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The Bible is God’s special revelation to man about Himself, inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21). It is without error in its original autographs and is life-transforming and powerful because it is God’s holy Word (John 17:17).
God is the life-sustaining Creator of the entire universe, and all that is contained in it (Genesis 1:1). He is omnipresent (Psalm 139:7-10), He is omniscient (Psalm 147:5; Hebrews 4:13), and He is omnipotent (Job 42:2; Matthew 19:26). The absolute attributes of God are holiness (Leviticus 11:44-45), love (John 3:16; 1 John 4:8) and goodness (Psalm 107:8-9). God exists, and has always existed as three Persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Genesis 1:26; John 1:1-3; John 1:18), but still one God (Deuteronomy 6:4). All three Persons are equal in authority, with a hierarchy of purpose (Matthew 12:31; Mark 1:9-11; John 14:26).
Jesus Christ is, was, and always will be God, present in eternity past and eternity future, as a member of the Godhead (John 8:28). He became man through the conception of the Holy Spirit, and was born to Mary, who was a virgin (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:35). Upon taking the form of a man, He voluntarily emptied Himself of His godly attributes (Philippians 2:7), while still retaining both His human and divine natures (Mark 2:3-12; Luke 4:40; John 11:35; John 19:28). Jesus became the substitutionary sacrifice for the sins of mankind (John 3:16), by willingly submitting Himself to be crucified on the cross (Luke 22:42). He died, was buried and rose again the third day, as was prophesied in Scripture (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is not merely an influence or power, but an equal, eternal, personal member of the Godhead. The Holy Spirit restrains sin (2 Thessalonians 2:7) and convicts humans of their sinful condition (John 16:8-11). At the point of salvation, the Holy Spirit regenerates (John 6:63), indwells (John 14:17; 1 Corinthians 3:16), baptizes (1 Corinthians 12:13), and seals (Ephesians 1:13-14) each believer. His ministry to the Christian includes teaching (John 14:26; John 15:26; John 16:13), leading (Romans 8:26-27; Galatians 5:16), and empowering (John 14:12; John 16:7; Acts 1:8). The Holy Spirit endows believers with one or more spiritual gifts for life and ministry (Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 12:4-11; Ephesians 4:11; 1 Peter 4:11).
God created man on the sixth day of creation, in His own image, innocent of all sin (Genesis 1:26; Genesis 3:7). The first man, Adam sinned willfully, thus bringing sin upon the entire human race (Romans 5:12-14). All men are born with a sin nature and cannot know God in their unregenerate state (Romans 3:10-18).
God immutably creates each person as male or female, which reflects the image and nature of God. Rejecting one’s biological sex rejects the created image of God. God designed marriage as a unique conjugal relationship joining one man and one woman in a single, exclusive, life-long union (Matthew 19:4-9). God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman joined in marriage. All forms of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, polygamy, polyandry, bestiality, incest, pornography, and acting upon any disagreement with one’s biological sex) are sinful and offensive to God (1 Thessalonians 4:3). God endows all human life with inherent dignity at every stage of development and it must be respected and protected from conception to natural death. Thus, the unjustified, intentional taking of human life before or after birth is sinful and offensive to God.
The only way that man can be saved from eternal separation from God is to believe that Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world (John 3:16; John 14:6; Romans 10:9-10). One cannot earn salvation through works, but only as grace is poured out on the believer who has faith in Jesus Christ’s substitutionary work (Romans 1:16-17; Ephesians 2:8-9). Salvation is a permanent work of God (John 10:29; Ephesians 1:13-14).
Angels are beings created by God for His purposes (Psalm 148:2-5), created as a higher order of being than mankind (Hebrews 2:7). They exist to worship and minister to God (Isaiah 6:1-7), to protect and provide for believers (1 Kings 19:5-7; Hebrews 1:14; Acts 5:19), and to act as messengers of God (Luke 1:28; Luke 2:9-14).
Satan and Demons
Satan is a literal being, originally created by God as a angel of light, who rebelled against God and was cast out of heaven with one-third of the angels, who became his demons (Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:12-17; Revelation 12:4). Satan was the tempter who caused the fall of man (Genesis 3:1-19), and he and his demons continue to work to interfere with God’s plan for mankind (2 Corinthians 11:14; 1 Thessalonians 2:18; 1 Peter 5:8).
The church, which began at Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4) is the body of Christ, and is made up of those professing faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 10:9), who have been baptized (John 3:5; Acts 2:38), who adhere to biblical doctrine (2 John 9; Titus 3:10), and who follow the moral standards of the Bible (Romans 14:1-4). Each church member is gifted by the Holy Spirit to edify the church and to function within the local body (1 Corinthians 12:1-11). The church is organized, as led by the Spirit, with various offices, all having Scriptural requirements (1 Timothy 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-9).
Jesus Christ will return at some time in the future to rapture His church, resurrecting the dead in Christ as well as snatching away those believers who are alive at that time (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). Following this event, there will be a period of seven years, known as the Tribulation, in which the wrath of God will be meted out on humanity (Daniel 9:24-27; 1 Thessalonians 1:10; Revelation 14:7). The Tribulation will end with the personal, bodily return of Jesus Christ to set up His millennial reign on the earth (Zechariah 14:4, 9-21; Revelation 20:4). Following this 1000-year reign, Satan and his followers will suffer their final defeat and judgment (Revelation 20:10-15). Once the world has been judged, the eternal state will begin, with the advent of the new heaven and new earth (Revelation 21-22).