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|CoR| Deacon

|CoR| Statement of Faith New
« on: December 20, 2005, 11:43:24 PM »
Let us take an opportunity to form a clear statement of faith.

A clearly declared statement of our faith helps to protect us against pressures to compromise or to make our beliefs more palatable to the pluralistic society which surrounds us.

This organization is not "Church," as in a substitute for participation in a local body of believers, but a Para-Church organization where Believers can gather in fellowship and also where people who do not believe may come and see the truth about our God and Savior. We encourage our members to get plugged into a local church body that adheres to the statement of faith we are about to present.

As you read, please remember our heart in this matter:
"Unity on the essentials, liberty on the non-essentials and love overall."

The City of Refuge Statement of Faith has been organized into two primary sections: Doctrinal and Practical:

DOCTRINAL

1. WE BELIEVE IN THE BIBLE

    We believe that "all scripture is given by inspiration of God" (2 Tim. 3:16), through holy men of God who "were moved by the Holy Ghost" to write the very words of God (2 Pet. 1:21; 1 Cor. 2:13).
    We believe that this Divine Inspiration extends equally and fully to all parts of the writings -- historical, poetical, doctrinal, and prophetical -- as appeared in the original manuscripts.
    We believe that we should follow the testimony of the Lord in relying upon it's absolute authority and trustworthiness (Matt. 5:17-18; John 10:35; Rom. 3:4; Rev. 22:19).
    We believe that the whole Bible, consisting of 66 Books in the original, is complete and without error.
    We believe that all scripture centers about the Lord Jesus Christ in His person and work, in His first and second coming, and ultimately points to Him (Luke 24:27, 44; John 5:39).
    We also believe that all scripture is designed for our practical instruction (Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 10:11; 2 Tim. 3:16-17).


2. WE BELIEVE IN GOD

    We believe that there is but one God eternally existing (Deut. 6:4; Isa. 45:21-22; Ex. 3:14), in a Trinity of three persons -- the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit -- and that these three are one God (Matt. 28:18-19; 2 Cor. 13:14, Matt. 3:16-17), having precisely the same essence, attributes, and perfections (John 1:14; Heb. 1:1-3; Acts 5:3-4; John 1:1; 10:30; 1 Cor. 2:10; 6:19). God is perfect in holiness, infinite in wisdom, measureless in power, and balanced in all His attributes.
    We believe that a correct understanding of God is a prerequisite to a correct understanding of all other things (Prov. 9:10; Jer. 9:23-24).


3. WE BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST

    We believe that Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Trinity, is God's only begotten Son, conceived of the Holy Spirit (Matt. 1:20), born of the Virgin Mary (Matt. 1:23; Luke 1:34-37), sinless in His life (Heb. 4:15), and sufficient in His sacrifice on the cross (Heb. 9:26; 10:10-12), and secures forever our salvation by His intercession at God's right hand (Heb. 7:25).
    We believe that by His death on the cross. He paid the penalty for the sins of all the world, and that whosoever believes in Him will be saved (1 John 2:2; John 3:16).
    We believe in His bodily resurrection (Matt. 28:5-6; 1 Cor. 15:1-6), His ascension into heaven (Acts 1:9), His high priestly position in heaven for His people (Heb. 3:1), and His personal and visible pre-millennial return to earth to reign in peace and righteousness for a thousand years (Rev. 20:6).


4. WE BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT

    We believe that the Holy Spirit, the Third person of the Trinity, though omnipresent from eternity, took up His abode in the Church in a special sense on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2).
    We believe that He dwells in every believer, and by His baptism unites every believer to Christ in one body (1 Cor. 12:13; 6:19). As the indwelling One, He is the source of all power and all acceptable worship and service (Zech. 4:6; John 14:16-17; John 15:26).
    We believe that He is the regenerator of all who believe in Jesus Christ as Savior (John 3:3-7; Titus 3:5), and that at the moment of regeneration, He also indwells, anoints, seals, and baptizes (1 John 2:27; Eph. 4:30; 1 Cor. 12:13).
    We believe the qualities of Christ-like character in a believer are the result of the fruit-producing work of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22-23). The "filling" of the Spirit is available to every believer who will submit to His control (Eph. 5:18).
    We believe that the Holy Spirit bestows gifts for ministry to each member of the body, gifts that are to be exercised for the glory of God and toward the edification, and unity of the body.
    We believe the Holy Spirit gives gifts wisely and sovereignly, that possession or lack of a particular gift is no cause for pride or regret, and that His gifts are not rewards to those who seek or qualify for them (1 Cor. 12:7-11; Gal. 5:26).
    We believe that speaking in tongues is not a common or necessary sign of the baptism or of the filling of the Spirit (Acts 4:8, 31; 1 Cor. 12:13, 30).
    We believe that the ultimate deliverance of the body from sickness or death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection (Rom. 8:23; Rev. 21:3-4).


5. WE BELIEVE THAT SALVATION IS ONLY THROUGH CHRIST

    We believe that due to universal death through sin (Rom. 5:12), no one can enter the kingdom of God unless born again (John 3:3, 7), and that no degree of reformation however great, no attainments in morality however high, no culture however attractive, no baptism or other ordinance however administered, can help the sinner to take even one step toward heaven, but a new nature imparted from above, a new life implanted by the Holy Spirit through the Word, is absolutely essential to salvation, and only those thus saved are sons of God.
    We believe also, that our redemption has been accomplished solely by the bloody death of our Lord Jesus Christ (Lev. 17:11; Heb. 9:22), who was made to be sin (2 Cor. 5:21), and was made a curse for us (Gal. 3:13), dying in our place (Matt. 20:28; 1 Peter 3:18), and that no feeling, no good resolutions, no sincere efforts, no submission to the rules and regulations of any Church, nor all the Churches that have existed since the days of the Apostles can add in the very least degree to the value of the blood, or to the merit of the finished work wrought for us by Him who united in His person true and proper deity with perfect and sinless humanity (Col. 1:15-17).
    We believe that the new birth comes only by God's grace through personal faith in Jesus Christ (Eph. 2:8-9). Repentance, although a vital part of believing, by itself does not save (Acts 20:21; 1 Thess. 1:9). Salvation is a gift of God and no acts, such as baptism, confession, faithful service, or prayer, need to be added to believing as a condition of the new birth (John 1:12; 3:16, 18, 36; John 5:24; Acts 13:39; Acts 16:31; Rom. 1:16, 17; 3:22, 24; Gal. 3:21-22).
    We believe that when an unregenerate person exercises faith in Jesus Christ he passes immediately out of spiritual death into spiritual life, and from the old creation into the new (John 5:24; 2 Cor. 5:17; 1 John 5:11-12). He is justified from all things, accepted before the Father according as Christ His Son is accepted, loved as Christ is loved, and has his place and portion as one with Him forever (Acts 13:39; Eph. 1:6). Though the one saved is commanded to grow in the realization of his blessing and to know a fuller measure of Divine Power through the yielding of his life more fully to God (2 Peter 3:18; Rom. 12:1-2; Phil. 3:10-12), he is, as soon as he is saved, in possession of every spiritual blessing and absolutely complete in Christ (Eph. 1:3; Col. 2:10). He is, therefore, in no way required by God to seek a so-called "second blessing" or a "second work of grace."


6. We await the rapture of the church, and we believe in the literal Second Coming of Christ with His saints to rule the earth, which will be personal and visible. This motivates us to holy living, heartfelt worship, committed service, diligent study of God's Word, regular fellowship, participation in adult baptism by immersion and Holy Communion.

7. We are neither Five-Point Calvinists, nor are we Arminians. We adhere firmly to the biblical teaching of God's sovereignty and man's responsibility. We avoid any theological systems of belief that go beyond the written Word and thereby divide the body of Christ.

8. We do not believe in "positive confession" (the faith movement belief that God can be commanded to heal or work miracles according to man's will); human prophecy that supersedes the Scriptures; the incorporation of humanistic and secular psychology into biblical teaching; the overemphasis of spiritual gifts and experiential signs and wonders to the exclusion of biblical teaching; or that true Christians can be demon-possessed.

9. We believe in the universal Church, in the living spiritual body, of which Christ is the head and all regenerated persons are members.

10. We believe the Lord Jesus Christ committed two ordinances to the Church: 1) baptism, and 2) the Lord's Supper. We believe in baptism by immersion and communion, both of which are open to all believers in Jesus Christ.

11. We believe that solid Church Doctrine declares in the laying on of hands for the sending out of pastors and missionaries, and in conjunction with the anointing of oil by the elders for the healing of the sick.


PRACTICAL

12. We believe the only true basis of Christian fellowship is Christ's (agape) love, which is greater than differences we possess, and without which we have no right to claim ourselves Christians.

13. We believe worship of God should be spiritual; therefore, we remain flexible and yielded to the leading of the Holy Spirit to direct our worship.

14. We believe worship of God should be intelligent; Bible study ought to be designed with great emphasis upon the teaching of the Word of God that He might instruct us on how He should be worshiped. We seek to teach the Word of God in such a way that its message can be applied to the individual's life, leading that person to a greater maturity in Christ. We teach both expositionally and topically.

15. We believe worship of God should be fruitful; therefore, we look for His love in our lives as the supreme manifestation that we have been truly worshiping Him.

16. We believe that |CoR|, like the church government, should be simplistic rather than a complex bureaucracy, and we depend on the Holy Spirit to lead, rather than on fleshly promotion.

17. We believe that the Bible clearly delineates that spiritual gifts are for the edification of the body and that they are to be exercised in love. We believe that love is more important than the most spectacular gifts, and without love, all exercise of spiritual gifts is worthless. We focus on a personal relationship with God through worship, prayer, and the teaching of the Word of God.

Furthermore, our stance on those core issues of doctrine and faith which are detailed in this document will be uncompromising. We resolve to take no action and hold no belief that will undermine the authority of scripture, the pre-eminance of Christ, or the simple truth that only through complete dependence on Christ's completed work on the cross of Calvary may man be made right with God.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 03:09:50 PM by |CoR| Cool_Hand_Luke »
In Christ,

Bryan Stiekes