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What We Believe

 

The Bible

We believe the Scriptures – the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments – to be the inspired Word of God, written by men under the direction of the Holy Spirit, inerrant and infallible in the original manuscripts and the final authority in faith and life. We accept the grammatical-historical system of interpretation of the Scriptures, and accept the historical record of the Bible as wholly true. 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21

God

We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – who are identical in essence, equal in power and glory, and possess precisely the same attributes and perfection. Deuteronomy 6:4; Matthew 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14

The Person and Work of Christ

We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man without ceasing to be God; that He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin in order that He might redeem sinful man. He accomplished this redemption by voluntarily giving Himself as a sinless substitutionary sacrifice on the cross thereby satisfying God’s righteous judgment against the sin of the elect. He gave proof that He accomplished that redemption by His bodily resurrection from the grave. He then ascended to the right hand of His Father where He intercedes on behalf of His people. Matthew 1:21; John 1:1-2, 14, 18; 10:15; Luke 1:34; Romans 3:24-25; 5:8; 1 Peter 2:2-4

The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit

We believe that the Holy Spirit is the Divine Person who convicts the world of sin; that He alone brings new life to those who are spiritually dead; that He places all believers into the one true Church, which is the body of Christ, that He indwells them permanently, seals them unto the day of redemption, and bestows spiritual gifts upon them. John 3:3-8; 14:16-17; 16:7-11; I Corinthians 12:4-11; Ephesians 4:30; 5:18; Galatians 5:22-23

The Condition of Man

We believe that Man was created in the image and likeness of God, in innocence and without sin. But in Adam’s sin the race fell, inherited the guilt of his sin, a sinful nature, thus becoming spiritually dead and alienated from God so that man is a sinner both by nature and choice. Man, of himself, is incapable of remedying his lost and depraved condition. Genesis 1:26; 3:1-24; Romans 3:10-18; 5:12; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Ephesians 2:1-3; 4:17-19

Salvation

We believe that salvation is the gift of God’s grace given to all whom God has called to salvation. It includes all that God does in saving His people from the penalty, power, and presence of sin (heaven) in restoring them to a right relationship with Himself. As such, it is solely the work of God from initiation to completion. The irresistible call (regenerating work) of the Holy Spirit is the cause not the result of the believer’s saving faith. It cannot be gained by good works, but is a free gift for all who put their trust in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross. All who trust in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord are forgiven and saved from their sins, declared righteous before God and are born into the family of God. God’s purpose for saving His people is so that they bring glory to Him by their lives. Matthew 1:21; John 1:12-13; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Ephesians 1:7; 2:8-9; Philippians 1:6; Titus 2:11-14; 3:5; 1 Peter 1:1-3; Romans 8:28-30

Security, Assurance and Responsibility

We believe that all the saved – those in whom God has accomplished His transforming work of grace – are kept by His power and thus, are secure in Christ forever. This assurance is based solely on God’s mercy and the promises of His Word. However, this assurance is not a license to sin, for God in holiness cannot tolerate an unrepentant, persistent lifestyle of sin in His children without consequences. In His infinite love He will correct or discipline those who are truly His. True faith in Christ will be expressed, in the power of the Holy Spirit, by a fruitful, God-pleasing life that endures until death. Matthew 7:20; John 10:27-29; Romans 6:1-2; 8:29-39; Galatians 6:7; Hebrews 7:25; 12:6-10; James 2:20; I John 5:13

Sanctification

We believe that God, in the Scriptures, has given us everything pertaining to life and godliness. This includes salvation from the penalty of sin (Romans 5) as well as from the power of sin (Romans 6). Sanctification from sin affects both the positional and practical aspects. Positional sanctification as a work of the Holy Spirit is complete and absolute at the moment of salvation; however, practical sanctification is a result of the continuing work of the Spirit using the Word of God to provide nourishment for growth into maturity in Christ. While the process of practical sanctification is assured and accomplished by the Word and the Spirit, it is yet imperfect in this life. There is some element of corruption in every aspect of creation which is the source for the war between the flesh and the Spirit. Spiritual growth occurs as believers feed on the Word and are in fellowship with other believers for encouragement and service. John 17:17; Romans 5:1; 6:19,22: 8:18-22; I Corinthians 1:2,30; 6:11; Colossians 2:6-7; Hebrews 10:25; I Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 1:3

The Church

We believe the true Church, called in Scripture the Body of Christ, is a spiritual organism. Every person who has trusted Jesus Christ for salvation is a part of the church. The local church, as established in Scripture, is made up of redeemed individuals who have joined together for worship, instruction, fellowship and service. We believe the ‘Church’ was and is the primary means by which God is reaching the world with the hope of the gospel of Jesus. John 20:21; Acts 1:8; 2:42; 13:1-2; I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:22

The Eternal State

We believe that at death the souls of those who have trusted Christ for salvation pass immediately into His presence and remain there in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at Christ’s coming for the Church, when soul and body will be reunited. We then shall be with Him forever in glory. We also believe that at death the souls of unbelievers remain in conscious misery until the final judgment when the soul and body will be reunited and cast into the lake of fire – not to be annihilated, but to be separated from God forever in conscious punishment. Luke 16:19-26; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Revelation 20:11-15

Final Authority for Matters of Belief and Conduct

The West Valley Bible Church 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 West Valley Bible Church’s faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our Elder Board is West Valley Bible Church’s final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.