The Bible originated in God. It is his word breathed-out to human authors; his spoken word written down. It is without error; it does not mislead nor deceive. It is not a cultural but an eternal book written by an eternal author, and therefore totally relevant to all people, in all spheres of life today.
God has existed in community with himself for all eternity. He has one essence and one nature that is expressed in three distinct persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Whilst each person has a different function, all remain equally God.
Jesus Christ of Nazareth is the Son of God and he is alive. He is a real man and is fully God. The Son was with the Father and the Spirit at creation, but he humbled himself and took on human flesh. In obedience to God the Father, he laid his life down on a cross, taking upon himself all the sin and punishment that the human race deserved, the perfect sacrifice for sin. In this way, Jesus restored the possibility for humans to live in relationship with God. He was then resurrected from the dead and is now seated on heaven’s throne, and all authority in heaven and on earth belongs to him.
The Holy Spirit
The third person of the trinity is indeed just that: a person. He can be known, listened to, spoken with, pleased or grieved, and worshipped as God. He is God at work in the world today. The baptism in the Holy Spirit is a foundational experience for every Christian. Unlike being born of the Spirit, this is a subsequent filling and empowering; God himself enabling his people to live a life that looks like Jesus.
Baptism in Water
Baptism literally means to be fully submerged. It is something Jesus did as a pattern for us, and is a command to every believer. Baptism involves a declaration of our repentance from sin and faith in Jesus as our Lord. In baptism, the old life is buried and out of the water comes a new creation, raised to live with Jesus and brought into his family: the church.
The Kingdom of God
The Bible defines the Kingdom of God as his rule; the sphere of influence where Jesus reigns. The church is the Kingdom community, the people through whom God is extending his rule in the earth, which is expressed in this way: righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
The new covenant in Jesus Christ is the climax of every Old Testament promise. Indeed, the eternal covenant purpose of God was always centred in Jesus Christ from the very beginning. As the new covenant people of God, the church is joined to him and to every other believer in a life defined by the practicalities of faith, hope and love.
Apostles are part of the continuing foundation of the church. They are necessary until the body of Christ reaches its ultimate maturity. Like master builders, apostles are concerned with the total design of the church. It is their focus to preach the Gospel and to establish the foundations of believing communities.
Money & Giving
As Christians our lives are dependent on God as our source. The Bible teaches that the first 10% of our income belongs to God; that’s called the tithe. We bring God our tithes, and we also give of our finance as a practical expression of our love for God. God’s promise is that as one sows, so one reaps.
This characterises God’s eternal plan: Jesus must remain in heaven until the restoration of all things (Acts 3:21). Restoration involves recovering what has been lost and then going beyond that to where the church has never yet been. This advancement, the increase of his government and of peace, will culminate in the glorious return of Jesus Christ himself.