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What we believe
The following is a summary of what we believe as Christians. There is more information in a course called ‘Christian Basics’ which can be found by clicking here.
What the Bible teaches about……
The Bible is truly God’s Word in the fullest sense and therefore true and reliable in all it says. It tells us all that we need to know, to believe and to do in order to be right with God and live well for him in his world. In the Bible, God reveals himself and we need his help to rightly understand it.
God. A great and wonderful mystery at the heart of the Christian faith is the nature of God himself, who is one God, but consisting of three equally glorious persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. God is the all-powerful creator and his rule over all things – including the rescue of sinners – is wise and total.
Ourselves. A proper treatment requires an accurate diagnosis – however uncomfortable! God made us in his image– to reflect his glory and to enjoy him forever. But Humankind is in rebellion against God and every part of each one of us is spoiled by sin. We cannot rescue ourselves! Our only hope is for God to intervene and to breathe life into our spiritual deadness.
Jesus. God himself has become one of us, in the person of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Born of a virgin, the Son has become fully human, yet remains fully God. All that Jesus said was true and authoritative, all that he did was right. He suffered and died in the place of sinners, to rescue us from God’s Judgment and bring us back to him. Then he rose bodily from the grave and later ascended back to heaven where he now represents his people in the preeminent place at his Father’s side.
Salvation! How can sinners be right with the God who made them, whose law they have broken? Only by trusting in Jesus and all that he has done. Such trust, and the resolve to turn from sin which always accompanies it, only comes as the Holy Spirit breathes new spiritual life into a person, changing their attitude to God. The Holy Spirit’s work is also essential for a Christian to serve and worship God and become more like Christ in character and obedience.
It is a humbling truth that the rescue of a sinner is God’s work of grace from beginning to end and without him the Christian can do nothing. Nevertheless, we are not to be passive, but are called to repentance (turning from sin) and a life of good works, in obedience to God. We are also called to a life of worship, which finds its focus on the Lord’s Day.
The Church. Christ is Head of his Church, which consists of all those who have been rescued – summoned by God through the Gospel, made alive by the Spirit, right with God by faith. Such believers gather in local churches which share fellowship together as part of the one Church. New believers are baptised and subsequently share in the Lord’s Supper.
The Future. All of history is moving towards a great climax – the glorious return of the Lord and a day of Judgment when the dead will be raised and the eternal destiny of all people will be sealed: perfect happiness for those who have been made right with God and punishment for those who have remained in rebellion against God.
A more detailed explanation of these statements can be found in the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith, to which the church holds.