Our Doctrinal Convictions
Emmanuel Grace is an Independent, Bible-believing, Evangelical Christian Church; that is also a Confessional, Reformed, Puritan, Covenantal, Family oriented, Worship driven, Truth loving, Preaching focused, Spirit-filled, Christ-Centered, and God-glorifying fellowship.
We believe that the supreme standard of doctrine and the ultimate authority in all matters of faith, life, order and conduct is alone the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments. They are the only infallible and all-sufficient rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy God.
We hold to the Reformed Confessions of the 16th century and adopt as the fullest expression of our faith the doctrinal standards set forth in the Westminster Confession, together with the Larger and Shorter Catechisms. As subordinate standards these documents are designed to be for us: a confirmation of divine truth, a tool of assistance in controversy, a means of spiritual edification, a platform for godly reformation, and a platform for church ministry and order.
- The Westminster Confession of Faith
- The Westminster Shorter Catechism
- The Westminster Larger Catechism
- The Congregational Covenant of Emmanuel Grace
- The Directory for Family Worship (with helps)
For the edification of believers a more simplified version of our doctrinal convictions can be summarized in ten points, which may be described as Ten Foundations of the Christian Faith.
1. The Primacy of Holy Scripture: We believe and teach that the Bible (The Old and New Testament together) is the inspired and inerrant Word of God, the only infallible and all-sufficient rule for faith and conduct, truth and life, doctrine and practice; and that alone that directs us how we may glorify and enjoy God. Isa.8:20; Lk.24:27, 44; Eph.2:20; Col.3:16; 1 Thess.2:13; 2 Tim.3:15-17; 2 Pet.1:19.
2. The Perfection of God’s Character: We believe and teach that there is one God infinite, eternal, unchangeable, almighty, and all glorious in His being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness, truth, and love; that He is most blessed and self-existing in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (the Holy Trinity), each of these persons in the Godhead being equal in power and glory, and equally worthy to be loved, worshipped, and obeyed; and that this one true and living God exercises His sovereign authority in the works of creation, providence, and redemption all to the glory of His name. Gen.1; Exo.34:6-7; 1 Chron.29:10-15; Mt.28:18-20; Jn.4:24, 15:26; 2 Cor.13:14; Mt.1 Jn.5:7; 1 Tim.1:17; Rev.1:4-6.
3. The Problem of Human Depravity: We believe and teach that God created the world in the space of six days and all very good, and He made man male and female in obedience to His law as a covenant works; but that Adam and Eve sinned by eating the forbidden fruit being deceived by the Devil; that all mankind participated in Adam’s fall from his original state of righteousness and communion with God, and are now alienated from the life of God, lost in sin, having become totally depraved, ungodly and helpless, and made liable to all the miseries of this life, to death itself, and to the punishment of hell forever. Gen.1-3; Mk.7:20-23; Rom.3:9-20, 5:12-14; 1 Cor.6:9-10; Eph.4:17-19; Titus 3:3.
4.The Preeminence of Jesus Christ: We believe and teach that Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God, the second person of the Holy Trinity, the Prophet, Priest, and King of His Church, the only Mediator between God and man, and the Redeemer of God’s elect, who for our salvation became man, (God and man in one person forever); that He lived a perfect life of obedience to the Law, was crucified for our sins, dead and buried, rose again the third day, presented Himself alive after His passion by many infallible proofs, ascended into heaven, and is now exalted to the right hand of God the Father Almighty where He now reigns as LORD over all, until he comes to judge the world in righteousness. And because He is our Lord and Redeemer He is worthy of all our faith, love, devotion, and worship, as well as our imitation and obedience. Gen.3:15; Isa.53; Mt.1:23; Jn.1:1-5, 14; Acts 2:22-36; Phil.2:5-11; Eph.1:17-23; Col.1:13-20; Rev.1:5-7.
5. The Power of the Holy Spirit: We believe and teach that the Holy Spirit is the eternal Spirit of God, the third person of the Holy Trinity, the Comforter and Advocate of God’s people, sent by the Lord Jesus Christ from God the Father, and who sovereignly and effectually works the application of grace and salvation to the elect, by His word testifying of Jesus Christ and the Gospel; and who further equips and sanctifies His church and people with His gifts and graces by the ministry of the Word and Sacraments, bringing them to conformity to Christ in true worship and holiness of life until the resurrection of the last day when they are glorified with Him. Isa.11:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Mt.3:16; Jn.15:26, 16:7-11; Acts 2; Gal.5:16-26; Eph.5:18-21; Tit.3:4-7.
6. The Plan of Covenant Salvation: We believe and teach that elect sinners whom Christ died for and who the Holy Spirit regenerates by His sovereign grace are in time convinced of their sin and misery, savingly enlightened in the true knowledge of God, renewed in their wills, brought to repentance and saving faith, and freely and affectionately embrace Jesus Christ as their only Lord and Savior; and are thereby in Christ justified by faith alone, adopted into the family of God, experience sanctification, spiritual renewal and the gifts of the Spirit; and are further promised by God the assurance of His saving love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Spirit, increase of grace, transformation into the image of Christ from glory to glory, and perseverance therein to the end, notwithstanding many trials and crosses, where they are brought to eternal glory and fully conformed to His image. Isa.35; Mt.1:21; Jn.17; Rom.3:21-26, 5:1-21, 8:28-30; Heb.9:15; Tit.3:4-7.
7. The Practice of True Godliness: We believe and teach the abiding validity of the Law of God, (the Ten Commandments) as the rule of the Christian life and all moral conduct, under the sovereign rule and Lordship of Jesus Christ; and that the goal of grace and salvation in the Christian life is to take up the cross and follow Him, bringing our lives ever into conformity with Jesus Christ our Lord; in love, holiness, good works, prayer, worship, self-denial, and service to the glory of God in the full enjoyment of His saving love, with sincere obedience to His word and commandments, dependence upon the Holy Spirit, and constant remembrance of God’s forgiving grace and mercy in Jesus Christ. Exo.20:1-17; Deut.6; Ps.1, 119; Mt.5-7, 16:24-25, 22:37-40; Rom.8:1-11, 12:1-2; 1 Cor.7:19; 13; Eph.4-6; 1 Jn.2:1-6; Rev.14:12.
8. The Participation in Church Life: We believe and teach that all who come to Jesus Christ for salvation should evidence their new life by faithful communion, submission, and service in a local Bible believing church: worshipping God in truth, hearing the Word of God with faith and humility, learning Christ and sound doctrine, exercising their spiritual gifts, contributing their substance by tithes and offerings, continuing in prayer, walking in love, and endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace for the sake of Christ and His Church and for the glory of God. Mt.16:18-19; Acts 2:38-47; 1 Cor.1:2, 12:1-31; Eph.4:1-16; Col.1:18; 1 Thess.5:12-14; 1 Tim.2-3; Rev.2-3.
9. The Priority of the Great Commission: We believe and teach that Christ’s commission and command to His Church is to preach the Word and disciple the nations to the obedience of faith in Christ through the Gospel, which is the power of God unto salvation to all who believe; and that this Gospel is to be proclaimed to our community and to all the world as a witness, and further defended against all sin, idolatry, cults and false religions, evil doctrines, pagan and worldly ideologies, and all deviant forms of Christianity until Christ returns in glory. Mt.28:18-20; Mk.16:15-16; Lk.24:46-49; Jn.20:20-23; Acts 1:8; Rom.1:16-17; Gal.1:3-10; Col.2:8-10; 2 Tim.4:1-5; Tit.1:9-11; 1 Pet.3:15-16; 2 Peter; Jude.
10. The Promise of Christ’s Return: We believe and teach that Jesus Christ will return to earth suddenly, visibly, and bodily, at the end of the age to consummate history and the eternal plan of God, to raise the living and the dead, and to judge the world in righteousness sentencing the ungodly to everlasting condemnation in hell for their sins and blessing all true believers with everlasting life in His presence in glory, thus bringing all things in subjection to Him that God may be all in all gloried world without end. Mt.24:30-31, 25:31-46; 1 Cor.15; Phil.3:20; 2 Thess.2; 1 Pet.1:3-5; 2 Pet.3; Rev.1:7-8.
*In 2 Tim.1:13-14 Paul says, “Hold fast the form of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. That good thing which was committed to, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.”
Brett Woody, pastor-teacher