that he became the unholy "god of this age" and the ruler of all the
powers of darkness and is destined to the judgment of an eternal justice in the lake of fire.
(Matt.4:1-11; II Cor.4:4; Rev.20:10).
We believe that a great company of angels kept their first estate and are before the throne
of God, from whence they are sent forth to be ministering spirits on behalf of those who
shall be heirs of salvation. (Luke 15:10; Eph.1:21; Heb.1:14; Rev.7:12).
Section 4 - CREATION
We believe the Biblical account of the creation of the physical universe, angels, and man;
that this account is neither allegory nor myth, but a literal historical account of the direct,
immediate creative acts of God without any evolutionary process. (Gen.1,2; Col.1:16; John 1:3).
Section 5 - MAN
We believe in the Genesis account of creation, and man was created directly in God's own
image and after His own likeness; that man's creation was not by evolution or evolutionary
change of species or development through interminable periods of time from lower to
higher forms; that all animal and vegetable life was effected by special creation, and God's
established law was that they bring forth only "after their kind".
We believe that man was created in innocence under the law of his maker, but by voluntary
transgression fell from his sinless and happy state, in consequence of which all mankind
are now sinful, and are sinners not by constraint but of choice; and therefore under just
condemnation without defense or excuse; and that man in his natural state is in a condition
of total depravity, by which we mean his nature is utterly incapacable to receive the things
of the Spirit of God apart from the regenerating grace of the Holy Spirit. (Gen.1:1,11,24,26-27;
Gen.2:21-23; Ex.20:11; Neh.9:6; Jer.10:12; John 1:3; Acts 4:24; Acts 17:24; Rom.1:20; Col.1:16,17;
Section 6 - SALVATION
We believe that, owing to universal death through sin, no one can enter the kingdom of
God unless born again, and that no degree of reformation, however great, no attainments
in morality, however high, no culture, however attractive, no baptism or other ordinance,
however administered, can help the sinner to take even one step toward heaven; but a
new nature imparted from above, a new life implanted by the Holy Spirit through the Word,
is absolutely essential to salvation and only those thus saved are the sons of God.
We believe also that our redemption has been accomplished solely by the blood of Christ,
who was made to be sin and was made a curse for us, dying in our stead; and that no
repentance, no feeling, no faith, no good resolution, no sincere efforts, no submission to
the rules and regulations of any church can add in the very least degree to the value of
the blood or to the merit of the finished work wrought for us by Christ. (Lev.17:11; Isa.64:6;
Matt.26:28; John 3:5,18; Rom.5:6-9; II Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13; 6:15; Eph.1:7; Phil.3:4-9; Titus 3:5; James 1:18; I
Peter 1:18,19,23, Eph.2:8-9).
A - Atonement: We believe that the salvation provided by the finished work of Christ was
for all men (I John 2:2; 4:14; Hebrews 2:9; II Cor.5:19; I Tim.2:6). However, not all men will be
saved. Those who are saved are identified as "foreknown, predestinated, called, justified
and glorified". (Romans 8:29,30).
B - Justification: We believe that justification is that judicial act of God whereby He declares
the believer righteous upon the basis of the imputed righteousness of Christ; that it is
bestowed not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done, but
solely by grace through faith in the Redeemer's shed blood. (Romans 3:24; 4:5; 5:1,9; Gal.2:16;
C - Sanctification: We believe that sanctification is the divine setting apart of the believer
unto God, accomplished in a three-fold manner; first, an eternal act of God based upon
redemption in Christ, establishing the believer in a position of holiness at the moment he
trusts Christ as Savior; second, a continuing process in the believer as the Holy Spirit
applies the Word of God to the life; third, the final accomplishment of this process at the
Lord's return. (Hebrews 10:10-14; John 17:17; II Cor.3:18; I Cor.1:30; Eph.5:25-27; I Thess.4:3; 5:23,24;
I John 3:2; Jude 24,25; Rev.22:11). We believe that Christian living is the working out of our
salvation (Phil.2:12) and is the current on-going of the process of sanctification through
the agency of the Holy Spirit.
D - Security: We believe that because of the eternal purpose of God toward the objects of
His love, because of His freedom to exercise grace toward the meritless on the ground of
the propitiatory blood of Christ, because of the very nature of the intercession and
advocacy of Christ in heaven, because of the regenerating, abiding presence of the Holy
Spirit in the hearts of all who are saved, we, and all true believers everywhere, once saved,
shall be kept saved forever. Though, as a Father, God must and will chastise His own,
nevertheless, having undertaken to save them forever, apart from all human merit, He will
in the end present everyone of them faultless before the presence of His glory and
conformed to the image of His Son. (John 5:24; 10:28,29; 13:1; 14:16,17; 17:11; Rom.8:29; I
Cor.6:19; Heb.7:25; I John 2:1,2; 5:13; Jude 24).
Section 7 - THE CHURCH
A - THE UNIVERSAL BODY CHRIST: We believe that the Church, as portrayed in the N.T.
figures of the "Body" and the "Bride" of Christ, is composed of all born-again believers who
are united by the Holy Spirit to the risen and ascended Son of God; that by the same Spirit
we are all baptized into one body; and thus being members one of another are ever
responsible to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (I Cor.12:12,13; Eph.1:22,23:
3:1-6, 4:11; 5:23; Col.1:18; Acts 15:13-18).
B - THE LOCAL CHURCH: We believe that a local Church is a congregation of immersed
believers associated by covenant of faith and fellowship of the Gospel; observing the
ordinances of Christ, baptism and the Lord's Table; governed by His laws; exercising the
gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by His Word; that its officers are Pastors and
Deacons, whose qualifications, claims and duties are clearly defined in the Scriptures. We
hold that the local Church has the absolute right of self-government, free from the
interference of an hierarchy of individuals or organizations; and that it is scriptural for true
churches to cooperate with each other in contending for the faith and in the furtherance of
the Gospel; that each local Church is the sole judge of the measure and method of its
cooperation; and, on all matters of membership, of policy, of government, of discipline, of
benevolence, the will of the local Church is final. (Acts 2:41; I Cor.11:2; Eph.1:22,23; Eph.4:11;
Acts 20:17-28; I Tim.3:17; Eph.5:23,24).
C - THE MISSION OF THE LOCAL CHURCH: In accordance with the Great Commission
recorded in Matthew 28:19,20 and Acts 1:8, we believe that the mission of the Church is to
proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all men, endeavoring to make the message clear
and plain in order that the Holy Spirit can bring them to salvation. We further believe that
the Church is to teach and train the saved person in order that he may produce fruit unto
the edification of the church and the salvation of souls. (Acts 13; Eph.4:11-15).
Section 8 - SEPARATION
A. PERSONAL: We believe that the born-again Christian, as he grows and matures in
spiritual things, should seek to honor the Lord by separation from the habits and lifestyles
of the world and from anything that would defile the body and spirit and bring dishonor to
the Lord. (I John 2:15,16; II Cor.6:13-17; I Thess.5:22).
B. ECCLESIASTICAL: We believe that it is mandatory for the Christian and the local
Church to separate from those who no longer teach and preach the "whole counsel of
God" and who deny the fundamental doctrines of the Word of God. These doctrines would
at least include the following: 1) The absolute authority and inspiration of the
Bible; 2) The virgin birth, sinless life, substitutionary death, bodily resurrection, the literal,
imminent second coming of Christ; 3) The salvation by faith through grace apart from
works. (OR) Such as those outlined in this Confession of Faith.
Such separation would encompass organizations such as the World Council of Churches
and the National Council of Churches. We further believe that we ought not to support or
condone others who knowingly cooperate with such apostate groups. We also reject the
philosophy of inclusivism and ecumenism such as is apparent in the New-Evangelical
(National Ass'n. of Evangelicals) camp and the Charismatic Movement. We will seek to
cooperate only with those churches and organizations which refuse to support and
cooperate with ecumenism and apostasy. (I Tim.6:3,5; II Chron.19:2; II Tim.2:17-19; II Cor.6:14-17;
Rom.16:17,18; II Thess.3:6; II John 10:11; I Tim.4:1,2; Mt.7:15-20; II John 6-11).
We further believe that the primary teachings of the Charismatic Movement, such as
speaking in tongues, the baptism of the Spirit (as they define it -- a second work of grace),
and healing are unscriptural and that the ecumenical approach employed by the
charismatic groups is error in doctrine and practice. For these reasons we will not
cooperate with area ecumenical meetings and programs sponsored by such groups.
Section 9 - ISRAEL
We believe in the sovereign selection of Israel as God's eternal covenant people; that she
is now dispersed because of her disobedience and rejection of Christ, the Messiah; and
that she will be regathered as a nation in the Holy Land and, after the completion of the
Church, will be saved as a nation at the second coming of Christ. (Gen.13:14-17; Romans
Section 10 - CIVIL GOVERNMENT
We believe in the absolute separation of Church and State; that the civil government is of
divine appointment for the interests of good order of human society; that magistrates are
to be prayed for, conscientiously honored and obeyed, except in things opposed to the
clear will of God who is the Lord of conscience. (Romans 13:17; II Sam.23:3; Exo.18:21,22; Acts
23:5; Mt.22:21; Acts 5:20; 4:19,20; Dan.3:17,18).
Section 11 - LAST THINGS
We believe in the pre-tribulational, pre-millennial return of Christ, an event which can occur
at any moment; that at that moment the dead in Christ shall be raised in glorified bodies
and the living in Christ shall be given glorified bodies without experiencing death and that
all shall be caught up to meet the Lord in the air before the seven years of Tribulation. (I
Thess.4:13-18; I Cor.15:42-44,51; Phil.3:20,21; Rev.3:20).
We believe that the Great Tribulation, which follows the Rapture of the Church, will be
culminated by the revelation of Christ in power and great glory to claim the throne of David
and establish His millennial kingdom over all the earth. (Daniel 9:25-27; Mt.24:29-31; Luke
1:30-33; Isa.(9:6,7; Acts 2:29,30; Rev.20:1-6).
Section 12 - THE RIGHTEOUS AND THE WICKED
We believe that there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and the
wicked (unsaved); that only those who are justified by faith in our Lord Jesus Christ and
sanctified (set apart) by the Holy Spirit of God are truly righteous in His sight, while all such
as continue in impenitence and unbelief are, in His sight, wicked and under the judgment of
God; that this distinction holds among men both in life and after death - in the everlasting
felicity of the saved and the everlasting conscious suffering of the lost in hell. (Mal.3:18;
Gen.18:23; Rom.6:17,18; I John 5:19; Rom.7:6; Rom.6:23; Prov.14:32; Luke 16:25; Mt.25:34-41; John
|Portville Baptist Church
PO Box 277
24 Temple Street
Portville, NY 14770
|Portville Baptist Church
PO Box 277
24 Temple Street
Portville, NY 14770