When it comes to theology and doctrine, Disciples Church trusts solely in the authority and teaching of the Holy Bible.
We affirm 2 Timothy 3:16-17: “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
And, Isaiah 55:8-9: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
In seeking God’s will in truth and practice, we are seeking to heed the Bible’s commands:
to have sound doctrine (1 Timothy 4:16; Titus 1:9, 2:1),
to love our Christian brothers and sisters (1 Peter 4:8; 1 John 4:7-21),
and to avoid unnecessary divisions (Romans 16:17; 1 Corinthians 1:10;1 Corinthians 12:25; Titus 3:10).
Below you will find a summary of our core beliefs in our “Statement of Faith” and some of our “Theological Distinctives”.
Finally, Disciples Church has been blessed by the historic and longstanding orthodox teachings of those throughout church history. We have come to increasingly benefit from the faithful work of the historic Baptist Confession of 1689, which can be found here: THE BAPTIST CONFESSION OF 1689
A. Disciples Church Statement of Faith
We believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the inspired word of God, infallible and inerrant and complete in the original manuscripts and the supreme authority for faith & life.
2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20,21; Psalm 19:7-11; Proverbs 30:5; Psalm 119:105; John 8:31,32; John 20:31; Romans 15:4; Matthew 24:35; Matthew 4:4; Numbers 23:19; Psalm 12:6; Psalm 119:89; Titus 1:2; Hebrews 6:18
God (The Trinity)
We believe in one God who eternally and equally exists in three persons; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and each person is fully God and there is one God. The Triune God has always been, is and always will be supremely joyful in the complimentary fellowship of the Holy Trinity. Perfect in holiness, truth and love, God is sovereign over all, creator of all, knows all and is present with all both visible and invisible, and is worthy to receive all glory and adoration forever.
Genesis 1:1-3; Deuteronomy 6:4; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Psalm 90:2; John 1:1-4; Matt 3:16-17; John 4:24; Romans 1:19-20; 1 Peter 1:2; Isaiah 43:7; Isaiah 48:9-11; Lamentations 3:37-38; Col 1:16; Exodus 4:11; James 1:13; Romans 13:1-2; Romans 11:36
We believe in God the Father who is perfect in holiness, wisdom, power and love. We believe that God is infinite & foreknows all that shall come to pass. We believe that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ.
The Son, Jesus Christ
We believe Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. Co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit, Jesus became man without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ who is perfect in nature, teaching and obedience, lived a sinless life and purchased redemption for those who believe through the costly grace of His death on Calvary’s cross as a vicarious, substitutionary sacrifice. Justification is assured by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead. Having redeemed his people from sin & reconciling them to God, on the third day He rose bodily from the grave, victorious over death. He ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God where, as our High Priest and head of the church, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate for His people as he rules as Lord over all. We believe Jesus is personally and visibly coming again to judge the living and the dead.
John 1:1-5,14; Luke 1:30-35; Hebrews 12:2; Hebrews 2:14; Heb. 4:14-15; Acts 1:9-11; Romans 1:3-4; Isaiah 9:6; Matthew 1:22-23; Matthew 14:13-30; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; 1 Timothy 6:12-15; Titus 2:13; 2 Corinthians 5:21; I Peter 2:21-23; John 20:30-31; Matthew 20:28; Ephesians 1:4; Acts 1:11; Romans 5:6-8; Romans 6:9-10; Hebrews 7:25; Hebrews 9:28; Romans 3:24; 1 Peter 2:24; Ephesians 1:7; 1 Peter 1:3–5; Hebrews 9:24; Romans 8:34; 1 John 2:1–2; John 11:51-52; 1 Peter 4:5; Romans 14:9
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the third person of the trinity and is co-equal with the Father and Son. Through the proclamation of the gospel, the Spirit persuades mankind to repent of their sins and confess Jesus as Lord. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ at salvation and provides abiding help and power for daily living, conviction of sin, understanding biblical truth, testimony of Christ, progressive sanctification, and distributing spiritual gifts which are to be used to build up the body of Christ and are to be exercised according to biblical guidelines and priorities.
John 16:7-15; 1 Corinthians 12:1-14; Romans 8:9; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 6:19; 2 Corinthians 3:17; Ephesians 1:13; 2 Corinthians 3:6; Ephesians 5:18; John 14:16-17; John 14:26; John 15:26; John 15:27; Galatians 5:22-26; Romans 8:26-27
We believe God made man, male and female, in His own image, as the crown of creation, but man rebelled against God in sin. As a result, all human beings incur physical, spiritual and eternal death, which is separation from God. Consequently, all human beings are born sinful by nature and practice sin by choice which enslaves man to the fleeting pleasures of self rule and sin leaving them totally depraved in every aspect of their being. Man has no hope or power to restore or save oneself apart from God’s own gracious intervention.
Genesis 1:26-27; Genesis 3:6; Genesis 3:14-19; Genesis 6:5; Romans 5:12; Romans 3:23; Ephesians 2:1-3; Romans 3:9-12; Ephesians 4:18; Romans 8:7; Romans 7:18; James 1:14; Romans 14:23; Romans 5:19; John 6:44; Ezekiel 36:26
We believe that salvation is the gift of God by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, for the glory of God alone.
Romans 6:23; John 3:3; John 3:8; Romans 9:14-24; Psalm 115:3; John 10:14-18; John 10:24-30; Romans 3:24-26; John 3:16; 1 Peter 1:18–19; 1 Peter 3:18; Mark 10:45; Titus 3:5; John 1:12-13; John 14:6; Romans 5:1-2; Galatians 3:26; Ephesians 2:4–10; Ephesians 1:5-7; 1 Cor. 10:31; Isa 43:7; 1 Cor 6:20; Romans 15:9; Psalm 115:1
We believe all people will experience bodily resurrection and will exist forever. We believe that those who have been saved by the grace of God through union with Christ by faith and through regeneration by the Holy Spirit enter the kingdom of God and delight in the blessings of the new covenant: the forgiveness of sins, and the inward transformation that awakens a desire to glorify, trust, and enjoy eternal union with God forever. We believe that those who deny Christ remain dead in their sin and are under God’s perfect wrath resulting in eternal suffering apart from God forever.
1 John 5:11-13; Philippians 3:17-21; 1 Corinthians 15:52; John 3:16; Ephesians 1:5-6 Romans 6:23; 1 John 2:25; John 6:37-40; John 10:27-30; Romans 8:1; Romans 8:38-39; 1 Corinthians 1:4-8; 1 Peter 1:5; Galatians 5:13; Romans 13:13-14; Titus 2:11-15; Revelation 13:8; Revelation 20:12-15
We believe God by His Word and Spirit creates the Church, calling sinful men and woman into the eternal fellowship of Christ’s Body. The purpose of the church is to Glorify God. The ultimate mission of the Church is to enjoy God above all things, to make disciples and grow in Gospel-centered community and to love & serve others both in and outside the church. By this God transforms human nature resulting in society’s transformation and restoration. The ultimate power of the church is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
All members of the Church universal are to be a committed participant of a local church. The church’s ultimate authority is Jesus Christ who is the head of the body. Pastoral Elders are called by God to be vetted, appointed, supported and charged with leading, feeding, protecting and caring for the local body of Christ so that each missional member may faithfully steward their God-given gifts in His service in relation to one another and to the world.
Colossians 1:18; Ephesians 4:4-6; Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Peter 2:9-10; Matthew 16:16-18; Matthew 28:18-20; Matthew 5:13-16; Matthew 22:37-40; Ephesians 1:22-23; Ephesians 5:23; Ephesians 5:25-27; 1 Corinthians 12:12-14; 2 Corinthians 11:2; Romans 16:1-4; 1 Corinthians 3:9-11; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 5:4-7; 1 Corinthians 5:13; 1 Peter 5:1-4; Ephesians 2:19-22; Ephesians 5:19-21; Acts 2:42; Hebrews 10:23-25; Acts 14:27; Acts 20:17; Acts 1:8; Acts 13:1-4; Acts 15:19-31; Acts 20:28; Titus 1:5–11; 1 Timothy 3:1-3
Ordinances of the Church
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has commissioned two ordinances to the local church. Believer’s Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. The Lord’s Supper and Believer’s Baptism are a scriptural means of testimony for the church and are to be celebrated and practiced by the body of believer’s at Christ command until He return’s.
Water baptism is only intended for the individual who has received the saving benefits of Christ’s atoning work and become His disciple. Therefore, in obedience to Christ’s command and as a testimony to God, the church, oneself and the world, a believer should be immersed in water in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Water baptism is a visual and symbolic demonstration of a person’s union with Christ in the likeness of His death and resurrection. It signifies that his former way of life has been put to death and vividly depicts a person’s release from the mastery of sin.
The Lord’s Supper is to be observed only by those who have become genuine followers of Christ. This ordinance symbolizes the breaking of Christ’s body and the shedding of His blood on our behalf, and is to be observed repeatedly throughout the Christian life as a sign of continued participation in the atoning benefits of Christ’s death. As we partake of the Lord’s Supper with an attitude of faith and self-examination, we remember and proclaim the death of Christ and signify our unity with other members of Christ’s body.
The Consummation of All Things
The consummation of all things includes the future, physical, visible, personal and glorious return of Jesus Christ, the resurrection of the dead and the translation of those alive in Christ, the judgment of the just and the unjust, and the fulfillment of Christ’s kingdom in the new heavens and the new earth. In the consummation, Satan with his hosts and all those outside Christ are finally separated from the benevolent presence of God, enduring eternal punishment, but the righteous, in glorious bodies, shall live and reign with Him forever, serving Him and giving Him unending praise and glory. Then shall the eager expectation of creation be fulfilled, and the whole earth shall proclaim the glory of God Who makes all things new.
John 6:37-40; Romans 8:1; Romans 9:22-24; Acts 1:11; Philippians 3:20-21; 1 Thessalonians 4:15; 2 Timothy 4:1; Titus 2:13; Matthew 16:27; Mark 14:62; John 14:3; 1 Corinthians 4:5; 1 Corinthians 15; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Revelation 13:8; Revelation 20:4-6; Revelation 20:11-15; Revelation 21:1-8
B. Disciples Church Theological Distinctives
The following is a summary of each of our theological distinctives. For copies of more detailed position papers that elaborate on each distinctive, contact us at email@example.com.
1. Gospel-Centered Ministry
A Gospel-Centered Ministry is a vision or philosophy of ministry that focuses exclusively on helping people grow in their love of God by understanding the person and work of Jesus while living out the practical implications of the Gospel in every aspect of their lives.
The Gospel is not simply the way that we get into the kingdom of God, but it is also the way that we make all progress in our lives. We believe it is only through the power of the Gospel that our lives will be transformed and God will be glorified. Therefore, everything that we do, say, and create is designed to help us deepen in our love, appreciation, understanding, and application of the Gospel in every area of our lives. A Gospel-Centered ministry means that we will resist doing anything that does not directly help us deepen in the application of the Gospel in our lives.
2. Complementarian Relationships
Complementarianism is the belief that the Bible teaches that God created men and women to be completely equal in essence, dignity, value, and human nature while being distinct in roles and function within the home and the church. This view is in contrast to hierarchialism that often neglects the equality of both men and woman, and egalitarianism that often neglects the biblical instruction of distinct roles given to men and woman.
3. Plurality of Biblical Elders Governance
The Elders are a group of God ordained and qualified men who are called to serve as the spiritual leaders of the body of Disciples Church. Biblical Elders have the responsibility of managing and shepherding the flock of God entrusted to their care. As a group, the Elders are to protect, feed, lead/govern, and care for the members of the church. Elders are men who are called and appointed by God because of their spiritual qualifications. They are servants who consistently seek direction for the body from the Lord through prayer and diligent study of the Bible while maintaining the highest standards of integrity and maturity before God and man. When biblical Elders are established and recognized by the church as a centralized authority, the body functions in victory and freedom resulting in unified vision, accountable leadership, shared responsibility for the equipping of each member of the body, and restorative church discipline.
4. Monergistic View of Salvation
To have a Monergistic View of Salvation is to affirm the Bible’s teaching that a person’s salvation is willed, worked, and accomplished by God alone. Monergism is the doctrine in Christian theology which explains that God, through the Holy Spirit, works to effectively bring about the salvation of individuals according to His will alone. Monergism is distinct from synergism which says that salvation hinges upon the will of man, in which conversion is accomplished by man initiating regeneration by his faith subsequently giving God permission to complete the salvation process. Disciples Church affirms and teaches the monergistic view of salvation.
5. Discipleship Emphasis
Because the mission of the church is to glorify God, and God is most glorified by those who see him as their ultimate joy and satisfaction, the work of the church should be to produce a deep passion and love for God in the hearts of the members of the church. We believe this will happen best as we develop in our discipleship to Jesus Christ alone. Therefore, our ministry and programming reflects a desire to help people go deep in their discipleship, rather than us doing several different things that results in a shallow faith in our lives. Small groups form the backbone of our church’s approach towards ministry since we believe this level of depth is best achieved in the context of small group community.