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Lead Pastor of our Portuguese Congregation
ARTICLE V STATEMENT OF FAITH
Section 1. THE SCRIPTURE
We believe the Bible to be the very Word of God; that the sixty-six books comprising of the Old and New Testament are verbally inspired in all parts and therefore wholly without error as originally given by God; that it is our final authority, our only and all-sufficient rule of faith and practice.
Section 2. THE GODHEAD
We believe in one eternal God, who has always existed and will always exist. He is the creator of all the universe, and is the ultimate authority or principle. God is perfect in holiness, boundless in love, infinite in wisdom, measureless in power, and supremely righteous and just. Although God is one in His being, He exists eternally in three divine persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Section 3. THE FATHER
We believe the Father is the headship of the Triunity. The Father reigns with providential care over all life and history in His created universe. He fulfils His eternal purpose according to His will and for His glory. He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, He hears and answers prayers, and He saves from sin and death all who come to Him by faith in Jesus Christ, His Son.
Section 4. THE LORD JESUS CHRIST
We believe the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God and God the Son who eternally existed in preincarnate glory. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, all-sufficient substitutionary death, victorious bodily resurrection, triumphant ascension, present intercession and personal and glorious return.
Section 5. THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe in the absolute deity and personality of the Holy Spirit; that He is the Divine agent in the sinner's regeneration and the believer’s sanctification. We believe He baptizes all believers into the body of Christ, indwelling and sealing them unto the day of redemption. The Holy Spirit gives spiritual gifts to believers, empowering them for discipleship and loving service. We believe that evidence of the Holy Spirit in a Christian’s life is manifested in the Fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22)
Section 6. SATAN
We believe in the existence and personality of Satan; that he was created perfect; but through pride rebelled against God thus becoming utterly depraved; that he is the adversary of God and His children, and is the power behind the world's godless and deceptive activity; that his final doom is settled in the lake of fire.
Section 7. MAN
We believe that human beings alone, both male and female, were directly created by God in His image. All people are made to enjoy relationship with God, with one another, and with creation, as its stewards. Through personal, sinful disobedience, the first man, Adam, became a fallen creature thus incurring both physical and spiritual death upon the human race. Being then totally depraved, he is dependent upon the mercy of God.
Section 8. SALVATION
We believe that salvation is the free gift of God, neither merited nor secured in part or in whole by any virtue or work of man but received only by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is bestowed only by the sovereign grace of God through the all-sufficient sacrifice of Christ and is provided for all. We believe that those whom God has effectually called shall be preserved and finally perfected in the image of the Lord.
Section 9. THE CHURCH
We believe the New Testament Church is the Body of Christ, the people of God. We believe the local church body is a company of believers, baptized by immersion, who are voluntarily associated together for: the ministry of the Word, mutual helpfulness and edification, observance of the ordinances and fulfillment of the great commission (making disciples, baptizing and teaching unto the ends of the earth). We believe the church is to be sovereign and under no higher ecclesiastical authority. We believe that Christians are to live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.
Section 10. CHURCH ORDINANCES
We believe there are two church ordinances in the New Testament in the following order: Baptism and the Lord's Supper. We believe baptism to be the immersion in water of a believer in testimony of union by faith with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection. We believe the Lord’s Supper to be a memorial, as instructed by Christ, which gives testimony of the believer’s faith in the death of Christ and is to be observed ‘until He comes.’ The believer partakes of two elements, the bread and the ‘fruit of the vine’, which symbolize the Lord’s body and shed blood. It is important that each believer regularly and humbly observes this memorial ordinance.
Section 11. FUTURE THINGS
We believe in the personal, imminent, bodily and glorious return of the Lord Jesus Christ and that as Christians we will be resurrected to appear before the judgment seat of Christ so that each one may receive according to what he has done in the body. We believe in the eternal blessedness of the righteous and in the eternal punishment of the wicked. The wicked will be judged at the Great White Throne judgment.
Section 12. CIVIL GOVERNMENT
We believe that civil government is of divine appointment for the interest and good order of society; that governments are to be prayed for, conscientiously honoured and obeyed, except only in the things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is Lord over all kings and rulers of the earth.
Section 13. CHURCH AND STATE
We believe in the entire separation of church and state.
Section 14. RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
We believe in religious liberty; that every man has the right to practice and propagate his beliefs.
Section 15. MARRIAGE
We believe that marriage is the covenant relationship between one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others.