What We Believe
Father God the Father, equal in authority but distinct in nature, expresses to us the order of headship and loving authority. "No one has seen the Father, except the Son." He is the Father of the Holy Son of God, Jesus Christ, whom He sent to reconcile the world to Himself. This act of sending His only Son into the world was the single greatest act of love and sacrifice the world will ever know. The Father, though mysterious in many ways, very clearly said of Jesus after His baptism "this is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.", and at another time "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well please. Listen to Him."
Son The Son of God, the judge, the King, the Shepherd, He is Jesus Christ, born of a virgin in Bethlehem as prophesied. The Son, before His first coming to earth was revealed from time to time to the old testament saints. He was there at creation speaking the world into existence, for He is the very Word of God. He claimed in fact to be God Himself, laying his claims before skeptics and believers alike. As the prophets declared, He would die at the hands of sinners, cursed by man and God as He hung on a tree bearing the sins of His people. Three days later He rose victorious over the grave, tearing down the wall of separation between God and man, and opening the door for all who trust Him to be reconciled with God for eternity. These events proved every claim He spoke, and became for us the foundation of our faith. For He is "the Author and the Finisher of our faith." Jesus said "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No man can come to the Father except it be through me." He is returning again for His people one day soon. Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus, Come!
Spirit Jesus said "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (John 14:26 ESV) The Holy Spirit is God, in full working authority with the Father and the Son. The Scriptures tell us that He is sent to lead, to help, to fill, to comfort, to empower. For the not yet saved, the Spirit is like the wind, moving about with the purpose to give new spiritual birth to otherwise dead souls. This is called being "born again by the Spirit." After Jesus rose from the dead, before His ascension, He instructed His disciples to wait for the power of the Holy Spirit before they "go" and do what He commanded. We believe this is essential for every believer today too, to be filled with power from on high, so that we do not attempt life in our own power, but with full dependence upon the Helper, the Holy Spirit.
The serpent (Satan) who had fallen from heaven because of his own rebellion, was allowed into the garden and tempted Eve to disobey. Eve was overtaken by the power of greed, lust, and the hunger for power, and she ate of its fruit. "She gave some to her husband and he also ate."
This too was no surprise to God. He sought them out for confession, but as He had said, their eyes were opened to know good and evil, and death came rushing in. This was the great fall of man. No longer could man get to God on his own. No longer could man fellowship with God without a mediator. This death signified two things, the death of man's Spirit, which meant corruption and wickedness in the hearts of every man born since, and physical death, which means that this life is not all there is. Every man will surely die and there is an eternity beyond this life.
The fall of man was not a partial fall, but a complete and total fall from relationship with God. No man has the ability of himself to escape this death or to assist in paying the debt for Adam's original sin.
After the fall, Adam and Eve were suddenly ashamed of their nakedness. This was an awareness of their need, and vulnerability, and death. They sought to cover this problem in their own strength using fig leaves, but the attempt was feeble and fell far short. Something innocent, something without the marks of sin must make payment for the guilty. God then sacrificed the first animal, a substitutionary sacrifice, fashioned clothes from it's skin and covered their nakedness. A curse was pronounced on Adam and Eve, the due consequence for their sin. The Serpent was also cursed for his deeds, but his curse would be our redemption. God promised to one day do away with the enmity, the chasm formed between Himself and man. He would restore the paradise that was lost. This would be accomplished through the "seed" of a woman, the coming Messiah, the Son of God. His death on the cross of Calvary would crush the head of God's enemy, the "seed" of the Serpent (death and Satan). It would all come to fulfillment thousands of years later through one man, Jesus Christ, the only adequate payment to cover man's nakedness and reconcile him again to God.
To redeem is to purchase back what was lost. In Eden, life was lost. Man traded eternal life for the lust of his flesh. He had placed his will over God's and because of this, every human is born dead in trespasses and sins. There is a wage to be paid by someone, but because man is born spiritually dead, and his heart is desperately wicked, and his best efforts still fall short, he cannot possibly pay the price that is owed for his souls redemption. But if God is truly just, someone has to pay.
The "seed" of the woman prophesied in Genesis 3 is non other than Jesus Christ, the Son of God. Many things from that time forward pointed to His first advent. The thousands of innocent animals sacrificed for Israel, the blood spilled on the altar of the temple, and the scapegoat released on the day of atonement all foreshadowed something greater. Even the high priest with the exclusive right to come before the presence of God looked forward to Jesus our Great High Priest. The "seed" of one woman would do all of this. Only one man was ever conceived by the holy Spirit, avoiding the sin heritage of man's seed, and born perfect. His name is Jesus!
He came to live a perfect life before the Father on our behalf. He came that He might die in our place. He, Jesus, is the Redeemer, the payment for the wages of sin. His death, His cross was the crushing blow to the head of the Serpent who deceived Eve in Eden, and His glorious resurrection is the victory for all who trust in Him today.
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.