What Our Church Teaches

STATEMENT OF FAITH AND COVENANT FOR GETHSEMANE BAPTIST CHURCH






1.  We believe the HOLY SCRIPTURES of the Old and New Testaments to be the verbally and plenarily inspired Word of God.  The Scriptures are inerrant, infallible and God-breathed, and therefore are the final authority for faith and life.  The sixty-six books of the Bible are the complete and divine revelation of God to Man.  The Scriptures shall be interpreted according to their normal grammatical-historical meaning.  The King James Version of the Bible shall be the official and only translation used by the Church.  (II Tim. 3:16-17; II Pet. 1:20-21)  

 

2.  We believe in THE ONE TRIUNE GOD:  Who is personal, spirit and sovereign; perfect, infinite, and eternal in His being, holiness and love, wisdom and power; absolutely separate and above the world as its Creator, yet everywhere present in the world as the Upholder of all things; self-existent and self-revealing in three distinct Persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, each having a distinct ministry in Godís relation to His creation and people.  (Genesis 1:1; I Corinthians 8:6; I John 5:7) 

 

3.  We believe in THE LORD JESUS CHRIST:  Who is the second Person of the Triune God, the eternal Word and only Begotten Son; that without any change in His divine Person He became man by miracle of the virgin birth; thus to continue forever as both true God and true man, one Person with two natures; that as man He was tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin; that as the perfect Lamb of God He gave Himself in death upon the cross becoming there the sin of the world, and suffering its full penalty of divine wrath in our stead; that He arose bodily from the grave and was glorified; that as our great High Priest, He ascended into Heaven, there to appear before the face of God as our Advocate and Intercessor.  (John 1:1-2; I John 5:20; Matthew 1:20; Luke 2:26-32)

 

4.  We believe in THE HOLY SPIRIT:  Who is the third Person of the Trinity, and the divine Agent in nature, revelation and redemption; that He convicts the world concerning sin, righteousness, and judgment; that He regenerates, indwells, seals, and anoints all who become children of God through Christ.  All children of God are baptized by the Holy Spirit at salvation.  He further empowers, guides, teaches, sanctifies and fills believers who daily surrender to Him.  (II Corinthians 13:14; John 14:16-17; Romans 8:14-27)

 

5.  We believe ALL MEN ARE BY NATURE AND CHOICE SINFUL AND LOST:  that man was the direct creation of God, made in His image and likeness; that by personal disobedience to the revealed will of God, man became a sinful creature, the father of a fallen race which is universally sinful in both nature and practice, thus alienated from the life and family of God, under the righteous judgment and wrath of God, and has with himself no possible means of salvation.  (Romans 3:23, 5:12; Galatians 3:22)

 

6.  We believe in SALVATION BY GRACE THROUGH FAITH:  that salvation is the free gift of God, neither merited nor secured in part or in whole by any virtue or work of man but received only by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, in Whom all true believers have a present possession, the gift of eternal life, a perfect righteousness, sonship in the family of God, deliverance, and security from all condemnation, every spiritual resource needed for life and godliness, and the divine guarantee that they shall never perish; that this salvation affects the whole man; that apart from Christ there is no possible salvation.  (Ephesians 2:8-9; II Corinthians 5:21, 7:9-10; Romans 6:23, 10:9, 10, 13)

 

7.  We believe in RIGHTEOUS LIVING AND GODLY WORKS:  not as a means of salvation in any sense, but as its proper evidence and fruit; and therefore, as Christians, we should obey the Word of our Lord, seek the things which are above, walk as He walked, and accept as our solemn responsibility the duty and privilege of bearing the Gospel to a lost world; remembering that a victorious and fruitful Christian life is possible only for those who in gratitude for the infinite and undeserved mercies of God have presented themselves wholly to Christ.  (Titus 2:11-1-4; Ephesians 2:10)

 

8.  We believe in THE EXISTENCE OF SATAN:  who originally was created a holy and perfect being, but through pride and wicked ambition rebelled against God, thus becoming utterly depraved in character, the great adversary of God and His people, leader of all other evil angels and spirits, the deceiver, and god of this present world; that his powers are vast, but strictly limited by the permissive will of God Who overrules all his wicked devices for good; that he was defeated and judged at the cross; and therefore, his final doom is certain; that we are able to resist and overcome him only in the armor of God, by the blood of the Lamb, and through the power of the Holy Spirit.  (Rev.12:9; Ezekiel 28:14-17; Isaiah 14:12-15)

 

9.  We believe in THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST:  that His return from Heaven will be personal, visible and glorious, a blessed hope for which we should constantly watch and pray; the time being unrevealed, but always imminent; that when He comes He will first by resurrection of the dead and translation of the living remove from the earth the saved, then pour out the righteous judgments of God upon the unbelieving world, afterwards descend with His church and establish His glorious and literal kingdom over all nations for a thousand years.  (Acts 1:11; I Thessalonians 4:13-17; Revelation 19:11-16, 20:6)

 

10.  We believe in FUTURE LIFE, BODILY RESURRECTION, AND ETERNAL JUDGMENT: that the spirits of the saved at death go immediately to be with Christ in heaven; that their works shall be brought before the Judgment Seat of Christ for determination of rewards which will take place at the time when Christ comes for His own; that the spirits of the unsaved at death descend immediately into Hades where they are kept under punishment until the final day of judgment, at which time their bodies shall be raised from the grave, that they shall be judged and cast into the lake of fire, the place of final and everlasting punishment. (John 14:1-6; I Thessalonians 4:14-17; II Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:20-21; Luke 16:19-31; Rev. 20:11-15)

 

11.  We believe in THE SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: with each having definite and distinct spheres of responsibility. This does not mean the separation of God from the state. (Romans 13:1-7; Ezra 6:7; Matthew 22:21; Acts 5:29)

 

12.  We believe in THE PRIESTHOOD OF ALL BELIEVERS: that Christ is our Great High Priest and through Him every born again person has direct access into Godís presence without need of a human priest; that the believer has the right and responsibility to personally study and interpret the Scriptures guided by the Holy Spirit. (I Peter 2:5, 9)

 

13.  We believe in THE LORDSHIP OF JESUS CHRIST: that He alone is the Head of the Body of Christ, of which all true believers of this age are members; that all members of this one spiritual body should assemble and identify themselves in local churches.

 

14.  We believe in THE IMPORTANCE OF THE LOCAL CHURCH: that a New Testament church is a local assembly of born again, baptized believers united in an organization to practice New Testament ordinances, to meet together for worship, prayer, fellowship, teaching and a united testimony, and to actively engage in carrying out the Great Commission. (Acts 2:41, 4:32; Matthew 26:26-39, 28:19-20)

 

15.  We believe in THE INDEPENDENCE AND AUTONOMY OF THE LOCAL CHURCH: that each New Testament church is free to govern itself without ecclesiastical interference, and should cooperate with other New Testament churches as the Holy Spirit leads; that it is responsible to follow the pattern of the New Testament church and is directly accountable to God. (Acts 6:1-6; Galatians 1:1-2)

 

16.  We believe THE ORDINANCES GIVEN TO THE LOCAL CHURCH ARE TWO, BAPTISM AND THE LORDíS SUPPER: that baptism is by immersion of believers portraying the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ; that the Lordís Supper is the partaking of the bread and the cup by the believers as a continuing memorial of the broken body and shed blood of Christ. (Matthew 3:13-17, 26:26-30, 28:19-20; Acts 2: 41; I Corinthians 11:23-32)


17.  We believe that SEXUAL IMMORALITY IS A SIN: 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. (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5, 13; Gen. 26:8-9; Leb. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:26-29; 1 Cor. 5:1; 6:9; 1 Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4)


18.  We believe that THE ONLY SCRIPTURAL MARRIAGE IS THE JOINING OF ONE MAN AND ONE WOMAN.  (Gen. 2:24; Rom. 7:2; 1 Cor. 7:10; Eph. 5:22-23)


19.  We believe that CHRISTIANS ARE PROHIBITED FROM BRINGING CIVIL LAWSUITS AGAINST OTHER CHRISTIANS OR THE CHURCH TO RESOLVE PERSONAL DISPUTES: and that 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 Cor. 6:1-8; Eph. 4:31-32)