HBC STATEMENT OF FAITH
These things we believe:
- The Word of God
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, fully inspired and without error in the original manuscripts,written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and it has supreme authority in all matters of faith and conduct.
2. The Trinity
We believe that there is one living and true God, eternally existing in three persons; that these are equal in every divine perfection, and that they execute distinct but harmonious office in the work of creation, providence, and redemption.
3. God the Father
We believe in God, the Father, an infinite, personal spirit, perfect in holiness, wisdom, power, and love. We believe that He concerns Himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that He hears and answers prayer, and that He saves from sin and death all who come to Him through Jesus Christ.
4. Jesus Christ
We believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, conceived by the Holy Spirit. We believe in His virgin birth, sinless life, miracles and teachings. We believe in His substitutionary atoning death, bodily resurrection, ascension into Heaven, perpetual intercession for His people and personal, visible return to earth.
5. The Holy Spirit
We believe in the Holy Spirit who came forth from the Father and the Son to convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment, and to regenerate, sanctify, and empower all who believe in Jesus Christ. We believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer in Christ, and that He is an abiding helper, teacher, and guide.
We believe that salvation is by Grace alone, through Faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone. We believe that all men are sinners by nature and by choice and are, therefore, under condemnation. We believe that those who are regenerated by the Holy Spirit repent of their sin, and believe and trust in Jesus Christ as Savior. The security of the believer is assured by both the words and works of Jesus Christ alone.
7. The Church
We believe in the universal church, a living spiritual body of which Christ is the Head and all regenerated persons are members. We believe in the local church, consisting of a company of believers in Jesus Christ, baptized on a credible profession of faith, and associated for worship, work, and fellowship. We believe that God has laid upon the members of the local church the primary task of giving the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost world.
8. Christian Conduct
We believe that a Christian should live for the glory of God and the well-being of his fellowmen; that his conduct should be blameless before the world; that he should be a faithful steward of his possessions, and that he should seek to realize for himself and others the full stature of maturity in Christ. Christian behavior or conduct is fundamental to those who have accepted, by faith, Jesus Christ as their Savior and thus are indwelt with His Holy Spirit (Romans 8:9), “You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the
Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” Christians are “God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10). And these last four words “to do good works” epitomize the behavior that glorifies God and makes
Christ real to others. Christians are called to live lives that are “holy and pleasing to God” (Romans 12:1), and exemplary Christian behavior that allows us to fully commit ourselves to serving the Lord is made possible as we are empowered by the Holy Spirit who enables us to do the Father’s will (Romans 8:9). Indeed, “the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him” (2 Chronicles 16:9).
- Christians are a chosen people, belonging to God so that we may declare His praises (1Peter 2:9). To “declare His praises,” then, it is essential that we spend time in His Word not just so we can learn how to behave in Christian fashion, but also so we can battle against the schemes of Satan.
- The “actions” that glorify our Father in heaven are those that bear much fruit (John 15:8). This is, in fact, how we show we are His disciples. Indeed, the fruit of the Spirit — love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23) — should be the hallmark of Christian behavior, especially love.
- Christian behavior includes heeding Jesus’ call for us to be His witnesses to “the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). We are to share the gospel, which Paul defined as the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
- Paul urged the Romans to “offer your bodies as living sacrifices” (Romans 12:2). This, ultimately, is the essence of true Christian behavior – surrendering our hearts and yielding our bodies to Christ so He might continue God’s work through us.
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has committed two ordinances to the local church: baptism and the Lord’s Supper.
1) We believe that baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament ordained by Jesus Christ, to be unto the party baptized a sign of fellowship with Him in His death and resurrection; of his being engrafted into Him, of remission of sins, and of giving up into God, through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life.Those who do actually profess repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ are the only proper subjects of this ordinance.The outward element to be used in this ordinance is water, wherein the party is baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.We practice baptism by immersion because we feel that it most clearly represents the symbols of dying and rising with Christ and the washing of regeneration, though we accept other forms of Christian believer’s baptism in water and in the name of the triune God.
2) The supper of the Lord Jesus was instituted by Him the night He was betrayed, to be observed in His churches unto the end of the world, for the perpetual remembrance and showing forth the sacrifice of Himself in His death, confirmation of the faith of believers in all the benefits thereof, their spiritual nourishment and growth in Him, their further engagement in and to all duties which they owe Him; and to be a bond and a pledge of their communion with Him and each other. We believe that these two ordinances should be observed and administered until the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Last Things
We believe in the personal and visible return of the Lord Jesus Christ to the earth and the consummation of His Kingdom. We believe in the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, the eternal felicity of the righteous, and the endless suffering of the wicked.
POLICY STATEMENT ON MARRIAGE, GENDER AND SEXUALITY
We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Genesis 1:26-27). Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. (Genesis 2:18-25). We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (1 Corinthians 6:18, 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4). We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
The Bible consistently tells us that homosexual activity is a sin (Genesis 19:1-13; Leviticus 18:22, 20:13; Romans 1:26-27; 1 Corinthians 6:9). Romans 1:26-27 teaches specifically that homosexuality is a result of denying and disobeying God. When people continue in sin and unbelief, God “gives them over” to even more wicked and depraved sin in order to show them the futility and hopelessness of life apart from God. 1 Corinthians 6:9 proclaims that homosexual “offenders” will not inherit the kingdom of God.
God does not create a person with homosexual desires. The Bible tells us that people become homosexuals because of sin (Romans 1:24-27) and ultimately because of their own choice. A person may be born with a greater susceptibility to homosexuality, just as some people are born with a tendency to violence and other sins. That does not excuse the person’s choosing to sin by giving in to sinful desires. If a person is born with a greater susceptibility to anger/rage, does that make it right for him to give into those desires? Of course not! The same is true with homosexuality.
However, the Bible does not describe homosexuality as a “greater” sin than any other. All sin is offensive to God. Homosexuality is just one of the many things listed in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 that will keep a person from the kingdom of God. According to the Bible, God’s forgiveness is just as available to a homosexual as it is to an adulterer, idol worshipper, murderer, thief, etc. God also promises the strength for victory over sin, including homosexuality, to all those who will believe in Jesus Christ for their salvation (1 Corinthians 6:11; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Philippians 4:13).
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and the use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Harvest Bible Church as a local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the members of Harvest Bible Church, it is imperative that all persons employed by Harvest Bible Church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agreed to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender and Sexuality. (Matthew 5:16; Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11)
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-30; Luke 6:31) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of Harvest Bible Church.