The GCBC Statement of Faith
Section 1. The Scriptures:
We believe in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be verbally inspired by God and inerrant in the original writings, and that they are of supreme and final authority in faith and life. (II Timothy 3:16-17; Hebrews 4:12; I Peter 1:25; II Peter 1:19-21)
Section 2. The Godhead:
We believe in one God, eternally existing in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These three are identical in essence, equal in power and glory, and possess the same attributes and perfection. (Matthew 28:18-19; John 1:14, 18; Acts 5:3-4; II Corinthians 13:14; Hebrews 1:1-3)
Section 3. The Person and Work of the Father:
We teach that God the Father, the first Person of the Trinity, orders and disposes all things according to His own purpose and grace (Psalm 145:8-9; 1 Corinthians 8:6). He is the Creator of all things (Genesis 1:1-31; Ephesians 3:9). As the only absolute and omnipotent Ruler in the universe, He is sovereign in creation, providence, and redemption (Psalm 103:19; Romans 11:36). His fatherhood involves both His designation within the Trinity and His relationship with mankind. As Creator He is Father to all men (Ephesians 4:6), but He is spiritual Father only to believers (Romans 8:14; 2 Corinthians 6:18). He has decreed for His own glory all things that come to pass (Ephesians 1:11). He continually upholds, directs, and governs all creatures and events (1 Chronicles 29:11). In His sovereignty He is neither the author nor approver of sin (Habakkuk 1:13; John 8:38-47), nor does He abridge the accountability of moral, intelligent creatures (1 Peter 1:17). He saves from sin all who come to Him through Jesus Christ; He adopts as His own all those who come to Him; and He becomes, upon adoption, Father to His own (John 1:12; Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:5; Hebrews 12:5-9).
Section 4. The Person and Work of Christ:
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, eternal Son of God, became and remained perfect man without ceasing to be God, having been born of a virgin, in order that He might reveal the invisible God and redeem man. This redemption He accomplished by voluntarily giving Himself as a sinless sacrifice on the cross, thereby satisfying God’s righteous judgment against sin.
After substantiating the accomplishments of that redemptive work by His bodily resurrection from the dead, He ascended to the right hand of His Father, where He performs His high-priestly ministry on behalf of all who trust in Him as Savior, and will personally and visibly return for the Church, His body. (Luke 1:34-35; John 1:1-2, 14, 18; Romans 3:24-26; 8:34; I Corinthians 15:3-4; I Thessalonians 4:13-18)
Section 5. The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit:
We believe that the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, is the Divine Person who convicts the world of sin, righteousness and judgment, that He alone brings new life to those who are spiritually dead, that He places all believers into one true church which is Christ’s body, that He indwells all believers permanently, seals them unto the day of redemption, bestows spiritual gifts upon them and fills those who are yielded to Him. (John 3:6; 14:16-17; 16:7-11; Romans 8:9; I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 4:30; 5:18; I John 2:20-27)
Section 6. Angels:
A. Holy: We believe that a great company of angels kept their holy estate and are before the throne of God, from whence they are sent forth as ministering spirits to minister to them who shall be heirs of salvation. (Luke 15:10; Ephesians 1:21; Hebrews 1:14; Revelation 7:11-12)
B. Fallen: We believe that God created an innumerable company of sinless spiritual beings, known as angels, that a great company of these angels followed Lucifer in his moral fall and became demons and are active as Satan’s agents and associates in the prosecution of his unholy purposes. At the final fall of Satan, they will join him in the lake of fire forever. (Isaiah 14:12-17; Matthew 25:41; I Timothy 3:6; II Peter 2:4; Revelation 12:4)
C. Satan: We believe that Satan is the originator of sin and is the enemy of God and the people of God. He was judged at the cross and he, as a usurper, now rules as god of this world. At the second coming of Christ, Satan will be bound and cast into the abyss for a thousand years. After the thousand years, he will be loosed for a season and then cast into the lake of fire where he shall be tormented forever. (Job 1:6-7; II Corinthians 4:3-4; Ephesians 6:10-12; I Timothy 4:1-3; Revelation 20:1-3, 10)
Section 7. Man:
We believe that man was originally created in the image and likeness of God and that he fell through sin. Consequently he lost his spiritual life, becoming dead in trespasses and sins. We also believe that his spiritual death has been transmitted to the entire human race of men, excepting the Man Christ Jesus, and that man of himself is incapable of remedying his lost and depraved condition. (Genesis 1:26; Romans 3:10-19; 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:1-3)
Section 8. Salvation:
We believe that salvation is the gift of God’s grace and cannot be gained by meritorious works. Redemption has been accomplished solely by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ who died for our sins as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice. We believe that the new birth of the believer comes only through faith in Christ and His work on the cross. (John 3:7-18; Romans 5:6-9; II Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 2:8-9)
We also believe that all saved are then kept by His power and are thus secure in Christ forever. This assurance must not be the occasion for sin, for God’s holiness cannot allow Him to overlook the sin of His children. In infinite love, He will correct His erring children, described in Scripture as chastening. In the end He will present every one of them faultless before the presence of His glory. (John 10:27-29; Romans 8:29-39; Hebrews 12:6; I John 5:13; Jude 24)
Section 9. The Church:
A. The Body of Christ: We believe that the Church of Jesus Christ was begun at Pentecost; is composed solely of believers; is the Body and Bride of our Lord; is distinct from Israel and that its business is to complete itself through the winning of lost souls to Christ and to bring them to maturity in Him. (Matthew 16:16-18; 21:42-44; Acts 2:47; Romans 11:22-23; 11:25-26; Ephesians 1:22, 2:11-13; 4:3-10)
B. The Local Church: We believe Scripture teaches that the Church is visibly recognized in the establishment and continuance of local, autonomous churches for the purpose of the joining together of believers for worship, instruction, fellowship, prayer and service. (Acts 2:42; 13:1-2; 14:27; Galatians 1:2)
- 1. Ordinances: We believe that our Lord Jesus Christ instituted only two ordinances to be observed by all believers until His return: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. We believe that water baptism by immersion is an ordained testimony, portraying the believer’s union with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection. We also believe that the Lord's Supper was instituted to commemorate His death till He comes. (Matthew 3:16; 26:26-29; 28:19; Acts 8:36-39; I Corinthians 11:23-26)
- 2. Missions: We believe that it is the solemn obligation, as well as the privilege, of every believer and local church to witness to God’s grace by life and by word, both by personal ministry and by missionary representatives. (Matthew 28:19; Acts 1:8; Romans 10:14-15; II Corinthians 5:18-20)
Section 10. Spiritual Life:
We believe that every believer is called by God unto a life of Godliness and is to live in the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, in prayer, witness, Bible reading and obedience. We also believe that every believer is to daily conduct himself in such a manner as will glorify the Lord and not be a reproach upon His name. (Romans 6:11-13; 12:1-2; Galatians 5:16-23; Ephesians 4:22-24)
Section 11. The Future:
We believe in “that blessed hope,” the personal and imminent coming of our Lord in the air for His Church, both those who are alive and those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.
For this event we should be constantly looking. (John 14:1-3; I Corinthians 15:51-52; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; Titus 2:11-14)
We believe that the translation of the Church will be followed by the fulfillment of Israel’s seventieth week, which will be a seven year time of judgment on the whole earth. (Daniel 9:27; Revelation 6:1-19:21)
We believe that the Tribulation Period will be climaxed by the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to the earth to introduce the Millennial Age, to bind Satan, to restore Israel to her land, to fulfill God’s covenant promises, and to bring the whole world to the knowledge of God. We also believe that after the thousand years of the Millennial Age the Lord will establish a new heaven and a new earth and He will be worshipped by the whole universe as the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. (Matthew 24:15-25, 46; Acts 15:16-17; Romans 11:25-27; Revelation 20:1-3, 21:1-22:5)
We believe that at death, the souls of believers pass immediately into God’s presence and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at His coming, whereupon reunited souls and bodies will be forever with Him in glory. We believe that the souls of unbelievers remain after death in constant misery until the final judgment of the great white throne at the close of the millennium, when both soul and body reunited shall be cast into the lake of fire to be forever separated from God in conscious torment. (Luke 16:19-26; II Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; II Thessalonians 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Revelation 11:15)
Section 12. Sanctity of Human Life:
We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life. (Psalm 139)
Section 13. Gender, Marriage, and Sexuality:
We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Genesis 1:26-27) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. (Gen 2:18-25) We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (1 Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4) We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10)
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Grace Community Church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the Grace Community Church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Grace Community Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement on Gender, Marriage, and Sexuality. (Matthew 5:16; Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of Grace Community Church.
Section 14. Final Authority for Matters of Faith and Conduct Within This Local Church:
The above Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of Grace Community Church’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our Elder Board is Grace Community Church’s final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.