Have you ever seen a church's doctrinal statement before? Doctrinal statements are really important because they state clearly and concisely what a church believes. Doctrinal statements help us by keeping precious biblical truths from being forgotten or distorted.
The Bell Creek Pastors and Elders have taken a lot of time to write this statement for our church. It's a labor of love, and a huge responsibility that we take seriously.
It's kind of popular nowadays to make the language in doctrinal statements as simple as possible, but we think there are some things that just can't be said correctly without using words and phrases that the people of God have used for centuries. If there's anything here you would like to discuss, we would be happy to talk with you!
We hope you'll take the time to read this carefully, and look up the verses in the Bible as you go - in fact, take some time and go through it as a family!
The Bell Creek Community Church Pastors and Elders
The Word of God
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, fully inspired and without error in the original manuscripts. We believe that its human authors wrote it under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and that it is the final authority in all matters of faith and conduct.
II Timothy 3:16; II Peter 1:20,21; Mark 13:31; John 8:31,32; John 20:31; Acts 20:32
We believe that there is only one living and true God, that He eternally exists in three persons -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, that each of these persons is fully God, and that they are equal in every divine attribute and perfection. Each person of the Trinity executes distinct but complementary offices in the work of creation, providence, and redemption.
Genesis 1:1,26; John 1:1,3; Matthew 28:19; John 4:24; Romans 1:19,20; Ephesians 4:5,6
The Providence of God (from the Heidelberg Catechism)
We believe that God is all-powerful, and is present everywhere; and, that by his fatherly hand, He upholds and governs heaven, earth, and all creatures; so that even leaves and grass, rain and drought, fruitful and barren years, food and drink, health and sickness, riches and poverty, indeed, all things come, not by chance, but by His fatherly hand.
Acts 17:25; Heb.1:3; Jer.5:24; John 9:3; Prov.22:2; Matt.10:20
God the Father
We believe in God the Father, the Almighty; the Maker of heaven and earth. He is an infinite, personal spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power and love. We believe that He foreknows all things past, present, and future; that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ.
Luke 10:21,22; Matthew 23:9; John 3:16; 6:27; Romans 1:7; I Timothy 1:1,2; 2:5,6; I Peter 1:3; Revelation 1:6
We believe in Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, that He is God's only begotten Son, that He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, was born of a virgin, and lived a sinless life. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into heaven, unceasing prayers for His people, and personal, visible, and imminent return.
Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38; John 1:1; 20:28; Romans 9:5; 8:46; II Corinthians 5:21; I Peter 2:21-23; John 20:30,31; Matthew 20:28; Ephesians 1:4; Acts 1:11; Romans 5:6-8; 6:9,10; Hebrews 7:25; Hebrews 9:28; I Timothy 3:16
The Holy Spirit
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, who proceeds from the Father and Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. He regenerates, sanctifies, and empowers all who believe in Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ, and that He is an abiding helper, teacher and guide.
John 14:16,17,26; 15:26,27; John 16:9-14; Romans 8:9; I Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; Galatians 5:22-26
We believe that human beings were created by God in His own image, but man sinned and thereby came under the terrible penalty of sin which is eternal suffering, and separation from God. As a consequence of this, all human beings are born with a sinful nature and are sinners by choice and therefore under condemnation. We believe that those who repent and forsake sin and trust Jesus Christ as Savior are regenerated by the Holy Spirit and become new creatures, delivered from condemnation and receive eternal life.
Genesis. 1:26; 5:2; Genesis 3; Genesis 2:17; 3:19; Eccl. 2:11; John 3:14; 5:24; John 5:30; 7:13; 8:12; 10:26; Romans 9:22; II Thessalonians 1:9; Rev. 19:3,20; 20:10;14,15; 21:18; Psalm 51:7; Jeremiah 17:9; James 1:14; Romans 3:19; 5:19; Proverbs 28:13; I John 1:9; John 3:16; John 1:13; II Corinthians 5:17; Romans 8:1
We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the head and all regenerated persons are members. We believe in the local church, which is made up of a community of believers in Jesus Christ, baptized on a credible profession of faith, and associated for worship, work, and fellowship. We believe that God has laid upon the members of the local church the primary task of giving the gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost world.
Ephesians 2:19-22; Acts 1:8; Ephesians 5:19-21; Acts 2:42; Hebrews 10:23-25
The Christian's Life
As Christians, we must live for the glory of God in all that we do, knowing that God is most glorified in our lives when we treasure and enjoy Him above all else. We are completely dependent on God for the provision of everything we need in life, including the strength to live as we ought. Therefore, we seek to be filled, and walk with the Holy Spirit, realizing that apart from Him we can do nothing. We earnestly pursue the full stature of maturity in Christ for ourselves and others.
I Corinthians 10:31; Romans 12:1-3; Hebrews 12:1-2; John 14:15, 23-24; I John 2:3-6; II Corinthians 9:6-9; I Corinthians 4:2; Col. 1:9-10; John 15:5; Ephesians 5:18; Colossians 1:28
Human Sexuality and Marriage
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. (Gen 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 Cor 6:18; 7:2-5; Heb 13:4.) We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity occur 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. (Matt 15:18-20; 1 Cor 6:9-10.). 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; Rom 10:9-10; 1 Cor 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 values of Bell Creek.
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Bell Creek Community Church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the Bell Creek Community Church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Bell Creek in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality. (Matt 5:16; Phil 2:14-16; 1 Thess 5:22.)
The Ordinances of the Church
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has given two ordinances to the local church - baptism and the Lord's Supper. We believe that Christian baptism is the immersion of the believer in water into the name of the triune God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). We believe that the Lord's Supper was instituted by Christ for commemoration of His death. We believe that these two ordinances should be observed and administered until the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Matthew 28:18-20; Romans 6:3-5; I Corinthians 11:23-26