The statement of faith of Anchor Bible Church:
We believe the sixty-six books of the Bible are the inspired, infallible, and inerrant word of God. The Bible is our absolute final authority in all matters of faith and practice (Psalm 12.6,7; 119.9,11; Proverbs 30.5; Matthew 24:35; 1 Thessalonians 2.13; 2 Timothy 2.15; 3:14-17; Hebrews 4.12; 1 Peter 1:23-25; 2 Peter 1:20,21; 3.16-18).
We believe in one God, eternally existent in three persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Genesis 1:1; Matthew 3.16,17; 2 Corinthians 13:14; 1 John 5:7-8)
We believe that mankind was created by God, that all people are sinners by birth and by choice; and are spiritually dead, separated from God until they believe on Jesus Christ as their personal Savior (Ephesians 2.1-3; Isaiah 64:6; Jeremiah 17:9; John 3.16-18,36; Romans 3:10, 23; 6:23; Titus 3:5).
We believe that Jesus Christ, the second Person of the Trinity, was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary, and that He is all the fullness of God, in bodily form, the only begotten Son of God, became man without ceasing to be God, and lived a sinless life. He died as God’s substitutionary sacrifice for man’s sin. His death on the cross and resurrection from the dead was a complete payment for all the sins of every man, and that salvation is only by grace through faith in Him (Isaiah 7:14; 9.6,7; Matthew 3:17; John 1:1-14; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 10:12; 1 John 2:2).
We believe that man can do nothing to redeem himself from his sinful condition (Romans 3.20; Galatians 2.16; Ephesians 2.8,9; 2 Timothy 1.9 Titus 3.5), therefore salvation is a free gift by believing in Christ apart from human merit; and that a believer is eternally secure in Christ, and cannot lose his/her salvation for any reason (John 3.16,18,36; 5.24; 6.47; 10.28,29; Ephesians 2.4-9; 1 John 5.13).
We believe that the Holy Spirit (i.e. Holy Ghost) is the third Person of the Trinity. He eternally seals the believer (2 Corinthians 1.22; Ephesians 1.13,14; 4.30) and equips and empowers the believer for service and obedience in the Christian Life (Ephesians 2.10; Romans 12.1-2; 1 Timothy 2.10, 4.12; 2 Timothy 3.16,17; Titus 2.7,14; Hebrews 10.24; 1 Peter 2.12).
We believe in salvation at the instant of belief which produces a new birth in Christ (see John 3.3,7; 1 Peter 1.23).
We believe that the spirit and soul are saved at the instant a person believes on Christ as Savior, yet it is the Christian’s responsibility to live a godly life and to strive to be holy in mind and body (John 8.31,32; 10:10; 15.3,7; Hebrews 12.1-3).
We believe that believers should understand the clear difference between salvation (Ephesians 2.8,9) and discipleship (Matthew 16.24-26; Mark 8.34-38; Luke 14.26,27,33).
We believe in the difference between standing of the believer in Christ (eternally secure and righteous in Christ – see 2 Corinthians 5.17,21; Ephesians 2.4-10;) and the state of the believer’s daily living. At the new birth, the Holy Spirit implants a new nature that cannot sin (2 Corinthians 5.17,21; 1 John 3.9; Ephesians 5.22-24; Colossians 3.9,10). However, at salvation, the old, sin nature still remains; and it is therefore quite possible for a believer to live by the desires of the old nature as made evident in the NT epistles (Romans 6.11-14,19; Galatians 5.13-21). Obedient believers receive reward, disobedient believers receive chastisement (John 15.1-6; Hebrews 12.4-11).
We believe that the child of God is not under the Law, but is under grace (Romans 6:14-15; 11:6; Galatians 3:25). The believer is saved by grace and thus disciplined by grace (1 Corinthians 3.16,17; 11.28-32; Hebrews 12:5-11; 1 John 5.16,17).
We believe that the local church should observe two ordinances: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Both are intended for believers as acts of love and obedience to their Lord; but neither has any virtue in relation to eternal life (Matthew 28:19; Luke 22:17-20; Acts 8:36-38; 10:47-48; 16:15; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26).
We believe in the great Commandment that Jesus has called us to love our Lord, and each other, and by doing so avoid anything that will harm our testimony before the saved or the unsaved (Matthew 22.35-40; Luke 17.1,2; John 13.34,35; 15.12; Romans 12.10,17; 13.8; 14.13; 1 Corinthians 8.9-13; 2 Corinthians 6.3; 8.21; Hebrews 10.24).
We believe that the church should understand, and if and when necessary, apply church discipline for a believer who is disobedient or divisive in matters of doctrine or personal testimony (Matthew 18.15-17; Acts 20.27-30; Romans 16.17; 1 Corinthians 1.10; 5.1-13; 6.1-4; Galatians 1.8,9; Ephesians 4.14; 2 Thessalonians 3.6,14,15; 1 Timothy 4.16; 6.3,4; 2 Timothy 4.2,3; Titus 1.9; 3.10; James 5.19,10; 2 Peter 2.1,2; 1 John 5.16,17).
We believe that the believer should grow in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ (Colossians 2.6,7; 2 Peter 3.18) by reading and studying the Bible (2 Timothy 2.15; 1 Timothy 4.13); praying (Romans 12.12; Ephesians 6.18), witnessing to the unsaved (Acts 1.8), fellowshipping with believers (Acts 2.42; Hebrews 10.24,25), and living an obedient Christian life as a good testimony to the unsaved, and an encouragement to believers (Matthew 5.13-16; 1 Timothy 4.12; Titus 2.1-15). Fruitfulness (Galatians 5.22-25; John 15.4,5) and maturity (James 2.22) are the result of abiding in God’s word (Luke 8.15; John 8.31,32).
We believe in the great commission and the Biblical mandate of missions – to proclaim the gospel at home and around the world (Matthew 28.19,20; Mark 16.15; Luke 24.47,48; John 20.21,29; Acts 1.8).
We believe that there is a coming judgment for every person after death (Hebrews 9.27). Heaven is the eternal destination of every born again believer (John 14:1-6; Revelation 21:1-4). We believe that the Rapture, which consists of the Lord Jesus Christ coming from Heaven and the saints on earth meeting him in the air, is the great hope of the church (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Titus 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51-53), and will be followed by the Judgment Seat of Christ for all believers (Romans 10.14; 2 Corinthians 5:9,10; 1 Corinthians 3.11-17). This judgment will determine the believer’s rewards (or lack thereof) to be enjoyed for eternity. The rapture of the church will be followed by the Great Tribulation which will end at the Second Coming of Christ. The Second Coming of Christ will be followed by the Great White Throne Judgment for all unbelievers (Revelation 20:11-15) which will determine the judgment of the unsaved/non-believers and their degree of eternal punishment in hell. (Matthew 25:41; Revelation 20:14, 15).