GRACE BIBLE CHURCH
STATEMENT OF FAITH
We believe that the Bible is the inspired, infallible, completed Word of God.
There is only one, living and true God, creator of all; holy, sovereign, eternal; perfect in all his ways; existing in three distinct, equal persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
God is sovereign over all creation, and He directs all things in accordance with His eternal, immutable purpose.
The first man was created perfect, but willfully disobeyed God and severed his communion with God, thus leaving his descendants – all humankind – at enmity with God and spiritually dead in their sin.
For no reason, other than to glorify His own Self, God in His eternal purpose chose to reconcile a multitude of people to Himself through the Person of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. For this multitude, Jesus Christ took on the form of a man and became their perfect Substitute on the cross, satisfying divine justice on their behalf. His sacrifice purchased all things necessary to ensure their eternal salvation.
Although God commands men everywhere to repent, such is the power of sin that men will not of themselves obey this command. Therefore God, determined to save those for whom Christ died, calls them through the Gospel and draws them by the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit; who renews their minds, hearts and wills so that they freely trust in Christ. Those brought to faith in Christ are forgiven all their sins, declared perfectly righteous in Christ (justified) and adopted as God’s children.
Saving faith is of necessity accompanied by repentance, which involves the recognition of, sorrow over, and the turning away from all known sin, with a new desire to live in obedience to Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ alone is the Head of the one true Christian Church, which is made up of those people who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit. All these are presently indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and by their words and deeds show their allegiance to Christ.
There are two ordinances that have been instituted by the Lord Jesus: believer’s baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Neither of these has, in themselves, the power to save men from their sins, but are outward symbols of inward, spiritual realities.
God, in His eternal purpose, has also appointed a day of judgment: a day in which He will judge all mankind in righteousness by Jesus Christ. Every human who has ever lived will appear before Christ to give an account of his or her life and to receive either everlasting torment in hell or everlasting life in the presence of God.
For a fuller exploration of these truths, see The 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith.
OUR CHURCH COVENANT
This covenant will be recited publicly by those becoming members of the church. Those already members will recite it with them to remind everyone of the privileges and obligations of membership (revised March 2017).
Having been led by the Spirit of God to receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, and upon profession of our repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; having been baptized as believers by immersion in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we are united together as a local body of believers.
We confess our status as redeemed sinners, who so often fall short of the glory of God. Yet we trust in his mercy and grace to sustain us in the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We joyfully join the church to unite ourselves with this local family of believers. We seek to regularly attend and support the ministry.
As the Lord directs, we look to enter into ways we can encourage other believers and participate in the ministries of GBC. We trust we will be a help and encouragement to others as we also look forward to their help and encouragement.
We acknowledge the elders provide spiritual leadership and we are accountable to them, to the church, and ultimately to the Lord. We understand that if we are overtaken in any fault, we will be subject to biblical discipline, which seeks our restoration.
We seek to live by the grace of God, for the glory of God.
Grace Bible Church affirms believer’s baptism (credo baptism). Though baptism is not essential for salvation, it is important. Baptism affirms one’s personal profession of salvation, and welcomes a believer into the family of a local church. Here is a summary of our understanding of baptism from the Scriptures (these beliefs are also supported by The 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith):
Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament instituted by Jesus Christ. It is intended to be a sign of fellowship with Christ in his death and resurrection, of being united in Christ and of the remission of sins. It also indicates that the baptized person has given himself up to God, confessing Jesus Christ as Lord, so that he/she may live and conduct themselves ‘in newness of life.’
See Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12.
We believe that baptism is a matter of obedience. Jesus instructed his followers to baptize disciples. We baptize those who have become disciples. This baptism involves a public affirmation of one’s identity with Christ Jesus, wherein a person is immersed in water, in the name of the Father, and the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
See Matthew 28:19; Galatians 3:26-28.
THE LORD’S SUPPER
The Lord’s Supper was instituted by Jesus on the night of his betrayal when he was with his disciples in an upper room in Jerusalem celebrating Passover (Mark 14:12-26).
In the ordinance, the bread and the cup symbolize his body and his blood, given for the salvation of his people. It is meant to be a perpetual remembrance of his atoning death and is to be observed in his church until his return.
The Lord’s Supper is:
a proclamation of Christ’s death and is to be celebrated until his imminent return (1 Corinthians 11:26)
a confirmation that all the benefits from Christ’s sacrifice are for believers
a bond of the fellowship believers have with Christ and with one another
a means of grace to promote spiritual nourishment and growth in Christ
an opportunity for self examination (1 Corinthians 11:28)
At GBC, we celebrate the Lord’s Supper on the first Sunday of each month.
Who should participate
The Lord's Supper is a church ordinance in which those who participate have professed faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and are living for him. All are welcome to be present during this time in our service but we ask that only those who are believers participate in the ordinance.