NB. The information below is quite technical, and assumes some knowledge of the Christian faith. If you’re looking for a simpler answer and an easier read then our page ‘What is an Evangelical?’ might be the one for you.
As a church we hold to the traditional foundations of the Christian faith, such as the ancient creeds, along with billions of Christians around the globe.
Our church has as its Statement of Faith the FIEC (Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches) Statement of Faith which expresses the basic fundamental truths of the Christian Faith.
In addition, we also have our own ‘Doctrinal Distinctives‘ which describe us more particularly as a church. We recognise that not all Christians or even our own members would agree on these matters, but they allow us to maintain our identity and set our direction as a church, whilst including others.
In a similar vein we also hold to the FIEC ethos statements on church practice, which spell out our position on church unity, ministry, and marriage.
The FIEC Statement of Faith
- God There is one God, who exists eternally in three distinct but equal persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God is unchangeable in his holiness, justice, wisdom and love. He is the almighty Creator, Saviour and Judge who sustains and governs all things according to his sovereign will for his own glory. Genesis 1-2; Exodus 15:1-18; Isaiah 45:5-18; Psalm 90:2; Psalm 96:10-13; Daniel 4:34-35; John 16:7-15; Titus 3:4-7; James 1:17.
- The Bible God has revealed himself in the Bible, which consists of the Old and New Testaments alone. Every word was inspired by God through human authors, so that the Bible as originally given is in its entirety the Word of God, without error and fully reliable in fact and doctrine. The Bible alone speaks with final authority and is always sufficient for all matters of belief and practice. Psalm 19:7-11; 1 Corinthians 2:6-16; 2 Timothy 3:14-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 2 Peter 1:19-21.
- The Human Race All men and women, being created in the image of God, have inherent and equal dignity and worth. Their greatest purpose is to obey, worship and love God. As a result of the fall of our first parents, every aspect of human nature has been corrupted and all men and women are without spiritual life, guilty sinners and hostile to God. Every person is therefore under the just condemnation of God and needs to be born again, forgiven and reconciled to God in order to know and please him. Genesis 1:26-27; 3:1-24; Psalm 8:3-8; Matthew 22:34-40; John 3:1-8; Romans 1:18-32; 5:12-19; 2 Corinthians 5:16-19; Ephesians 2:1-3.
- The Lord Jesus Christ The Lord Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin, and lived a sinless life in obedience to the Father. He taught with authority and all his words are true. On the cross he died in the place of sinners, bearing God’s punishment for their sin, redeeming them by his blood. He rose from the dead and in his resurrection body ascended into heaven where he is exalted as Lord of all. He intercedes for his people in the presence of the Father. Matthew 1:18-25; John 1:1-18; 7:16-18; Acts 2:22-36; Colossians 1:15-22; Hebrews 2:14-18; 7:23-28; 10:11-14.
- Salvation Salvation is entirely a work of God’s grace and cannot be earned or deserved. It has been accomplished by the Lord Jesus Christ and is offered to all in the gospel. God in his love forgives sinners whom he calls, granting them repentance and faith. All who believe in Christ are justified by faith alone, adopted into the family of God and receive eternal life. John 1:12-13; 5:24-26; 6:35-51; Romans 3:21-26; Galatians 2:15-16; Ephesians 2:4-9; 2 Timothy 1:9-10; Titus 3:4-7.
- The Holy Spirit The Holy Spirit has been sent from heaven to glorify Christ and to apply his work of salvation. He convicts sinners, imparts spiritual life and gives a true understanding of the Scriptures. He indwells all believers, brings assurance of salvation and produces increasing likeness to Christ. He builds up the Church and empowers its members for worship, service and mission. John 3:1-8; 16:5-16; Romans 8:1-17; 1 Corinthians 2:6-16; 3:17-18; 12:1-31; Galatians 5:16-26.
- The Church The universal Church is the body of which Christ is the head and to which all who are saved belong. It is made visible in local churches, which are congregations of believers who are committed to each other for the worship of God, the preaching of the Word, the administering of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper, for pastoral care and discipline, and for evangelism. The unity of the body of Christ is expressed within and between churches by mutual love, care and encouragement. True fellowship between churches exists only where they are faithful to the gospel. Acts 2:42-47; Ephesians 2:19-22; 4:1-6; 5:25-33; Philippians 2:1-11; Colossians 1:18
- Baptism and the Lord’s Supper Baptism and the Lord’s Supper have been given to the churches by Christ as visible signs of the gospel. Baptism is a symbol of union with Christ and entry into his Church but does not impart spiritual life. The Lord’s Supper is a commemoration of Christ’s sacrifice offered once for all and involves no change in the bread and wine. All its blessings are received by faith. Matthew 28:19; Luke 22:14-23; Romans 6:3-10; 1 Corinthians 11:23-32
- The Future The Lord Jesus Christ will return in glory. He will raise the dead and judge the world in righteousness. The wicked will be sent to eternal punishment and the righteous will be welcomed into a life of eternal joy in fellowship with God. God will make all things new and will be glorified forever. Matthew 24:1-44; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 20:11-21:4; 22:1-5
Our Doctrinal Distinctives
(Words in italics are not in the original document itself, but are here for clarity’s sake)
- The Sovereignty of God
We believe in God’s sovereignty in all things, but not in a way that negates human responsibility. (Compatibilism)
- The Sword of the Spirit (The Bible)
We believe the Spirit works through His Word, the Bible, to bring new life and conformity to the likeness of Christ, but it should be understood, explained and applied in the light of Christ. (Expository Preaching, Biblical Theology)
- The Pursuit of Joy in God
We believe joy in God is His gift to be shown in every aspect of the Christian life; it is always to be pursued, but not always expected. (A Culture of Joy)
- The Ministry of Every Believer
We believe that every believer has a responsibility to minister to other believers, but some are set apart to full-time ministry. (The Priesthood of All Believers)
- The Mission of Every Believer
We believe every believer is a missionary where they are, but some are sent to the ends of the Earth. (Evangelism, Mission)
- The Priority of the Local Church
We believe every community should have a church of local believers where the Gospel can be heard and where the Word is faithfully taught. (Localism, Church Planting)
- The Practice of Believers’ Baptism
We believe full immersion of believers as a public witness to their faith is the Biblical mode of baptism, but believers holding an alternative position in line with the FIEC statement of faith are welcome into membership. (Credo-baptist)