Statement: What We Believe

Our mission is to ‘Make Jesus Known in Barlanark and beyond’. The following document makes clear what we understand to be the most simple and foundational beliefs of someone who knows Jesus. All our members affirm this statement which helps to hold us in unity and protect us from false teaching.

We, the members of Hope Community Church Barlanark, believe that;

i. The Bible is;

foundational: The scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were fully written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and are without error in their original manuscripts. Being the very Word of God they are the ultimate authority we submit to. They are necessary for us to come to a saving knowledge of God and sufficient for us to know what God calls us to believe and do. (Psalm 19:7, Psalm 138:2 Isaiah 40:8, Mark 13:31, John 20:31, Acts 20:32, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:20-21)

ii. God is;

supreme: There is only one living and true God and he is perfect, holy and glorious in every way. He is the creator, sustainer and ruler of all things. Therefore, all creatures owe him the highest love, reverence, trust and obedience. (Genesis 1:1, Deuteronomy 6:4, Psalm 145:3, Isaiah 6:3, John 1:3, Romans 11:36, 1 Corinthians 8:4-6, 10:31, Colossians 1:16-17, 1 Timothy 1:17)

sovereign: God, as the King and ruler of all, has decreed or permitted from eternity past all things that come to pass. He continually upholds, directs and governs all creation and all events, yet without in any way being the author or approver of sin nor to destroy the real choice and responsibility of humankind. (Isaiah 46:9-11, Proverbs 16:33, Romans 8:28-30, Colossians 1:17, Hebrews 1:3, James 1:13-15)

triune: He exists eternally in three persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit and these are without division of nature, essence or being and so are equal in every divine perfection whilst executing distinct harmonious functions in both creation and redemption. (Genesis 1:1, 26, Deuteronomy 6:4, Matthew 3:16-17, 28:19, John 1:1-3, 4:24, 1 Corinthians 13:14, Ephesians 4:5-6)

The Father: God the Father planned both creation and redemption before the foundation of the world and works all things according to the purpose of his will including the sending of his Son to accomplish his plan. (Matthew 23:9, Luke 10:21-22, John 3:16, 6:27, Romans 1:7, Ephesians 1:3-6, 1 Timothy 1:1-2, 1 Peter 1:3)

The Son: Jesus Christ is the Father's only begotten Son and is truly God and truly man. He was born of a virgin and lived a sinless life before his substitutional atoning death, bodily resurrection and ascension into heaven. Through this he accomplished salvation for God's people and now sits at his Father's right hand as the only Mediator between God and man. He is the Prophet, Priest and King of the Church. He reigns eternally and will return as Judge of all people. (Isaiah 53:1-12, Matthew 1:18-25, 20:28, Luke 1:26-38, John 1:1, 14, 10:30, 17:3, 20:28-31, Acts 1:9-11, 20:28, Romans 5:6-10, 8:34. 9:5, 1 Corinthians 8:6, 15:3-4, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Galatians 3:13, Philippians 2:5-11, Colossians 1:15-20, 1 Timothy 2:5; 3:16, Titus 2:13, Hebrews 1:1-3, 7:25, 9:28, 1 Peter 2:21-23, Revelation 12:10)

The Spirit: The Holy Spirit was sent by the Father and Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment, and to regenerate, sanctify, and empower all who believe in Jesus Christ. The Spirit brings to completion the work planned by the Father and begun by The Son. The Holy Spirit lives in every believer from moment of conversion and gives each gifts for the building of the church. (John 14:16-26, 15:26, 16:7-14, Romans 8:1-17, 1 Corinthians 3:16, 6:19, 12:11, Galatians 5:22-26, Ephesians 1:13-14)

iii. Humankind is;

unique: God created humankind male and female, in his image and free from sin. Humankind was placed in a special role to rule over the rest of creation on God's behalf. Each individual man or woman is knit together in their mother's womb and so loved by God and made to know Him. (Genesis 1:26-28, 2:16-17, Psalm 71:6, Psalm 139:13, Acts 17:24-27)

fallen: Humankind has wilfully sinned against God and so have incurred physical, spiritual, and eternal death, which is separation from God. Consequently, all human beings are born with a nature corrupt and totally opposed to God and His law. Humankind are sinners by choice and so are under the just condemnation and wrath of God without defence or excuse. (Genesis 3:1-19, 6:5-12, 8:21, Jeremiah 17:9, John 5:24, Romans 3:9-23, 5:12-19, 6:21-23, 7:13, 8:6-7, 9:22, Ephesians 2:1-3, 2 Thessalonians 1:9, James 1:14-15, 1 John 3:14, Revelation 21:8)

iv. Salvation is;

by grace: Salvation is the gracious act of God and not the work of humankind. It is the Holy Spirit who brings sinners to Christ, giving life to the spiritually dead, sight to the spiritually blind and changing hearts of stone for hearts of flesh. This grace not only saves the sinner in the moment but also continues to apply this salvation throughout the life of the sinner so that they turn from sin and strive to obey Christ and become more and more like Him. (Ezekiel 36:25-26, John 1:12-13; 3:3-8, Ephesians 2:1-10, 2 Corinthians 3:18, Titus 3:5)

through faith: Salvation is through faith alone and this faith is itself a gift from God not a work of humankind. It is only through faith that the believer is freed from the wrath of God and given Christ’s righteousness. True saving faith is always followed by true repentance which is genuine turning away from sin. (Romans 3:20-28, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Galatians 2:20, Philippians 3:8-9)

in Christ: Salvation is in Christ alone. It is only by the substitutionary life, death and resurrection of Christ that we can be free from the judgement we deserve and be reconciled to The Father. Salvation is found in nothing else but by trusting Jesus Christ. (John 3:16, Acts 4:12, 10:43, Romans 6:23, 1 Peter 3:18, 1 John 5:1)

both present and future: Salvation is enjoyed in the present by God’s people but will ultimately be brought in full with the personal and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to earth and the complete establishment of his kingdom. This second coming will bring the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the eternal joy of the saved on the new heavens and earth, and the punishment of the unsaved in hell. (Matthew 16:27, 25:31-46, Mark 14:62, John 5:28-29, 14:3, Acts 1:11, 17:31, Romans 2:6-11, 1 Corinthians 4:5, 15:12-28, 2 Corinthians 5:1-10, Philippians 3:20, 1 Thessalonians 4:15, 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10, 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Titus 2:13, Revelation 20:4-15)

v. The Church is;

universal: The universal church consists of God's saved people from every tribe, language, people, and nation throughout all the ages. (Matthew 16:18, John 10:16, 1 Corinthians 15:9, Ephesians 1:22-23, 2:19-22, 5:19-23, Colossians 1:18)

local: The universal church is made visible in the gathering of believers in local churches, which are marked by the right preaching of God’s Word and right administration of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The local church consists of baptised believers in Jesus Christ who have given a credible profession of faith and have committed together for worship, discipleship and the spreading of the gospel. The scriptural offices of local church leadership are elders (often referred to as pastors) and deacons. (Acts 1:8, 2:41-47, 6:1-6, 20:17-28, 1 Corinthians 12, Ephesians 4:11-16, Colossians 3:16, 1 Timothy 3:1-12, Titus 1:5-9, Hebrews 3:13, 10:24-25)