What We believe
SECTION 1 Ė STATEMENT OF FAITH
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 normal grammatical-historical meaning. (II Tim. 3:16-17; II Pet. 1:20-21)
B) Dispensationalism (Rules of Life)
We believe that the Scriptures interpreted in their natural, literal sense reveal divinely determined dispensations, or rules of life, which define manís responsibilities in successive ages. These dispensations are not ways of 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; I Cor. 9:17; II Cor. 3:9-18; Gal. 3:13-25; Eph. 1:10, 3:2-10; Col. 1:24-25, 27; Rev. 20:2-6)
C) The Godhead
Essentials we believe:
1). ABOUT GOD
God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are equal and are one God. (Gen. 1; John 1; Col. 1; Heb. 1)
2) ABOUT GOD THE FATHER
God the Father orders and disposes of all things according to His own purpose and grace, and continually upholds, directs, and governs all creatures and events for His own glory. Fatherhood denotes spiritual relationship; first, within the Trinity; second, within mankind, creatively in relation to all men, but spiritually only in relation to those who have been saved by His grace from their sin and come to Him through Jesus Christ. (James 1:17; Gen. 1:26-27; 3:22; Psalm 90; Matt. 28:19; I Pet. 1:2; II Cor. 12:14)
3) ABOUT JESUS CHRIST
Jesus Christ is Godís one and only Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the earth after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heavenís glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. (Isa. 9:6; Matt. 1:22-23; John 1:1-5; Rom. 1:3-4; I Cor. 15:3-4; I Tim. 6:14-15; Titus. 2:13; Heb. 4:14-15)
4) ABOUT THE HOLY SPIRIT
The Holy Spirit is present in the world to make men aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in following Godís will. As Christians, we seek to live under His control daily. Furthermore, we do not support the doctrine of the cessation of the gifts of the Spirit (I Cor. 12:4-11) as we believe He gives every believer spiritual gifts when they are saved as a means of helping the church, so long as it is done in an orderly manner (I Cor. 14:39-40). (John 14:16-17, 16:7-13; Acts 1:8; I Cor. 2:12; 3:16; II Cor. 3:17; Gal. 5:25; Eph. 1:13; 5:18)
D) The Total Depravity of Man
People are made in the spiritual image of God to be like Him in character, for the purpose of fellowship with God and glory for God. Man was tempted by Satan and sinned, and because of this all men have been born in sin since that time. Every person is marred by a nature of rebellion and disobedience toward God which the Bible calls sin. Sin separates us from God, and man, of himself, is utterly unable to remedy his lost condition. All persons need to be saved from sin. (Gen. 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isa. 53:6; 59:1-2; Rom. 3:23; 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3)
Salvation is Godís free gift to us, but each person must receive it individually by repenting from a self-ruled (sinful) life and turning to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, whose precious blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of our sins. We can never make up for our sins by self-improvement or good works. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ as Godís offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sinís penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith, we are saved. Eternal life with God begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into his life by faith. (John 1:12; 14:6; Rom. 5:1; 6:23; Gal. 3:26; Eph. 2:8-9; Titus 3:5)
F) The Eternal Security
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by Godís power and are thus secure in Christ forever. (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1, 38-39; I Cor. 1:4-8; I Pet. 1:4-5)
G) The Eternal State
1) We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men, the saved to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and
everlasting punishment. (Matt. 25:46; John 5:28-29; 11:25-26; Rev. 20:5-6, 12-13)
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; II Cor. 5:8, Phil. 1:23; 3:21; I Thess. 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4-6)
3) We believe that the souls of the 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; II Thess. 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Rev. 20:11-15)
H) The Church
1) We believe that the Church, which is the body and the espoused bride of Christ, is solely made up of born-again persons. (I Cor. 12:12-14; II Cor. 11:2; Eph. 1:22-23; 5:25-27)
2) We believe that the establishment and continuance of our Church is clearly taught and defined in the New
Testament Scriptures. (Acts 14:27; 20:17, 28- 32; I Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-11)
3) We believe in the autonomy of our Church free of any external authority or control. (Acts 13:1-4; 15:19-31; 20:28; Rom. 16:1, 4; I Cor. 3:9, 16; 5:4-7, 13; I Pet. 5:1-4)
4) We recognize Water Baptism and the Lordís Supper as the Scriptural ordinances of obedience for our Church in this age. (Matt. 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42; 18:18; I Cor. 11:23-26) (See Appendix for more information on Ordinances.)
We believe that Satan is a fallen 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)
J) 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. All three are equal and sovereign in their respective Biblically assigned spheres of responsibility under God. Every person is subject to these authorities, but all (including the authorities themselves) are answerable to God and governed by His Word. (Rom. 13:1-7; Eph. 5:22-24; Heb. 13:17; I Pet. 2:13-14)
We believe that God has given the 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 groups who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. As ambassadors of Christ, we must use all available means to go to the foreign nations and all peoples and not wait for them to come to us. (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-48; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; II Cor. 5:20)
L) Tithes and Offerings
We believe that every Christian, as a steward of that portion of Godís wealth entrusted to him, is obligated to support his local church financially. We believe that God has established the tithe, ten percent of gross earnings, as a basis for giving, but that every Christian should also give other offerings sacrificially and cheerfully to the support of the Church, the relief of those in need, and the spread of the Gospel. (Gen. 14:20; Prov. 3:9-10; Acts 4:34-37; I Cor. 16:2; II Cor. 9:6-7; Gal. 6:6, Eph. 4:28; I Tim. 5:17-18; I John 3:17)
SECTION 2 Ė AUTHORITY OF STATEMENT OF FAITH
The Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the foregoing Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, is binding upon all members.
SECTION 3 Ė COVENANT
We believe that we have been led by the Holy Spirit to covenant together for the purpose of advancing the kingdom of God. Having received the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, we agree solemnly and joyfully to enter into commitment with one another as one body in Christ. We agree that this commitment includes, but is not limited to, the following things:
A) To love each other as Christ loves us, never allowing our care and love for one another to grow cold.
B) To pray for the work and ministry of the church and to promote its teaching and mission in our community and
throughout the world. To dutifully pray for one another, lifting our brothers and sisters in Christ toward the Lord
on a consistent basis.
C) To share verbally and with our actions, the gospel of Christ with our family, friends, and neighbors and to give
faithfully to missionaries who do the same across the world.
D) To have private and family time spent in the word of God, and if we have children, to educate those children in the
E) To be above reproach in our personal and business lives including our conduct and our speech. To acknowledge
that Godís people are called to holiness in all aspects of life. This includes honoring the sanctity of marriage
between a man and a woman, the only relationship with which sexual activity is appropriate.
F) To turn to each other and to the Lord in times of distress and difficulty.
G) To watch over one another, pray for one another and to aid one another in sickness, grief or distress. We commit
to weep when others weep and rejoice when they rejoice.
H) To avoid all gossip, backbiting and excessive anger.
I) To be slow to take offense and to always be ready to reconcile and work out our differences, according to the rules
of our Savior and to secure it without delay.
J) To be eager to hear and obey Godís direction for our lives for ministry in this church or outside of it.
K) To share the responsibility of our church by praying for its growth, inviting the unchurched to attend, and by
warmly welcoming those who attend.
L) To serve the ministry of my church by discovering and using my gifts and talents.
In conclusion, we desire as part of the Pleasantdale Community Church to be an extension of the Lord Jesus Christ and to be His ambassadors to our world.
Pleasantdale Community Church, 155 New Turnpike Road, Troy NY 12182, Phone 518-235-5101
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