Beliefs and History
Statement of Doctrine
The Holy Scriptures
We believe the Bible to be the God-breathed Word of God. Its inspiration is verbal and total. Its authority is absolute. Its original manuscripts are inerrant. (Matt. 5:18; II Tim. 3:16-17; II Peter 1:20-21) We believe that all Scripture is to be interpreted in a plain, normal, or literal manner in light of history, grammar, literary devices and context.
We believe in the one Triune God, existing in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, eternal in being, identical in essence, equal in power and glory and having the same attributes and perfections. (Deut. 6:4; II Cor. 13:14)
The Total Depravity of Man
We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God. However, as a result of Adam’s sin, the human race fell into sin, became alienated from God, and is totally unable to regain its former position. (Gen. 1:26; 3:1-24; Rom. 3:23; 5:12; Eph. 2:12)
The Person and Work of Christ
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful man. We believe that He provided redemption from sin through His death on the cross as a substitutionary sacrifice. This redemption is sufficient for all men, but effective only for those who believe. We believe that salvation and future resurrection are guaranteed to all believers by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead. We believe that Christ’s atonement and resurrection ensure redemption from physical affliction for each and every believer in the eternal state, and that until such time, God heals some and not others depending on His wisdom and will. We believe that He will return again to earth in a literal, physical Second Coming. (John 1:1, 14, 18; Luke 1:35; Acts 1:11; Rom. 3:24-26; 9:24; II Cor. 12:7-10; Eph. 1:11; Rev. 21:4)
The Person of the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a Person, the third Person of the Godhead. His ministry includes convicting the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment; regeneration; baptizing believers into the Body of Christ; permanently indwelling believers; sealing believers unto the day of redemption; bestowing spiritual gifts to each believer; and filling believers. (Matt. 28:19; John 3:3-7; 16:7-11; Rom. 8:9; I Cor. 3:16; 6:19; 12:4-13; Eph. 4:30; 5:18)
Angels, Fallen and Unfallen
We believe that God created Lucifer and innumerable spiritual sinless beings called angels. Lucifer sinned through pride, desiring to be “like the most High.” and becoming Satan, fell from heaven with a company of demons who joined him in his unholy purpose to corrupt the human race, beginning with leading Adam and Eve into transgression. Satan was judged at the cross, but is still a usurper who rules as the “god of this world.” He now appears as an “angel of light,” counterfeiting the works of God, denying the sufficiency of Christ for salvation. At the Second Coming of Christ, Satan will be bound for one thousand years, then loosed for a season to deceive the nations, then finally defeated and “cast into the lake of fire and brimstone.” (Gen. 3:1-19; Isa. 14:12-17; Ezek. 28:11-19; Romans 5:12-14; II Cor. 4:3,4; 11:13-15; Eph. 6:10-12; Col. 2:15; II Thess. 2:4; I Tim. 3:6; 4:1-3; II Pet. 2:4; Jude 6; Rev. 20:1-3, 10).)
We believe another company of angels serves God’s purposes, sent forth as ministering spirits for those who shall inherit salvation. Man was created lower than the angels, but because of the incarnation of Christ, man has been lifted to a new sphere above the angels. (Luke 15:10; I Cor. 6:3; Eph. 1:21; Heb. 1:14; 2:6-10; Rev. 7:12)
We believe that salvation is a gift of God in grace and is received by man through personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ whose precious blood was shed for the forgiveness of sins. (Eph. 1:17; 2:8-10; John 1:12; Tit.Titus 3:5)
The Eternal Security of the Believer
We believe that all true believers, once saved, are kept secure in Christ forever. (John 6:37-40; 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1, 29-30, 38-39)
We believe that the Church is composed of all born-again believers and, as the Body and Bride of Christ, exists in two aspects, universal and local. The universal Church is that elect company of believers, baptized by the Holy Spirit into one spiritual organism, the Body of Christ. The local church is a group of like-minded believers voluntarily joined together to glorify God and His Son, Jesus Christ, and to administer the ordinances of the Lord’s Supper and water baptism. (Matt. 28:19-20; Acts 2:42; 8:3; 9:31; I Cor. 4:17; 11:23-27; Eph. 1:22-23; 5:23-30; I Thess. 1:1)
The Second Coming of Christ
We believe in the personal and imminent return of Jesus Christ. (Zech. 14:4-11; Matt. 24-25; John 14:1-3; I Titus 2:13; I Thess. 1:10; 3:13; 4:13-18; 5:4-10; Rev. 19-20) We believe the Kingdom of God is both present (Matt. 12:28; Lk. 17:20-21; Rom. 14:17; I Cor. 4:19-20; Col. 1:13) and will yet be fully consummated (Is. 24:23; 33:22; 52:7; Zech. 14:9-10; Matt. 6:10; 7:21-23; 8:11:12; Gal. 5:21; Eph. 5:5; II Tim. 4:18).)
We believe that great humility is needed in interpreting the prophetic scriptures. We believe in allowing for some diversity of opinion in relation to the exact unfolding of future prophetic events. We believe that the purpose of Bible prophesy is more to motivate Christian holiness than to develop detailed prophetic chronologies. (I Pet. 1:10-16; II Pet. 3:9-13)
The Eternal State
We believe that the souls of those who have trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation do at death immediately pass into His presence, and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body, when soul and body shall be reunited and associated with Him forever in glory; but the souls of unbelievers remain after death in conscious misery until the final judgment of the Great White Throne, when soul and body shall be reunited and cast into the Lake of Fire, not to be annihilated, but to be punished with everlasting separation from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power. (Luke 16:19-26; 23:43; II Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23; II Thess. 1:7-9; Rev. 20:11-15)
The Responsibility of Believers
We believe that all believers should seek to walk by the Spirit, not bringing reproach upon their Lord and Savior. (Rom. 12:1-2; Gal. 5:16, 25; II Cor. 6:14; 7:1)
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ instituted the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper to be observed by all believers until His return. (Matt. 28:19-20; I Cor. 11:23-26) We believe that baptism is a public symbol of the believer’s identification with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection. (Rom. 6:3-5; Col. 2:12; I Pet. 3:21).) We deny that baptism is necessary for salvation. The mode of baptism is primarily symbolic. Thus, while we believe that the original mode of baptism was probably by immersion, the mode may be determined by the candidate’s choice or particular circumstances. Baptism shall be administered after a candidate has been examined by an Elder.
We believe that the Lord’s Supper is also a public symbol of the believer’s identification with Christ and His body, the Church. It should be regularly observed. The Elders shall determine its frequency.
We believe that spiritual gifts are divine enablement for spiritual service given by God to every Christian. We believe that, although God is free to give any gift at any time, some spiritual gifts were unique in nature and purpose. These gifts were primarily intended for the founding of the infant Church. The giving and exercising of these gifts is not now the norm, nor necessary for personal or corporate spiritual growth. These sign gifts include speaking in tongues, interpreting tongues, the gift of healing, and the gift of miracles. (Acts 2:6-11; Rom. 12:3-8; I Cor. 12:12-31; 14:20-22; Eph. 2:20; 4:7-16; Heb. 2:3-4; I Pet. 4:10-11)
The Christian & Culture
We believe that Christians are to be in the world but not of the world. (John 17:15-18; I Jn. 2:15-17; Rom. 12:2).) Thus we are to avoid the extremes of worldliness and isolation from the world. Similarly we should avoid the extremes of either identifying all Christian social activism and cultural involvement as wrong or the opposite extreme of viewing social activism and cultural involvement as the primary ministry or focus of the church. (Gen. 1:28; Prov. 31:8-9; Jer. 29:4-7; John 20:21; Gal. 6:10; Tit.Titus 3:1)
We recognize that the New Testament places a high priority on the unity of the Church (Jn. 13:34-35; 17:20-23; Acts 4:32; Gal. 3:27-29; I Cor. 1:10-17; II Cor. 13:11; Eph. 4:1-6; Phil. 2:1-5, 14; Tit.Titus 3:9-11; Jas. 2:1-13; I John 4).) Thus we desire to follow the maxim of the early Church: "“In essentials unity, in non-essentials diversity, and in all things charity.".” In other words we desire to:
Clearly affirm the clearly revealed (i.e., the foundational doctrines of the Christian faith);
Be less dogmatic regarding issues not as exhaustively revealed or readily discerned (i.e., allow for some diversity); and
Emphasize the essentials of the Christian faith and preserve the unity of the Church (i.e., without sacrificing our essential doctrines).
Thus, dogmatism and intolerance are virtues when foundational doctrines of the faith are in dispute. However, regarding less clearly revealed doctrines, dogmatism and intolerance are vices. Humility and the preserving of unity are virtues Christians should manifest regarding less exhaustively revealed issues. Furthermore, Christians today face many issues which the Bible does not directly address and are issues of Christian liberty (e.g., the nature of schooling which a particular Christian family chooses). Regarding such issues each Christian is to be guided by the principles of Romans 14-15 and I Corinthians 8-10. Often, different Christians will validly come to different conclusions regarding such issues. Regarding these issues, Christians are not to judge one another or demand that others conform to their viewpoint.
Marriage and Sexuality
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture.
We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other. 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, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography or any attempt to change one’s sex, or disagreement with one’s biological sex, is sinful and offensive to God.
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of the church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Trinity Bible Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, should abide by and agree to this Section on Marriage and Sexuality and conduct themselves accordingly.
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ.
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. 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 the Church.
Trinity Bible Church will welcome into its worship services a person who is involved with the behavior described in subsections (2) through (3) above, but such person will not be permitted to hold membership or a leadership role at Trinity Bible Church.