THE CHURCH COVENANT
All read: 2 Corinthians:5:14-15
We will live for Christ: (repeat for each point)
• By encouraging one another to walk more closely with the Lord. 1 Thes:5:11-14
• By worshiping together. Hebrews:10:25
• By serving together.
• By showing Christ to others in word and deed (1 John:3:18).
• By growing in evangelism. Acts:1:8
• By living for the world to come. Matthew:6:19-20
• By acknowledging Christ' call to attend this church, to support it and serve in it. Eph:4:11-16
(A covenant is a contractual agreement; this covenant for Waterloo Baptist Church defines our basic relationship with each other and with Christ.)
What We Believe
I. The Holy Scriptures
I We believe that the Old and New Testaments of the Holy Bible, in every word and the whole, are the verbal, plenary, inspired word of God and perfectly preserved in the King James Version; that this book in my our hands is the absolute authority in all matters of life, faith, and practice; that it has no error and reveals the truth about this world, life and mankind. God is its author through human writers. We believe this book to be the seed of regeneration used by the Holy Spirit. Salvation comes through believing in Christ. Matthew:5:18, 2 Timothy:3:15-17, 2 Peter:1:20-21, Psalms:119:89, Psalms 140, 1 Peter:1:23, John:12:47-48
We believe in one triune God, creator and judge of heaven and earth, eternally co-existing in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: co-equal in power, glory, being, attributes, and perfections.
Genesis:1:1, Deuteronomy:6:4, 2 Corinthians:13:14, 1 John:5:7, John:4:24, Rev:20:11-15, Matthew:28:19
III. The Person and Work of Jesus Christ
a) We believe that Jesus Christ is Lord of all, the eternal word of God, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary; God manifest in the flesh, in order that He might reveal who God is and to redeem sinful man. Luke:1:35, John:1:12, John:1:14, 1 Timothy:3:16, Matthew:11:27, John:14:9, Isaiah:9:6
b) We believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, lived a sinless life, died on the cross, was buried, rose again on the third day, and is ascended into heaven, where he sits on the right hand of the throne of God and will physically return to earth in the future.
Isaiah:7:14, Matthew:1:18-25, Luke:1:34-35, John:1:14, 1 Corinthians:15:1-4, Acts:1:9-11, Phil:2:9-10, Zech:12:10
c) We believe that Jesus Christ emptied Himself of the exercise of all the attributes of deity in His humility and that God has raised Him from the dead and exalted Him as Lord over everything, to the glory of God the Father. Phil:2:7-11, Hebrews:2:9
d) We believe that Jesus lived a sinless life which is the only sufficient, substitute for the sins of the whole world by means of death on the cross; to give life to all who receive him; to intercede before the Father. John:1:12, John 29, John:14:6, Hebrews chapters 4:15, Hebrews:9:14-15, Hebrews 24-28, 1 John:2:1-2, Romans:8:34
e) We believe that Jesus is God. Hebrews:1:8, John:1:1-3
IV. Person and Work of the Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit convicts, regenerates (gives new life), indwells, and seals all believers in Christ; that He gives spiritual gifts to all believers for the perfecting of the saints, the work of the ministry, and the edifying of the body of Christ: that the manifestation (outward expression) of any gift is not required as evidence of spirituality. The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth. Ephesians:4:12, Ephesians:1:13-14, John:16:7-14, 1 John:2:20, 1 John:2:29, 1 Corinthians 12, 1 Corinthians 13, John:14:26
The Holy Spirit restrains the “wickedness” of mankind. (2 Thessalonians:2:7)
We believe that apostolic sign gifts, including tongues, healing, prophesying and working miracles, are not the norm for today.
We believe that man was created innocent in the image and likeness of God; that man died and inherited a sin nature in Adam’s fall; that man is completely alienated from God; that he is, in his nature, totally depraved (but his actions are not as bad as they could be); a sinner by choice; that is unable, of himself, to save himself, or approach God. Genesis:1:27, Genesis:3:15, 1 Corinthians:15:22, Romans:1:18-20, Romans:3:10-23, Ephesians:2:1-12
We believe that Satan is the anointed cherub who fell by pride, that he is the tempter and accuser of all men; that he is powerful; that the lake of fire is created for his future destiny; that he has malicious intent toward God and His people; that he is the prince of this world; that he is defeated.
His names are Lucifer, serpent, dragon, Beelzebub, devil etc..
Ezekiel:28:11-19, Genesis:3:1-5, Job:1:6-12, Job:2:1-7, Revelation:12:10, Matthew:25:41, John:12:31, Ephesians:2:2, Revelation:12:9-10
We believe that salvation is a gift of God by grace, not of works, received by faith in Jesus Christ who lived righteously, died a sinner's death and physically rose from the grave (Ephesians:2:8-9); that God’s justice is satisfied (atoned) by the shed blood of Jesus Christ (Romans:3:24-25, Hebrews:9:14); that justification is by faith (Romans:4:1-5); that we are saved from the penalty of sin ( justification); and the power of sin (sanctification) (Romans:5:9, Romans:6:22-23) and that we will be saved from the presence of sin (glorification) (Romans:8:23 and Romans:8:30). Justification is to be declared righteous by God. Sanctification is God's work of making us righteous in daily living. Glorification is when God perfects us.
VIII. Eternal Security and Assurance of Salvation
We believe that all the redeemed are kept by the power of God and sealed by the Holy Spirit. They cannot lose their salvation. Romans:8:35-39, John:10:27-30, 2 Timothy:2:13, Ephesians:1:13-14, Ephesians:4:30
We believe that the Christian's assurance of his salvation only comes from a walk of faith that is close to Jesus Christ; Believers can know that they are saved. 1 John chapters 1-5, (especially 1 John:5:13)
IX. The Church
We believe that the church is the body and bride of Christ made up of all born-again believers; that in this world it is seen in local, autonomous churches; that each church is to be self-supporting, self-governing, self-propagating; that it is best known by the Baptist distinctives (Biblical authority, autonomy of local church, priesthood of believers, two offices – pastor and deacons, individual soul liberty, separation of church and state, two ordinances; baptism and communion, saved church membership).
1 Corinthians:11:23-26, Ephesians:4:11, 1 Corinthians:3:9, Acts:13:1, Acts:15:19-31, Romans:16:1, Romans:16:4,
1 Corinthians:12:12-14, 2 Corinthians:11:2, Revelation:19:7-9, Revelation:21:2, Revelation:21:10, Ephesians:1:22-23, Ephesians:5:25-27
We believe Baptism is an act of obedience signifying that the believer has died to self and is alive to God. Roman 6:1-6, Galatians:2:20 We believe that communion symbolically pictures the believers continual identification with the death of Christ and continual living for the day Christ returns. 1 Cor:12:26.
We believe that God’s plan for the church is the evangelization and discipling of the world by the preaching of the Word of God and by the witness of every believer in Jesus Christ through the local church and the establishing of local churches. Matthew:28:18, Acts:1:8, 2 Cor:5:19-20, 2 Timothy:2:2
XI. Prophesy and End Times
a) We believe that Jesus will return to set up His millennial kingdom of 1000 years at the end of the seven years of tribulation where he will reign as King of Kings. We believe that at the end of the millennial kingdom there will be the final judgment where Satan and all who are not saved will be cast into the lake of fire to suffer for eternity. We believe that the final judgment will be followed by the destruction of this creation and God will create a new heaven and new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness. Matthew:28:15-30, Daniel:9:27, Revelation:20:7-15 ; 2 Peter:3:7-13.
b) We believe in the pre-tribulational bodily return of Christ in the air to catch away his bride.
Revelation:3:22, Revelation:4:1, 1 Thessalonians:4:13-18, 1 Thessalonians:4:13-18, 1 Thessalonians:5:9,
Revelation:6:16-17, Jeremiah:30:7, Daniel:12:1
c) We believe in a moderate dispensational interpretation of scripture. We believe that the Scriptures interpreted in their natural literal sense reveal divinely determined dispensations or rules of life which define man's responsibilities in successive ages. These dispensations are not ways of salvation, but rather are divinely ordered stewardships by which God directs man according to his purpose. Three of these dispensations - the law, the church, and the kingdom- are subjects of detailed revelation in Scripture. Ephesians:1:10, Ephesians:3:2, Colossians:3:25, 2 Timothy:2:15 , Galatians:3:13-25, 1 Corinthians:9:17
XII. Final Judgment
We believe in the physical resurrection of all men to be judged at the end of the 1000 year reign of Christ on earth; the saved to eternal life and joy, the unsaved to judgment and everlasting conscious punishment in the lake of fire. Revelation:20:5, Revelation:20:6, Revelation:20:11-15, Matthew:25:46, Luke:16:22-26, Matthew:25:21-23
XIII. Civil Government
We believe that God has set up authorities on earth that are to be obeyed and honored. Each authority answers to God as to how they fulfill their God given responsibilities. We believe that every person is subject to these authorities. We believe that the Bible teaches that the authorities; the home, the church , and the state, are not to infringe upon or interfere with the biblical responsibilities of each authority. God's law supersedes man's law in all things. Romans:13:1-7; Ephesians:5:22-24; Hebrews:13:17;
1 Peter:2:13-14; Acts:4:19
We believe that all the saved should live a life that honors Christ and avoids all that does not. We believe that God commands us to separate from sinful pleasures, practices, and associations. Roman 12:1-2, Romans:14:13, 1 Corinthians:6:19-20, 2 Corinthians:6:14-17
We believe that God created the universe in six literal days. We reject evolution, theistic evolution, and all unscriptural theories of origin. We believe that the fossil record is part of this present creation. Genesis 1 and Genesis 2, Exodus:20:11
XVI: Human Sexuality
We believe that intimate sexual activity is to be reserved for heterosexual marriage. All homosexual, lesbian, bi-sexual behavior is sin. Bestiality, fornication, cross-dressing, adultery, pornography are sinful perversions of God's gift of sex. We believe that all attempts to change gender are manifestations of sin. We believe in compassion for those who go through this struggle. Genesis:2:24, Leviticus:18:1-30, Romans:1:26-29, 1 Corinthians:6:9, 1 Thessalonians:4:3
We believe that only marriage between one man and one woman is scriptural. We reject same sex marriage. Ephesians:5:22-23, Matthew:19:4-6.
XVII. Divorce and Remarriage
a)We believe that God hates divorce and intends marriage to be "until death do us part". We believe God
allows divorce because of the hardness of the human heart. Matthew:19:3-9 Genesis:2:23-24 1 Cor:7:27
b)We believe divorce is the death of a marriage. 1 Cor:7:15, 1 Cor:7:27-29, 1 Cor:7:39 John:5:16-18
c)We believe that God allows remarriage but commands that it be in the Lord. 1 Cor:7:39
d)We believe that a church leader/member that is divorced and remarried is the husband of one wife. He is not a bigamist. 1 Tim:2:2 Titus:1:6 John:5:16-18
a) We believe that human life begins at conception and that the unborn child is a human being. We believe that abortion is murder. There are no acceptable excuses for abortion. We believe in compassion for those who go through this struggle. Job:3:16, Psalm:51:5, Psalm:139:14-16, Isaiah:44:24, Isaiah:49:1, Isaiah:49:5, Jeremiah:1:5, Luke:1:44
All life is sacred and valuable. We therefore reject all forms of euthanasia. Any act that causes death or any omission of proper medical care is murder. This statement is focused against mercy killing and assisted suicide rather than trying to respond to every possible medical question. Ex 20:13, Ex 23:7, Acts:17:28.
We believe that we should demonstrate love for others, not only toward fellow believers, but also toward those who are not believers, those who oppose us, and those who engage in sinful actions. We are to deal with those who oppose us graciously, gently, patiently, and humbly period. God forbids the stirring up of strife, the taking of revenge, or the threat and the use of violence as a means of resolving personal conflict or obtaining personal justice. Although God commands to abhor sinful actions, we are to love and pray for any person who engages in such sinful action. Lev:19:18, Matthew:5:44-48, Luke:6:31, John:13:34-35, Romans:12:9-10, Romans:12:17-21, Romans:13:8-10, Phil:2:24-26, 2 Tim:2:24-26, Titus:3:2, 1 John:3:17-18.