Eastside Baptist Church Core Beliefs
This statement of faith does not exhaust the full extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final authority of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the following Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and is therefore binding upon all members.
(A) The Holy Scriptures
We believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the verbally 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 grammatical-historical context. We believe that God’s Word has been divinely preserved in the English language and commonly known as the Authorized King James Version. Therefore the Authorized King James Version shall be the official and only translation used by the church. (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21).
(B) The Godhead
We believe in one Triune God, eternally existing and expressed 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 perfections (Deut. 6:4; Matt 29:19; 2 Cor. 13:14; John 14:10, 26).
(C) The Person and Work of Christ
(1) We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became wholly man yet 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; 2 Cor. 5:19-21; Gal. 4:4-5; Phil. 2:5-8).
(2) 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; 1 Peter 2:24; Eph. 1:7; 1 Peter 1:3-5).
(3) 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; 1 John 2:102).
(D) The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
(1) 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; indwelling and sealing all believers unto the day of redemption (John 16: 8-11; Rom. 8:9; 1 Cor. 12:12-14; 2 Cor. 3:6; Eph. 1:13-14).
(2) 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; 1 John 2:20, 27).
(3) 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; 1 Cor. 12:4-11, 28; Eph. 4:7-12).
(4) 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 the speaking in tongues was never the common or necessary sign of the baptism of the 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 prayer of believers for physical healing (1 Cor. 1:22; 13:8, 14:21-22).
(E) The Fall of Man
We believe that mankind was created in innocence in the image and likeness of God, but by voluntary transgression fell from his sinless and happy state, in consequence of which all mankind are now sinners, not by constraint, but of choice; and therefore under just condemnation without defense or excuse. (Gen. 1:26-27; Gen. 3:1-6, 24; Rom. 1:18,20,28; 3:10-23; 5:12; 6:23; Eph. 2:1-3).
(1) 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; Ep. 1:7; 2:8-10; 1 Peter 1:18-19). This free gift of salvation is fully available to all who will receive it by faith. We reject the notion that only the “elect” may be saved, or that God has chosen who can and cannot be saved. Salvation is available to “whosoever will” receive it.
(2) We believe that in order to be saved, sinners must be born again; that the new birth is a new creation in Christ Jesus; that it is instantaneous and not a process; that in the new birth the one dead in trespasses and in sins is made a partaker of the divine nature and receives eternal life, the free gift of God; that the new creation is brought about in a manner above our comprehension, not by culture, not by character, nor by the will of man, but wholly and solely by the power of the Holy Spirit in connection to the gospel; that its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance and faith and newness of life.
(3) We believe that the great gospel blessing which Christ secures to such as believe in Him is Justification; that Justification includes the pardon of sin, and the gift of eternal life on principles of righteousness; that it is bestowed not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done; but solely through faith in the Redeemer’s blood, His righteousness is imputed unto us.
(4) We believe that repentance and faith are solemn obligations. When we are deeply convicted of our guilt, danger, and helplessness, and of the way of salvation by Christ, we turn to God with unfeigned contrition, confession and supplication for mercy; at the same time heartily receiving the Lord Jesus Christ and openly confessing Him as our only and all-sufficient Saviour (John 3:3; II Corinthians 5:17 & 19; I John 5:1: Luke 5:27; John 3:6-7; II Peter 1:4; Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:1; Colossians 2:13; John 1:12-13; Ephesians 5:9; Acts 13:39; Romans 8:1; Romans 5:9; Romans 5:1; Titus 3:5-7; Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Romans 4:1-3; Hebrews 10:38; Acts 20:21; Mark 1:15; Acts 2:37-38; Luke 18:13; Romans 10:13; Luke 12:8; Romans 10:9-11).
(G) The Eternal Security and Assurance of Believers
(2) 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 continue to serve the flesh (Rom. 13:13-14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15).
(H) The Church
(1) We believe that the Biblical New Testament church is a local assembly of born-again, scripturally baptized believers associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the Gospel (1 Cor. 12:12-14; 2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 1:22-23; 5:25-27; Acts 2:41).
(2) 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; 1 Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11; Acts 1:8).
We believe that all who are saved should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord; and that separation from all religious apostasy, all worldly and sinful pleasures, practices and associations is commanded of God (Rom. 12:1-2; 14:13; 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1; 2 Tim. 3:1-5; 1 John 2:15-17; 2 John 9-11).
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 ways of achieving salvation, but rather are divinely ordered stewardships by which God directs man according to His purpose. Three of these dispensations – the age of Law, the age of the Church, and the age of the Kingdom – are the subjects of detailed revelation in Scripture (Gen. 1:28; 1 Cor. 9:17; 2 Cor. 3:9-18; Gal. 3:13-25; Eph. 1:10; 3:2-10; Col. 1:24-25, 27; Rev. 20:2-6).
(K) 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 (Psa. 89:3-4; Dan. 2:31-45; Zech. 14:4-11; 1 Thes. 1:10; 4:13-18; Titus 2:13; Rev. 3:10; 19:11-16; 20:1-6).
(L) The Eternal State
(2) 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; 3:21; 1 Thes. 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4-6).
(3) We believe that the souls of unbelievers remain, after death, 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; 2 Thes. 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Rev. 20:11-15).
(M) The Personality of Satan
We believe that Satan is a powerful, yet not omnipotent nor omnipresent, being; the author of sin and 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).
We believe that God created the universe in six literal, 24-hour periods. We reject Evolution, the Gap Theory, the Day-Age Theory, and Theistic Evolution as unscriptural theories of origin (Gen. 1-2; Ex. 20:11).
(O) 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; 1 Peter 2:13-14).
(P) Human Sexuality
We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity should be engaged in outside of a marriage between one man and one 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. (Gen. 2:24; Gen. 19:5, 13; Gen. 26:8-9; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:26-29; 1 Cor. 5:1; 6:9; 1 Thes. 4:1-8; Heb. 13:4).
(Q) Divorce and Remarriage
We believe that God disapproves of divorce and intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. Although divorced and remarried persons or divorced persons may hold positions of service in the church and be greatly used of God for Christian service, they may not be considered for the offices of pastor or deacon or those administrative positions within the church that would consist of pastoral duties. (Mal. 2:14-17; Matt. 19:3-12; Rom. 7:1-3; 1 Tim. 3:2, 12; Titus 1:6).
We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a living human being. Abortion constitutes the unjustified, unexcused taking of unborn human life. Abortion is murder. We reject any teaching that abortions of pregnancies due to rape, incest, birth defects, gender selection, birth or population control, or the mental or physical well-being of the mother are acceptable (Job 3:16; Psa. 51:5; 139:14-16; Isa. 44:24; 49:1, 5; Jer. 1:5; 20:15-18; Luke 1:44).
We believe that God has given the local Baptist 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 scriptural means available to go to all who have not heard the message of salvation, both at home and abroad. Further, we believe the Great Commission outlines God's three-fold plan for missions: Evangelism, Baptism and Discipleship. The most biblical form of missions is the carrying out of all three aspects of the Commission by the planting and establishing of local, New Testament, Baptist churches (Matt. 28: 19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2 Cor. 5:20).
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 freewill offerings sacrificially and cheerfully to the support of the church, the relief of those in need, and the spreading of the Gospel. We believe that a Christian relinquishes all rights to direct the use of the tithe or offering once the gift has been made (Gen. 14:20; Prov. 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; 1 Cor. 16:2; 2 Cor. 9:6-7; Gal. 6:6; Eph. 4:28; 1 Tim. 5:17-18; 1 John 3:17).