DOCTRINAL STATEMENT

of Village Baptist Church

Approved: February 18, 2001

I.  The Holy Scriptures

We teach that the Holy Bible is God’s written revelation to man.

By “Holy Bible” we mean that collection of 66 books from Genesis to Revelation.

We teach that the Bible is an objective propositional revelation (1 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Corinthians 2:13), verbally and equally inspired in every word (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21), absolutely inerrant in the original documents, infallible, and God breathed.

We teach that the Bible constitutes the only infallible rule of faith and practice (Matthew 5:18; 24:35; John 10:35b; 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:15-17).

We teach that, although there may be several applications to any given passage of Scripture, there is but one true interpretation.  The meaning of Scripture is to be found as one diligently applies the literal grammatical historical method of interpretation under the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit (John 7:17; 16:12&13).

We teach that man must move from truth to experience, and not from experience to truth (Proverbs 30:5 & 6; John 12:48; Romans 3:4; 2 Peter 1:16-21).

II. God

We teach that there is only one living and true God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 45:5), an infinite, all knowing Spirit (John 4:24), perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three persons — Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).

Father

We teach that God the Father is the first person of the triune Godhead. That His fatherhood involves both His designation within the Godhead and His relationship with mankind.

That He mercifully concerns Himself in the affairs of men. He continually upholds, directs, and governs all creatures and events (Daniel 4:34 & 35). He hears and answers prayer (John 11:41 & 42), He sent the Son to be the Savior of the world(1 John 4:14), and will accept all those who come to Him through Jesus Christ (John 1:12).

Son

We teach that Jesus Christ is the second person of the triune Godhead. That He eternally has and will exist as God’s only begotten son, and that all things were created by Him and for Him (cf. John 1:1-3,14; Colossians 1:15-17).

We teach that at His incarnation(God becoming man), Christ surrendered only the prerogatives of deity, but nothing of the divine essence, either in degree or kind (Philippians 2:6-8).

We teach that He was begotten of the Holy Spirit in a miraculous manner, born of the Virgin Mary(Matthew 1:18). We teach that He was tempted, yet without sin in His life(Hebrews 4:15). He died a substitutionary death on the cross for our sin (Titus 2:14; 1 John 3:16a).

We teach His bodily resurrection, His ascension into heaven to the right hand of the Father, where He now mediates as our Advocate and High Priest (John 20:25-28; 1 John 2:1; Hebrews 4:14).

We teach that Jesus Christ will return to receive the church, which is His body, at the rapture(1 Thessalonians 4:13-18), and returning with His church in glory, will establish His millennial kingdom on earth in fulfillment of His promises(Revelation 19:11-16; 20:4-6).

We teach that He is the one and only mediator between God and men, and apart from Him, man is helpless and hopeless   (1 Timothy 2:5).

Holy Spirit

We teach that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the triune Godhead.

His expressed purpose in this age is to glorify Jesus Christ (John 16:13-14).

In His relation to the unbelieving world,

He convicts the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgement (John 16:8-11). He also restrains evil until God’s purpose is fulfilled(2 Thessalonians 2:7).

In His relation to believers,

Every believer possesses the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit from the moment of salvation(John 14:17; Romans 8:9;1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

The Holy Spirit administers spiritual gifts to the church(1 Corinthians 12:4-11).  The Holy Spirit glorifies neither Himself nor His gifts by onstentatious displays, but He does glorify Christ by implementing His work of redeeming the lost and building up believers in the faith(Cf. John 16:13-14).

The Holy Spirit is sovereign in bestowing all His gifts for the perfecting of the saints today, and that speaking in tongues and the working of sign miracles in the beginning days of the church were for the purpose of pointing to and authenticating the apostles as revealers of divine truth, and were never intended to be characteristic of the lives of believers( 1 Corinthians 12:4, 11; 13:8, 10; 2 Corinthians 12:12; Ephesians 4:7; Hebrews 2:14).

III. Creation

We teach the Genesis account of creation, and:

a. that it is to be accepted literally, not allegorically or figuratively.

b. that creation took place in six literal 24 hour periods as recorded in  Genesis 1:1-31.

c. that everything on earth and heaven was created by God during those first six 24 hour days in both the physical and spiritual realm — that includes all angelic beings

(Exodus 20:11; John 1:3; Acts 4:24; Acts 17:23-26; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 11:3).

IV. Man

We teach that man was directly and immediately created by God in His image and likeness. Man was created free of sin, and God’s intention was that man should glorify God, enjoy God’s fellowship, and live his life in the will of God (Genesis 1:27; Isaiah 43:7; James 3:9; Revelation 4:11)

His Fall

We teach that man was created free of sin with a rational nature, intelligence, volition, self-determination, and moral responsibility to God.

We teach that man by voluntary transgression fell from his sinless state, and that consequently, all men are now sinners by inheritance from Adam and by individual choice and until regenerated are dead in sin (Romans 5:12; Ephesians 2:1-3).

Sin

We teach that because of sin all men are alienated from God because a nature corrupted by Adam’s sin has been transmitted to all men of all ages(Romans 5:12), Jesus Christ being the only exception

(1 Peter 2:22).  All men are thus sinners by nature, choice, and by divine declaration (Psalm 14:1-3; Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 3:9,18,23).

Salvation

We teach that salvation is by grace through faith, that it is the free gift of God (Ephesians 2:8&9).  We teach that man is saved by faith in the complete redemptive works of the Lord Jesus Christ, and that a person must repent of his sin and by faith receive and trust the Person and provision of Jesus Christ in order to be saved( Titus 3:5; Luke 13:3; John 1:12). We teach that salvation is a present reality, that one can be saved, know that he is saved, and enjoy his life of salvation, and that all who have been truly born again have been saved forever, and will not lose their salvation(1 John 5:11-13; John 10:27-30),

We teach that salvation is the ultimate deliverance from the guilt, power, and penalty of sin, which is eternal separation from God (Romans 8:1; 2 Thessalonians 1:9).

Sanctification

We teach that Biblical Sanctification is the process by which every believer is set apart  from sin unto God. Sanctification has 3 aspects.

a. Positional Sanctification

This aspect of sanctification is instantaneous and happens at the moment one believes.

This has to do with one’s standing before God through Christ - not his present walk or condition (1 Corinthians 1:2, 30; 2 Thessalonians 2:13; Hebrews 10:10,14).  

b. Progressive Sanctification

This aspect of sanctification is the process by which the state of the believer is brought closer to the standing the believer positionally enjoys through justification.  Through obedience to the Word of God and the empowering of the Holy Spirit, the believer is able to live a life of increasing holiness in conformity to the will of God. This is the process through which the believer becomes more and more like Christ.

We teach that in this process every believer is involved in a daily conflict — the new creation in Christ doing battle against the flesh.  Although God has made adequate provision for victory through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, the struggle stays with the believer all through his life.  Any claims to the complete eradication of sin in this life are unscriptural. Eradication of sin is not possible, but victory over sin through the Holy Spirit is not only provided for, but is also commanded (John 17:17; Romans 8:13; 2 Peter 3:18; Romans 8:28-29a; 2 Corinthians 3:18; 7:1; Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Timothy 4:7b; Hebrews 5:12-14; 1 John 3:3; Romans 12:1&2; Ephesians 4:22-24; Galatians 5:16-17).

c. Final Sanctification

No matter how much progress we may have made in the life of holiness, entire conformity to Christ will only be realized at His coming.  There will be no further possibility of sinning after that for those who are redeemed and living at His coming. Our sanctification from the presence of sin will take place when we shall see the Lord, either at death, or at His coming (1 John 3:2; 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 5:23).

Security

We teach that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever (John 5:24; 6:40;10:27-30).

We teach that the assurance of salvation is based, not upon a profession of faith but, upon a resulting lifestyle following that profession that demonstrates the qualities of a citizen of heaven (1 John 5:13).   

We teach that those who do not persevere are superficial professors, never having exercised Biblical faith and repentance (2 Corinthians 7:10; 1 John 2:19).

Religious Liberty

We teach that every man has the right to believe what he wishes and that it is neither the duty nor the right of one person or of one group, to impose beliefs upon another.  This does not mean that it is alright for “every man to do what is right in his own eyes,” but rather that each man is individually responsible to God. We may not force our beliefs upon another, no matter how wrong his doctrines may be  (Ezekiel 18:20; Romans 14:1-10) .

Separation

We teach that all believers should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord (Colossians 3:17).

We also teach that Biblical Separation is two-fold.

1. Separation from all religious apostasy

(1 Timothy 4:1-3;  2 Timothy 3:1-5; 2 John 9-11).

2. Separation from all worldly and sinful pleasures, practices and associations (Romans 12:1&2; 1 John 2:15-17; 2 Corinthians 6:14-17).

V. Angels

Holy Angels

We teach that angels are created spirit beings, and are therefore not to be worshiped(Revelation 22:8&9).

Although they are a higher order of creation than man, they are created to serve God and to worship Him(Revelation 5:11,14).

Fallen Angels

We teach that Satan is a created angel and the author of sin. Known as Lucifer before his rebellion, he was God’s anointed cherub who incurred the judgment of God by means of that rebellion(Isaiah 14:12-14; Ezekiel 28:13-15)..

We teach that, at the time of his rebellion, Satan convinced a multitude of God’s created angels to take part in that rebellion(cf. Jude 6; Revelation 12:3&4). These angels are now fallen angels, also known as demons, under Satan’s leadership and control(Revelation 12:7-9). They are confirmed enemies of God and destined, along with Satan, to spend eternity in conscious torment in the lake of fire(Revelation 20:10).

VI. God’s Ordained Institutions

We teach that there are three God ordained institutions: the family, civil government, and the church.

The Family

We teach :

a. that the family is the plan of God and sacred in His sight. It begins with the marriage of a man to a woman in a life-long covenant of companionship. It includes the children God blesses this covenant with (Genesis 2:18-25; Psalm 127:3-5; Matthew 19:3-9; Malachi 2:13-14).

b. that the roles of husband, wife, parent, and child are clearly defined in Scripture (Ephesians 5:21-6:4; Colossians 3:16-21; I Timothy 3:4,5,12; I Peter 3:1-7).

c. that the sexual relationship is sacred and fulfilling only within the bonds of marriage, and is condemned outside the marriage relationship (I Corinthian 7:3,4; Heb. 13:4).  

Civil Government

We teach:

a. that civil government is of divine appointment, for the interests and good order of human society (Romans 13:1-7; II Samuel 23:3-4; Exodus 18:21,22).

b. that magistrates are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored, and obeyed (Matthew 22:21; I Timothy 2:1-2; Titus 3:1; I Peter 2:13, 14, 17; Daniel 1:8-15) except only in things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 4:19,20, 5:29; Daniel 3:17,18, 6:10,11) who is the only Lord of the conscience, and the coming Prince of the Kings of the earth.  In this connection we stand firmly for the separation of the church and state (Matthew 10:28; 22:21; 23:10; Revelation 11:16; Philippians 2:10,11; Psalm 72:11).

The Church

We teach:

a. that all who place their faith in Jesus Christ are immediately placed by the Holy Spirit into one united spiritual body, the church (1 Corinthians 12:12-13), which is also the bride of Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:23,32; Revelation 19:7,8), of which Christ is the Head (Ephesians 1:22; Colossians 1:18).

b. that the formation of the church, the body of Christ, began on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1,21,38,47) and will be completed at the coming of Christ for His own at the rapture (1 Corinthians 15:51,52: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).

c. that the church is distinct from Israel (1 Corinthians 10:32).

d. that the establishment and continuity of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament Scriptures (Acts 14:23,27; 20:17,28; Galatians 1:2; Philippians 1:1) and that the members of the one spiritual body are directed to associate themselves together in local assemblies (1 Corinthians 11:18,20; Hebrews 10:25).

e. that the one supreme authority for the church is Christ (1 Corinthians 11:3; Ephesians 1:22; Colossians 1:18) and that church leadership, gifts, order, discipline, and worship are all appointed through His sovereignty as found in the Scriptures.

f. that the Biblically designated officers serving under Christ and over the assembly are pastors [also called bishops, elders, and pastor-teachers] (Acts 20:28; Ephesians 4:11) and deacons. Both of which must meet biblical qualifications (1 Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9).

VII. The Ordinances

We teach that two ordinances have been committed to the local church:

Baptism

Christian baptism by immersion (Acts 8:36-39)is the solemn and beautiful testimony of a believer showing forth his faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Savior, and his union with Him in death to sin and resurrection to a new life (Romans 6:1,11). It is also a sign of fellowship and identification with the visible Body of Christ (Acts 2:41-42).

The Lord’s Supper

The Lord’s Supper is a memorial commemorating  our Lord’s death until He returns, by the use of broken bread and the freshly pressed juice of the vine as symbols of the price He paid for us, This commemoration should always be preceded by solemn self-examination (1 Corinthians 11:23-28).

VIII. Last Things

Death

We teach that physical death involves no loss of our immaterial consciousness (cf. Revelation 6:9), rather it consists of a separation of soul from body (2 Corinthians 5:1,8).

a. For the redeemed in Christ, their souls shall remain in joyful fellowship with their Lord Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:8) until the rapture(1 Thessalonians 4:13-18), which initiates the first resurrection (Revelation 20:4,6).

b. The souls of the unsaved at death are kept under punishment until the second resurrection(Luke 16:23,24; Revelation 20:13), when the soul and the resurrection body will be united (John 5:28-29).

The Rapture of the Church

We teach the imminent, personal, bodily return of our Lord Jesus Christ before the seven year tribulation to translate His church from this earth(1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Titus 2:13) and to reward believers according to their works(2 Corinthians 5:10).

The Tribulation Period

We teach that immediately following the removal of the church from the earth(John 14:1-3) the seventieth week of Daniel’s prophecy will take place(Daniel 9:27; 12:1)

a. During this seven year period, the righteous judgments of God will be poured out upon an unbelieving world (Jeremiah 30:6&7; Matthew 24:21).

b. these judgements will be climaxed by the return of Christ in glory to the earth (Matthew 24:27,31).

c. at that time the Old Testament and tribulation saints will be raised and the living will be judged(Daniel 12:2).

The Millennial Reign of Christ

We teach that after the tribulation period:

a. Christ will come to earth to occupy the throne of David (Matthew 25:31) and establish His messianic kingdom for a thousand years on earth (Revelation 20:1,7).

b. This kingdom will be the fulfillment of God’s covenantal promises to Israel (cf. Genesis 12:1-3; Deuteronomy 30:3; 2 Samuel 7:16; Ezekiel 37:21,22,28).

The Judgment of the Lost

We teach that following the release of Satan after the thousand year reign of Christ (Revelation 20:7):

a. Satan will once again deceive the nations and gather them to battle against the people of God, at which time Satan and his army will be devoured by fire from heaven(Revelation 20:8-9).

b. Satan will then be thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone where he will be tormented forever(Revelation 20:10).

c. Then Christ, Who is the Judge of all men(John 5:22), will resurrect and judge  the great and small at the Great White Throne judgment (Rev. 20:11-13).

d. This resurrection of the unsaved dead to judgement will be a physical resurrection, whereupon receiving their judgement, they will be committed to an eternal conscious punishment in the lake of fire (Matthew 25:41; Revelation 20:11, 15).

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How to Become a Christian

Admit your sinful ways and desire to turn from them and be delivered from the judgment they bring (Romans 3:10,23; Acts 3:19).

Believe what Christ did for sinners on the cross, which was confirmed by His resurrection from the dead (Romans 5:8; John 11:25).

Call upon Him by receiving Him as the only means of eternal life (John 1:12;6:40; Ephesians 2:8-9; Romans 10:13).

Placing your faith in Christ is a personal commitment between you and God, but we would like the joy of praying with you and assisting you in this eternally significant matter.  If you make this commitment, or desire to know more about it, please call the church office, or come to us at any of our church services — WE ARE HERE TO HELP YOU.

To speak with our pastor, call the church at (219) 992-3170.