I. Doctrine of the Scriptures (Bibliology)
The central contention of the Old and New Testaments is that God has revealed Himself to man to communicate information vital for man's well being. That information concerns the way God has acted and will act in His relationship to man, and thus defines the responsibilities of man to God. (Jn 1:14, 18; I Pt 1:20-21; Dt 32:46-47)
II Timothy 3:16 asserts that all Scripture is God breathed.
God has validated His spokesmen, the prophets and apostles through supernatural signs and wonders, demonstrating that their message is the Word of God, sanctioned by the Creator-God. Thus the Scriptures are the revealed will of God, the final authority in all matters to which they speak. (Jn 16:13; II Cor 12:12; II Pt 1:20-21; 3:15-16; Dt 18:18, 22)
The issues of revelation, inspiration, and authority of Scripture, as well as our Saviors's use of it require an inerrant view of the original writings. (Mt 5:17-19; Lk 24:44; Jn 10:35) The Spirit of God insured that what was written was what He wanted writtten. (Jn 16:13; II Pt 1:20-21)
The Spirit of God has revealed the mind of God to the apostles and guided them into all truth. (I Cor 2:10; John 14:26) His ministry to believers is to guide them in obedience to the revealed truth. (I Cor 2:14)
The individual books of Scripture are self-authenticating, based upon their authorship, internal consistency, harmony with the rest of Scripture, and their use by God in the lives of His people. (Lk 24:44; Jn 6:63) On the basis of such a definition, the Apocrypha would be excluded.
Scripture should be interpreted as a normal piece of literature following consistent grammatical and literary principles in light of its textual, historical and cultural contexts. (Gal 3:16; Mt 22:31-32)
II. Doctrine of God (Theology Proper)
God is an absolute, infinite, self-existing, transcendent, corporate spirit being.
(Ex 3:14; Ps 90:2; Gen 1:1, 26; Jn 4:24)
God is everywhere, knows everything, can do anything He desires, unchangingly perfect, and infinitely good: holy, just, and loving.
(Ps 139; Jer 32:27; Js 1:17; Mk 10:18; I Pt 1:16; Rm 2:6; I Jn 4:8)
The one undivided, indivisible, uncompounded God eternally exists in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, having precisely the same nature and attributes, and worthy of the same worship and obedience.
(Dt 6:4; Eph 1; Mt 28:19; Jn 6:27; Heb 1:8; Ac 5:3-4)
It is on the basis of God's work as Creator of man and earth that He has claim on man's allegiance and is sovereign ruler over all.
(Gen 1:1,26; Rm 11:36; Ac 17:24; Col 1:16; Gen 1:2)
2. Sovereign Rule
God is in sovereign control of all history, working out His plan for ruling over men, so as to achieve maximum glory.
(I Chr 29:11; Col 1:16; Rm 9:22-23; Heb 2:9; Eph 1:20-23)
God graciously rules over the world for our benefit and His glory.
(Mt 5:45; 7:11; Ac 14:17; Rm 1:19-20; 8:28; Is 48:11)
III. Doctrine of Christ (Christology)
Jesus is called God, claimed to be God, does things only God can do, and possesses exclusive attributes of deity.
(Heb 1:8; Jn 10:30-33; 1:3; Mt 14:33; 18:20)
The pre-existent Christ became man. (Jn 1:1; 1:14; 8:58)
Jesus was fully human. (Lk 2:11-12, 52; 9:22; Gal 4:4)
Jesus' life was sinless, lived in dependence upon the Father.
(Heb 4:15; Jn 5:30; Phil 2; Heb 2:14)
His death was not for His own sins, but for ours, as a ransom or substitute, propitiating the just wrath of God.
(Mt 20:28; I Pt 3:18; I Cor 15:3; II Cor 5:21; I Jn 2:2)
Jesus was resurrected from the dead according to plan.
(Mt 12:40; Jn 20; Ac 1:3; I Cor 15:4-8; Rm 1:4;)
Jesus ascended to the right hand of the Father (Ac 1:9-11)
5. Present Ministry
Jesus is interceding for believers in heaven, ruling over the Church, empowering believers. (Heb 8:1; Eph 1:19-22; 5:26; Jn 15)
6. Future Ministry
Jesus will return to judge and rule over the world.
(Heb 1:2, 13; 2:8; II Cor 5:10; Rev 20:11-15; Jn 5:27-29)
IV. Doctrine of the Holy Spirit (Pneumatology)
He has the characteristics and works of a person, and is treated as such in Scripture. (I Cor 2:10-11; 12:11; Eph 4:30; Ac 5:3 Jn 16)
He is named God, does things only God can do, and possesses exclusive attributes of deity. (I Cor 6:11; Gen 1:2; II Cor 3:17)
The Spirit's overarching ministry is to glorify Jesus (Jn 16:14) by:
He convicts unbelievers of sin, righteous, and judgment. (Jn 16)
He imparts new life to believers. (Tit 3:5; Jn 3:3-7)
He dwells within the body of believers. (I Cor 6:19)
He enables believers to lead holy lives. (Gal 5:16, 22-25)
The Holy Spirit dispensed unusual manifestations of God's grace for the building up of the Body of Christ. When the Body reached a certain level of maturity, the unusual manifestations were surplanted by the everyday workings of God's Spirit and grace in the life of believers to build up the Body. In certain churches undergoing development, such a need may still exist. The present day charismatic movement would have a difficult time proving that their "manifestations of the the Spirit" are in accord with those in Scripture. (Eph 4:7-16; I Cor 12:1-14:30; Rm 12:6-8)
V. Doctrine of Angels, Satan and Demons (Angelology)
A. Nature and Ministries of Angels
Angels are spirit beings created to serve God. (Heb 1:4; Col 1:16)
1. Past History
Satan was formerly the chief of God's creation, rebelled against God through pride taking a large company of angels and later man with him.
(Isa 14:12-20; Gen 3:13-15)
2. Present Occupation
Satan actively rules over earth, blinding unbelievers to the gospel, and seeking to keep believers from glorifying God. (Mt 13:19; II Cor 4:4; Eph 2:2; 4:27; 6:12; I Pt 5:8; II Tim 2:26)
3. Future Fate
Though judged at the cross, the execution of Satan's sentence awaits the return of Christ. ( Col 2:15; Rev 20:1-3, 10)
Demons are fallen angels, some of whom are active in accomplishing Satan's will, and other's of whom are restrained until they all join Satan in his judgment and punishment. (Mt 25:41; Jude 6)
VI. Doctrine of Man (Anthropology)
Man is a material and spiritual being created sinless, in the image of God, to have dominion over the earth. (Gen 1:26-28)
Man has a body, soul, and spirit. (I Thess 5:23)
Man rebelled against God by disobeying His commandment. The penalty was death, loss of dominion, loss of fellowship with God, and loss of the holiness with which man was created. (Gen 3)
VII. Doctrine of Sin (Harmartiology)
Sin is a universal condition and experience of man. Man is a sinner by nature, and action. Sin, unfaithfulness to and rebellion against God, results in eternal death. (Ps 51:5; 53:3; Rm 5:12; 3:23; 6:23; Eph 2:1-3)
VIII. Doctrine of Salvation (Soteriology)
Salvation is best viewed as a reversal of the effects of the Fall, and can be seen in the Scriptures as having three areas of emphasis:
1) Justification = Accomplished escape from hell and the death penalty incurred by sin, and restoration of our relationship with God. (Tit 3:5; Rm 5:9)
2) Sanctification = Progressive deliverance from sin habits and restoration toward pre-Fall holiness and Christlikeness. (I Pt 2:2: Phil 2:12)
3) Glorification = Future restoration of glory and rulership with Christ in His kingdom. (Heb 9:28; I Pt 1:5)
A change of mind or thinking on the part of one who is opposed to God is necessary to receive and appropriate God's gracious gift. (Ac 20:21)
God, through His Word, and by the power of His Spirit, creates new life in those who believe. (Tit 3:5; Jn 3:5; 1:13)
When a person trusts Christ's death on his behalf as a satisfactory payment to God for his sins, he receives forgiveness and is declared to be in a right relationship with God. (I Cor 5:21; Rm 5:1)
E. Election and Predestination
All elections should be as free and democratic as possible, of responsible individuals, before they reach their destination.
Believers are to progressively grow in Christlikeness. (I Jn 1:9)
IX. Doctrine of the Church (Ecclesiology)
The Body of Christ was formed at Pentecost. (Mt 16:18; I Cor 12:13)
A church consists of an interdependent body of believers submitted under the headship of the Lord Jesus Christ and to each other, organized and uniting under Biblically qualified leadership for worship, instruction, fellowship and evangelism.
(Eph 1:22-23; Acts 2:42-47; I Tim 3; Titus 1)
In Scripture elders are entrusted with the ongoing tasks of shepherding and overseeing the Body, and deacons performed delegated tasks of service on behalf of the Body as the needs arose. (Acts 6; 20:28; I Pt 5:1-4; Phil 1:1; I Tim 3; Titus 1)
Christ prescribed two ritual acts for the Church, Baptism and the Lord's Supper; the former, by immersion, symbolizes the identification of a believer with Christ, the latter commemorates and proclaims Christ's death and our participation in the New Covenant blessings until Christ returns.
(Mt 28:19-20; Lk 22:19-20; Rm 6; I Cor 10:16; 11:23-26)
The church exists bring glory to God by obeying Christs comission to make disciples of all nations. (Eph 1; Mt 28:19-20)
X. Doctrine of Last Things (Eschatology)
A. Christ's Return
The Lord Jesus will visibly return from heaven to gather His church, judge His enemies, and set up the promised kingdom. (Ac 1:11; I Thess 4:16-17; Rev 5; 11:15-19; 19:11-21; 20; Lk 19:11-27; Dan 7:13-27; II Sam 7:8-16)
B. The Resurrections
Both believers and unbelievers will be resurrected; the former before the Millennium, the latter after. (I Cor 15:20-24; Rev 20:4-6)
C. The Judgments
Both believers and unbelievers will be judged and recompensed; the former for their service, the latter for their sins. (I Cor 3:10-15; Rev 20:11-15)
D. The Tribulation
Christ will pour out His wrath on His enemies after the Rapture and before the Millennium. (Dan 9:27; Mt 24; Rev 6-18)
E. The Millennium
In fulfillment of the Abrahamic, Davidic, and New covenants, Christ will rule over the earth for a thousand years, sharing His rule with those who are faithful to Him. (Rev 5:10; 20:1-7; Mt 19:28; plus A. above)
F. Final Destiny
God will burn this cursed earth and create new heavens and earth over which God will be all in all. (Rev 21:1; I Cor 15:28; II Pt 3:3-14)