STATEMENT OF FAITH
The following is a brief outline of the basic doctrinal beliefs of Covenant Life Church:
We believe in the one triune God revealed in the Bible: the Father; Jesus Christ, the Son; and the Holy Spirit. He is creator, redeemer, and sovereign ruler of creation. He is the author of truth, love, and faith (Genesis 1:1; Colossians 1:15-23).
We believe that the Holy Bible is the inspired Word of God and our standard for faith and practice (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
We believe that man was created in the image of God. Through disobedience mankind is separated from God, and without God, he is without hope (Genesis 1:26-28; Romans 5:17).
We believe man’s salvation is through renouncing his self-determination, taking responsibility for his disobedience, turning from his sin, and seeking forgiveness from God (Romans 10:9-10; Ephesians 2:8-9). Further, we believe such a penitent person must put his faith in Jesus Christ, whom we believe to be the incarnate Son of God. Jesus died substitutionally for man’s transgressions, was raised from the dead on the third day, and ascended back to the Father.
We believe God is a covenant-making and covenant-keeping God; that is, He has made promises to those who respond to His love by committing their lives to Him (Jeremiah 31:31-34).
We believe the very nature and purpose of God is revealed in His Church. Jesus came and established it as His Body in the earth. We believe the Church Universal consists of all who live under Jesus’ lordship, while the Church Local is a body of believing people, baptized and joined together, practicing the new covenant. Since the Church is one as God is one, the local church must seek to walk in harmony with the universal church.
We believe there are many experiences that are valid encounters with God, the Holy Spirit. “Baptism with the Holy Spirit,” “Filled with the Holy Spirit,” and “anointed with the Holy Spirit” are among those scriptural terms used to describe such encounters with the Holy Spirit. These experiences should produce greater commitment to God’s will, greater realization of His power, and greater edification of His Church (Acts 2:38).
We believe in the priesthood of the believer. By the shedding of His blood, Jesus has become the believer’s High Priest and has made it possible for each Christian to have free access to the presence of the Father. In His presence, each one can come to know God and to receive from Him. Each Christian, likewise, is responsible to come to the Father in confidence and faith as a priest unto Him under the new covenant. There he is to minister both the worship of his lips and the worship of his life sacrificially presented to God (I Peter 2:4-12).
We believe in freedom of conscience. One is responsible for his or her own choices and behavior. While God has ordained both civil and spiritual government, we believe each person is still directly accountable to Him. Therefore, pastors and churches can give direction, but all service must be rendered voluntarily, joyfully, and from a free conscience (Romans 14:9-12; Philippians 2:5-8; John 10:14-18).
We believe in world evangelism. We accept the commission of Jesus Christ, who is Lord, to make disciples of all nations, to baptize them and to teach them to observe His commandments. We join with all those believing in Him to accomplish this urgent task. We accept this as a personal commission as well as a commission to the entire Church (Matthew 28:16-20).
We believe that God views His people as one people. This is true historically and currently. All Christians share in the responsibility for division and reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5: 11-21; Ephesians 3:14; Ephesians 4:4-6).
We believe God is the author of all authority. He has ordained civil government for the establishment of order and peace in the nations. He has ordained government in His Church to bring it to righteousness, peace; and joy in the Holy Spirit. We believe there should be mutual respect between civil and spiritual authority. While civil authority is separated from church government, it should not be separated from God and His law.
We believe God created marriage. It is a covenant made between a man and a woman that makes them one (Gen 2: 22, 24; Matt 19: 5-6).
We believe the Church should be supported by the tithes and offerings of those committed to its mission. We further believe that when people serve God with a free spirit, there is financial abundance to accomplish God’s purpose (Genesis 14:17-20; Malachi 3:6-12; 2 Corinthians 8:1-7).
We believe Jesus Christ will return to earth in a visible way. His purpose will be to manifest His government in the earth. Christians are exhorted to be watchful and obedient until His appearing. While there are many viewpoints concerning His second coming, we believe Christians should lovingly look for His appearing, giving full attention to obedience while He tarries. We believe His appearing will occasion the resurrection of the righteous who have died and who are now with Him (I Corinthians Chapter 15).
We believe in a final judgment at the end of the age. The righteous and the wicked shall stand before Him and be judged. Those who have righteousness produced by faith will be rewarded with the privilege of ruling and enjoying His eternal blessings. Those who are wicked will be eternally punished (Matthew 25:31-46).
Following faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, a new believer is commanded by the Word of God to be baptized in water in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19; Acts 2:38).
The Lord’s Supper (Communion):
A unique time of communion in the presence of God when the elements of bread and “fruit of the vine” (the Body and Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ) are taken in remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross (Matthew 26:26-29; Mark 16:16; Acts 8:12, 36-38; 10:47-48; 1Corinthians 10:16, 11:23-25).
These principles of our faith are foundations for God’s continuing leadership in our lives. We realize that our statement of faith does not relieve us of the responsibility to live by faith. We gratefully acknowledge those who have served Him in ages past, and we bless them in their eternal state for their faithfulness. We acknowledge those who serve Jesus Christ now, whose doctrinal expressions may be different from our own. We desire to walk with them as brothers.