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STATEMENT OF FAITH

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What we believe.

I. The Scriptures

The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God’s revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.

Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10; 119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36:1-32; Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21.

II. God

There is one and only one living and true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence, or being.

A. God the Father
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude toward all men.

Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; 15:11ff.; 20:1ff.; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; 1 Chronicles 29:10; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; 17:13; Matthew 6:9ff.; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1 Peter 1:17; 1 John 5:7.

B. God the Son
Christ is the eternal Son of God. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the will of God, taking upon Himself human nature with its demands and necessities and identifying Himself completely with mankind yet without sin. He honored the divine law by His personal obedience, and in His substitutionary death on the cross He made provision for the redemption of men from sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body and appeared to His disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God where He is the One Mediator, fully God, fully man, in whose Person is effected the reconciliation between God and man. He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission. He now dwells in all believers as the living and ever present Lord.

Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; 53; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15; 5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.

C. God the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls men to the Saviour, and effects regeneration. At the moment of regeneration He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church. He seals the believer unto the day of final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the guarantee that God will bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.

Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13; 12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3; 7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.

III. Man

Man is the special creation of God, made in His own image. He created them male and female as the crowning work of His creation. The gift of gender is thus part of the goodness of God’s creation. In the beginning man was innocent of sin and was endowed by his Creator with freedom of choice. By his free choice man sinned against God and brought sin into the human race. Through the temptation of Satan man transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original innocence whereby his posterity inherit a nature and an environment inclined toward sin. Therefore, as soon as they are capable of moral action, they become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the grace of God can bring man into His holy fellowship and enable man to fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is evident in that God created man in His own image, and in that Christ died for man; therefore, every person of every race possesses full dignity and is worthy of respect and Christian love.

Genesis 1:26-30; 2:5,7,18-22; 3; 9:6; Psalms 1; 8:3-6; 32:1-5; 51:5; Isaiah 6:5; Jeremiah 17:5; Matthew 16:26; Acts 17:26-31; Romans 1:19-32; 3:10-18,23; 5:6,12,19; 6:6; 7:14-25; 8:14-18,29; 1 Corinthians 1:21-31; 15:19,21-22; Ephesians 2:1-22; Colossians 1:21-22; 3:9-11.

IV. Salvation

Salvation involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, and glorification. There is no salvation apart from personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord.

A. Regeneration, or the new birth, is a work of God’s grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus. It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin, to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace.

Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Saviour.

B. Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal upon principles of His righteousness of all sinners who repent and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer unto a relationship of peace and favor with God.

C. Sanctification is the experience, beginning in regeneration, by which the believer is set apart to God’s purposes, and is enabled to progress toward moral and spiritual maturity through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him. Growth in grace should continue throughout the regenerate person’s life.

D. Glorification is the culmination of salvation and is the final blessed and abiding state of the redeemed.

Genesis 3:15; Exodus 3:14-17; 6:2-8; Matthew 1:21; 4:17; 16:21-26; 27:22-28:6; Luke 1:68-69; 2:28-32; John 1:11-14,29; 3:3-21,36; 5:24; 10:9,28-29; 15:1-16; 17:17; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 15:11; 16:30-31; 17:30-31; 20:32; Romans 1:16-18; 2:4; 3:23-25; 4:3ff.; 5:8-10; 6:1-23; 8:1-18,29-39; 10:9-10,13; 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18,30; 6:19-20; 15:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-20; Galatians 2:20; 3:13; 5:22-25; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-22; 4:11-16; Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 1:9-22; 3:1ff.; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Timothy 1:12; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 2:1-3; 5:8-9; 9:24-28; 11:1-12:8,14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:2-23; 1 John 1:6-2:11; Revelation 3:20; 21:1-22:5.

V. God’s Purpose of Grace

Election is the gracious purpose of God, according to which He regenerates, justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. It is consistent with the free agency of man, and comprehends all the means in connection with the end. It is the glorious display of God’s sovereign goodness, and is infinitely wise, holy, and unchangeable. It excludes boasting and promotes humility.

All true believers endure to the end. Those whom God has accepted in Christ, and sanctified by His Spirit, will never fall away from the state of grace, but shall persevere to the end. Believers may fall into sin through neglect and temptation, whereby they grieve the Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, and bring reproach on the cause of Christ and temporal judgments on themselves; yet they shall be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.

Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-8; 1 Samuel 8:4-7,19-22; Isaiah 5:1-7; Jeremiah 31:31ff.; Matthew 16:18-19; 21:28-45; 24:22,31; 25:34; Luke 1:68-79; 2:29-32; 19:41-44; 24:44-48; John 1:12-14; 3:16; 5:24; 6:44-45,65; 10:27-29; 15:16; 17:6,12,17-18; Acts 20:32; Romans 5:9-10; 8:28-39; 10:12-15; 11:5-7,26-36; 1 Corinthians 1:1-2; 15:24-28; Ephesians 1:4-23; 2:1-10; 3:1-11; Colossians 1:12-14; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14; 2 Timothy 1:12; 2:10,19; Hebrews 11:39–12:2; James 1:12; 1 Peter 1:2-5,13; 2:4-10; 1 John 1:7-9; 2:19; 3:2.

VI. The Church

A New Testament church of the Lord Jesus Christ is an autonomous local congregation of baptized believers, associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel; observing the two ordinances of Christ, governed by His laws, exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by His Word, and seeking to extend the gospel to the ends of the earth. Each congregation operates under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes. In such a congregation each member is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. Its scriptural officers are pastors and deacons. While both men and women are gifted for service in the church, the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture.

The New Testament speaks also of the church as the Body of Christ which includes all of the redeemed of all the ages, believers from every tribe, and tongue, and people, and nation.

Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42,47; 5:11-14; 6:3-6; 13:1-3; 14:23,27; 15:1-30; 16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 9:13-14; 12; Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11,21; 5:22-32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 1 Timothy 2:9-14; 3:1-15; 4:14; Hebrews 11:39-40; 1 Peter 5:1-4; Revelation 2-3; 21:2-3.

VII. Baptism and the Lord’s Supper

Christian baptism is the immersion of a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer’s faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, the believer’s death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. It is a testimony to his faith in the final resurrection of the dead. Being a church ordinance, it is prerequisite to the privileges of church membership and to the Lord’s Supper.

The Lord’s Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby members of the church, through partaking of the bread and the fruit of the vine, memorialize the death of the Redeemer and anticipate His second coming.

Matthew 3:13-17; 26:26-30; 28:19-20; Mark 1:9-11; 14:22-26; Luke 3:21-22; 22:19-20; John 3:23; Acts 2:41-42; 8:35-39; 16:30-33; 20:7; Romans 6:3-5; 1 Corinthians 10:16,21; 11:23-29; Colossians 2:12.

VIII. The Lord’s Day

The first day of the week is the Lord’s Day. It is a Christian institution for regular observance. It commemorates the resurrection of Christ from the dead and should include exercises of worship and spiritual devotion, both public and private. Activities on the Lord’s Day should be commensurate with the Christian’s conscience under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Exodus 20:8-11; Matthew 12:1-12; 28:1ff.; Mark 2:27-28; 16:1-7; Luke 24:1-3,33-36; John 4:21-24; 20:1,19-28; Acts 20:7; Romans 14:5-10; I Corinthians 16:1-2; Colossians 2:16; 3:16; Revelation 1:10.

IX. The Kingdom

The Kingdom of God includes both His general sovereignty over the universe and His particular kingship over men who willfully acknowledge Him as King. Particularly the Kingdom is the realm of salvation into which men enter by trustful, childlike commitment to Jesus Christ. Christians ought to pray and to labor that the Kingdom may come and God’s will be done on earth. The full consummation of the Kingdom awaits the return of Jesus Christ and the end of this age.

Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 9:6-7; Jeremiah 23:5-6; Matthew 3:2; 4:8-10,23; 12:25-28; 13:1-52; 25:31-46; 26:29; Mark 1:14-15; 9:1; Luke 4:43; 8:1; 9:2; 12:31-32; 17:20-21; 23:42; John 3:3; 18:36; Acts 1:6-7; 17:22-31; Romans 5:17; 8:19; 1 Corinthians 15:24-28; Colossians 1:13; Hebrews 11:10,16; 12:28; 1 Peter 2:4-10; 4:13; Revelation 1:6,9; 5:10; 11:15; 21-22.

X. Last Things

God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to its appropriate end. According to His promise, Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly in glory to the earth; the dead will be raised; and Christ will judge all men in righteousness. The unrighteous will be consigned to Hell, the place of everlasting punishment. The righteous in their resurrected and glorified bodies will receive their reward and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.

Isaiah 2:4; 11:9; Matthew 16:27; 18:8-9; 19:28; 24:27,30,36,44; 25:31-46; 26:64; Mark 8:38; 9:43-48; Luke 12:40,48; 16:19-26; 17:22-37; 21:27-28; John 14:1-3; Acts 1:11; 17:31; Romans 14:10; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 15:24-28,35-58; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:20-21; Colossians 1:5; 3:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 5:1ff.; 2 Thessalonians 1:7ff.; 2; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:1,8; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:27-28; James 5:8; 2 Peter 3:7ff.; 1 John 2:28; 3:2; Jude 14; Revelation 1:18; 3:11; 20:1-22:13.

XI. Evangelism and Missions

It is the duty and privilege of every follower of Christ and of every church of the Lord Jesus Christ to endeavor to make disciples of all nations. The new birth of man’s spirit by God’s Holy Spirit means the birth of love for others. Missionary effort on the part of all rests thus upon a spiritual necessity of the regenerate life, and is expressly and repeatedly commanded in the teachings of Christ. The Lord Jesus Christ has commanded the preaching of the gospel to all nations. It is the duty of every child of God to seek constantly to win the lost to Christ by verbal witness undergirded by a Christian lifestyle, and by other methods in harmony with the gospel of Christ.

Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 6:1-8; Matthew 9:37-38; 10:5-15; 13:18-30, 37-43; 16:19; 22:9-10; 24:14; 28:18-20; Luke 10:1-18; 24:46-53; John 14:11-12; 15:7-8,16; 17:15; 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2; 8:26-40; 10:42-48; 13:2-3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 3:1-11; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 2 Timothy 4:5; Hebrews 2:1-3; 11:39-12:2; 1 Peter 2:4-10; Revelation 22:17.

XII. Education

Christianity is the faith of enlightenment and intelligence. In Jesus Christ abide all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. All sound learning is, therefore, a part of our Christian heritage. The new birth opens all human faculties and creates a thirst for knowledge. Moreover, the cause of education in the Kingdom of Christ is co-ordinate with the causes of missions and general benevolence, and should receive along with these the liberal support of the churches. An adequate system of Christian education is necessary to a complete spiritual program for Christ’s people.

In Christian education there should be a proper balance between academic freedom and academic responsibility. Freedom in any orderly relationship of human life is always limited and never absolute. The freedom of a teacher in a Christian school, college, or seminary is limited by the pre-eminence of Jesus Christ, by the authoritative nature of the Scriptures, and by the distinct purpose for which the school exists.

Deuteronomy 4:1,5,9,14; 6:1-10; 31:12-13; Nehemiah 8:1-8; Job 28:28; Psalms 19:7ff.; 119:11; Proverbs 3:13ff.; 4:1-10; 8:1-7,11; 15:14; Ecclesiastes 7:19; Matthew 5:2; 7:24ff.; 28:19-20; Luke 2:40; 1 Corinthians 1:18-31; Ephesians 4:11-16; Philippians 4:8; Colossians 2:3,8-9; 1 Timothy 1:3-7; 2 Timothy 2:15; 3:14-17; Hebrews 5:12-6:3; James 1:5; 3:17.

XIII. Stewardship

God is the source of all blessings, temporal and spiritual; all that we have and are we owe to Him. Christians have a spiritual debtorship to the whole world, a holy trusteeship in the gospel, and a binding stewardship in their possessions. They are therefore under obligation to serve Him with their time, talents, and material possessions; and should recognize all these as entrusted to them to use for the glory of God and for helping others. According to the Scriptures, Christians should contribute of their means cheerfully, regularly, systematically, proportionately, and liberally for the advancement of the Redeemer’s cause on earth.

Genesis 14:20; Leviticus 27:30-32; Deuteronomy 8:18; Malachi 3:8-12; Matthew 6:1-4,19-21; 19:21; 23:23; 25:14-29; Luke 12:16-21,42; 16:1-13; Acts 2:44-47; 5:1-11; 17:24-25; 20:35; Romans 6:6-22; 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 4:1-2; 6:19-20; 12; 16:1-4; 2 Corinthians 8-9; 12:15; Philippians 4:10-19; 1 Peter 1:18-19.

XIV. Cooperation

Christ’s people should, as occasion requires, organize such associations and conventions as may best secure cooperation for the great objects of the Kingdom of God. Such organizations have no authority over one another or over the churches. They are voluntary and advisory bodies designed to elicit, combine, and direct the energies of our people in the most effective manner. Members of New Testament churches should cooperate with one another in carrying forward the missionary, educational, and benevolent ministries for the extension of Christ’s Kingdom. Christian unity in the New Testament sense is spiritual harmony and voluntary cooperation for common ends by various groups of Christ’s people. Cooperation is desirable between the various Christian denominations, when the end to be attained is itself justified, and when such cooperation involves no violation of conscience or compromise of loyalty to Christ and His Word as revealed in the New Testament.

Exodus 17:12; 18:17ff.; Judges 7:21; Ezra 1:3-4; 2:68-69; 5:14-15; Nehemiah 4; 8:1-5; Matthew 10:5-15; 20:1-16; 22:1-10; 28:19-20; Mark 2:3; Luke 10:1ff.; Acts 1:13-14; 2:1ff.; 4:31-37; 13:2-3; 15:1-35; 1 Corinthians 1:10-17; 3:5-15; 12; 2 Corinthians 8-9; Galatians 1:6-10; Ephesians 4:1-16; Philippians 1:15-18.

XV. The Christian and the Social Order

All Christians are under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society. Means and methods used for the improvement of society and the establishment of righteousness among men can be truly and permanently helpful only when they are rooted in the regeneration of the individual by the saving grace of God in Jesus Christ. In the spirit of Christ, Christians should oppose racism, every form of greed, selfishness, and vice, and all forms of sexual immorality, including adultery, homosexuality, and pornography. We should work to provide for the orphaned, the needy, the abused, the aged, the helpless, and the sick. We should speak on behalf of the unborn and contend for the sanctity of all human life from conception to natural death. Every Christian should seek to bring industry, government, and society as a whole under the sway of the principles of righteousness, truth, and brotherly love. In order to promote these ends Christians should be ready to work with all men of good will in any good cause, always being careful to act in the spirit of love without compromising their loyalty to Christ and His truth.

Exodus 20:3-17; Leviticus 6:2-5; Deuteronomy 10:12; 27:17; Psalm 101:5; Micah 6:8; Zechariah 8:16; Matthew 5:13-16,43-48; 22:36-40; 25:35; Mark 1:29-34; 2:3ff.; 10:21; Luke 4:18-21; 10:27-37; 20:25; John 15:12; 17:15; Romans 12–14; 1Corinthians 5:9-10; 6:1-7; 7:20-24; 10:23-11:1; Galatians 3:26-28; Ephesians 6:5-9; Colossians 3:12-17; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; Philemon; James 1:27; 2:8.

XVI. Peace and War

It is the duty of Christians to seek peace with all men on principles of righteousness. In accordance with the spirit and teachings of Christ they should do all in their power to put an end to war.

The true remedy for the war spirit is the gospel of our Lord. The supreme need of the world is the acceptance of His teachings in all the affairs of men and nations, and the practical application of His law of love. Christian people throughout the world should pray for the reign of the Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 2:4; Matthew 5:9,38-48; 6:33; 26:52; Luke 22:36,38; Romans 12:18-19; 13:1-7; 14:19; Hebrews 12:14; James 4:1-2.

XVII. Religious Liberty

God alone is Lord of the conscience, and He has left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men which are contrary to His Word or not contained in it. Church and state should be separate. The state owes to every church protection and full freedom in the pursuit of its spiritual ends. In providing for such freedom no ecclesiastical group or denomination should be favored by the state more than others. Civil government being ordained of God, it is the duty of Christians to render loyal obedience thereto in all things not contrary to the revealed will of God. The church should not resort to the civil power to carry on its work. The gospel of Christ contemplates spiritual means alone for the pursuit of its ends. The state has no right to impose penalties for religious opinions of any kind. The state has no right to impose taxes for the support of any form of religion. A free church in a free state is the Christian ideal, and this implies the right of free and unhindered access to God on the part of all men, and the right to form and propagate opinions in the sphere of religion without interference by the civil power.

Genesis 1:27; 2:7; Matthew 6:6-7,24; 16:26; 22:21; John 8:36; Acts 4:19-20; Romans 6:1-2; 13:1-7; Galatians 5:1,13; Philippians 3:20; 1 Timothy 2:1-2; James 4:12; 1 Peter 2:12-17; 3:11-17; 4:12-19.

XVIII. The Family

God has ordained the family as the foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to one another by marriage, blood, or adoption.

Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God’s unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and His church and to provide for the man and the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel of sexual expression according to biblical standards, and the means for procreation of the human race.

The husband and wife are of equal worth before God, since both are created in God’s image. The marriage relationship models the way God relates to His people. A husband is to love his wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and to serve as his helper in managing the household and nurturing the next generation.

Children, from the moment of conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Parents are to demonstrate to their children God’s pattern for marriage. Parents are to teach their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical truth. Children are to honor and obey their parents.

Genesis 1:26-28; 2:15-25; 3:1-20; Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Joshua 24:15; 1 Samuel 1:26-28; Psalms 51:5; 78:1-8; 127; 128; 139:13-16; Proverbs 1:8; 5:15-20; 6:20-22; 12:4; 13:24; 14:1; 17:6; 18:22; 22:6,15; 23:13-14; 24:3; 29:15,17; 31:10-31; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; 9:9; Malachi 2:14-16; Matthew 5:31-32; 18:2-5; 19:3-9; Mark 10:6-12; Romans 1:18-32; 1 Corinthians 7:1-16; Ephesians 5:21-33; 6:1-4; Colossians 3:18-21; 1 Timothy 5:8,14; 2 Timothy 1:3-5; Titus 2:3-5; Hebrews 13:4; 1 Peter 3:1-7.


This is taken directly from the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message.

CHURCH COVENANT

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What we commit ourselves to.

APPENDIX II – CHURCH COVENANT
Revised: May 20, 1971 CONSTITUTION APPENDIX II Page 1 of 1

Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Saviour;

And on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

We do now, in the presence of God, angels and this assembly, most solemnly and joyfully enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.

We engage, therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love; to strive for the advancement of this church in knowledge, holiness, and comfort;

To promote its prosperity and spirituality; to sustain its worship, ordinances, discipline and doctrines;

To contribute cheerfully and regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the church, the relief of the poor and the spread of the Gospel through all nations.

We also engage to maintain family and secret devotions; to religiously educate our children; to seek the salvation of our kindred and acquaintances;

To walk circumspectly in the world; to be just in our dealings, faithful in our engagements and exemplary in our deportment;

To avoid all tattling, backbiting, and excessive anger;

To abstain from the sale of, and use of destructive drugs or intoxicating drinks as a beverage; to shun pornography; to be zealous in our efforts to advance the kingdom of our Saviour.

We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love;

To remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and Christian courtesy in speech;

To be slow to give or take offense, but always ready for reconciliation, and mindful of the rules of our Saviour to secure it without delay.

We moreover engage that when we remove from this place we will, as soon as possible, unite with some other church, where we can carry out the spirit of this covenant and the principles of God’s Word.

FBC STAFF

Click a name to learn more about our church leadership team.

Dean Haun - Senior Pastor

As you are viewing my profile it is my prayer that we can someday meet in person.

I was born in Knoxville, Tennessee but I did not come into this world alone. I have an identical twin brother named David who is a Christian business man in Knoxville. We both graduated from Doyle High School.

My parents were sporadic in their Church attendance when I was young. My mother, Janet, was a Christian but my father, Charles, a very successful business man in Knoxville, was not. Mom prayed for the family and specifically prayed for the salvation of my dad. When I was 13 years old my father trusted Christ as His Savior and became a sold-out believer in Jesus Christ. My parents joined Valley Grove Baptist Church in Knoxville where they became very active. My dad also became active as a lay-leader with Campus Crusade for Christ.

As a senior at Doyle High School Dad challenged me and my brother to attend a Campus Crusade Youth Conference. It was at that conference that I repented of my sins and trusted in Christ as my Savior. Six months later, at another Campus Crusade for Christ Bible Conference, I sensed the Lord’s call to preach the Gospel. I was licensed in February of 1974 and ordained in 1976.

I met my wife, Pam, at Cumberland College in Williamsburg, Kentucky. We were married in Memphis, Pam’s home town, in August of 1975. We have three grown children and five grandchildren. Jonathan is married to Samantha and they have two daughters, Addison and Mason. Jordon is married to Jana and they have two children, Ethan and Erin. Jennah is married to Jordan Mendez and they have one daughter, Sofia.

I received a Bachelor of Arts from Cumberland College with a major in Religion and Pastoral Counseling in May of 1977, a Master of Divinity (with an emphasis in Preaching) from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas in 1981, and a Doctor of Ministries in Expository Preaching through Trinity Theological Seminary in 1998. I had the privilege of learning under the great expositor, Dr. Stephen Olford.

It has been my blessing to serve churches in Kentucky, Texas, south Florida, Tennessee, and Georgia. God has allowed me to be very active with the Tennessee Baptist Convention serving as Chairman of the Executive Board and Chairman of the State Baptist paper, The Baptist and Reflector, back in the 90’s. I have served as a member of the Executive Committee for the TBC since 2008. I have recently served as President of the Tennessee Baptist Convention Pastor’s Conference in 2012 and President of the Convention in 2013. I came to FBCM having most recently served for eight and one half years at the First Baptist Church of Jonesboro, Georgia. It has been an incredible privilege to serve our great church since December of 2007.

I also have a deep love for Israel and am involved in numerous ministries and many trips to the Holy Land (Come go with me on our next trip). God has allowed us to begin a ministry to the Messianic Churches in Israel called Harvest of Israel.

I love the Big Orange, especially UT football and basketball. I love everything about the mountains.

Most of all, I love my Savior who died for me that through Him I might have eternal life. I pray that you know Him and are walking with Him as well.

Don’t forget! If you visit our Church I want to meet you!

Mike Chesney - Church Administrator

I grew up in Knoxville and attended high school at Harrison Chilhowee Baptist Academy and the University of Tennessee, graduating in the field of Education. I later completed my MBA from the University Of Chicago, while working in the telecommunications industry. After thirty five years in that industry I began consulting within various business and small city management as well as bi-vocationally working in various churches doing pulpit supply, working with senior adults, pastoral care and administration. I received additional biblical training from the Bible Training Center at Harrison Chilhowee, The J. Harold Smith Pastor Training program and the Masters in Applied Theology program at Carson Newman University. I received my license to the Gospel Ministry from Central Baptist Church of Bearden, where I was interim Senior Adult and Pastoral care pastor and leader of Sunday evening services. The time I worked at Central Baptist under Pastor and mentor Larry Fields strengthened my call to the ministry. Working with Dean Haun and witnessing his passion for training bi-vocational pastors in the J. Harold Smith program led me to learn about the amazing ministry here at First Baptist Morristown.

My wife Karen is also from Knoxville and attended UT where we met and later married. We have two daughters and one grandson. Karen works part time for the Knox County Association of Baptists as the ministry assistant to the Director of Missions. It is truly a privilege to work and serve with this great staff and family of believers here at FBCM as well as being part of a great community here in Morristown.

Danny Georges - Senior Adult Pastor

As a young boy, Danny Georges attended a small church near his home. He participated in the Royal Ambassador program and was guided by some compassionate, godly men. At the age of twelve, he became aware of his sin and his need for a Savior. He experienced a life change as he repented of his sins and received Jesus into his life. This presence is real and personal. Soon after giving his life to Christ, God put a strong call on Danny’s life to pursue a full time Christian ministry. That definite call from God has shaped his life to this day. Danny attended North Greenville Community College where he earned his Associate of Arts Degree. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Religious Education from Mars Hill College and his Master’s Degree in Religious Education from Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.

Danny has served at several churches. After serving as Youth Pastor at churches in Raleigh, N.C. and Lakeland, FL., he served as Minister of Youth and Education at First Baptist Church, Newton, North Carolina (3 years) and First Baptist Church, Sweetwater, Tennessee (6years). He served as Minister of Education & Outreach/Senior Adults at First Baptist Church, Morristown from 1989 to 2001. He then served as Minister of Discipleship at Bluegrass Baptist Church in Hendersonville, TN until 2002, at which time God clarified the call on Danny’s life and the direction He wanted him to take in ministry. The focus of his call changed from education to Pastoral Care and Senior Adults.

Danny was again called to First Baptist in Morristown in September, 2002, where he serves as the Pastor of Senior Adults and Pastoral Care. Danny states that his goal in ministry to Senior Adults is to bring them to a saving knowledge of Christ, to help them grow deeper in their faith, to keep them active in ministry and to provide opportunities for seniors to fellowship with one another. Danny’s great love for people is evident in his Pastoral Care Ministry.

Danny and Cindy Georges were married in Knoxville, Tennessee in January, 1977. They are the parents of two sons, David, who graduated from Mars Hill College in 2003, and recently returned home after serving two-years as a Journeyman missionary with the IMB in South East Asia. Phillip, their second son, graduated from Carson Newman College in 2004 and is currently employed locally. Danny enjoys following the Clemson Tigers and the teams from the University of Tennessee. He also loves to garden, golf and fish. Cindy teaches regularly in the “School of the Bible”, enjoys scrapbooking, and is active in Women’s Ministry and WMU.

Tim Thompson - Children's Pastor

Tim Thompson was born in West Virginia to Christian parents. When he was eight years old, he went forward during a crusade service to accept Jesus as his personal savior, but no one prayed with him. Although Tim desired to give his life to Jesus at that time, it was a few years later before he realized that something was missing in his life. But the teenage years were quickly approaching and the flame of conviction faded. While attending college, he found a good friend in Mike Wade who was older than Tim and a good role model for the Christian life. One night Mike shared his personal testimony and this helped Tim realize what he needed to do. Tim went back to his room that very night and asked Jesus into his heart. This occurred on September 15, 1983 at 12:43 a.m. Mike was not aware of the important role he had played in Tim’s life until 20 years later when they were reunited. Tim graduated from Middlesboro High School in Middlesboro, Kentucky in 1982. He then attended Cumberland College in Williamsburg, Kentucky. Tim graduated with a double major in Religious Education and Psychology.

Tim served as the youth pastor as well as the Minister of Education and the Minister of Music at Middle Creek Baptist Church in Coalfield, Tennessee. His next call was to Porter Memorial Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky, to be the Minister to Preschoolers and Children. He soon realized that this was the age group God had called him to serve. Tim ministered at Porter Memorial until 1998, when he accepted the call to be the Minister to Preschoolers and Children at FBC.

Tim describes his preschool and children’s ministries in the following terms. The Preschool Ministry of FBC serves as the “footer” which supports the foundation. The preschooler is a person who is fully capable and prepared to learn about God’s love for them and who Jesus is and why He came to earth. They also learn, among other things, that the Bible is God’s word. The Children’s Ministry is the Foundation. It is the supporting structure for the life of the believer. The children are taught to internalize God’s word, have a relationship with God through prayer and hear and respond to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Tim and his wife Becky are the parents of four children: Holly, Josh, Mary Grace, and Anna. As a family, they enjoy golfing and other outdoor activities such as camping and riding bikes. Tim and Becky home school their four children and are involved in the Five Rivers Home School Co-op which meets at First Baptist, Morristown. The Thompson family also enjoys playing board games, working around the house and watching “The Andy Griffith Show”. Being from Kentucky means that college basketball is king at their house, so they are always busy when the Kentucky “Cats” are playing. Becky also enjoys sewing, reading, and scrapbooking.

Rob Walters - Student Pastor

Rob joined our staff in August, 2010 although he is not new to First Baptist Church, Morristown, as he and his wife Lindsay have been serving with the youth at our church since 2006. Rob and Lindsay met while attending Carson-Newman College, where Rob graduated in 2004 with a B.A. Degree in Communication Arts. He and Lindsay were married in 2005, and now have three children.

John Greene - Worship Pastor

John Greene was born in Memphis, Tennessee and spent his formative years in Prentiss, Mississippi. Being the son of a Baptist pastor, John was never far from the influence of his parents and the church. John’s mother always encouraged her children to prepare their Sunday school lesson each Saturday evening. At the age of 13, as he was studying his lesson, John realized that he was lost and needed Christ in his life. He responded that night by giving his heart to Christ. The next day, he publicly professed Christ before his home congregation and was baptized a few weeks later. By the age of 15, John felt God’s call to full-time ministry. During his high school years, he began to use his musical abilities to lead out in church, school and revival meetings. John began his education at Clarke College, a Baptist junior college in Newton, Mississippi. It was there that he met his future wife, Beth. He received his B.A. in Music from William Carey College in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Three years later, he attended New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and earned a Master’s Degree in Religious Education.

John comes to First Baptist with a wealth of experience as a worship leader. He has served churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida and Georgia and served for 10 years at Hunters’ Glen Baptist Church in Plano, TX. He has been a part of the First Baptist Morristown staff since July of 2006.

John’s philosophy of ministry is that he sees himself first and foremost as a pastor and secondly, as a musician. He wants to see every member of First Baptist involved in the music ministry. One can be a member of the Celebration Choir & Orchestra, our Student and Children’s Choirs, or as a part of our largest choir…the congregation. His desire is to lead God’s people to a deeper relationship with our Lord through worship and personal devotion.

John and Beth were married on July 22, 1978. They are the parents of two sons, both of whom are active in music ministry. Philip and his wife, Marissa live in Fletcher, NC where Philip serves as the Worship Pastor at West Asheville Baptist Church. They have a daughter, Elizabeth Kaye and a son, Joshua Mark. Michael and his wife, Shanna serve Heatherwood Baptist Church in Newnan, GA and are the parents of three young sons, Jonathan David, Caleb Elijah and Benjamin Michael. John and Beth enjoy traveling, working in their yard and hiking. Beth has taught music through the years and currently leads our Music Maker Choir and sings in the Celebration Choir. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor/ Board Certified Counselor and leads the Christian Care Ministry here at First Baptist.

Doug Johnson - Media Pastor

Doug joined the staff of FBC January 1st of 2011. He was born in Morristown, Tennessee and was raised in a Christian home that was active in a growing church. One morning while attending Children’s Church, at the age of 9, Doug fell under the convicting power of the Holy Spirit. That morning he surrendered his life to Jesus Christ.

Doug, through his high school years, developed an interest in broadcasting and landed his first radio job during his junior year working weekends. Continuing to pursue the broadcast field, he continued to work in radio and moved to full-time status upon his high school graduation in 1985. He worked for various stations in East Tennessee not only on-air, but also as Operations Manager, Music Director, and Program Director. Doug also worked with advertisement agencies developing television and radio commercials.

In the early nineties the Spirit began to move Doug from broadcasting toward ministry. Doug had already completed an Associates Degree from Walters State. Then in 1991, Doug accepted a bi-vocational youth minister position at Lebanon Baptist Church in Talbott for 4 ½ years. During this ministry he completed his Bachelor’s Degree from Carson Newman College in Communication Arts. After Doug graduated Carson Newman College he began working at Goody’s Family Clothing Corporate Headquarters in their Information Technology group as a Systems Programmer. He then accepted a position in the startup of Vifan USA where he setup and managed the Information Technology department for ten years. While at Vifan, God opened a new opportunity in youth ministry. Doug began at Hillcrest Baptist Church in 2003 as a youth pastor and then moved into full-time ministry accepting the role of Associate Pastor – Youth and Outreach. While there he completed a Master’s Degree from Luther Rice University & Seminary in Christian Studies. Doug has now completed his M.Div in Apologetics at the same institution.

Doug’s ministry experience has offered him various opportunities in missions. He has led various area-wide door to door canvassing outreaches and participated in missional Back Yard Bible Clubs, Block Parties, and VBS activities while partnering with church plants. He has also led youth beach evangelism events and has spoken at youth and college camps. Doug has participated as a Dawson McAllister Hope Coach for the Dawson McAllister national radio program. Doug has participated in various disaster relief projects. He speaks routinely at Carson Newman in their Communications Department concerning church marketing and web development. He has also developed websites for various churches and businesses in East Tennessee.

Doug married his wife Rhonda in 1987 and they are the parents of two children, Ryan and Hannah. Ryan is beginning his third year in college and enjoys watching and playing sports. Hannah is a senior in High School. Rhonda enjoys reading and scrapbooking. Doug loves mountain biking and is still trying to master snowboarding. The family enjoys spending time at the beach.

Brooks Gray - Associate Pastor of Media & Worship

Brooks Gray became part of the FBC staff in February of 2013 as Contemporary Worship Leader for the newly added service, “The Way”. Brooks and his wife, Nichole, live in Greeneville, TN along with their four children.

Entering his senior year of High School in the summer of 2000, Brooks attended an FCA Leadership camp at King College where he dedicated his heart and service to the work of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He later went on to attend Hiwassee College and graduated with an A.S. Degree focused in music in 2003. It was during his time spent at Hiwassee that he led worship for the Christian Student Movement campus ministry and began answering the call into the ministry of leading others in worship through music.

“It seems to me that many people underestimate and take for granted the power of the church body united in worship. A body that meets together regularly, standing fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the Gospel is a powerful force. I’m honored to be able to use my gifts to serve the church as we ‘reach forward to the things that are ahead’ and ‘press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus’.”

John Griggs - Pastor of Prayer

John Griggs was raised in Huntsville, Texas. He found the Lord through the leadership of godly parents. His dad read the Bible each night to his family of six, and his mom led him to memorize many scripture passages. One night, John was led by his mother to pray and make Jesus the Lord and Savior of his life. God called John to preach during his second year of engineering study at the University of Huntsville, while studying physics. He joined the Baptist Church that night although he had been raised a Methodist. John graduated from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1953. He then attended Golden Gate Baptist Seminary in Berkley, California and earned a Bachelor of Divinity in 1957. He attended Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky and earned a Master of Theology degree in 1959. John served as Pastor of Muncy Creek Baptist Church from 1957 – 1958 and Casky Baptist Church in Hopkinsville, Kentucky from 1958 – 1962. He then served as an IMB Missionary to Zimbabwe, Africa as a church planter from 1962 – 1996. During his tenure in Africa, he saw three churches grow to 365 churches and saw 20,000 souls baptized. John was called to FBC Morristown as Pastor of Prayer in 1997. John states that his purpose in ministry is “To make prayer a reality in everyone’s life.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17 – “Pray Without Ceasing!”) His philosophy of ministry reminds us that when we look to government, we get what government can do; but when we look to prayer, we get what GOD can do. Everything should be covered with prayer. But prayer is not only lifting requests in praise and petition to God, it is also claiming HIS presence against the working of our enemy, Satan. (See Matthew 4:1-11, James 4:7 and Revelation 12:11) Prayer is work; it leads to work; but it is the most effective work, because it brings God’s presence into whatever activity He leads us to do. John married Florence Sanders in 1958. They spent almost thirty-five years in Africa, where their five children were raised. Both parents agree that the most significant events of the last 46 years were those five births. Their five children and nine grandchildren are a constant source of pride and joy for this family. Dottie is a family therapist; Ruth is a computer trainer; Mary, and her husband Fred work in finance in South Africa; Becky teaches at Berean Bible School in Knoxville; and Philip is a Licensed Financial Asset Manager in Dallas, Texas.