Underneath our header it reads, “Christians Meet Here”. Christians: This is what we strive to be. Nothing more, nothing less. Our beliefs center around the ideology of following the Bible ONLY. The Bible is very clear about certain aspects of the Christian life. Things such as our worship, personal conduct, and what we must do to be saved, are very clearly defined in the Scriptures. Here we have listed a few of these beliefs:
Because we want to be as close to the New Testament pattern as we can possibly be, we do some things a little different in our worship than most other churches. For example, we do not have instruments of music in our worship. When we look at the New Testament we see no mention of them being used, or do we see them commanded to be used. Because of this silence in the Scriptures we choose not to use them in our worship. Another aspect of our worship is the Lord’s Supper. Some believe the Lord’s Supper is something to be done on a monthly or quarterly basis, however when we look in the Scriptures, as well as early Church history, we find the Lord’s Supper was something the 1st century Christians did on a weekly basis (Acts 20:7). Because of this example we believe it is important to keep the Lord’s Supper on a weekly basis, just as the early Christians did.
In Ephesians 4:1 Paul wrote: “Live lives worthy of the calling to which you have been called”. In Matthew 7:20 Jesus said, “You will know a tree by it’s fruits”. What both of these passages are saying is the way we live our lives is important to God. In the Scriptures God has given us everything we need to live godly lives (2 Peter 1:3). His Word instructs us on what is right and what is wrong. In fact God, through the Apostle Paul in Romans 3:19, tells us the purpose of the Scriptures is, “So that every mouth may be stopped and the whole world be held accountable to God”. With the Word of God being given to mankind we now know the difference between right and wrong. Knowing this difference is the reason we can be held accountable when we miss the mark, that is sin. We do not want to sin, so we do our best to live lives that follow how God would have us be. Are we perfect all the time, no. If we are willing to submit our lives to God we have the forgiveness of sins. But, how do we submit our lives to God? What must we do if we want to be saved; to be right with God?
What Must I Do To Be Saved?
Of all the questions that could ever be asked, the question of salvation has to be the most important. Where some subjects are discretionary, God’s plan of salvation is very exact. God’s plan of salvation is not like a “12 Step Program”. It’s not a “Do these 5 things and you’re done” kind of plan. Are there specific things we must do to be saved, yes. But God wants your heart, not a “well I have to do this” mentality. He wants us to be true disciples compelled by love, not by obligation. With this in mind, what does God’s Word say I must do if I want to be saved?
We Must Be Willing to Hear and Study the Word of God.
The most fundamental aspect of salvation is faith. Without faith it is impossible to please God ( Hebrews 11:6). Without faith we have no foundation to build upon for our Christian walk. So, how do we grow our faith? In Romans 10:17 the Bible says, “So faith comes by heart, (that is) hearing the Word of God”. In other words the way we grow our faith is by a greater understanding of God’s Word. Without God’s Word we cannot know what he desires of us. Without knowing God’s Word we will not know what He requires of us for salvation.
We Must Believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
With an established faith in God and His Word, we must then be willing to believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. As Jesus said in John 8:24, “Unless you believe that I am He, you will all die in your sins”. Another passage that discusses this is found in Hebrews 3:12. Here the Word of God says, “Do not have an evil and unbelieving heart leading you to depart from the Living God”. In this passage the Hebrew Writer is writing to non-believers. He urges them not to be filled with unbelief, but to believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. Why does he urge them so strongly? Because without a belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, they are lost. The same hold true for us today.
We Must Be Willing to Repent and Turn from Our Sins.
In Romans 3:23 the Word of God says, “For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”. In other words we all have sinned. I have sinned, you have sinned. Every human being, minus Jesus Christ, who has ever walked this earth has sinned. The word sin literally means, “To Miss the Mark”. When we sin we fall short of the mark God has set. The question for mankind is “how do I deal with the problem of sin?” Even though we fall short God has provided a way back to Him if we are willing to repent and turn from our sin. Notice what God’s Word says a few verses down in Romans 3:24, “And are justified by His (Jesus Christ) grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ”. What a powerful passage! We have salvation as a gift if we are willing to repent. In repenting we understand we must also turn from our sin. In Matthew 5:30 Jesus said, “And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.” Here Jesus uses an extreme example to make His point. In essence He says if something, even something very important to you, causes you to sin you must turn from it. And why must we turn? Jesus said because it would be better for us to be without the places, old habits, and even the people who lead us to stumble than to end up in Hell.
We Must Be Willing to Confess Our Faith in Jesus Christ.
If we are willing to believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and repent of our sins, we must also be willing to confess Jesus Christ as our Savior. In Romans 10:9 the Word of God says, “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Another passage is found in 1 John 4:15 the Word of God says, “Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.” So we see that we must be willing to confess our faith in Jesus Christ. Even in the end the Bible says every tongue will confess Jesus Christ as Lord (Philippians 2:11).
We Must Be Willing to be Baptized into Jesus Christ for the Forgiveness of our Sins.
In Acts 2:14 – 38 Peter and the eleven other Apostles delivered the first Gospel sermon to the Jews on the Day of Pentecost. When the people heard they had crucified their Savior the Bible says they were cut to the heart and asked, “What shall we do to be saved?” Peter responded by telling them in verse 38, “Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”. When they asked what they needed to do to be right with God they were commanded to repent and be baptized. This meant they had to turn from their sin and be full immersed in water for the forgiveness of their sins.
Is Baptism Commanded for Salvation?
When we look in the book of Acts you will see different aspects of God’s plan of salvation played out. For example, in Acts 8:26-40 there’s the Ethiopian eunuch and Philip. The eunuch is reading a passage from Isaiah about Jesus. Philip then begins to teach Him about Jesus. As they are riding along they come across some water and the eunuch asks Philip, “Here is water, what prevents me from being baptized?” And they immediately stopped the chariot, got out, and Philip baptized him. Over and over again we see this same scene played out in the book of Acts. We see someone being taught the Gospel, they believe, it might say they repented, but it always ends in the same fashion. They are baptized and they go away rejoicing. You never see someone in the book of Acts being saved, without baptism being part of the equation. Even Jesus Himself said in Mark 16:16, “He that believes and is baptized will be saved, but he who does not believe will be condemned.”
What’s so special about baptism?
First of all, there is nothing magical in the water. Water is simply the element in which God has chosen for us to come in contact with the blood of Jesus to wash away our sins (Romans 6:1-4). There is also nothing magical or miraculous about the act of baptism itself. The teaching of “Baptismal Regeneration” is a false teaching. You are not a regenerated Christian just because you were dunked under the water. If someone has not truly given themselves to Christ baptism will do them no good. They will simply be getting wet. The act alone will not save you, but when we look at God’s Word we see it as an element of God’s plan of salvation. Simply put, God said to do it, so we do it.
We Must Be Willing to Live Life as a Faithful Christian
After we have obeyed the Gospel of Jesus Christ we must continue to live faithful Christian lives. As John said in 1 John 1:7, “If we walk in the light as He is in the light we have fellowship one with another and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all our sins.” What this passage is saying is if we “walk in the light” or try our best to live lives as God would have to, we have fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ and we have forgiveness in Christ. How do we have stronger relationships with fellow Christians? We grow in Christ, we walk in the light. How do we insure we have the forgiveness of sins? We do our best to walk as Jesus walked. This is what God wants. This is what God desires of His people. As Paul wrote in Galatians 5:24, “If we live my the Spirit, let us then also walk by the Spirit”. To be a Christian means I must pattern my life after the life Jesus lived.