I. THE SCRIPTURES
The Holy Bible was written by men
divinely inspired and is God's revelation of Himself to mankind. It is a perfect
treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its
end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all
Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which
God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the
true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human
conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a
testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.
Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10; 119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36:1-32; Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21.
There is one and only one living and
true God. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator,
Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and
all other perfections. 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. To Him we owe the highest love,
reverence, and obedience. The eternal triune God reveals Himself to us as
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with distinct personal attributes, but without
division of nature, essence, or being.
A. God the Father
God as Father reigns with providential
care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human
history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all
knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become
children of God through faith in Jesus Christ. He is fatherly in His attitude
toward all people.
Genesis 1:1; 2:7; Exodus 3:14; 6:2-3; 15:11ff.; 20:1ff.; Leviticus 22:2; Deuteronomy 6:4; 32:6; 1 Chronicles 29:10; Psalm 19:1-3; Isaiah 43:3,15; 64:8; Jeremiah 10:10; 17:13; Matthew 6:9ff.; 7:11; 23:9; 28:19; Mark 1:9-11; John 4:24; 5:26; 14:6-13; 17:1-8; Acts 1:7; Romans 8:14-15; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 4:6; Colossians 1:15; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 11:6; 12:9; 1 Peter 1:17; 1 John 5:7.
B. God the Son
Christ is the eternal Son of God. In
His incarnation as Jesus Christ He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of
the virgin Mary. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the will of God, taking upon
Himself human nature with its demands and necessities and identifying Himself
completely with mankind yet without sin. He honored the divine law by His
personal obedience, and in His substitutionary death on the cross He made provision
for the redemption of mankind from
sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body and appeared to His
disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He ascended
into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of Father where He is the One Mediator, fully God,
fully man, in whose Person is effected the reconciliation between God and mankind. He will return in
power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission. He
now dwells in all
believers as the living and ever present Lord.
Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; Isaiah 53:1-12; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15; 5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.
C. God the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God,
fully divine. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through
illumination He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts
men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls men to the Savior and effects regeneration. At the moment of
regeneration He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He cultivates
Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by
which they serve God through His church. He seals the believer unto the day of
final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the guarantee that God will
bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens
and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.
Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13; 12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3; 7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.
are the special
creation of God, made in His own image. He created them male and female as the
crowning work of His creation. The gift of gender is thus part of the goodness
of God's creation. In the beginning mankind was innocent of sin and was endowed by the Creator with freedom of choice. By
free choice mankind sinned against God and brought sin into the human race.
Through the temptation of Satan mankind transgressed the command of God, and
fell from original innocence whereby mankind’s posterity inherit a nature and
an environment inclined toward sin. Therefore, as soon as they are capable of
moral action, they become transgressors and are under condemnation. Only the
grace of God can bring mankind into His holy fellowship and enable mankind to
fulfill the creative purpose of God. The sacredness of human personality is
evident in that God created mankind in His own image, and in that Christ died
for mankind; therefore, every person of every race possesses full dignity and
is worthy of respect and Christian love.
Genesis 1:26-30; 2:5,7,18-22; 3; 9:6; Psalms 1; 8:3-6; 32:1-5; 51:5; Isaiah 6:5; Jeremiah 17:5; Matthew 16:26; Acts 17:26-31; Romans 1:19-32; 3:10-18,23; 5:6,12,19; 6:6; 7:14-25; 8:14-18,29; 1 Corinthians 1:21-31; 15:19,21-22; Ephesians 2:1-22; Colossians 1:21-22; 3:9-11.
Salvation involves the redemption of
the whole person, and is
offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His
own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense
salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, and
glorification. There is no salvation apart from personal faith in Jesus Christ
A. Regeneration, or the new birth, is
a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus.
It is a change of heart wrought by the Holy Spirit through conviction of sin,
to which the sinner responds in repentance toward God and faith in the Lord
Jesus Christ. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences of grace.
Repentance is a genuine turning from
sin toward God. Faith is the acceptance of Jesus Christ and commitment of the
entire person to Him as
Lord and Savior.
B. Justification is God's gracious and
full acquittal upon principles of His righteousness of all sinners who repent
and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer into a relationship of peace
and favor with God.
C. Sanctification is the experience,
beginning in regeneration, by which the believer is set apart to God's
purposes, and is enabled to progress toward moral and spiritual maturity
through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him. Growth in
grace should continue throughout the regenerate person's life.
D. Glorification is the culmination of
salvation and is the final blessed and abiding state of the redeemed.
Genesis 3:15; Exodus 3:14-17; 6:2-8; Matthew 1:21; 4:17; 16:21-26; 27:22-28:6; Luke 1:68-69; 2:28-32; John 1:11-14,29; 3:3-21,36; 5:24; 10:9,28-29; 15:1-16; 17:17; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 15:11; 16:30-31; 17:30-31; 20:32; Romans 1:16-18; 2:4; 3:23-25; 4:3ff.; 5:8-10; 6:1-23; 8:1-18,29-39; 10:9-10,13; 13:11-14; 1 Corinthians 1:18,30; 6:19-20; 15:10; 2 Corinthians 5:17-20; Galatians 2:20; 3:13; 5:22-25; 6:15; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-22; 4:11-16; Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 1:9-22; 3:1ff.; 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24; 2 Timothy 1:12; Titus 2:11-14; Hebrews 2:1-3; 5:8-9; 9:24-28; 11:1-12:8,14; James 2:14-26; 1 Peter 1:2-23; 1 John 1:6-2:11; Revelation 3:20; 21:1-22:5.
V. GOD'S PURPOSE OF GRACE
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 mankind, and comprehends all the means in
connection with the end. It is the glorious display of God's sovereign
goodness, and is infinitely wise, holy, and unchangeable. It excludes boasting
and promotes humility.
true believers can be secure in the promise that the grace of Jesus is fully
capable of holding to the end what is committed unto Him. As human beings, we
cannot define the boundaries of God’s grace, yet as followers of Jesus Christ
we daily pursue His righteousness being more and more evident in our personal
Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-8; 1 Samuel 8:4-7,19-22; Isaiah 5:1-7; Jeremiah 31:31ff.; Matthew 16:18-19; 21:28-45; 24:22,31; 25:34; Luke 1:68-79; 2:29-32; 19:41-44; 24:44-48; John 1:12-14; 3:16; 5:24; 6:44-45,65; 10:27-29; 15:16; 17:6,12,17-18; Acts 20:32; Romans 5:9-10; 8:28-39; 10:12-15; 11:5-7,26-36; 1 Corinthians 1:1-2; 15:24-28; Ephesians 1:4-23; 2:1-10; 3:1-11; Philippians 3:14-17; Colossians 1:12-14; 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14; 2 Timothy 1:12; 2:10,19; Hebrews 11:39–12:2; James 1:12; 1 Peter 1:2-5,13; 2:4-10; 1 John 1:7-9; 2:19; 3:2.
VI. THE CHURCH
A New Testament church of the Lord
Jesus Christ is an autonomous local congregation of baptized believers,
associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel; observing the
two ordinances of Christ,
governed by His laws, exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in
them by His Word, and seeking to extend the gospel to the ends of the earth. The
church operates under the Lordship of Christ through a church governmental
structure as described and modeled in the New Testament, and each individual
person is responsible and accountable to Christ as Lord. Its scriptural
officers are pastors and deacons. While both men and women are gifted for
service in the church, seen as equal in the sight of God, His word does give
specific guidance as to the office of pastor/overseer. The New Testament speaks
also of the church as the Body of Christ which includes all of the redeemed of
all the ages, believers from every tribe, and tongue, and people, and
Matthew 16:15-19; 18:15-20; Acts 2:41-42,47; 5:11-14; 6:3-6; 13:1-3; 14:23,27; 15:1-30; 16:5; 20:28; Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 3:16; 5:4-5; 7:17; 9:13-14; 12; Ephesians 1:22-23; 2:19-22; 3:8-11,21; 5:22-32; Philippians 1:1; Colossians 1:18; 3:1-15; 4:14; Hebrews 11:39-40; 1 Peter 5:1-4; Revelation 2-3; 21:2-3.
VII. BAPTISM AND THE LORD'S SUPPER
Christian baptism is the immersion of
a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It
is an act of obedience symbolizing the believer's faith in a crucified, buried,
and risen Savior, the believer's death to sin, the burial of the old life, and
the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. It is a testimony to his faith in the final
resurrection of the dead.
Lord's Supper is a symbolic act of obedience whereby followers of Jesus Christ
through partaking of the bread and the fruit of the vine, memorialize the death
of the Redeemer and anticipate His second coming.
and partaking of the Lord’s Supper are intimate celebrations of a relationship
with Jesus Christ, therefore salvation is the biblical prerequisite for baptism
and the Lord’s Supper.
Matthew 3:13-17; 26:26-30; 28:19-20; Mark 1:9-11; 14:22-26; Luke 3:21-22; 22:19-20; John 3:23; Acts 2:41-42; 8:35-39; 16:30-33; 20:7; Romans 6:3-5; 1 Corinthians 10:16,21; 11:23-29; Colossians 2:12.
VIII. DAYS OF WORSHIP
God has given to mankind a
special day of the week designed to promote trust in Him, and rest for His
people. We are to honor the Lord by giving honor to a Sabbath Day.
We are free to gather any day
of the week in order to worship the Lord, but we recognize in scripture that
the first day of the week, Sunday, is given special mention as a day when
believers in the New Testament church gathered to commemorate the resurrection
of Christ from the dead and to exercise worship and spiritual devotion, both
public and private, to Christ the Lord. This day is also commonly termed as “The
Lord’s Day,” and activities on this day should be commensurate with the
Christian’s conscience under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Exodus 20:8-11; Matthew 12:1-12; 28:1ff.; Mark 2:27-28; 16:1-7; Luke 24:1-3,33-36; John 4:21-24; 20:1,19-28; Acts 2:46; Acts 20:7; Romans 14:5-10; I Corinthians 16:1-2; Colossians 2:16; 3:16; Revelation 1:10.
IX. THE KINGDOM
The Kingdom of God includes both His
general sovereignty over the universe and His particular kingship over humans who willfully
acknowledge Him as King. Particularly the Kingdom is the realm of salvation
into which humans enter
by trustful, childlike commitment to Jesus Christ. Christians ought to pray and
to labor that the Kingdom may come and God's will be done on earth. The full
consummation of the Kingdom awaits the return of Jesus Christ and the end of
Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 9:6-7; Jeremiah 23:5-6; Matthew 3:2; 4:8-10,23; 12:25-28; 13:1-52; 25:31-46; 26:29; Mark 1:14-15; 9:1; Luke 4:43; 8:1; 9:2; 12:31-32; 17:20-21; 23:42; John 3:3; 18:36; Acts 1:6-7; 17:22-31; Romans 5:17; 8:19; 1 Corinthians 15:24-28; Colossians 1:13; Hebrews 11:10,16; 12:28; 1 Peter 2:4-10; 4:13; Revelation 1:6,9; 5:10; 11:15; 21-22.
X. LAST THINGS
God, in His own time and in His own way, will bring the world to
its appropriate end. According to His promise, Jesus Christ will return
personally and visibly in glory to the earth; the dead will be raised; and
Christ will judge all of mankind in righteousness. The unrighteous (those who
reject Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord) will be consigned to Hell, the place of
everlasting torment. The righteous (those who receive Jesus Christ as Savior
and Lord) in their resurrected and glorified bodies will receive their reward
and will dwell forever in Heaven with the Lord.
Isaiah 2:4; 11:9; Matthew 16:27; 18:8-9; 19:28; 24:27,30,36,44; 25:31-46; 26:64; Mark 8:38; 9:43-48; Luke 12:40,48; 16:19-26; 17:22-37; 21:27-28; John 14:1-3; Acts 1:11; 17:31; Romans 14:10; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 15:24-28,35-58; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:20-21; Colossians 1:5; 3:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 5:1ff.; 2 Thessalonians 1:7ff.; 2; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:1,8; Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:27-28; James 5:8; 2 Peter 3:7ff.; 1 John 2:28; 3:2; Jude 14; Revelation 1:18; 3:11; 20:1-22:13.
XI. EVANGELISM AND MISSIONS
It is the duty and privilege of every
follower of Christ and of every church of the Lord Jesus Christ to endeavor to
make disciples of all nations. The new birth of a human’s spirit by God's Holy Spirit means the
birth of love for others. Missionary effort on the part of all is a spiritual necessity of the
regenerate life, and is expressly and repeatedly commanded in the teachings of
Christ. The Lord Jesus Christ has commanded the preaching of the gospel to all
nations. It is the duty of every child of God to seek constantly to win the
lost to Christ by verbal witness undergirded by a Christian lifestyle, and by
other methods in harmony with the gospel of Christ.
Genesis 12:1-3; Exodus 19:5-6; Isaiah 6:1-8; Matthew 9:37-38; 10:5-15; 13:18-30, 37-43; 16:19; 22:9-10; 24:14; 28:18-20; Luke 10:1-18; 24:46-53; John 14:11-12; 15:7-8,16; 17:15; 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2; 8:26-40; 10:42-48; 13:2-3; Romans 10:13-15; Ephesians 3:1-11; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 2 Timothy 4:5; Hebrews 2:1-3; 11:39-12:2; 1 Peter 2:4-10; Revelation 22:17.
Christianity is the faith of
enlightenment and intelligence. In Jesus Christ abide all the treasures of
wisdom and knowledge. All sound learning is, therefore, a part of our Christian
heritage. The new birth opens all human faculties and creates a thirst for
knowledge. In Christian education there should be a proper balance between
academic freedom and academic responsibility. Freedom in any orderly
relationship of human life is
always limited and never absolute. The freedom of a teacher, who is a follower
of Jesus Christ, is subject to the pre-eminence of Jesus Christ, and the
authoritative nature of the Scriptures.
Deuteronomy 4:1,5,9,14; 6:1-10; 31:12-13; Nehemiah 8:1-8; Job 28:28; Psalms 19:7ff.; 119:11; Proverbs 3:13ff.; 4:1-10; 8:1-7,11; 15:14; Ecclesiastes 7:19; Matthew 5:2; 7:24ff.; 28:19-20; Luke 2:40; 1 Corinthians 1:18-31; Ephesians 4:11-16; Philippians 4:8; Colossians 2:3,8-9; 1 Timothy 1:3-7; 2 Timothy 2:15; 3:14-17; Hebrews 5:12-6:3; James 1:5; 3:17.
God is the source of all blessings,
temporal and spiritual; all that we have and are we owe to Him. Christians have
a spiritual obligation to
the whole world, a holy trusteeship in the gospel, and a binding stewardship in
our possessions. We are therefore under obligation to serve Him with our time,
talents, and material possessions; and we should recognize all these as
entrusted to us to use for the glory of God and for helping others. According
to the Scriptures, Christians should contribute of our means cheerfully,
regularly, systematically, proportionately, and liberally for the advancement
of the Redeemer's cause on earth.
Genesis 14:20; Leviticus 27:30-32; Deuteronomy 8:18; Malachi 3:8-12; Matthew 6:1-4,19-21; 19:21; 23:23; 25:14-29; Luke 12:16-21,42; 16:1-13; Acts 2:44-47; 5:1-11; 17:24-25; 20:35; Romans 6:6-22; 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 4:1-2; 6:19-20; 12; 16:1-4; 2 Corinthians 8-9; 12:15; Philippians 4:10-19; 1 Peter 1:18-19.
Christ's people should, as occasion
requires, organize such associations as may best secure cooperation for the
great objects of the Kingdom of God. Such organizations have no authority over
one another or over the churches. They are voluntary and advisory bodies
designed to elicit, combine, and direct the energies of our people in the most
effective manner. Members of New Testament churches should cooperate with one
another in carrying forward the missionary, educational, and benevolent
ministries for the extension of Christ's Kingdom. Christian unity in the New
Testament sense is spiritual harmony and voluntary cooperation for common ends
by various groups of Christ's people. Cooperation is desirable between the
various Christian denominations when such cooperation involves no violation of
conscience or compromise of loyalty to Christ and His Word as revealed in the
Exodus 17:12; 18:17ff.; Judges 7:21; Ezra 1:3-4; 2:68-69; 5:14-15; Nehemiah 4; 8:1-5; Matthew 10:5-15; 20:1-16; 22:1-10; 28:19-20; Mark 2:3; Luke 10:1ff.; Acts 1:13-14; 2:1ff.; 4:31-37; 13:2-3; 15:1-35; 1 Corinthians 1:10-17; 3:5-15; 12; 2 Corinthians 8-9; Galatians 1:6-10; Ephesians 4:1-16; Philippians 1:15-18.
XV. THE CHRISTIAN AND THE SOCIAL ORDER
All Christians are under obligation to
seek to make the will of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society.
Means and methods used for the improvement of society and the establishment of
righteousness among mankind can
be truly and permanently helpful only when they are rooted in the regeneration
of the individual by the saving grace of God in Jesus Christ. In the spirit of
Christ, Christians should oppose racism, every form of greed, selfishness, and
vice, and all forms of sexual immorality. We should work to provide for the
orphaned, the needy, the abused, the aged, the helpless, and the sick. We
should speak on behalf of the unborn and contend for the sanctity of all human
life from conception to natural death. In order to promote these ends
Christians should be ready to work with all people of good will in any good cause, always
being careful to act in the spirit of love without compromising their loyalty
to Christ and His truth.
Exodus 20:3-17; Leviticus 6:2-5; Deuteronomy 10:12; 27:17; Psalm 101:5; Micah 6:8; Zechariah 8:16; Matthew 5:13-16,43-48; 22:36-40; 25:35; Mark 1:29-34; 2:3ff.; 10:21; Luke 4:18-21; 10:27-37; 20:25; John 15:12; 17:15; Romans 12–14; 1Corinthians 5:9-10; 6:1-7; 7:20-24; 10:23-11:1; Galatians 3:26-28; Ephesians 6:5-9; Colossians 3:12-17; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; Philemon; James 1:27; 2:8.
XVI. PEACE AND WAR
It is the duty of Christians to seek
peace with all people on
principles of righteousness. The true remedy for the spirit of war is the
gospel of our Lord. The supreme need of the world is the acceptance of His
teachings in all the affairs of mankind and nations, and the practical
application of His law of love. Christian people throughout the world should
pray for the reign of the Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 2:4; Matthew 5:9,38-48; 6:33; 26:52; Luke 22:36,38; Romans 12:18-19; 13:1-7; 14:19; Hebrews 12:14; James 4:1-2.
XVII. RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
God alone is Lord of the conscience,
and He has left it free from the doctrines and commandments of humans which are contrary to His Word
or not contained in it. Church and state should be separate. The state owes to
every church protection and full freedom in the pursuit of its spiritual ends.
In providing for such freedom no ecclesiastical group or denomination should be
favored by the state more than others. Civil government being ordained of God,
it is the duty of Christians to render loyal obedience thereto in all things
not contrary to the revealed will of God. The church should not resort to the
civil power to carry on its work. The gospel of Christ contemplates spiritual
means alone for the pursuit of its ends. The state has no right to impose
penalties for religious opinions of any kind. The state has no right to impose
taxes for the support of any form of religion. A free church in a free state is
the Christian ideal, and this implies the right of free and unhindered access
to God on the part of all people, and the
right to form and propagate opinions in the sphere of religion without
interference by the civil power.
Genesis 1:27; 2:7; Matthew 6:6-7,24; 16:26; 22:21; John 8:36; Acts 4:19-20; Romans 6:1-2; 13:1-7; Galatians 5:1,13; Philippians 3:20; 1 Timothy 2:1-2; James 4:12; 1 Peter 2:12-17; 3:11-17; 4:12-19.
XVIII. THE FAMILY
God has ordained the family as the
foundational institution of human society. It is composed of persons related to
one another by marriage, blood, or adoption.
Marriage is the uniting of one man and
one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God's unique gift to
reveal the union between Christ and His church and to provide for the man and
the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel of
sexual expression according to biblical standards, and the means for
procreation of the human race.
The husband and wife are of equal
worth before God, since both are created in God's image. The marriage
relationship models the way God relates to His people. A husband is to love his
wife as Christ loved the church. He has the God-given responsibility to provide
for, to protect, and to lead his family. A wife is to submit herself graciously
to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits
to the headship of Christ. She, being in the image of God as is her husband and
thus equal to him, has the God-given responsibility to respect her husband and
to serve together in
managing the household and nurturing the next generation.
Children, from the moment of
conception, are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Parents are to
demonstrate to their children God's pattern for marriage. Parents are to teach
their children spiritual and moral values and to lead them, through consistent
lifestyle example and loving discipline, to make choices based on biblical
truth. Children are to honor and obey their parents.
Genesis 1:26-28; 2:15-25; 3:1-20; Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 6:4-9; Joshua 24:15; 1 Samuel 1:26-28; Psalms 51:5; 78:1-8; 127; 128; 139:13-16; Proverbs 1:8; 5:15-20; 6:20-22; 12:4; 13:24; 14:1; 17:6; 18:22; 22:6,15; 23:13-14; 24:3; 29:15,17; 31:10-31; Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; 9:9; Malachi 2:14-16; Matthew 5:31-32; 18:2-5; 19:3-9; Mark 10:6-12; Romans 1:18-32; 1 Corinthians 7:1-16; Ephesians 5:21-33; 6:1-4; Colossians 3:18-21; 1 Timothy 5:8,14; 2 Timothy 1:3-5; Titus 2:3-5; Hebrews 13:4; 1 Peter 3:1-7.