There are many variations Bible belief – all of which quote the Scriptures as their source.
This discussion is not intended to cover every Bible doctrine, but to highlight those most important to 1) identify who we are and 2) to inform you of what we believe.
The Bible is God’s word and message to humanity about salvation. The scriptures are inspired by God and infallible, meaning without error. The Bible ought to be read and interpreted literally, understood contextually, and obey whole-heartedly. God’s Word is profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16), ought to be studied (2 Timothy 2:15) and should not be interpreted by personal opinion or agenda (2 Peter 1:20).
We believe that the King James Version is the best English translation due to its literal interpretation of the original texts, as well as the power of its prose and writing style. Although some people have difficulty with the old English at first, once this obstacle is overcome, the KJV simply has no peer among modern English translations. Heritage Family Church primarily uses the KJV for reading the Scriptural text in our services.
There is only One God (Deuteronomy 6:4). God is an invisible Spirit who manifested himself to humanity throughout scripture (Colossians 1:15). In the New Testament, God manifested himself in flesh and dwelt among us through Jesus Christ (John 1:1, 14; 1 Timothy 3:16). We believe that Jesus Christ is God, that the fulness of the Godhead dwells in Him (Colossians 2:9), and that He possesses all authority in heaven and earth (Matthew 28:18).
The message of New Testament salvation is summed up in Peter’s preaching on the day of Pentecost when he responded to the question: What shall we do? Peter answered, “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:38). This salvation message was consistently preached and obeyed throughout the Book of Acts.
Jesus Christ taught the same message to his disciples as we see during a conversation in John 3:5-7: Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. (6) That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. (7) Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.
New Testament salvation is experienced by an individual once he or she experiences
1. Obedient faith in Jesus Christ
2. Repents from sin and turns to Jesus Christ
3. Baptism in Jesus’ Name for the remission of sin (born of water)
4. Receives the Holy Ghost (born of the Spirit)
The New Birth experience bringing New Testament salvation delivers people from sin and out of a sinful lifestyle. The experience results in significant behavioral and lifestyle changes. The Bible defines clear principles and guidelines for Christian living which are taught and lived by today. These guidelines apply to our attitude, spiritual disciplines, worship, media consumption, hair and clothing styles – ultimately purifying ourselves on the inside and out. Our reason for living this way is not to be “legalistic,” but to be obedient to God with a lifestyle that we KNOW pleases Him.
These do not represent all of our beliefs, but they do identify who we are and the foundation upon which our church is built. Below are guiding principles that we embrace as we pursue our relationship with God.
Our ultimate goal is to deal with sin at the root and to not allow it’s symptoms to manifest in our lives. The majority of all sin can be traced back to three root sins: 1) arrogant pride, 2) deception and 3) selfish desire. Arrogant pride manifests in defiance and disobedience, rebellion and iniquity, violence, and egotism – it says “nobody is going to tell me how to live: not even God.”
Deception causes people to believe anything besides the truth. Sometimes we are self-deceived, and sometimes we are deceived by others. Regardless, what we believe, right or wrong, influences our decisions and actions. These can be false doctrines, lies about yourself or others, or self-justification to excuse away sin.
Selfish-desire can be manifested as lust, craving, or ambition that only seeks our own personal gratification without consideration of its consequence to others. It often manifests in materialism, obesity, debt, theft, pornography, adultery, or other deviant sexual sins.
Being absolutely honest with ourselves, others, and especially God is the best way to live an overcoming and victorious life. We need to be honest with how we handle the scripture (doctrinal truth), with the appropriateness of our thoughts and actions (personal integrity), and not behave in any way that would impose a need to deceive or mislead (honesty). A powerful term in this regard is transparency – or living a life that does not have to be hidden. When we find ourselves in messy situations convoluted by lies and deception, remember that the truth shall set you free.
When Jesus Christ becomes the Lord of our lives, that means over everything. In other words, there is no area of my life that is off-limits to God – our thoughts, our attitudes, our ambitions, our relationships, our personality, our possessions. Jesus has the final say. We want Him to freely access anything and everything in our lives and guide us in ordering our lives in a manner that pleases him. If something needs to be removed – it’s gone. No questions asked. He is in charge here!
Scripture gives a clear hierarchy of authority. The head of Christ is God. The head of man is Christ. The head of the woman is the man (see 1 Corinthians 11:3). In order to be in authority, one must be under authority, for the source of all authority comes from a higher power, and the highest power is that of God. Knowing this, we endeavor to align ourselves with proper spiritual authority in our lives, as well as being obedient to the calling of God for our lives. Within a family, this means the children align with the parents and the wife to her husband. On the job, employees align with their managers, managers to owners. In a local assembly, men align themselves to the Pastor, and the Pastor to his Pastor or an Elder (usually outside of the local assembly), and ultimately to God. Another word for aligning is submitting.