We’re pleased that you have come to this page. Surveys indicate that decreasing numbers of churchgoers are interested in doctrine. Their focus is more on experience. They seek a religion that meets needs, is flexible, and requires little. This phenomenon is in keeping with the Bible’s warning that in the latter times people will idolize personal pleasure and “not endure sound doctrine.” (II Timothy 4:3)
In contrast to cultural trends, the Bible tells us that what we believe is very important to God. The healthy, growing church at its inception “continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine” (Acts 2:42). From their right beliefs came right attitudes and actions contrary to the world's. This is God’s work done God’s way. We therefore teach doctrine.
Anybody considering a church should know what the church believes, and any church worth considering should be open and able to declare its beliefs.
First, because what we believe is important to God. Beliefs affect our usefulness and our eternity (John 3:36).
Second, because though we all have a right to believe as we choose, all beliefs are not equally valid. The Bible says that there are beliefs that seem right but are the ways of death (Proverbs 16:25).
The basis of our beliefs is therefore of utmost importance. Our beliefs may be shaped through a variety of sources such as experience, training, tradition, knowledge of history, study of nature, and self-examination. These sources have their uses, but there is one infallible source given to us. That is the Bible.
Grace Baptist Church believes that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant Word of God. We believe it is thus our ultimate authority for all faith and practice. We believe there is immense value in studying, memorizing, meditating upon, and obeying it. The preaching of its truth is at the center of our worship services.
Accompanying our convictions about the Bible are other beliefs that are fundamental to our faith. By “fundamental” we mean that belief in them is essential to being part of the true church of Jesus Christ. These fundamentals include beliefs about the nature of man, Jesus Christ, and salvation. So let’s start there….
- The nature of man – Man was created in the image of God, but he sinned. All his faculties were corrupted. He found himself separated from a holy God and under the sentence of death. This condition of being a sinner by nature and by choice and spiritually dead has been passed on to all the human race. Unless this condition is remedied before physical death the corruption and separation from God will continue through eternity. Man is totally unable in his own strength to remedy this situation.
- The nature of Jesus Christ – We believe Jesus Christ came to earth to remedy what man ruined. We believe that He has always been and will always be God, that at the perfect time He also became a man by being begotten by God the Father and born of a virgin. We believe that, having no sin of His own, He was free to pay the penalty of death for the sin of others. We believe He did thus die in our place, that He was buried, and that on the third day God raised Him from the dead. We believe Christ ascended into heaven and will come again to earth at the end of the age.
- The way of salvation – As stated, we believe that all of us have sinned and that the wages of sin is death. We can not save ourselves. There is no amount of good works or virtuous life which can compensate for our nature and record of sin. There is only one way of salvation. We are saved by grace through faith. We must believe that Jesus Christ died for our sins and personally receive His gift to us of eternal life.
We believe in the trinity. That is, we believe there is one God expressed in three Persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. All three have always been and are equally God.
We believe in a literal heaven and hell. We believe in the literal existence of angels as well as of the devil and demons. We believe that God literally created the heavens and the earth by direct act and not by any process of evolution.
We believe in the eternal security of the believer. Many people may be under the delusion that they are saved from the wrath of God and going to heaven when indeed they are lost, but those who truly have been saved are kept by the power of God.
We believe in believers’ baptism by immersion. It is to occur after salvation as a matter of obedience and testimony with no saving grace associated whatsoever. We do not baptize infants because we see no Bible precedent for doing it. The consistent sequence in the Scriptures is for a person first to exercise saving faith in Christ and then give public testimony through baptism.
As for future events, we believe the Bible’s depiction of a 7-year period of increasing world-wide trouble, or tribulation, leading up to the end of this age. We believe that the true church will be snatched away, or raptured, just before this period of great trouble begins. This doctrinal position is known as pre-tribulationalism. We believe that Jesus will return at the end of the 7-year tribulation, that He will destroy His enemies and will physically reign on earth for 1,000 years. This position is known as pre-millennialism. We believe that believers’ works shall be judged at the judgment seat of Christ at the time of the rapture and that the lost will be judged at the Great White Throne at the end of the millennium.