Old Statement Of Faith

Way back when we were just a handful of people meeting in a living room, we used this statement of faith penned by Sean Nolan. The content is not particularly different from our current statement of faith, however, we opted for an updated statement which we ultimately found to be more succinct and clear. For transparency sake, we include this relic of days gone by:

Doctrine of Revelation

We believe that God wrote the Bible through people and that it is without error in its original form. The Old and New Testaments, in their entirety, are to be the final and sole authority in matters of teaching and practice. The Bible is indispensable, clear, sufficient, and authoritative for the life of individual Christians as well as the Church community. (Matthew 5:182 Timothy 3:162 Peter 1:21)

Doctrine of God

We believe that God is a sovereign, all-powerful, personal, self-existent, self-sufficient, holy, good, infinite, unchanging, all-knowing, ever-present, loving, and merciful triune creator. He exists eternally as one God in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each of these three persons is fully and equally God, but they are distinct in terms of their eternal relationships and roles. God desires that we should know Him intimately and live a life of fulfillment through the pursuit of His will and glory. (Genesis 1:1 /1:26Deuteronomy 6:4,Matthew 28:19-20John 4:24/10:302 Corinthians 13:14)

Doctrine of Christ

We believe that Jesus Christ is the eternal son of God and second person of the Trinity. He is fully God and is not created. He entered into time and space by being born of the virgin Mary and made his dwelling among sinful humanity. He lived a sinless life, died on a cross as a substitute for humankind, was buried, resurrected bodily from the grave, and ascended into heaven where he now sits at the right hand of God the Father as the sole mediator between humanity and God. His death fully and finally paid for all sins of those who place their faith in him. The historic and miraculous fact of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead is a powerful evidence of his deity, and is humanities only and ultimate hope. As his followers we expectantly await his imminent return to earth to free it from the curse of sin. (John 1:1-14Romans 3:23-25Acts 2:24-271 Timothy 2:5Titus 2:13)

Doctrine of the Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead who supernaturally applies salvation to sinful people. He is fully God, and eternally proceeds from both the Father and the Son. He regenerates, indwells, baptizes, sanctifies, and seals all believers until the day of Christ’s return. He bears persuasive testimony to the person and work of Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its sin and consequences and provides assurance of salvation to the Christian. Christ baptizes and fills all Christians with the Holy Spirit, which then incorporates them into his body, the Church. The Spirit gives gifts to all believers and unites them for mutual service within the Church. He also bears the fruit of Christian character in the lives of believers as he guides, instructs, and empowers them for godly living and service. (Matthew 28:19John 3:3-7Romans 8:91 Corinthians 2:12/6:19/12:7-13Ephesians 4:30)

Doctrine of Humanity

We believe that God creates all People in his image as uniquely male and female. Humanity fell from its original harmonious relationship with God when Adam sinned and now all humans are sinful by nature and choice. In its present natural state, humanity is separated from God and without hope. Yet, humans still maintain the essence of God’s image even in their fallenness. As such, humanity, bearing God’s image, is especially good and set above the rest of creation. Every human life is sacred, worthy of respect, dignity, and significance. Humanity at its fullest exists in harmonious interpersonal relationships of male and female which, while remaining equal in personhood and importance, have distinctions in role and authority. Gender is a fundamental given of human existence, with masculinity and femininity being congruent with human embodiment and remaining static, stable, and consistent characteristics of each image-bearer established by God’s creational intent. God mandated humans to build a society through procreation and vocation. This means a majority of people will be married, though some may be called to singleness as a means of glorifying God in following Jesus’ example. Monogamous life-long marriage between one man and one woman is God’s design for unifying people in the covenant of matrimony. Racism and bigotry in all of its forms is a tragic effect of our fallenness and is not found in the character of God. However, of the myriad of sins that mar the image of God in man none are beyond the scope or reach of Jesus’ redemptive work. (Genesis 1:26-28/3:16Romans 3:10-18/5:12-14James 3:9Luke 2:52)

Doctrine of Salvation

We believe that Salvation is by grace through faith in Jesus Christ and necessary for all people because all people are sinful. Salvation is the gift of God received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and exists apart from merit, works, or ceremonies. True Christians are kept eternally secure by the power of God. Only through justification by Christ and regeneration by the Holy Spirit can sinful people obtain salvation and spiritual life. Jesus’ death and resurrection are the only grounds of justification and the only way to appropriate them is through faith in him and repentance from sin. We are justified and delivered from the wrath of God through our faith in Christ. The Spirit’s work of regeneration removes the old nature and creates a new nature that seeks to please God. Salvation also includes adoption as sons and daughters into God’s family, union with Christ that brings spiritual blessings, and the promise of sanctification as his co-heirs.  (Acts 4:12/16:31Ephesians 2:8-101 Peter 1:3-51 John 5:11-13Romans 8:35-39)

Doctrine of the Church

We believe that the Church is both universal and local. The universal church (Body of Christ) consists of all Christians in all times and all places. The local church is an autonomous congregation that comes together for worship, instruction, fellowship, service, and to celebrate baptisms and the Lord’s Supper. Engage finds itself planted within a rich and vibrant stream of traditions that unite it to the universal Church of all times and places. As a local church, Engage, only welcomes into membership those who are members of the universal Church. Baptism of believers is an initiatory symbol of entrance into the Church and the Lord’s Supper is an ongoing symbol of our continuous covenant to remain in God’s family. However, neither of these acts aid in securing our salvation. We believe mission is at the heart of God and that the local church exists for the benefit of those outside of it. As such, we pray and seek opportunities for evangelism, raising and training other church-leaders, discipling new members, and partnering with other faithful churches for the advancement of the universal Church and the manifestation of God’s kingdom on earth. (Matthew 7 /28:19Acts 1:8Mark 1:172 Corinthians 5:11-20)

Doctrine of Resurrection and Consummation

We believe in the imminent Return of Jesus to earth to judge all people and rule and reign with his saints forever. When he returns, all people will be resurrected and give an account of their lives before God. Believers in Christ will be resurrected to everlasting life, blessedness, and joy in the presence of God. Those that reject Christ will be resurrected to judgment and eternal separation from God. The ultimate hope of all creation, and the final state of all that now exists, is the new heavens and new earth in which righteousness dwells. (Revelation 22Matthew 242 Timothy 4:11 Peter 4:52 Peter 3)

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