What We Believe
A. Infallibility of Scripture
The inspired scripture as written by the original authors is the very breath of God. It is without error and in no part either contradicts itself or truth (II Timothy 3:16, 2 Peter 1:16-21).
B. The Absolute Deity of Jesus Christ
We believe that Jesus, before he became a man and after he became human flesh, possessed in his nature, and always will possess, the very attributes of God; that Jesus Christ was, in fact, and still is, God Himself (John 1:1-14).
C. The Triune God
We believe that the godhead eternally exists in three persons-the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit-and that these three are not three gods but one God, having precisely the same nature and attributes, and worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence and obedience (Matthew 28:18-19; John 1:1-14; John 14:1-14; 26; Acts 5:3-4; 2 Corinthians 13:14).
D. The Virgin Birth
We believe that Jesus, existing as God the Son, took upon Himself a perfect and complete human nature in addition to his divine nature when he was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary (Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:30-35; Philippians 2:6-7). These two natures exist without confusion or loss of separate identity in His one person. The second member of the trinity became, therefore, fully human as well as fully divine.
We believe that according to Genesis 1 and John 1:3, all matter was created and found its origin in the eternally existent Son of God as opposed to any form of evolution. Adam was created by God in an adult form.
F. Depravity of Man
We believe that man is separated from God from birth by his inherited sin nature. Man without Christ is spiritually dead (Rom.5:12).
G. Substitutionary Death
We believe that the entire payment for the guilt of the believer’s sins was paid for by Christ’s substitutionary death on the cross (II Corinthians 5: 21).
H. Salvation by Grace
We believe that the scriptures teach that salvation is by the grace of God through His free gift which is neither merited nor secured in part or in whole by any virtue or work of man (Ephesians 2:8,9).
I. Bodily Resurrection of Christ
We believe in a literal resurrection of Christ (John 20:27, Luke 24:39).
J. Literal Return of Christ
We believe in the literal return of Christ (Acts 1:11).
K. Resurrection and Assignment of All Mankind
We believe in the physical resurrection of both the saved and the lost: the saved unto the resurrection of life and the lost unto the resurrection of damnation (I Corinthians 15:5-57; Rev. 20:11-15).
L. The Church
We believe that the Church is a spiritual body, began and baptized by the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:22, 23).
M. The Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the godhead, co-eternal co-equal with the Father and the Son (Acts 5:3, 4). We believe that the Holy Spirit provides crucial ministries in the present age including conviction, regeneration, indwelling, sealing, baptizing and filling (John 3:6,16:7-11; Romans 8:9; I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18). We believe that every believer possesses the Holy Spirit in full measure (Romans 8:9). We believe that God can and does heal but that the sign gifts associated with the communication of Scripture (e.g. prophecy and knowledge) as well as gifts associated with the authentication of God’s messengers (e.g. healings, miracles, tongues) were temporary, remaining valid only until the scripture was completed (I Corinthians 13:8-10). We believe that speaking in tongues was never the common nor necessary sign of the baptism or filling of the Spirit, and that the final deliverance of men from sickness and death awaits the consummation of our salvation in the resurrection (Acts 4:8, 31; Romans 8:23; I Corinthians 12:13; 13:8).
N. Arriola Bible Elders Statement On Marriage, Divorce And Sexuality
We teach that marriage was given by God as part of His common grace, and that it has no meaning other than as He has provided (Gen. 2:18–24). We teach that marriage is subject to the curse of the Fall but that believers, living in obedience to the Scripture and under the control of the Holy Spirit, can begin to experience peaceful, productive, and fulfilled marriage as intended by God (Gen. 3:16; 1 Peter 3:7).
We teach that the marriages of believers are to illustrate the loving relationship of Christ and His church, with the husband loving his wife as Christ loves the church and the wife responding to her husband’s loving leadership as the church responds to Christ (Eph. 5:18–33).
We teach that as believers’ marriages are to illustrate Christ’s relationship with His church, believers should choose to marry those who share their faith and new life in Christ. And as such, we teach that marriage is a covenant relationship between God, man and woman. (2 Cor. 6:14; Eph. 5:22-33).
We teach that the term “marriage” has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in scripture (Gen. 2:23–24).
We teach that marriage is always a public, formal, and officially recognized covenant between a man and a woman. We teach that common law marriage and/or prolonged cohabitation do not establish and are not equivalent to marriage (John 4:18). We teach that where no such covenant exists between a cohabiting couple prior to coming to faith in Christ, family units should be preserved to the extent possible and marriage encouraged. We teach that where a valid marriage has been established prior to coming to faith in Christ, the couple should remain married (1 Cor. 7:24).
We teach that God hates divorce and intends marriage to last until one of the spouses dies. Divorce and remarriage is regarded as adultery except on the grounds of fornication or desertion. (Mal. 2:14-14; Matt. 9:3-12; Romans 7:1-3; 1 Cor. 7:12-15)
We teach that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. We teach that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman (Heb. 13:4, 1 Cor. 6:13, 18-20).
We teach that any form of sexual immorality, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, and bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pedophilia, pornography, any attempt to change one’s sex or disagreement with one’s biological sex, is sinful and offensive to God (Lev. 18:1–30; Matt. 5:28; Rom. 1:26–29; 1 Cor.5:1, 6:9; 1 Thess. 4:1–8).
We teach that the act of homosexuality, in particular, is subject to God’s wrath of abandonment, is a matter of choice and not inherited status, and epitomizes man’s ungrateful rebellion against God (Rom. 1:18–28).
We teach that sexual sin is a matter of the outworking of the heart and all heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual lust must be acknowledged as sin, requiring confession and repentance. (Rom. 12:1; James 1:13-15; 2 Cor. 10:3-5)
We teach that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual, irrespective of sexual orientation, are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture or the doctrines of the church. We teach that the faithful proclamation of the Scripture, including the call to repentance, for all sin including sexual sin, does not constitute hate speech, or hateful and harassing behavior, but is instead a fundamental part of the church’s loving mission to the world (Matt. 28:16–20; 2 Cor. 5:11–20; 1 Tim. 1:5; 2 Tim. 4:1–2).
We teach that God offers redemption and forgiveness to all who confess and forsake their sin, including sexual sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. We teach that His forgiveness is total and complete (Ps. 103:11–12, 130:3–4; Is. 43:25, 44:22; John 5:24; Col. 2:13–14) and that God imputes the full righteousness of Christ (2 Cor. 5:21) to the believing sinner. We teach that the forgiven sinner has been cleansed from the guilt of sin, set apart unto God, or made holy, and justified before Him (1 Cor. 6:9–11). We teach that any man or woman who has received that forgiveness is “in Christ” and is a “new creation” (2 Cor. 5:17).
O. Authority of the Statement of Faith
The Statement of Faith does not exhaust the extent of our faith. The Bible itself is the sole and final source of all that we believe. We do believe, however, that the foregoing Statement of Faith accurately represents the teaching of the Bible, and therefore, is binding on all members.