What calvary believes

What we believe as a church is of incredible importance.  We can only be united under a common confidence in the Holy Scriptures and shared belief system.  Doctrine does matter.  We must share the common ground of trust in Jesus Christ and the truthfulness of His Word.  If we don't share this common ground then our church has no firm foundation and our fellowship will falter.


"There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God, and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all."  Ephesians 4:4-6


A Principle that helps guide us is this:

  • In major beliefs/doctrines we must have unity
  • In minor beliefs/doctrines we must have freedom
  • In all beliefs/doctrines we must show love

Our doctrines are those things that we believe and hold to by conviction.  Our doctrine defines us.


What we believe must be rooted and grounded in Scripture.  We do not have allegiance to tradition or the institutions and ideas established by man.  our allegiance belongs to Jesus Christ and His Word alone.  When facing a problem, decision, or change of direction we will seek insight first by asking, "What does the Word of God have to say about this?"  Our shared belief must be that God's Word is sufficient to give insight, principle and direction for all situations.

Basic beliefs

The gospel is the hope of the world. As we read the Scriptures, we see the overarching themes of God’s providence, power and provision to reconcile mankind and the created world to Himself through the person and work of Jesus Christ. In light of this, we aim to be explicitly gospel-centered in all that we preach, teach and practice.

 

We believe:

  • The Scriptures are true, authoritative and sufficient[1].
  • There is only one true God, Creator of heaven and earth, who eternally exists in three distinct persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit[2].
  • All things exist for the glory of God[3].
  • All humanity, Christ excluded, is sinful by both birth and action[4].
  • The deserved penalty for sin is physical and spiritual death[5].
  • Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God, was born of a virgin and is both fully God and fully human[6].
  • Jesus Christ died as the sacrificial substitute to pay the penalty for sin[7].
  • Jesus Christ physically rose from the dead, ascended into heaven and will one day physically return[8].
  • There will be a future physical resurrection of the dead. Only those who turn from sin and to Jesus in faith and repentance will be raised to eternal reward. Those who do not turn from sin and to Jesus will be raised to eternal punishment[9].
  • Only through faith in the person and work of Jesus Christ and repentance from sin can one be reconciled to God and experience true life and joy[10].
  • Biblical baptism is an act of obedience to Christ for those who are saved, has no saving power, is symbolic in nature, has immersion in water as its method, and is required for membership[11].



[1]  Psalm 19:7-11; 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21

[2]  Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 45:5-6; Isaiah 46:9-10; John 17:3; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6; 1 Timothy 2:5; Genesis 1:26; Psalm 45:6-7; Psalm 110:1; Matthew 3:13-17; Matthew 28:17-20; 1 Corinthians 12:4-6

[3] Psalm 148; Proverbs 16:4; Isaiah 61:3; Romans 11:33-36; 1 Corinthians 10:31; 2 Corinthians 5:15; Ephesians 1:3-14

[4] Genesis 6:5; Psalm 51:5; Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 3:23; 5:8, 12-21; 7:18; Ephesians 2:1-3

[5] Genesis 2:15-17; Genesis 3:19; Romans 5:12; 6:23; James 1:14-15

[6] Matthew 1:20; Luke 2:52; John 1:1-4, 14; Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1:1-3

[7] John 1:29; 10:1-18; Romans 5:8; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Galatians 1:4; 1 Peter 3:18

[8] Matthew 28:1-20; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-53; John 1:20-21:25; 1 Corinthians 15:12-34; John 14:3; Acts 1:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:16; Hebrews 9:28; 1 John 3:2; Revelation 1:7

[9] Matthew 25:31-46; John 5:28-29; Acts 24:15

[10] John 3:18, 14:6; Acts 4:12; Romans 3:21-26; 1 Timothy 2:5-6

[11] Matthew 3:13-17; 28:19-20; Mark 1:9-11; Luke 3:21-22; John 3:23; Acts 2:41; 8:35-39; 16:30-33; Romans 6:3-5; Colossians 2:12

statement of theological alignment with the 2000 baptist faith and Message

As a Southern Baptist Church, we are theologically aligned with the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message.


You can see the full text of the Baptist Faith and Message by clicking HERE.


We do have places in the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message that we feel need clarification or further explanation in order to accurately represent our church’s particular beliefs. Those areas needing further explanation are listed below. They are designated by their section in the 2000 Baptist Faith and Message:

 

Section II. God

We believe the statement, “God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures” is not the best wording that describes the relationship between people’s choices and God’s sovereignty. We would emphasize that people have real and valid choices that have real consequences, and that they are responsible for those choices. We would also emphasize that all those actions of people fall under the sovereignty of God. Thus we believe using the term “free creatures” may not be the best way to express mankind’s position under God’s sovereignty.



Section V. God's Purpose of Grace

We believe the definition of election as, “Election is the gracious purpose of God, according to which He regenerates, justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. It is consistent with the free agency of man, and comprehends all the means in connection with the end” does not give a clear understanding of our belief of the Biblical definition of election. We believe that election is the act of God whereby in eternity past He chose those who will be saved. Election is unconditional, because it does not depend on anything outside of God, such as good works or foreseen

faith (Romans 9:16). While we hold to this view of election, we do not deny scriptures that present the idea that God’s offer of salvation is genuinely and freely offered to all. We realize election and an offer of salvation to all may seem contradictory, but we do not want to deny either truth taught in scripture.

 

Section VI. The Church

We believe the statement, “Each congregation operates under the Lordship of Christ through democratic processes” should be clarified to emphasize that the democratic process is only democratic in the sense that we are corporately and prayerfully seeking God’s direction, and should not be implied to mean that our church is led by a democratic process where the majority of the human opinion of the congregation is followed.



Statement of Biblical Doctrine and Distinctives

These beliefs and distinctives captures our convictions on a broader range of areas including those that are debated even among Southern Baptist, Bible-believing, gospel-centered churches. Though agreement with these distinctives isn’t necessary for membership, we will preach, teach and counsel based on these beliefs.


Defining these statements will be an ongoing process as the church walks through the teachings of Scripture.


how the church works

  • The Church is a Body: We are called together and identified as the Body of Christ. We are individually members of one body. We have been placed in this Body purposefully by God to bring about His desire for our lives and our church. As a body is dependent upon its individual parts or members, so we are dependent upon one another. 

  • The Head of our Body is Jesus Christ: We are His Body and His is our head. We are under the leadership and lordship of Jesus Christ. He holds us together and empowers us to function as He desires.

  • The Body has many different parts: As a body has many different parts and each part carries out its unique function, so our Church, the Body has many different, individual parts (people) and each individual part carries out its function for the good of the whole. Each individual member of our church has been called, gifted and equipped to carry out our mission within the church. Our church can function properly and be successful only when each member is being faithful to that which God has called them to do in our Body. We are dependent upon the faithfulness and service of one another. Each member is vitally important and expected to carry out their calling to our church.

  • The Body must function in unity: A body functions properly only when working together. There must be unity. Our church is the same way. We can function effectively only when we are united in spirit, doctrine, vision, and direction. We work well when we work together. Divisive attitudes and actions have no place in the Body of Christ. We must protect the unity of Christ in our church.