Statement of Faith

STATEMENT OF FAITH

Section 1: Our Faith in God
 
We affirm a core confession of convictions in common with the creeds of the early church, the confessions of the Reformation and the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith. This statement of faith and conduct does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind and is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of this church’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, the leadership seeks to adhere to this statement of faith as the church’s interpretation of the meaning and application of Scripture.
 
1) The Holy Scriptures
We believe the Bible, comprised of 66 books, was given to us through men who were verbally and plenary inspired, as originally written, and is God’s revelation of Himself to man. We believe it is truth, without any mixture of error, clear and powerful in its message, sufficient for all of our needs, and the final authority for faith and life.
 
We wholeheartedly affirm the 1978 Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy.
 
 II Timothy 3:15-17; II Peter 1:16-21; Romans 15:4; Colossians 3:16
 
2) The Holy Trinity
We believe in one and only one living and true triune God, eternally existent in the three persons of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. He is an intelligent, spiritual, personal being, who is loving, good, wise, holy, and perfect in all His characteristics. 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. He created all things by His word and is our Sustainer and Ruler in all things. He is our Redeemer through whom alone salvation can come.
 
John 1:1-18; 5:19-24; 14:11; 16:7-15; Matthew 28:16-20
 
3) God the Father
We believe in God as Father who reigns with providential care over His universe and deal with His creatures according to the purposes of His grace. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.
 
Isaiah 46:8-11; 57:14-21; Matthew 5:48; 6:28-34; I John 5:14
 
4) God the Son
We believe in Jesus Christ, the one and only eternal Son of God, who added full humanity to His perfect deity when he was born into this world through his virgin mother. We believe He became the perfect substitute for mankind’s sins. He obeyed God perfectly, died on the cross for our sins, and arose in bodily form from the grave defeating the power of sin, death and Satan. He became the one and only mediator between God and man and will return one day in power and glory, in a literal body to judge the world. He now dwells in all believers as the living and ever present Lord.
 
Isaiah 9:1-7; Luke 1:26-38; 2:1-20; John 10:22-38; Romans 8:34; I Corinthians 15:3-4
 
5) God the Holy Spirit
We believe in the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination, He enables men to understand truth. He convicts men of sin, righteousness, and a judgment to come. He indwells the sinner at the moment of salvation, which is God’s guarantee to every believer of final redemption and gives them everything they need to follow and live for Him. We believe the Spirit gives gifts in each believer at conversion. We also believe that the apostolic sign and revelatory gifts were temporary and are no longer given by the Spirit today.
 
John 14:15-26; 16:1-14; Romans 8:1-27; I Corinthians 13:12
 
6) Mankind
We believe that man is God’s special creation, made in His own image. He created them as male and female, with differences, yet both equally in the image of Himself. Although in the beginning man was created innocent of sin, he soon, by his free choice, fell into sin. His disobedience alienated all mankind from God, leaving man without hope in his own ability to be accepted by God.
 
Genesis 2:16-17; 3:12-13; Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 5:12
 
7) Salvation
We believe that saving grace comes not from any works, but through repentance and faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ alone, whose precious blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins. Salvation is wholly a work of God in the life of a sinner, who is kept by the power of God forever in the family of God.
 
 Romans 3:23-24; 5:6-21; I Peter 1:18-19; John 3:1-21; Titus 3:1-11; II Corinthians 5:14-21; 6:1
 
8) The Church
We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the head and all born again individuals who are the members, from all ages who put their trust in Christ. It finds itself expressed in local assemblies. We believe in the autonomy of the local congregation, which is free from external authority or control, the priesthood of the believers, and that Jesus gave two ordinances for the church to follow: the Lord’s Supper and baptism of believers by immersion. We believe that the two main offices of the church are elders and deacons and that God ordained these offices to be filled with godly men.
 
 Ephesians 4:1-5:7; Romans 12:5; Matthew 16:13-19; 28:19-20; I Corinthians 11:23-32; I Timothy 3:1-13
 
9) Spiritual Gifts
We believe in the continued expression of the spiritual gifts, which are given to all believers. The apostolic sign gifts such as healing, raising the dead, and speaking in tongues were essentially given for the authentication of the apostolic generation and are not normative for today.
 
Romans 12:6-8; I Corinthians 12:4-11; I Corinthians 13:12; I Peter 4:10-11
 
10) Satan & Fallen Angels
We believe in the reality of Satan and his kingdom of darkness, and that our confrontation of Satan demands belief and trust in God and the effective use of Scripture. We believe that Satan, the originator of sin, and his fallen angels are destined for an eternal punishment in the lake of fire on judgment day.
 
John 8:44; II Corinthians 11:14; James 4:7; I Peter 5:8; I John 3:8; Revelation 20:10
 
11) Future Events
We believe in the blessed hope, the personal, visible, and imminent return of Jesus Christ who will rapture His church prior to the coming wrath, defeating the kingdom of the Antichrist and establishing His glorious and literal kingdom over all nations. We believe in the bodily resurrection of the just and the unjust, that Jesus Christ will be the final judge, and the everlasting blessedness of the saved and the everlasting, conscious punishment of the lost. We believe in a literal heaven and hell.
 
Matthew 16:27; John 14:3; I Thessalonians 4:15; Titus 2:13; II Thessalonians 1:7-10; Revelation 20:4-6, 11-15
 
 
Section 2: Our Life in the World
 
 We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Eastport Baptist Church as a local body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to this fellowship’s members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Eastport Baptist Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this statement of our life in the world. We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. We believe that every person must be accorded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the beliefs of Eastport Baptist Church.
 
1) Civil Government
We believe that God has created all authority consisting of three basic institutions: the home, the church and the civil government. Each person is subject to these authorities except when they command us to violate God’s Word. We believe that God has given each specific responsibility with the understanding that those institutions do not have the right to infringe upon the other.
 
Acts 5:29; Romans 13:1-7; I Timothy 2:1-3; I Peter 2:13-17
 
2) Marriage & Sexuality
We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male and female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person. We believe that the only legitimate marriage is the joining of one man and one woman for life. We believe that all other kinds of relationships outside of this is a perversion of God’s standard. We believe God’s standard for sexuality is only for those who are married to each other. All other sexual activity outside of marriage is sinful and outside of God’s will for mankind. We believe that men and women are spiritually equal in position before God, but have distinct and separate spiritual functions in the home and church. The husband is to be the leader of the home and men are called to be the leaders of the church. Accordingly, only men are eligible for licensure and ordination by the church.
 
Genesis 2:21-24; Matthew 19:2-9; Ephesians 5:22-33; I Timothy 3:1-13; Hebrews 13:4
 
3) Divorce & Remarriage
We believe that God intends for marriage to be a covenant relationship and is to last until one of the spouses dies. Divorce and/or remarriage is regarded as adultery except for grounds of adultery or abandonment. Accordingly, divorced, or divorced and remarried people may serve in any position of ministry in the church except as a elder, deacon, or deaconess.
 
Matthew 5:32; Matthew 19:2-9; Romans 7:2; I Corinthians 7:10-15
 
4) Abortion
We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion is murder in the eyes of God and is not acceptable for any reason except the threat of the life of the mother.
 
Exodus 20:13; Psalm 139:13-16; Proverbs 6:16-19
 
5) Lawsuits
We believe that the church possesses all the resources necessary to resolve personal disputes between believers. Accordingly, we believe that Christians ought not to bring civil lawsuits against other Christians or the church to resolve personal disputes. 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.
 
Matthew 5:38-39; I Corinthians 6:1-8
 
6) Stewardship
We believe that every Christian, as a steward of that portion of God’s wealth entrusted to him, is responsible to support his local church financially. We believe that every Christian should be encouraged to give cheerfully and sacrificially for the relief of those in need, the support of the local church, and the spread of the gospel to every people group. We give our gifts to the church for these purposes. Gifts may also be given for specific purposes stated at the time the gift is given. While the church should make an effort to honor such designated purposes, the right to redirect the use of the gift rests with the church, not the giver.
 
Luke 6:38; 12:33-34; Acts 20:35; II Corinthians 9:6-7; I Timothy 6:17-19