Our Statement of Faith The following comprise the scriptural beliefs of the members of Grace Bible Church:
1. The Word of God We believe that the Bible, or the Scriptures, is the divinely, verbally, plenary, inspired, preserved, and inerrant Words of God in its entirety, written by men as they were moved by the Holy Spirit, and that it is the sole authority for the Christian's faith and conduct. We do not believe that the Bible merely "contains" the Words of God, but that it is the very Words of God. The King James Version of the Bible shall be the official translation used in all ministries of the church. By the "Bible" or "Scriptures" we mean that collection or cannon of sixty-six books, from Genesis to Revelation. By "inspiration" we mean that the Scriptures were God-breathed. We believe that they were written by holy men of God as they were moved by the Holy Spirit, and that their writings were supernaturally free from error. (2 Timothy 3:16; Psalm 68:11) By "verbal"we mean that God gave the exact words of scripture, not just the thoughts and ideas. (1 Corinthians 2:13; 2 Samuel 23:2) By "plenary" we mean every word of the Bible is God-breathed. (Proverbs 30:5; 2 Timothy 3:16) By "preserved" we mean that God has supernaturally preserved His Word throughout the ages, and that we can hold those very words in our hands in the English language today. (Matthew 24:35) By "inerrant" we mean that the Bible is without error throughout. (Matthew 5:18)
2. The Godhead We believe the Bible teaches that there is only one God and that there were none existing before Him, nor will any exist after Him (Isaiah 43:10). We believe this one God to be the God of the Bible Who is known as Jehovah ("the Self-Existent One"), Adonai ("My Lord; my Master"), Elohim ("the Strong One"), El Shaddai (the All-Sufficient One"), El Elyon (the Most High God"). We believe He is eternal (Ps. 90:2), infinite (1 Kings 8:27), immutable (Mal. 3:6), omniscient (Rom. 11:33-34), omnipresent (Jer. 23:23-24), and omnipotent (Matt. 19:26; Rev. 19:6). He is holy, just, righteous, love, mercy, grace, goodness, and truth. We believe that He is one God, yet He eternally exists as three distinct Persons known as the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit in what is called the Trinity, and that they are all fully God (Matthew 28:19; Matthew 3:16-17). Each of these divine Persons has a distinct function in the execution of the plan of the Godhead. (1 Corinthians 12:3-4)
3. God the Father We believe the Bible teaches that God the Father is the ultimate source of all things (1 Corinthians 8:6). It is God the Father Who forgives the sins of those who receive God the Son, Jesus Christ, as their Savior. (1 John 1:3-9). The Father sent His Son Jesus into the world as His Gift to mankind (John 3:16). God the Father sent the Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus, to be resident in the world from the day of Pentecost (John 14:26).
4. God the Son We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ , the second Person of the Godhead, is coequal and co-eternal with the Father and the Holy Spirit (John 1:1-2). We believe that He became a man when He was miraculously conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary (Matthew 1:18 & 20). He became the God-man without change in His deity (Philippians 2:6-8). He lived a sinless life (Hebrew 4:15), died a substitutionary death for all men (1 Timothy 2:6; 1 John 2:2), was buried and arose bodily from the grave on the third day after His death (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). We believe the Bible teaches that it is only through the Son of God that man can have salvation from the penalty of his sin (Acts 4:10-12). He ascended bodily into heaven after His resurrection (Acts 1:9-11) where He is presently our intercessor and mediator (Romans 8:34). We believe that Jesus will rapture the church prior to the tribulation (John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 3:10), and after the tribulation He will return to earth and institute His Millennial reign (Revelation 20:4).
5. God the Holy Spirit We believe the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead, and is co-equal and co-eternal with God the Father and God the Son (Matthew 28:19). The Holy Spirit was the co-agent in creation as well as the divine agent in the recording of the written Word of God (Job 26:13; 2 Peter 1:21). The Holy Spirit restrains the evil one until God's purpose is fulfilled (2 Thess 2:7). He convicts of sin, righteousness and judgment (John 16:7-11), and is the divine agent in the new birth, regenerating those who receive Jesus Christ as their personal Savior (John 3:5). He then baptizes the believer into the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-13) and then indwells, teaches, guides, seals, fills, and bestows gifts for service upon the believer (Ephesians 4 & 5; 1 Corinthians 12:1-13). The Holy Spirit testifies, directs attention to, and exalts the Lord Jesus Christ (John 15:26). We do not support the Charismatic movement and its tongues and other sign manifestations.
6. Satan, or The Devil We believe that the Bible teaches that Satan was a created spirit, formally named Lucifer, of the highest order (Ezekiel 28:13-17; Isaiah14:12). Through pride and ambition to be as the Almighty, he sinned and drew with him a host of angels which fell from their first estate (Isaiah 14:12-15; Revelation 12:9; 2 Peter 2:4), and are known as demons or evil spirits. He is now the prince of the power of the air and the unholy god of this world (Ephesians 2:2; John 14:30). He is the great tempter, the enemy of the Godhead, the accuser of the saints, the author of all false religions, and the Lord of the final Antichrist. He is destined to final defeat (Revelation 12:7-9; Revelation 20:1-3, 10), and to judgment of an everlasting doom in the lake of fire prepared for him and his angels (Revelation 20:10).
7. Creation We believe the Genesis account of Creation literally, and not allegorically or figuratively. We believe that all of creation was spoken into existence by God in six literal days, and that God rested on the seventh day (Exodus 20:11; Genesis 2:2). We believe that man was created in the image of God and in His likeness (Genesis 1:26-27), and that the creation of man was not a matter of evolutionary changes of species, or development through intermediate periods of time from lower to higher forms (Genesis 2:7; 21-23). We believe that all animals and vegetable life was made directly by God, and that God's established law was and is that they should bring forth only "after their kind" (Genesis 1:11; Genesis 1:24). We believe that all men are descended from the historical Adam and Eve, the first parents of the entire human race (Genesis 1:28; 3:16-20).
8. The Fall of Man We believe the Bible teaches that man was created in innocence under the law of his Creator, but by deliberate sin and disobedience to God, man fell from his sinless state (Genesis 3:1-6, 24). All who are now born are born into this fallen state and are totally depraved, sinners by nature and conduct (Romans 3:10-19; Romans 5:12, 19). Therefore, all mankind is under just condemnation without defense or excuse (Romans 1:18,32).
9. The Substitutionary Sacrifice We believe the Bible teaches that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace (Ephesians 2:8; Romans 3:24), through the mediatorial offices of the Son of God, who by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon Himself our nature, yet He being without sin, and by His death made a full and vicarious propitiation for our sins and the sins of all mankind (John 3:16; Matthew 8:11; 1 John 4:10; Romans 3:25). His sacrifice was not as a martyr, but was the voluntary substitution of Himself in the sinner's place; the Just dying for the unjust, Christ bearing our sins in His own body on the cross (John 10:18; Philippians 2:8; Galatians 1:4). We do not agree with the doctrine of the Hyper-Calvinistic beliefs of the limited substitutionary sacrifice of Christ. (John 3:16; Matthew 8:11)
10. The New Birth We believe the Bible teaches that a sinner must be born again to be saved (John 3:3), and that the new birth is a new creation in Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). The new birth is instantaneous and not a process (1 John 5:1), and in it, the one who is dead in his sins is made a partaker of the divine nature and receives eternal life, the free gift of God (Romans 6:23; 2 Peter 1:4). The proper evidence of the new birth appears in the fruits of repentance, faith, and a changed life (Galatians 5:22-25; Ephesians 5:8-9).
11. Justification We believe that justification is the judicial act of God whereby He declares the repentant sinner to be righteous through faith in Jesus Christ, and that it is bestowed, not by works of righteousness which man has done, but solely through faith in the blood of Jesus (Acts 13:39; Isaiah 53:11; Romans 4:1-5; Romans 5:1-9).
12. Repentance We believe that repentance is a change of the mind that agrees with God that one is a sinner, prompted by the Holy Spirit, and results in a change of attitude and behavior (Romans 2:4; 2 Corinthians 7:10; Matthew 21:28-29; Jeremiah 25:5; Isaiah 55:7).
13. Salvation We believe that all persons who receive Jesus Christ as their personal Savior, by calling upon Him in faith, are saved from the penalty of their sin, and become the children of God. We do not believe there is any other way for salvation (John 1:12-13; Romans 10:9; Acts 4:12; Acts 16:31; John 14:6).
14. Sanctification We believe that sanctification is the divine setting apart of believers unto God: first, an eternal act of God establishing believers in a position of holiness the moment they trust Christ as Savior; second, a life long process in which believers are being conformed to the image of Christ as the Holy Spirit applies the scripture to their lives; third, the completion of this process at the Lord's return when believers shall be made like Christ (Hebrews 10:10; Hebrews 3:1; John 17:17; 2 Corinthians 3:8; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4; 1 John 3:2; Revelation 22:11).
15. Eternal Security We believe the Bible teaches that all those who have been born again, having received eternal life by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, are kept through the power of God so that they can never lose their salvation and be lost (John 3:16; John 3:36; Romans 6:23; 1 John 5:12-13; Philippians 1:6; John 10:28-29; Romans 8:35-39).
16. The Church We believe the Bible teaches the unity of all true believers in the church which is the Body of Christ, established on the day of Pentecost, and that all believers, both Jews and Gentiles, from Pentecost to the Rapture, are added to this church by the baptism of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 3:1-6; 1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Acts 2:41-42, 47). We believe that this church is manifested through the local church, a congregation of immersed believers observing the ordinances of Christ (Acts 2:42; 1 Corinthians 11:2, 23-30). The local church is governed by the laws of Christ (Ephesians 1:22-23), and exercises the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in it by His Word (Ephesians 4:11; 1 Corinthians 12:4, 8, 11). The scriptural offices of the church are pastor (elder, bishop) and deacons, whose qualifications and duties are defined in the Scriptures (Acts 14:23; Acts 6:5-6; Acts 15:23; Acts 20:17; 1 Timothy 3:1-13). We believe the mission of the church is the Great Commission: first, to make individuals disciples; second, to baptize by immersion all who receive Christ; third, to teach and instruct believers as Christ commanded; and last, to show the love of Christ to our fellow believers and those that are without (Matthew 28:19-20; 1 Corinthians 13). We hold that the local church has the absolute right of self government, with Christ at its head (Colossians 1:18; Ephesians 5:23-24; 1 Peter 5:1-4). It is scriptural for Bible-believing churches to cooperate on a voluntary basis with other fundamental churches in contending for the faith and the furtherance of the gospel (Acts 15:22; Jude 3:4; 2 Corinthians 8:23-24). On all matters of membership, policy, government, and discipline, the will of the local church is final (1 Corinthians 6:1-3; 1 Corinthians 5:11-13).
17. Baptism and the Lord's Supper (Communion) We believe that baptism is the complete immersion of believers in water, by the authority of the local church, to symbolize their faith in the crucified, buried and risen Savior, and that Baptism is prerequisite to the privileges of church membership (Acts 2:41; Acts 8:36, 38-39; Rom. 6:3,5). We believe that the Lord's Supper is the commemoration of Christ's death, and should be preceded by solemn self-examination (1 Corinthians 11:23-31). We believe that the scriptural order of the ordinances is Baptism and then the Lord's Supper (Acts 2:41; 42).
18. Separation We believe the Bible teaches that all believers should be separated from the world unto God; that believers are in the world but not of it; and that believers are not to love the world nor to be conformed thereto. We believe we are pilgrims and strangers here and should not walk after the flesh, but after the Spirit (Colossians 3:1-10; 1 John 2:15-17; Romans 12:2). We believe Bible-believing churches, in obedience to the scripture, should separate themselves entirely from worldliness, apostasy, and false brethren (2 Corinthians 6:14, 7:1; 1 Timothy 6:3-5; Romans 16:17-18; 2 John 9:11; 2 Corinthians 11:26; Galatians 2:4).
19. Second Coming of Christ We believe the Bible teaches the imminent, pre-tribulational return of Jesus Christ in literal body form to rapture the Church, which is His body, out of the world. At this time the dead in Christ will be resurrected, and living believers will be transformed, receiving glorious bodies. The church will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air (Revelation 4:1-2; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:42-44). Christ, with His Church, will come to the earth at the end of the tribulation period to judge the nations, and set up His Millennial Kingdom (Matthew 24:27-51; Matthew 25:31-46; Revelation 19:11-21; Jude 14-15; Revelation 20:1-6).
20. Civil Government We believe that civil government is of divine appointment for the interest and good order of human society (Romans 13:1-7; Exodus 18:21-22), and that governing leaders are to be prayed for, honored, and obeyed (Matthew 22:21; Titus 3:1; 1 Peter 2:13-17), except in things opposed to the will of God as found in the scriptures (Acts 5:29; Acts 4:19-20; Dan. 3:17-18).
21. Israel We believe the Bible teaches the sovereign selection of Israel as God's covenant people, and that Israel is now dispersed because of her disobedience and rejection of Christ. We believe in the literal fulfillment of the prophecies and promises of the Scriptures which foretell and assure the future regeneration and restoration of Israel as a nation (Genesis 13:14-17; Jeremiah 16:14-15, 30:6-11; Romans 11; Ezekiel 37; Deuteronomy 28:63-66).
22. Heaven We believe in a literal place called Heaven; a place of blessedness to which the righteous go and forever consciously enjoy God's presence (John14:2-3; 2 Corinthians 5:1; Hebrews 11:16; Hebrews 12:22-23; 1 Peter 1:3-5; Revelation 21:1-2).
23. Hell We believe in a literal place called Hell; a place of torment to which the wicked go (those not covered by the blood of Christ), and forever consciously experience physical and mental torment and banishment from God's presence. We believe Hell was created for Satan and his demons, but all will go there who reject the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:22; Matthew 10:28; Matthew 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; James 3:6; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:10, 14-15; Revelation 21:8).
24. Human Sexuality We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexuality, bestiality, incest, fornication, adultery and pornography are sinful perversions of God's gift of sex. We believe that God disapproves of and forbids any attempt to alter one's gender by surgery or appearance. (Genesis 2:24; 19:5, 13; 26:8-9; Leviticus 18:1-30; Romans 1:26-29; 1 Corinthians 5:1; 6:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8; Hebrews 13:4) We believe that the only legitimate marriage is the joining of one man and one woman. (Genesis 2:24; Romans 7:2; 1 Corinthians 7:10; Ephesians 5:22-23)
25. Family Relationships We believe that men and women are spiritually equal in position before God but that God has ordained distinct and separate spiritual functions for men and women in the home and the church. The husband is to be the leader of the home, and men are to be the leaders (pastors and deacons) of the church. Accordingly, only men are eligible for licensure and ordination by the church. (Galatians 3:28; Colossians 3:18; 1 Timothy 2:8-15; 3:4-5, 12) We believe that God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. The husband is to love his wife as Christ loves the church. The wife is to submit herself to the scriptural leadership of her husband as the church submits to the headship of Christ. We believe children are an heritage of the Lord, and that parents are responsible for teaching their children spiritual and moral values and leading them through consistent lifestyle example and appropriate discipline, including scriptural corporal correction. (Genesis 1:26- 28; Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Psalm 127:3-5; Proverbs 19:18; 22:15; 23:13- 14; Mark 10:6-12; 1 Corinthians 7:1-16; Ephesians 5:21-33; 6:1-4; Colossians 3:18-21; Hebrews 13:4; 1 Peter 3:1-7)
26. Divorce and Remarriage We believe that Gods perfect will and plan disapproves of divorce and intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. We also believe that God's permissive will and forgiveness should allow divorced and remarried persons or divorced persons to hold positions of service in the church and be greatly used of God for Christian service, although they may not be considered for the offices of pastor or deacon as specifically taught in the Scripture. (Mal. 2:14-17; Matt. 19:3-12; Romans 7:1- 3; 1 Timothy 3:2,12; Titus 1:6)
27. Abortion We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teaching that abortions of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the physical or mental well being of the mother are acceptable. (Job 3:16; Psalm 51:5; 139:14-16; Isaiah 44:24; 49:1,5; Jeremiah 20:15-18; Luke 1:44)
28. Lawsuits Between Believers We believe that Christians are prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against otherChristians or the church to resolve personal disputes. We believe the church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between members. We do believe, however, that a Christian may seek compensation for injuries from another Christian's insurance company as long as the claim is pursued without malice or slander. (1 Corinthians 6:1-8; Ephesians 4:31-32)
29. Missions We believe that God has given the church a great commission to proclaim the Gospel to all nations so that there might be a great multitude from every nation, tribe, ethnic group, and language group who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. As ambassadors for Christ we must use all available means to go to the foreign nations and not wait for them to come to us. (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2 Corinthians 5:20)
30. Giving We believe that every Christian, as a steward of that portion of God's wealth entrusted to him, is obligated to support his local church financially. We believe that God has established the tithe as a basis for giving, but that every Christian should give other offerings sacrificially and cheerfully to the support of the church, the relief of those in need, and the spread of the Gospel. We believe that a Christian relinquishes all rights to direct the use of the tithe or offering once the gift has been made. (Genesis 14:20; Proverbs 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; 1 Corinthians 16:2; 2 Corinthians 9:6-7; Galatians 6:6; Ephesians 4:28; 1 Timothy 5:17-18; 1 John 3:17)
31. Music We believe that music is a very wonderful, powerful tool that was created by God for the specific purposes of worshiping and praising Him, edifying other believers, and sharing the Gospel. We believe that music is also a very powerful tool of Satan in this world. We do not condone any form of rock and roll, modern country, hip-hop, pop, rap, (etc.) whether labeled secular or Christian. We do not believe that the music itself is simply a vehicle to carry the message, or that it is neutral in and of itself. We do believe that music itself can be right or wrong, good or bad, without the words. Therefore, we are very much in opposition to the modern day Christian Contemporary Music (CCM) scene, and do not believe that this type of music is honoring to the Lord or should have a place in the church. We believe the Bible commands the Christian to be separated from the world in all areas, including the area of music. (Psalm 100:2; Romans 12:2; Romans 13:14; Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16; 1 Thessalonians 5:21; Hebrews 2:12)
32. Last Events We believe that the order of last events is as follows: a. The Rapture- John 14:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 b. The Judgment Seat of Christ- 1 Corinthians 3:13-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10 c. The Marriage of the Lamb- Matthew 22:2-10; 25:10; Revelation 19:7-9 d. The Tribulation- Daniel 12:1; Matthew 24:21; Luke 21:25-26; Rev. 4 e. The Revelation of Christ- Zechariah 14:4 ; Matthew 24:20, 30; Revelation 19:11-16 f. Armageddon- Revelation 16:12-16; 19:11-21; Matthew 24:29-30 g. The Millennium- Daniel 2:44; Jeremiah 23:5; Isaiah 32:1; Revelation 20:3-7 h. The Final Rebellion- Revelation 20:7-10 i. The Great White Throne Judgment- Revelation 20:11-15 j. The New Heaven and Earth- Revelation 21, 22 This Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the soul and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the foregoing Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, is binding upon all members of Grace Bible Church. All literature used in the church shall be in complete agreement with our Statement of Faith.
Any questions contact Pastor at 540-448-0278,
77 Glover Circle, Staunton VA 24401