Hope Chapel Statement of Faith
1. The Trinity
We believe there is only one God, an infinite and personal Spirit, who is entirely holy, perfect and self-sufficient. God is one being, yet eternally exists as three persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The persons of the Trinity are equal in their perfection with no fracture in who they are. The Father is not the Son, the Son is not the Holy Spirit, nor the Holy Spirit the Father, but they are each fully God, and are eternally one with each other. Their roles are distinct, but they always work in harmony.
a. God the Father
We believe in God the Father, who is perfect in all that He is and all that He does. He is the rightful, just, and loving ruler of everything that exists. He actively and mercifully intervenes in the affairs of men, He hears and answers prayers, and He saves from sin and condemnation any who come to Him through Jesus Christ. He draws mankind to Himself through His Son and will carry out all things in their appropriate time according to His wisdom, love, and providence to make known His glory and to set Jesus above every other name.
b. God the Son
We believe in Jesus Christ, the one and only Son of God, who is the human embodiment of the invisible God. Along with the other persons of the Trinity, He always existed and will exist forever; the name “Son” refers to His relationship to God the Father. All things were created through Him and for Him. Jesus became man without ceasing to be God, giving up His privileges as God and taking the humble form of a human. His purpose was to reveal God and redeem mankind from our desperately sinful situation.
Jesus was supernaturally conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin, Mary. By the power of the Holy Spirit, He lived the life we could not, walking in total obedience to the Father, never sinning.
We believe that Jesus was physically crucified on a cross, where he suffered, bled, and died. He was buried in a tomb, but on the third day, he rose from the dead. He then ascended to heaven, exalted to the right hand of the Father. By His suffering and His death, Jesus paid the penalty for sin. The wrath of God was poured out on Him in our place so that all who trust in Him may receive the gift of forgiveness and reconciliation to God.
c. God the Holy Spirit
We believe in the Holy Spirit, who is the ever-present Comforter, Helper and Counselor. While active at creation and in the saga of Old Testament redemptive history, the Holy Spirit was sent by Christ Jesus after His ascension to reside in all His people. This same Holy Spirit is at work today as He was in the early church, actively and powerfully present in every Christian.
Followers of Jesus are sustained and assisted in spreading the good news of the kingdom of God through the power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit draws people to Christ and enables them to understand the Truth. When they accept the Truth of Christ, people are born again by the Spirit, moving from spiritual death to spiritual life. The Holy Spirit indwells each believer permanently, as the promised down-payment of all the blessings we receive through Christ Jesus. As our abiding Helper, He is the power and presence of Jesus within us. He gives each one of us spiritual gifts, equipping all believers for service including the work of expanding God’s kingdom. These gifts are to be eagerly desired, faithfully developed, and lovingly exercised according to biblical guidelines. He changes us to be like Jesus, renewing our minds and transforming our lives.
2. The Bible
We believe that the Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, is the inspired Word of God. It is 100% trustworthy, the final authority for the Church today. The Bible is the true revelation of God, written through men under the supervision of the Holy Spirit. The Bible should be read using the intellect God gave us, under the illumination of the Holy Spirit.
3. The Condition of Humanity
God created Adam and Eve innocent and without inclination to sin. God intended humanity to live in perfect relationship with Himself and with each other, but Adam and Eve sinned when they followed Satan into pride and deliberate disobedience. The consequence was not only physical death, but also spiritual death, severing their perfect relationship with a perfect God. Now the likeness of God in us, the descendants of Adam and Eve, is twisted but not destroyed. Therefore each person knows God’s standard for good and evil, yet we all sin and do not choose good, and deserve His wrath. We are without excuse for our sinful thoughts, words, and deeds. Humankind, alienated from God, will one day face judgment. In our natural state we remain helpless, in need of a savior.
4. The Gospel and Salvation
Salvation is a gift from God through which He saves us from the penalty, power, and, ultimately, the presence of sin. Salvation is offered to all the world through the gospel of Jesus Christ alone, (the good news about all that Jesus accomplished in His death and resurrection). All who respond to the call of the Holy Spirit will authentically own up to their sin, turn from it, and trust in Christ. Each one will be forgiven, cleansed in Jesus’ blood and declared righteous in the sight of God. Believers in Christ are kept and protected by the power of God through faith. Believers are saved only through faith in Christ Jesus.
5. The Church
We believe the church exists to worship God and glorify Him. The church consists of all persons who trust in Jesus Christ for their salvation. Local expressions of the church are believers in Jesus Christ who gather together in a community formed by the Spirit and founded according to Scripture. The church is called to make disciples, working with God to lead people to Jesus and develop them to full maturity as obedient followers of Jesus.
We believe that Jesus established water baptism and the Lord’s Supper as practices for the church. These are sacred and symbolic acts of obedience and testify of a believer’s faith, worship, and submission to God. We believe Jesus Christ will return to the earth in person to claim His Bride, the Church, to set all things right, and to perfect His Kingdom.
6. The Life to Come
We believe that Heaven and Hell are real places, and when Christ returns, all persons will be bodily resurrected to life or to judgment. Believers in Christ, saved by grace through His shed blood, will be resurrected to enjoy eternal life with God in the new Heaven and the new Earth. All others, who have not turned from their sin to trust in Christ, will experience God’s wrath and righteous judgment according to their deeds, suffering eternally apart from God in Hell.
From the very beginning, God’s design has been for mankind to live in intimate relationship with Him, and despite our rejection of His will, His intention has never changed. In His perfect timing, the Father sent Jesus into the world as the Lamb who takes away the sins of the world. God continues, in mercy, to send us, the followers of Jesus, to make disciples by sharing this good news of redemption with all people on Earth. The primary purpose of this mission is to bring glory to God, so that He might receive the worship He deserves from every tribe, tongue, and nation, and to present to Christ a complete and beautiful Bride prepared for His wedding day.
The Trinity: Genesis 1:1,26; Lev 11:44,45,19:2; Deuteronomy 4:35,39, 6:4, 32:3,4; Isaiah 43:10- 13,45:21-25; Matthew 5:48, 28:19; Mark 12:29-30; John 1:1-3, 8:17-19; Acts 4:10-12,5:3-4:30-32; Romans 14:9-12; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Ephesians 3:14-21, 4:4-6; Philippians 2:6-11; Colossians 1:12-20,2:9; 1 Timothy 2:5; Titus 1:1-5, 2:10-14, 3:4-8; 1 Peter 1:16; 1 John 5:7
God the Father: Deuteronomy 32:4; Daniel 4:37; Matthew 5:48; Luke 6:36; 1 Peter 1:3; Revelation 6:4
God the Son: John 1:1-18, 10:30-38, 20:28,30,31; Romans 9:5; Matthew 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38; Matthew 27:32-28:10; Romans 5:6-11; Colossians 2:13-15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21
God the Holy Spirit: Acts 4:3-4, 5:32; John 14:16-17,26, 15:26, 16:7-14; Romans 8:9, 12-13; 1 Corinthians 2:10-12, 3:16, 6:19, 12:13; 2 Corinthians 3:5-6; Galatians 5:22-26; Titus 3:5; 1 Corinthians 3:16, Ephesians 4:30; Romans 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians 12-14; John 14:15-17, 16:4b-15
The Bible: Matthew 5:18; Mark 13:31; John 8:31,32, 17:17, 20:30,31; Romans 15:4,5; 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21
The Condition of Humanity: Genesis 1:26-31, 3:1-19, 5:1-3; Romans 1:18-25, 2:1-5, 3:21-26; 1 John 2:1-2
The Gospel and Salvation: Romans 3:21-26, 5: 6-9; Ephesians 2:9-10
The Church: Ephesians 5:27, Col. 1:28, Jude 1:24-25; Romans 6:1-14; 1 Corinthians 11:17-34; Matthew 3:13-17; Luke 22:14-23; Matthew 24:3-51; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 19:6-16; 21:1-4
The Life to Come: Psalms 62:12; Matthew 16:27; Acts17:30-31; Romans 2:5-11; Revelation 20:12-14
Mission: Exodus 19:4-6; Acts 17:24-27; Matthew 28:18-20; Revelation 5:6-14