STATEMENT OF FAITH AND PURPOSES


    Section 1  The programs and activities governing the form of worship of  LIFE CHURCH OF JACKSONVILLE INC, shall be based upon and at


all times shall be consistent with the following creed and beliefs:


  THE SCRIPTURES 

The Bible is the inspired Word of God, the product of Holy Men of old who spoke and wrote as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.  The New Covenant as recorded in the New Testament, we accept as our infallible guide in matters pertaining to conduct and doctrine (II Timothy 3:16, I Thess. 2:13, II Peter 1:21).  


   THE GODHEAD  

Our God is One, manifested in three persons—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Philippians :6; Matthew 3:16-17).  
    God the Father is greater than all; the Source of the Word (Logos) and the Begetter (John 14:28; John 16:28; John 1:14).  
    Jesus is the Son of God, One with the Father, the Word flesh-covered, the One Begotten, and has existed with the Father from the beginning (John 1:1; John 1:18; John 1:14; John 10:30).  
    The Holy Spirit is sent by Jesus from the Father and is eternal (John 15:26).  

    MAN, HIS FALL AND REDEMPTION   

Man is a created being, made in the likeness and image of God, but through Adam’s transgression and fall, sin came into the world.  “All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”  “As it is written, there is none righteous, no not one.”  Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was manifested to undo the works of the devil and gave His life and shed His blood to redeem and restore man back to God (Romans 5:12; Romans 3:23; Romans 3:9-10; I John 3:8; Galatians 3:13,14).  
    Salvation is the gift of God to man, separate from works and the law, and is made operative by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, producing works acceptable to God (Ephesians 2:8).  

    ETERNAL LIFE AND NEW BIRTH

 Man’s first step toward salvation is Godly sorrow that worketh repentance.  The new birth is necessary to all men, and when fulfilled produces eternal life (II Cor. 7:10, I John 5:12; John 3:3-5).  


    WATER BAPTISM  

Baptism with water is a direct commandment of our Lord and is for believers only.  The ordinance is a symbol of the Christian’s identification with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection (Matt. 28:19; Romans 6:4; Col. 2:12; Acts 8:36-39).  
    The following recommendation regarding the Water Baptismal formula is adopted, to-wit:  

    “On the confession of your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and by His authority, I baptize you in the name of the Father, Son and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.”  

    BAPTISM IN THE HOLY GHOST  

The Baptism in the Holy Ghost and Fire is a gift from God as promised by the Lord Jesus Christ to those who are believers in this dispensation.  This experience may be accompanied by the initial evidence of speaking in other tongues as the Holy Spirit Himself gives utterance (Matt. 3:11; John 14:16-17; Acts 1:8; Acts 2:38-39; Acts 19:1-7; Acts 2:4).


    SANCTIFICATION

The Bible teaches that without Holiness no man can see the Lord.  We believe in the doctrine of sanctification as a definite, yet progressive work of grace, commencing at the time of regeneration and continuing until the consummation of salvation (Heb. 2:14; I Thess. 5:23; II Peter 3:18; II Cor. 3:18; Philippians 3:12-14; I Cor. 1:30).  


    DIVINE HEALING 

Healing is for the ills of the human body and is wrought by the power of God through the prayer of faith, and by laying on of hands.  It is provided for in the atonement of Christ, and it is the privilege of every member of the church today (Mark 16:18; James 5:14-20; I Peter 2:24; Matt. 8:17; Isaiah 53:4-5).  

    RESURRECTION OF THE JUST AND THE RETURN OF OUR LORD 

The Angels said, “This same Jesus shall so come in like manner.”  His coming is imminent.  When He comes, “The dead in Christ shall rise first; then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air” (Acts 1:11; I Thess. 4:16-17).  
    Following the tribulation, He shall return to earth, as King of kings, and the Lord of lords and together with His Saints, who shall be kings and priests, He shall reign a thousand years (Rev. 20:6).


    HELL AND ETERNAL RETRIBUTION 

The one who physically dies in his sins without Christ is hopelessly and eternally lost in the lake of fire and therefore has no further opportunity of hearing the Gospel or for repentance.  The lake of fire is literal.  The terms “eternal” and “everlasting” used in describing the duration of the punishment of the damned in the lake of fire, carry the same thought and meaning of endless existence as used in noting the duration of joy and ecstasy of the saints in the presence of God (Hebrews 9:27; Rev. 19:20; Hebrews 6:1-2).  


   COMMUNION-THE LORD’S SUPPER  

We partake of the Lord’s Supper to show the Lord’s death until He comes (I Cor. 11:23-31).  The bread symbolizes the Lord’s broken body (Is. 53:5;  I Cor. 11:24).  The cup represents the new covenant in His blood which provides us forgiveness and relationship with God (Heb. 9; I Cor. 11:25).  We judge ourselves and realize that this is our salvation and receive it (I Cor. 11:28-30) for if we receive it unworthily—without giving it honor as our salvation—we are guilty of the body and blood of the Lord (I Cor. 11:27).  


    LAYING ON OF HANDS

A simple belief that power or anointing or any other necessary quality can be transmitted from one person touching another.  Laying on of hands was practiced by the Levitical Priesthood.  Jesus practiced it in Mark 10:13-16 as a blessing.  Laying on of hands for healing (Mark 5:22, 23 and 41; Mark 5:28-31; Acts 28:8; Acts 19:11,12); laying on of hands to confer office (Acts 6:2-6); laying on of hands to receive the Holy Ghost (Acts 8:16-18); laying on of hands to believe words spoken, to receive anointing, and to cultivate the anointing (I Tim. 4:14); laying on of hands for ordination to consecrate and receive the necessary ministry tools (I Tim. 4:14).  


    MARRIAGE

We believe that God created man and that He created them male and female. As such He created them different so as to complement and complete each other. God instituted monogamous marriage, in life-long covenantal commitment, between male and female as the foundation of the family and the basic structure of human society. This union is a picture of the relationship between Christ and the Church.  We believe that sexual relations are exercised solely within monogamous marriage between one man and one woman. (Gen 2:24; Matt. 19:4-6; John 4:16-18; Rom 1:18-32; 1 Cor 5:11, 6:9-11, 18-20, 7:1-3, 8-9; Gal 5:19-21; Eph 5:3-7; 1 Tim 1:9-11)


    LIFE

We believe that all human life is a sacred gift from God, created in His image, and is to be protected and defended from conception to natural death. We also believe that one’s gender (male or female) is defined by God at conception and revealed at birth. (Gen 1:26-27, 3:20; Exodus 20:13; Ps. 22:9-10, 139:13-16; Jer. 1:4; Rom 9:9-11)

 

     Final Authority for Matters of Belief and Conduct

The statement of faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of LIFE Church’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our [minister/executive committee/board of directors] is LIFE Church’s final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.


Life Church