God: The Trinity
There is one perfect and true, Holy God, eternally existing in three Persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—each of Whom equally possesses all the attributes of deity and the characteristics of personality while also knowing, loving, and glorifying one another. The Trinity is without division of essence, being, and nature.
2 Corinthians 13:14; Genesis 1:1; Genesis 1:26-27
1 Peter 1:2; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19
God the Father
God the Father reigns with providence, care, and supreme authority over all creation and all history. In His infinite knowledge, love, wisdom, power, and grace, He gave His Son, Jesus Christ, for the redemption of mankind.
Psalm 19:1; Exodus 3:14; Romans 8:14-15; Matthew 6:9; Matthew 7:11
Jesus Christ (God the Son)
Jesus Christ is the eternal Second Person of the Trinity and the only Son of God. Fully God and fully man, He lived a life of perfect obedience to the Father. He voluntarily atoned for the sins of all by dying on the cross as the substitute, accomplishing salvation for all who trust in Him alone. Jesus Christ is the only true Savior of the world without Whom eternal life is impossible.
John 1:1-5, 14; Colossians 1:15-20; Philippians 2:5-11; Hebrews 1:1-4
1 Timothy 6:14-15; Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 1:20-23; John 14:10-30; Acts 1:9-11; Romans 1:3-4; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 4:14-15
The Holy Spirit
God the Holy Spirit is the eternal Third Person of the Trinity. He divinely inspired the writing of the Scriptures and through illumination enables men to understand truth. He calls people to faith in Christ, regenerates the hearts of all true believers, and permanently dwells within every believer at the moment of salvation.
1 Corinthians 2:12, John 14:16-17, John 16:7-13
1 Corinthians 3:16, Acts 1:8; 2 Corinthians 3:17, Galatians 5:25, Ephesians 1:13, Ephesians 5:18
The sole basis of true Christian belief is the Bible, composed of the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments. Scripture in its entirety originated from God, and it was given through the divine means of chosen men. The Scriptures are infallible in the translations and inerrant in the original manuscripts and are the unique, full, and final authority on all matters of faith, practice, and teaching.
2 Timothy 3:16-17; Psalm 19:7-11
2 Timothy 1:13; Psalm 119; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Proverbs 30:5
Man is the special and unique creation of God, made male and female equal in His own image, for the purpose of glorifying God and enjoying fellowship with Him. By his free choice, man rebelled against God. This rebellion fractured the relationship with God and has corrupted the basic nature of every man and woman. Apart from the saving work of Christ, man is completely incapable of being reconciled back to God, is under the slavery of sin, and is willfully hostile against God.
Genesis 1:27, Psalm 8:3-6, Isaiah 53:6, Romans 3:23, Isaiah 59:1-2, Isaiah 64:6
The Gospel and Salvation
The Good News of Jesus Christ is the central message of Christianity, revealed in the birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus. The crucifixion of Christ demonstrates the perfect meeting of God’s amazing love and grace with His holy justice and wrath. The proper response to the Gospel is for an individual to place faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord and to turn from sin in repentance.
John 14:6; Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:1-10; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; John 1:12; Titus 3:5
1 Corinthians 2:7-9; John 3:16; Romans 8:17-18; Revelation 20:15; John 14:17
Justification is God’s gracious and full declaration of righteousness upon sinners who repent and believe in Christ. This free acquittal is based on the righteous obedience and death of Jesus Christ and not due to any human effort or goodness. Justification results in a relationship of peace and favor with God that encourages believers to live in joyful obedience to God.
2 Timothy 1:12; John 10:29; Hebrews 7:25
1 Peter 1:3-5; Hebrews 10:10-14
Sanctification is the process through which growth in the believer’s knowledge and experience leads him to spiritual and moral maturity, as empowered by the Holy Spirit. While justification is based solely on God’s grace, sanctification requires the active desire and persevering faith of the believer to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ.
Philippians 2:12-13; Romans 6:11-14; Romans 8:26
The Church is the body and bride of Jesus Christ that exists to glorify God. Composed of all true believers, it is not a denomination or an institution of religion. The Church seeks to glorify and to worship God by making disciples through the preaching and receiving of the Gospel.
1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Ephesians 4:11-16; Acts 2:24-47; Colossians 1:18
Baptism and the Lord’s Supper (Communion)
Baptism and the Lord’s Supper are the observances (ordinances) of the Church in which the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ are celebrated. Baptism is the outward expression of the inner heart change in a Christian believer. Thus, baptism is reserved only for those who have made a prior declaration of genuine faith in Jesus Christ. The Lord’s Supper, or communion, is the remembrance of Jesus’ atoning sacrifice and the proclamation of His victory over sin and death. Communion also anticipates and memorializes the Second Coming of Christ.
Matthew 28:19-20; Romans 6:3-5; Acts 8:35-39
1 Corinthians 11:23-26; Matthew 26:26-29
Marriage is the unique creation of God that illustrates the love relationship between Jesus Christ and His Church. It is the equal uniting of only one man and only one woman in a lifetime covenant commitment. It is a basic foundation of human society, from which intimate companionship is properly found and for the procreating of and caring for the next generation. Husbands are called to love their wives, as Christ loves the Church, sacrificing himself in order to provide for, to protect, and to lead her. Wives are called to support their husbands graciously and to follow his servant leadership, as the Church follows Christ.
1 Peter 3:1-7; Ephesians 5:22-33; Colossians 3:18-19
Proverbs 31:10-31; Malachi 2:14-16; Genesis 1:26-28; Genesis 2:15-25