The Doctrinal Statement of Calvary Bible Church
We believe in the verbal plenary inspiration of the Bible, consisting of sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments. We further believe that the Bible was given by divine inspiration and is the inerrant Word of God in all matters that it addresses including historical, geographical, and scientific data (II Tim. 3:16-17; II Pet. 1:19-21; I Thess. 2:13); that it is sufficient, harmonious, and authoritative; that it reveals man’s state by nature (Rom. 3:10-12) and presents the only means of his salvation (Acts 4:12); that it constitutes the only perfect rule and final authority in all matters pertaining to Christian faith and practice (Matt. 5:18-19; Acts 17:11; Isa. 8:20); and it sets forth the principles by which man will be judged (Rom. 2:1-3, 16). We believe that the only infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture is the Scripture itself. Moreover, we believe that the canon of Scripture is closed (Heb. 1:1-2) and that all canonical revelation from God has ceased.
We believe that there is only one true God (Deut. 6:4; Isa. 45:21-22); eternally existing (Exod. 3:14; Jer. 10:10) in three persons of one substance, power, and eternity (Matt. 28:19; II Cor. 13:14): Father (John 4:23-24), Son (John 1:1-14; Rom. 9:5), and Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3-4). These three are the same in essence though distinct in personality, responsibility, and function, equal in every divine perfection and attribute (Phil. 2:6; Heb. 9:14), and working harmoniously to accomplish the manifold acts and purposes of God (John 14:26, 15:26, 17:3).
GOD THE FATHER
We believe that God the Father began to assume his place as Father in relation to the Son and Holy Spirit in the council of the Godhead before creation and time (Ps. 2:7-10); that, although equal in nature, the Son and Holy Spirit have been subordinate to the Father since the council and will remain in that relationship until eternity future (I Cor. 15:28), and the subordination is for the purpose of executing the divine purpose (John 4:34, 5:17-18, 14:16; Eph. 1:3-14). The Father is the ultimate source of all things (I Cor. 8:6; Ephesians 3:9); sustains a Fatherhood relationship to spirit beings (Job 1:6; Heb. 12:9); sent the Son into the world (John 3:16), and with the Son sent the Holy Spirit (John 14:26, 15:26), but the Father is never the sent one. The Father enters a Fatherhood relation with men through their spiritual new birth (John 1:12-13, 3:1-7); indwells believers (John 14:23; Eph. 4:6); makes them partakers of the divine nature (II Pet. 1:4); calls them his born ones (I John 3:9); forgives their sins (I John 1:9); and answers their prayers (John 16:23).
We believe in the identification of Jesus Christ as the impeccable (able not to sin and not able to sin) Son of God and God the Son (Matt. 16:13-16; John 10:36); His incarnation (Heb. 10:5); that he was begotten of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary (Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:18-25); his vicarious atonement for the sins of the world (Isa. 53:1-12; John 3:16; Gal. 4:4-5), the resurrection of his body from the tomb (Matt. 28:5-7; Luke 24:46; I Cor. 15:3-4); his ascension into heaven (Mark 16:19; Luke 24:51), as our High Priest (Heb. 4:14-16) and Advocate (I John 2:1-2), before the throne of God (Heb. 1:3; Rev. 3:21); that he is both God (Isa. 9:6; Phil. 2:6) and man (Matt. 20:28; Phil. 2:7-8), the two natures being inseparably united in one glorious Person without sin; and that he is the only sufficient mediator between God and humanity (I Tim. 2:5-6).
We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity. He proceeds from the Father and the Son (John 15:26). His principle ministries since his advent at Pentecost are: to reveal Christ to all in the regeneration and sanctification of souls (John 16:12-16); to reprove or convict the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:8-11); to restrain the progress of evil until God’s purposes are accomplished (II Thess. 2:7); to bear witness to the truth preached (Acts 5:30-32); to regenerate those who repent of their sins and exercise faith in Christ (John 3:3-8; Tit. 3:5); to instruct, comfort, and guide God’s children (John 14:16-18, 14:26, 16:13); to sanctify them (II Thess. 2:13; I Pet. 1:1-2); to empower them for life and service (Rom. 8:2; Acts 1:8; Eph. 3:16; I Cor. 2:1-4; I Thess. 1:5); to give life to their mortal bodies that he seals (Rom. 8:11; Eph. 1:13); to indwell the believer (Rom. 8:11); to intercede for the believer in his prayer life (Rom. 8:26-27); and, to bestow gifts sovereignly upon each believer (I Cor. 12:7-11). While certainly not a part of the modern-day charismatic movement, we do believe that the power of the Holy Spirit is available in our day and is absolutely necessary for the believer to live a holy life.
We believe that man was created by an immediate act of God and not by a process of evolution; that he was created in the image and likeness of God, possessing personality and holiness; that he was endowed with power of rational and responsible choice in view of moral ends; and that the purpose of his creation was to glorify God (Gen. 1:27; Col. 3:10; Acts 17:24-28).
We believe that in the providence of God, man was brought to trial in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:1-6). Under trial he lost his holy estate, incurring spiritual death for himself and all of humanity (Rom. 5); was alienated from God (Eph. 4:18); and became depraved physically, mentally, morally, and spiritually by voluntarily transgressing his positive command, and yielding to the enticement of Satan. In consequence of this act of disobedience, the entire human race became involved in sin so that in every heart there is by nature that evil disposition which eventually leads to responsible acts of sin and to just condemnation (Gen. 3:1-6; Rom. 1:19-32, 3:10-12, 3:23, 5:12, 5:18; Eph. 4:18; I John 1:8-10).
We believe that God has provided redemption for men through the mediatorial work of Christ, who voluntarily offered himself on Calvary as a perfect sacrifice for sin, the just suffering for the unjust, bearing sin’s curse and tasting death for every man (Matt. 20:28; Heb. 9:11-12; I Pet. 3:18; Gal. 3:13; Heb. 2:9; I Timothy 2:5-6).
We believe that the salvation of sinners is through the Son of God, who is the Savior by virtue of his substitutionary death for sinners (Eph. 5:23; II Pet 1:11); salvation is completely dependent upon the grace of God (Eph. 2:8); can be obtained only through the gift of God (Eph. 2:9; Rom. 6:23); that man can in no way merit salvation (Tit. 3:5); the basis of salvation is the shed blood of Christ (Rom. 3:25; Eph. 1:7; Heb. 9:22); the conditions of salvation are with repentance and faith in the resurrected Son of God (Eph. 2:8-9; Acts 16:31); the instruments of salvation are the Word of God (Rom. 10:17; I Pet. 1:23), and the Holy Spirit who applies the Word to the heart of man to bring conviction of sin (John 15:26; 16:7-11); that in salvation the believer is elected, called, regenerated, converted, justified, adopted, sanctified, and glorified (Rom. 8:30), forgiven all sins (Col. 1:14), and endowed with all spiritual blessings in Christ (Eph. 1:3); that the true believer is secure in Christ, nothing being able to separate him from God, and that this security is dependent upon God’s ability to keep the believer and not the believer’s ability to keep himself (Rom. 8:35-39; John 10:27-29; Phil. 1:6; II Tim. 1:12).