TENET 13

13.  God

There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

a.  God the Father

God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.

Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; Galatians 4:6; 1 John 5:7

b.  God the Son

Christ is the eternal Son of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the will of God, taking upon Himself human nature with its demands and necessities and identifying Himself completely with mankind yet without sin. He honored the divine law by His personal obedience, and in His substitutionary death on the cross, He made provision for the redemption of men from sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body and appeared to His disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God where He is the One Mediator, fully God, fully man, in whose Person is effected the reconciliation between God and man. He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission. He now dwells in all believers as the living and ever-present Lord.

Isaiah 7:14; 53; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3; Ephesians 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11;1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15;1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 13:8; 19:16

c.  God the Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination, He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls men to the Saviour, and effects regeneration. At the moment of regeneration, He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church. He seals the believer unto the day of final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the guarantee that God will bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.

We also believe that the baptism by the Holy Spirit occurs once upon salvation. The Bible tells us to be filled by the Holy Spirit and never commands us to be baptized by the Holy Spirit.

In Scripture, when reference is given regarding the baptism of the Holy Spirit, it was a special occurrence given to believers for the purpose of service and witnessing.

We seek to obey the Lord’s command in Ephesians 4:3 to “be diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace”. Upon salvation, the Holy Spirit baptizes all believers and gives them at least one gift to be used for the edification of the church and not for ourselves. The sign gifts were given to authenticate Jesus, the apostles, and the Scriptures. The Scriptures teach that the Bible is His completed written Word, is sufficient, and thoroughly equips us for every good work. Knowing these truths, we desire to preserve the unity of the church by asking members and visitors to not openly practice or teach as doctrine the sign gifts in any of the church’s services whether on or off campus. These practices include speaking unintelligible words and new revelations of God.

Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Psalms 51:11; Isaiah 61:1-3; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18; John 4:24; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 10:44; 13:2;19:1-6; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:3, 30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16

en_USEnglish