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Key Characteristics

1.     We are Fundamental: We ascribe to and boldly defend the basic truths of Biblical Christianity:

2.      We are Evangelical: We believe in salvation by faith (belief) alone in Christ’s death and resurrection. (Eph 2:8-9) We believe that a major purpose of the church is to share the Gospel.

3.      We are Dispensational: We understand that God has revealed Himself and His expectations to mankind in different ways at different times. What God revealed concerning Himself and what He expected of mankind was different for Adam and Eve (differing even before and after the fall), Noah, the Patriarchs, Moses and the Israelites, the Church, and will be in the Millennial kingdom. Though God works in different ways at different times, salvation has only and always been by grace through belief in the promise of God, ultimately based upon the redemptive work of Jesus' substitutionary death and resurrection (Gen 15:6; Rom 3:19-26; 4:18-26; Rev 13:8). Two main tenants of dispensationalism are:

  • Literal, grammatical, historical method of interpretation (it says what it means and means what it says – not allegorical). This includes a literal interpretation of creation, which is foundational to accurate interpretation of the entire Word of God.
  • Israel and the Church are separate and distinct. God will keep his promises to the nation Israel.

4.      We are Cessationist: We believe that the “sign” gifts have ceased. We believe that God has completed the revelation of His Word, and that it is complete. We are thus not “charismatic.” We study, believe, and follow the written Word.

5.      We are Baptistic: We identify with Baptists because of the Biblical truths that they embrace. A church is not “Baptist” because of its name but because of its beliefs and practices. A name in no way guarantees a church’s orthodoxy or tradition. Such a name could even be a hindrance. A denominational title is certainly not a Biblical requirement but is at best a preference. We believe that we will be more Biblical and effective by holding to a name that accurately describes us, rather than hoping that someone identifies us correctly by holding to some historical denominational name.

B – Biblical Authority

A – Autonomy of the Local Church

P – Priesthood of the Believer

T – Two Ordinances: Believer’s Baptism and the Lord’s Supper

I – Individual Soul Liberty

S – Saved, Baptized Church Membership

T – Two Offices: Pastors/Elders/Overseers & Deacons

S – Separation of Church and State

6.   We are Family-Focused: We believe God designed marriage as the basic unit of society, and that God designed the family to be the incubator and training ground for children. The church is to assist but not to replace the parents. We design our programs around helping parents fulfill their responsibilities rather than taking those responsibilities away from the parents. Our goal is to minister to families as families, within the family structure, as well as to each individual. Our ministry contains elements geared to the entire congregation together, including family units, as well as age-segregated elements designed to minister to individuals. We encourage parents to be the primary spiritual trainers of their own children. We embrace and emphasize foundational family truths set forth by God from creation:

  • Men and women are equal in value but distinct in roles - Complementarian (not Egalitarian)
  • Roles of men and women are distinct in the home, the church, and the world.
  • Children are a blessing from the Lord.
  • Parents are responsible to raise their children.
  • Children are responsible to respect, honor, and obey their parents.

7.    We are Christ-Ruled, Pastor-Led: We are led by Christ by means of His Word. God chooses leaders to lead the flock to follow God. Leaders are given to lead, feed, and protect. Leaders are to be gentle, patient, and lead by teaching and example. Having more than one pastor is Biblically ideal, normal, safe, beneficial, and stable.