The most important question you can ask a church as you consider committing yourself to its ministry and membership is: "What do you believe?" We live in a time of great confusion about the things of God and about His Church; so we need to be clear about what we believe the Bible teaches. Therefore, we are a confessional church. That means that we have a written Confession of Faith that clearly states what we believe the Scriptures teach. We fully subscribe to the historic London Baptist Confession of Faith of 1689. The 1689 Confession has played a key role in the formation of Baptist churches and associations throughout history. The Baptists in America around Philadelphia adopted the confession, calling it the Philadelphia Confession of Faith. This also became the cornerstone of many Baptist groups elsewhere in America. We do not hold our Confession as equal to or above Scriptures, but as an accurate expression of the system of doctrine taught in Scriptures. As such, it is a great help in our faith, both as assistance in controversy and as an instrument of edification and instruction. A few of the doctrines, or teachings, of our Confession are listed below:
1. We believe the Bible alone is the Word of God written and that it was given without error and is sufficient to reveal who God is and what He requires of us for our eternal happiness.
2. We believe that God exists eternally in three Persons – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
3. We believe God created the world in the space of six days and all for His glory.
4. We believe God created Adam and Eve in His image, with the law written on their hearts, with the ability to sin or not to sin, requiring obedience of them to His revealed will, promising eternal life and glory for obedience and threatening death for sin. This is what we call the covenant of works, life, or creation.
5. We believe that the sin of our first parents brought the rest of mankind into a state of sin, misery, bondage, and condemnation. They did not attain unto eternal life and fell short of the glory of God.
6. We believe that God’s law shows us who God is, what He requires of us, and, due to our sin, condemns us all.
7. We believe that our perfect obedience to the law of God is both impossible and would be insufficient to earn us a right standing with God because obedience alone does not absolve our guilt.
8. We believe that God has revealed a covenant of grace, the only way of salvation from our sin, in the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9. We believe that the gospel was first revealed to Adam and Eve in the promise of the skull-crushing Seed of the woman and then progressively revealed in the Old Testament until it was fully revealed in Jesus Christ in the New Testament.
10. We believe that Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man, the unique Mediator between God and man.
11. We believe that Jesus Christ perfectly obeyed the law of God for us and died under the wrath of God for the forgiveness of our sins.
12. We believe Jesus Christ was raised from the dead (entered into His glory) on the third day for our justification and ascended into heaven where He sits at the Father’s right hand.
13. We believe that the salvation purchased by Jesus Christ is brought to the souls of men through the preaching of the gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit.
14. We believe that justification (being pronounced right with God) comes to us through the instrument of faith (and faith alone) and is based on the righteousness of Christ, not on anything in us.
15. We believe that faith is the gift of God brought to us by the Holy Spirit.
16. We believe that everyone who believes in Christ is justified, adopted, sanctified, and glorified by grace alone.
17. We believe that the church is the community of believers, the temple of God, His household.
18. We believe that baptism is reserved for confessing believers alone.
19. We believe that the church is responsible to teach baptized believers all that Christ commanded them.
20. We believe that the church is responsible to provide public worship where prayer, singing, Scripture reading, preaching, discipline, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper are to be conducted.
21. We believe that Sunday is the Lord’s Day, the day of public worship for Christians and rest from our normal labors and activities.
22. We believe that each local church is to be self-governed by its elders under the Word of God and yet accountable to other churches.
23. We believe that each local church is called by Christ to spread the gospel to others throughout the world.
24. We believe that the souls of believers who die before Christ returns to this earth enjoy temporary joy and satisfaction with Christ in heaven.
25. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ will come to this earth a second time in glory to judge the living and the dead.
26. We believe in the bodily resurrection of believers and unbelievers when Christ returns to this earth.
27. We believe that all those who do not believe the gospel will suffer eternal, conscious punishment in hell in both body and soul.
28. We believe that all those who believe the gospel will not suffer condemnation but enter into the new heavens and the new earth in body and soul to enjoy eternal, immutable, joyous communion with God and other believers.