Statement of Faith
Both the statements and the Scripture citations that follow are intended to be selective as well as depictive only of the basic doctrinal convictions of this local church.
We believe the Bible as the only God-initiated and God-directed written revelation of Himself and His purposes to man. All the words of the sixty-six books were written by men under the guidance of the Holy Spirit so that the original product is without error. When properly translated and interpreted, the Bible proves to be the complete and sufficient guide unto salvation and godly conduct. We, therefore recognize no additional authority for all matters of faith and practice. John 17:17,20:30-31; I Thess 2:13; II Tim 3:16-17; II Peter 1:19-21.
We believe in only one self-existing personal God who is eternal, invisible and infinite in intelligence, power and perfection. Because of His nature and His work as Creator and Sustainer of all, He rightly deserves man’s worship, faith and allegiance. His indivisible essence is revealed in three distinct persons, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit; each being equally and fully God, harmonious in purpose, yet distinct in functions. Deut 6:4, I Tim 1:17; John 15:26, Eph 1:3-14.
We believe that in the unique person of Jesus Christ, the full essence of deity and perfect humanity are indissolubly united. He was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, took the place of sinful man and suffered death as the punishment for sin, rose bodily the third day, and after forty days, ascended bodily to heaven. He intercedes for His people and is preparing for a glorious visible return to earth. John 1:1-18; Phil 2:6-8; Titus 2:11-14.
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a Person equal in divine essence with God the Father and God the Son. He was active in creation and the inspiration of the Bible. To fulfill His function in redemption, the Spirit attests the truth of the gospel, convicts of sin, brings about the new birth (regenerating), inducts every believer into the Body of Christ (baptizing), resides in him permanently (indwelling), controls the one who yielded to Christ (filling), produces the gifts for ministry and the Christian virtues which conform believers to the image of Christ (sanctifying), and serves as the guarantee of eternal life (sealing). John 3:3-6, 16:8-11, Acts 5:3-4, Rom 8:1-8, Gal 5:22-23, Eph 4:4-6, 5:18.
We believe in angels – that innumerable company of sinless personal spirit beings created by, distinct from, and subordinate to God. They stand continually worshipping before God’s presence. Some of their number led by Lucifer sinned through pride, thus the reality of Satan and his demons. At the cross, Satan and his company were decisively defeated and await impending judgement in hell. Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezek 28:13-15; Matt 25:41: Heb 1:6-14.
We believe that as stated in Genesis, man was created from the dust of the ground and with God’s breath of life, he became a living soul. Man bears the image of God – the powers of self-consciousness, self-determination, moral judgment, and the ability for spiritual communion with God – the elements which make human life sacred and inviolate. Man was created morally upright, but through Adam, all sinned and man sins because he is a sinner by nature and by choice. Man is totally depraved meaning that all men have sinned, and that every area of man’s being is blighted by sin. Gen 1:1-3; Jer 17:9; Rom 3:23; Eph 2:1-3.
We believe that man is totally unable to save himself or merit favor from God. Therefore, salvation is available wholly by God’s sovereign elective grace, appropriated solely by faith. Christ died vicariously bearing the sins of all men, thereby removing God’s wrath, and providing reconciliation for man. The Spirit impresses the truth of the gospel upon the sinner, produces conviction and repentance, and moves him to faith whereby he personally appropriates the finished work of Christ (conversion). God forgives the believing sinner, imputes the righteousness of Christ to him and declares him righteous and acceptable to God (justification). Before God, the believer is constituted perfect, but in daily experience, he is progressively delivered from the influence of sin and conformed to the image of Christ as he yields himself to the control of the Holy Spirit (sanctification). Having received eternal life, sealed by the presence of the Spirit and protected by Christ’s intercession, the true believer once saved, is saved forever. Man’s salvation culminates in his glorification. Isa 53:5-7; John 10:23-30; Rom 3:21-31; Eph 1:1-14; 2:8-10; Heb 11:1, 12:2.
We believe that all who by faith have been united to Christ are priests unto God and inducted by the Spirit into the universal Body of Christ. As exemplified in the New Testament, this spiritual communion finds concrete expression in local churches composed of baptized believers, covenanted together and organized for worship, Bible study, edifying fellowship and church discipline, the observance of the ordinances, the exercise of spiritual gifts, and the fulfillment of its mission to make disciples of all nations. To commemorate the redemptive work of Christ, the church is ordained to observe Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. In baptism, the believer is immersed in water to symbolize his oneness with Christ in death, burial, and resurrection, and his initiation into church membership. In the Lord’s Supper, the elements symbolize the sacrificial death of Christ and the spiritual unity of His body. At least two offices are specifically prescribed with qualifications and duties; the Pastor (or Bishop or Elder), and Deacons, without necessarily precluding other offices deemed incumbent in time. Under Christ, the church has absolute right of self-government, free from any outside interference. In demonstration of spiritual and functional unity, local churches cooperate with each other but each church is the sole and supreme judge of the measure and method of its cooperation. Matt 16:18-19, 28:18-20; Acts 2:41-42; Rom 6:1-6; I Cor 11:17-34; I Tim 3:1-13.
We believe in the Christian’s blessed hope that God will consummate His purposes for this age with rapture of the church, the seven years of unparalleled outpouring of God’s judgments, and the bodily return of Christ to establish His millennial kingdom on earth. At the close of the millennium there will be a mass resurrection and men will be judged before the Great White Throne whereby the unsaved will be committed to eternal punishment with Satan and his company in hell. The righteous are destined to enter the eternal state of glory with God in heaven. Isa 11:1-6; Ezek 37:21-28; Dan 9:24-27; 12:1; I Thess 4:15-17, 5:1-10; Rev 2:1-15; 21:1-5.
We believe that civil government is ordained of God to promote the well-being and order of society. It is the duty of individuals to exercise responsible citizenship, and to pray for, honor, and obey those in authority, except in matters directly opposed to the revealed will of God, who alone is the Lord of the conscience. The affairs of the church and those of the state should remain distinct and mutually separate. Acts 5:29; Rom 13:1-7; I Tim 2:1-2; I Peter 2:13-17.
We support and adhere to a biblical view of marriage and sexuality because we believe such an approach to life and marriage honors God and makes for fulfillment in life the way God designed it.
We find in the Bible that Jesus went back to creation to argue the original intent for marriage. Marriage was intended from the very beginning of creation to be the covenant union of a man and a woman in a permanent and exclusive relationship (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19: 4-9; Mark 10: 5-9). God’s design for this relationship was for the purposes of procreation, personal pleasure, and the fulfillment of the purposes of reflecting the image of the Creator and His desired relationship with His people (Genesis 1:27–28; 2:18–24; Ephesians 5:31–33). That image involves both male and female with marriage depicting their mutual cooperation in a designed diversity to steward God’s creation.
We believe God has also expressly reserved sexual intimacy and intercourse for heterosexual marriage (Ephesians 5:3, Colossians 3:5; 1 Corinthians 6:9). It is God’s expectation that the married live in faithfulness to their spouse and unmarried should live pure and celibate lives, refraining from sexual intimacy (1 Thessalonians 4:3).
BCC affirms that all marriage ceremonies performed in the name of this church and any related celebrations or activities allowed in its facilities shall be for unions that meet the standards named in this church constitution, and further, that church ministers and staff engage only in marriage ceremonies in keeping with this church’s adopted biblical and theological definition of marriage.