STATEMENT OF FAITH
- The Scriptures Inspired. The Bible is the revealed Word of God to man: The New Testament is our sole rule for discipline and government (II Timothy 3:15-17; II Peter 1:21).
- The One True God. The triune Godhead consists of one true God the Father, Jesus Christ His Son, and the Holy Ghost the third person of the Godhead (John 10:36; 14:26; 20:21-22).
- Lord Jesus Christ. We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and in His personal returning in power and glory (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18, 23; Luke 1:34-35).
- Special Creation. We believe the triune God created the universe apart from pre-existing materials and without any evolutionary process. We believe in the historicity of the first eleven chapters of Genesis (Genesis 1:1; Nehemiah 9:6; Psalms 102:25; Acts14:15).
- Satan. We believe that Satan was originally created a perfect being. He rebelled against God. As a result he became depraved, the devil and adversary of God and His people, the leader of a host of angels who fell with him. Satan has been judged and defeated at the cross and awaits his ultimate doom at the conclusion of the Millennial Reign which takes place after the Second Advent of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:2; I Thessalonians 3:5; I Peter 5:8; Revelation 12:9; 20:1-3; 7-10).
- The Fall of Man. Man was created good and upright; for God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness!” However, man by voluntary transgression fell and thereby incurred not only physical death but also spiritual death, which is separation from God (Genesis 1:26-27; 2:17; 3:6; Romans 5:12-19).
- The Salvation of Man. Man’s only hope of redemption is through the shed blood of Jesus Christ the Son of God.
A. Conditions to Salvation
Salvation is received through repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. By the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost, being justified by grace through faith, man becomes an heir of God according to the hope of eternal life (Luke 24:47; John 3:3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 2:8; Titus 2:11, 3:5-7).
B. The Evidences of Salvation. The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16). The outward evidence to all men is a life of righteousness and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24; Titus 2:12).
A. Sanctification is an act of separation from that which is evil and of dedication unto God (Romans 12:1-2; I Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 13:12).
B. Sanctification is obtainable as a second definite work of grace, received by faith in the blood of Christ.
C. Sanctification is realized in the believer by recognizing his identification with Christ in His death and resurrection, and by faith reckoning daily upon the fact of that union, and by offering every faculty continually to the dominion of the Holy Spirit (Romans 6:1-11,13; 8:1-2,13; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 2:12-13; I Peter 1:5).
- The Baptism in the Holy Ghost. All believers are entitled to, should ardently expect and earnestly seek the promise of the Father, the baptism in the Holy Ghost and fire, according to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible evidence of the baptism in the Holy Ghost is witnessed by the physical sign of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives utterance. (Acts 2:4; 10:46; 19:6). This was the normal experience of all in the early Christian church. With it comes the enduement of power for life and service, the bestowment of the gifts and their uses in the work of the ministry (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4; I Corinthians 12:1-31). With the baptism in the Holy Ghost comes such experiences as an overflowing fullness of the Spirit (John 7:37-39; Acts 4:8), a deepened reverence for God (Acts 2:42-43), and a more active love for Christ, for His Word, and for the lost (Mark 16:20).
- The Ordinances and Practices of the Church.
A. Baptism in Water
The ordinance of baptism by immersion in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost is commanded in the Scriptures. All who repent and believe on Christ as Saviour and Lord are to be baptized. Thus they declare to the world that they died with Christ and that they also have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 10:47-48; Romans 6:4).
B. Holy Communion. The Lord’s Supper, consisting of the elements – bread and fruit of the vine – is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ (II Peter 1:4); a memorial of His suffering and death (I Corinthians 11:26); and a prophecy of His second coming (I Corinthians 11:26); and is enjoined on all believers “until He comes!”
C. Footwashing. Washing the saints’ feet is scripturally sound, but its practice in the local assembly is left optional (John 13:4-17).
D. Child Dedication. Since water baptism is an outward expression of an inward work of grace, we do not practice infant baptism. However, we do encourage presenting our children to the Lord in child dedication and blessing until they are old enough to make their own choice and decision (Luke 2:27; Mark 10:13-16).
- The Church and Its Mission.
A. The Church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointment for the fulfillment of her great commission. Each believer, born of the Spirit, is an integral part of the General Assembly and Church of the Firstborn, which are written in heaven (Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:22; Hebrews 12:23).
B. Since God’s purpose concerning man is to seek and to save that which is lost, to be worshipped by man, and to build a body of believers in the image of His Son, the priority reason-for-being of the International Pentecostal Church of Christ is:
(1) To be an agency of God for evangelizing the world (Acts 1:8; Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16).
(2) To be a corporate body in which man may worship God (I Corinthians 12:13).
(3) To be a channel of God’s purpose to build a body of saints being perfected in the image of His Son (Ephesians 4:11-16; I Corinthians 12:28; 14:12).
C. The International Pentecostal Church of Christ exists expressly to give continuing emphasis to this reason-for-being in the New Testament apostolic pattern by teaching and encouraging believers to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. This experience:
(1) Enables them to evangelize in the power of the Spirit with accompanying supernatural signs (Mark 16:15-20; Acts 4:29-31; Hebrews 2:3-4).
(2) Adds a necessary dimension to worshipful relationship with God (I Corinthians 2:10-16; 12; 13; and 14).
(3) Enables them to respond to the full working of the Holy Spirit in expression of fruit and gifts and ministries as in New Testament times for the edifying of the body of Christ (Galatians 5:22-26; I Corinthians 12:28; 14:12; Ephesians 4:11-12; Colossians 1:29).
- The Ministry. A divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for the threefold purpose of leading the Church in: (1) Evangelization of the world (Mark 16:15-20); (2) Worship of God (John 4:23-24); (3) Building a body of saints being perfected in the image of His Son (Ephesians 4:11-16).
- Divine Healing. Divine healing is an integral part of the gospel. Deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement and is the privilege of all believers (Isaiah 53:4-5; Matthew 8:16-17; James 5:14-16).
- The Blessed Hope. The resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Christ and their translation together with those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord is the imminent and blessed hope of the church (I Thessalonians 4:16-17; Romans 8:23; Titus 2:13; I Corinthians 15:51-52).
15. The Millennial Reign of Christ. The Word of God promises the catching away of the prepared and waiting saints, followed by the great tribulation, and then the return of our Lord with His saints and holy angels in power and great glory to reign on earth a thousand years. This millennial reign will bring the salvation of national Israel (Ezekiel 37:21-22; Zephaniah 3:19-20; Romans 11:26-27) and the establishment of universal peace (Isaiah 11:6-9; Psalms 72:3-8; Micah 4:3-4).
- The Final Judgment. There will be a final judgment in which the wicked dead will be raised and judged according to their works. Whosoever is not found written in the Book of Life, together with the devil and his angels, and the beast and false prophet, will be consigned to everlasting punishment in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Matthew 25:46; Mark 9:43-48; Revelation 19:20; 20:11-15, 21:8).
- The New Heaven and the New Earth. “We, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness” (II Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:1).
- Racism. God created all men equal in value and imputed upon them dignity and the Imago Dei. One is never partially in the Image of God any more than one may be partially alive. Attempts to identify, treat, or view certain people or groups as lesser members of humankind are a blasphemous affront to our Creator. Racism in all its forms is sin, for it grounds the identity and security of human life in self rather than God, in creature rather than the Creator, apart from whom a human being has no identity or value. Self-indulgent pride in refore, must be regarded as idolatry in one of its most ugly forms, an attempt to be like God. We believe prejudice to be an attempt to reverse the creative act of God and what God has valued, let no man devalue. Secondly, racism is an attempt to reverse the redemptive act of Christ. In Jesus Christ, God became a Man and so identified Himself fully with every member of the human family in whatever nation or culture they may be found. Jesus Christ has removed all barriers that stand between human beings, giving reconciliation through His cross. Thirdly, through the means of grace, God empowers and commands all Christians abstain from the passions of the flesh that wage war against the soul,luding the sin of racism. (Gen. 1:26-27; 9:6; Jn. 13:35, 15:12-13; Acts 17:24-26; 1 Cor. 1:13; Gal. 3:26-28; Eph. 2:13-16; 1 Tim. 2:3-6; 1 Pet. 1:22; 1 John 2:9-10)
- Tithes and Offerings. The needs of the New Testament Church, its varied ministries along with its God ordained leadership are to be met by the tithes and offerings of the believers (Matthew 23:23; I Corinthians 16:1; II Corinthians 9:6-7).
- Biblical Marriage. The Bible is the highest authority for both church and life (2 Timothy 3:16-17). In constituting the first accredited institution in society, God defined marriage as being exclusively between one man and one woman, and all other variations are gross distortions of Godబan. (Gen. 1:27, 2:18, 23-24). Homosexual behavior is sin because it is disobedient to the most basic scriptural and moral teachings which define the church: man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. viticus 20:13 NIV). When the church condones detestable behavior, it becomes detestable to God. (Romans 1:25, 1 Cor. 6:9-10, 1 Timothy 1:9-10). It is sin because it violates the created order for families. Condoning homosexual behavior brings destruction upon the church institution (Genesis 19:25 – 24-25), and any governmental effort to force religious institutions to condone homosexual behavior is the government attempting to destroy the church. Furthermore, it is also clear that Jesus authoritatively affirmed the continuing validity of the Old Testament moral law, including prohibitions against homosexual behavior. (Matthew 5:27-28). Therefore; because of our most basic belief in the inalterable law of the Bible, the International Pentecostal Church of Christ condemns the practice of homosexual behavior including arrogant attempts to redefine marriage. All churches, ministers, officers, employees, and members on every level are prohibited from condoning or engaging in homosexual practices. Churches, ministers, officers, employees, and members are also expressly forbidden to participate in or aid in any way same-sex weddings, unions, or related religious services, or to allow any church owned facilities or resources to be used for homosexual weddings or activities. (2 Cor. 6:14). Although all church positions are limited to those subscribing to church faith and practice, all persons, whatever their backgrounds, should be welcomed to any church, for Christ calls upon all persons to come to Him and to leave their sin.