Statement of Faith
STATEMENT OF FAITH
Anaheim Baptist Fellowship
The following comprise the scriptural beliefs of this church and its members:
- The Holy Scriptures. We believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments (as delivered in the original languages) to be the verbal and plenary 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 Old and New Testaments are the complete and divine revelation of God to man. The Scriptures shall be interpreted according to their normal grammatical-historical meaning, and the pastor shall determine all issues of interpretation and meaning. (II-Tim. 3:16-17; II-Pet. 1:20-21)
- Dispensationalism. We believe that the Scriptures interpreted in their natural, literal sense reveal divinely determined dispensations or rules of life, which define man’s responsibilities in successive ages. These dispensations are not different ways of salvation, but rather are divinely ordered stewardships by which God directs man according to His purpose. Three of these dispensations –the law, the church, and the kingdom– are the subjects of detailed revelation in the Scripture. (Gen. 1:28; I-Cor. 9:17; II-Cor. 3:9-18; Gal. 3:13-25; Eph. 1:10; 3:2-10; Col. 1:24-25, 27; Rev. 20:2-6)
- The Godhead. We believe in one Triune God, eternally existing in three persons–Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each co-eternal in being, co-identical in nature, co-equal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfection. (Deut. 6:4; Matt. 28:19; II-Cor. 13:14; John 14:10, 26)
Person and Work of Christ.
- We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful men. (Isa. 7:14;9:6; Luke 1:35; John 1:1-2, 14; II-Cor. 5:19-21; Gal. 4:4-5; Phil. 2:5-8)
- We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as a representative, vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice and that our justification is made sure by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead. (Acts 2:18-36; Rom. 3:24-25; I-Peter 2:24; Eph 1:7; I-Peter 1:3-5)
- We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven, and is now exalted at the right hand of God, where, as our High Priest, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate. (Acts 1:9-10; Heb. 9:24; 7:25; Rom. 8:34; I-John 2:l-2)
Person and Work of the Holy Spirit.
- We believe that the Holy Spirit is a person Who convicts the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; and, that He is the Supernatural Agent in regeneration, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ, indwelling and sealing them unto the day of redemption. (John 16:8-11; Rom. 8:9; I-Cor. 12:12-14; II-Cor. 3:6; Eph. 1:13-14)
- We believe that He is the Divine Teacher who assists believers to understand and appropriate the Scriptures and that it is the privilege and duty of all the saved to be filled with the Spirit. (Eph. 1:17-18; 5:18; I-John 2:20, 27)
- We believe that God is sovereign in the bestowal of spiritual gifts to every believer. God uniquely uses evangelists, pastors, and teachers to equip believers in the assembly in order that they can do the work of the ministry. (Rom. 12:3-8; I-Cor. 12:4-11, 28; Eph. 4:7-12)
- We believe that the sign gifts of the Holy Spirit, such as speaking in tongues and the gift of healing, were temporary. We believe that speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary sign of the baptism or filling of the Holy Spirit and that ultimate deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection, though God frequently chooses to answer the prayers of believers for physical healing. (I-Cor. 1:22; 13:8; 14:21-22)
- The Total Depravity of Man. We believe that man was created in innocence (in the image and likeness of God) under the law of his Maker, but by voluntary transgression Adam fell from his innocent and happy state, and all men sinned in him, in consequence of which all men are totally depraved, are partakers of Adam’s fallen nature, and are sinners by nature and conduct, and therefore are under just condemnation without defense or excuse. (Gen. 3:1-6; Rom. 3:10-19; 5:12, 19; 1:18, 32)
- Salvation. We believe that salvation is the gift of God brought to man by grace and received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, Whose precious blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins. (John 1:12; Eph. 1:7; 2:8-10; I-Pet. 1:18-19)
- Sanctification. We believe that sanctification is the divine setting apart of the believer unto God, accomplished in a threefold manner: first, an eternal act of God, based upon redemption in Christ, establishing the believer in a position of holiness at the moment he trusts the Savior; second, a continuing process in the saint as the Holy Spirit applies the Word of God to the life; and third, the final accomplishment of this process at the Lord’s return. (Heb. 10:10-14; 3:1; John 17:17; I-Cor. 1:30; II-Cor. 3:18; Eph. 5:25-27; I-Thess. 4:3, 4; 5:23, 24; I-John 3:2; Jude 24, 25)
Eternal Security and Assurance of Believers.
- We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever. (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1, 38-39; I-Cor. 1:4-8; I-Pet. 1:4-5)
- We believe that it is the privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation through the testimony of God’s Word, which, however, clearly forbids the use of Christian liberty as an occasion to the flesh. (Rom. 13:13-14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15)
- We believe that the local church should be made up of born-again persons. (I-Cor. 12:12-14; II-Cor. 11:2; Eph. 1:22-23; 5:25-27)
- We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures. (Acts 14:27; 20:17, 28-32; I-Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11)
- We believe in the autonomy of the local church free of any external authority or control. (Acts 13:l-4; 15:19-31; 20:28; Rom. 16:1,4; I-Cor. 3:9, 16; 5:4-7, 13; I-Peter 5:1-4)
and the Lord’s Supper.
- We believe that Christian baptism is the single immersion of a believer in water to show forth in a solemn and beautiful emblem our identification with the crucified, buried and risen Savior, through Whom we died to sin and rose to a new life; that baptism is to be performed under the authority of the local church; and that it is a prerequisite to church membership.
- We believe that the Lord’s Supper is the commemoration of His death until He comes, and should be preceded always by solemn self-examination. We believe that the biblical order of the ordinances is baptism first and then the Lord’s Supper and those partakers in the Lord’s Supper should be immersed believers.
- We recognize water baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper as the scriptural ordinances of obedience for the church in this age. (Matt. 3:16; 28: 18-20; Acts 2:41- 42; 8:36-39, 23:41, 42; 18:18; John 3:23; Rom 6:3-5; I-Cor. 11:23-28, Col 2:12)
- Separation. We believe that all the saved should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord; and, that separation from all religious apostasy, worldly and sinful pleasures, practices and associations as commanded of God and our church shall not join in alliances with other groups who deny the true Christian faith. (Rom. 12: 1-2; 14:13; II-Cor. 6: 14-7: 1; II-Tim. 3:l-5; I-John 2:15-17; II-John 9-11)
- The Second Advent of Christ. We believe in that “blessed hope,” the personal, imminent return of Christ Who will rapture His church prior to the seven-year tribulation period. At the end of the Tribulation, Christ will personally and visibly return with His saints to establish His earthly Messianic Kingdom which was promised to the Nation of Israel. (Ps. 89:3-4; Dan. 2:31-45; Zech. 14:4-11; I-Thess. 1:10, 4:13-18; Titus 2:13; Rev. 3:10; 19:11-16; 20:l-6)
- We believe in the bodily resurrection of all mankind – the saved to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment. (Matt. 25:46; John 5:28-29, 11:25-26; Rev. 20:5-6, 20:12-13)
- We believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the body and present with the Lord, where in conscious bliss they await the first resurrection, when spirit, soul, and body are reunited to be glorified forever with the Lord. (Luke 23:43; 2 Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23; 3:13-14; 3:20-21; 1 Thess. 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4-6)
- We believe that after death the souls of unbelievers remain in conscious punishment and torment until the second resurrection, when, with soul and body reunited, they shall appear at the Great White Throne Judgment, and shall be cast into the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to suffer everlasting conscious punishment and torment. (Matt. 25:41-46; Mark 9:43-48; Luke 16:19-26; II- Thess. 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Rev. 20:11-15)
- The Personality of Satan. We believe that Satan is a person, the author of sin and partially the cause of the Fall of Man; that he is the open and declared enemy of God and man, and, that he shall be eternally punished in the Lake of Fire. (Job 1:6, 7; Isa. 14:12-17; Matt 4:2-11; 25:41; Rev. 20:10)
- Creation. We believe the biblical account of the creation of the physical universe, angels, and man; that this account is neither allegory nor myth, but a literal, historical account of the direct, immediate, creative acts of God without any evolutionary process; that man was created by a direct work of God and not from previously existing forms of life; and that all men are descended from the historical Adam and Eve, the first parents of the entire human race. (Gen. 1, 2; Col. 1:16, 17; John 1:3)
- Civil Government. We believe that God has ordained and created all authority consisting of three basic institutions: 1) the home; 2) the church; and 3) the state. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. God has given each institution specific Biblical responsibilities and balanced those responsibilities with the understanding that no institution has the right to infringe upon the other. The home, the church, and the state are equal and sovereign in their respective biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God. (Rom. 13:1-7; Eph. 5:22-24; Heb. 13:17; I-Pet 2:13-14)
- We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity should be engaged outside of a 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 and forbids any attempt to alter one’s gender by surgery or appearance. (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5,13; Gen. 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:26-29; I-Cor. 5:1; 6:9; I-Thess. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4)
- We believe that the only legitimate marriage is the joining of one man and one woman. (Gen. 2:24; Rom. 7:2; I-Cor. 7:1; Eph. 5:22-23)
- Divorce and Remarriage. We believe that God intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. The only scriptural grounds for divorce and remarriage are fornication or desertion. (Divorced and remarried persons or divorced persons may still hold positions of service in the church and be greatly used of God for Christian service). (Mal. 2:14-17; Matt. 19:3-12; Rom. 7:1-3; I-Tim. 3:2, 12; Titus 1:6)
- Abortion. We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion, except to save a mother’s life, constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teaching that abortion of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental well-being of the mother is acceptable. (Job 3:16; Psalms 51:5; 139:14-16; Isa. 44:24; 49:1, 5; Jer. 1:5; 20:15-18; Luke 1:44)
- Love. We believe that we should demonstrate love for others, not only toward fellow believers, but also toward both those who are not believers. Those who oppose us, and those who engage in sinful actions. We are to deal with those who oppose us graciously, gently, patiently and humbly. God forbids the stirring up of strife, the taking of revenge, or the threat or the use of violence as a means of resolving personal conflict or obtaining personal justice. Although God commands us to abhor sinful actions, we are to love and pray for any person who engages in such sinful actions. (Lev 19:18; Matt 5:44-48; Luke 6:31; John 13;34-35; Romans 12:9-10; 17-21; 13:8-10; Phil 2:2-4; II-Tim 2:24-26; Titus 3:2; I-John 3:17-18)
- 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 of Christ, we must use all available means to go to the foreign nations and not wait for them to come to us. (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; II-Cor. 5:20)
- Lawsuits between Believers. We believe that Christians are prohibited from bringing civil lawsuits against other Christians 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 the claim is pursued without malice or slander. (I-Cor. 6:1-8; Eph. 4:31-32)
- 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 also 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 offerings once the gift has been made. (Gen. 14:20; Prov. 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; I-Cor. 16:2; II-Cor. 9; 6-7; Gal. 6:6; Eph. 4:28; I-Tim. 5:17-18; I-John 3:17)
- Euthanasia. We believe that the direct taking of an innocent human life is a moral evil, regardless of the intention. Life is a gift from God and must be respected from conception until natural death. Thus we believe that an act or omission which, of itself or by intention, causes death in order to eliminate suffering constitutes a murder contrary to the will of God. Discontinuing medical procedures that are extraordinary or disproportionate to the expected outcome can be a legitimate refusal of over-zealous treatment. (Ex. 20:13; 23:7; Matt 5:21; Acts 17:28)