Christ Church Doctrinal Summary
God has revealed Himself in Scripture as both one and three. He has one essence, nature, and character shared by three co-equal, co-eternal Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The LORD is the one true and sovereign God and there are no other legitimate gods.
The canon of Scripture is just that, the canon: the rule, principle, or criterion by which something is judged. Scripture is God's Word. As such, it establishes the standard for our doctrine and for our lives. Our beliefs and our lives must be measured by and assessed on the basis of God's Word as contained in Scripture and brought into conformity with it. Our beliefs and patterns of living are not subject to cultural shifts and mores, but rather cultural norms and mores must be accepted, rejected, or redeemed on the basis of the contents of Scripture. We affirm the inerrancy of Scripture, the infallibility of Scripture, and the sufficiency of Scripture.
Man is, as any cursory reading of history reveals, capable of both great good and terrible evil. Only Scripture's accounting of man's nature makes sense of this observation. Man was made in God's image Genesis 1:26-27, such that he possesses emotions, intellect, and will to a degree that is far beyond any of God's other creatures Psalm 8:4-8 and is a reflection of God's own emotions, intellect, and will. But man rebelled against His Maker and in response God cursed him with a fallen nature. Thus man is now tainted, corrupted, and impure. He still bears God's image (which accounts for his capacity for goodness, innovation, and the like) but that image is now broken, marred, and stained by sin (which accounts for the evil that man always and invariably perpetrates with the use of his capacities). Man is incapable of removing the stain of sin and restoring himself to his original state, thus he is a slave to sin and must be born again by the Spirit of God John 3:3-8.
(in three parts)
Salvation is a comprehensive work of God that can be understood under the headings of justification, sanctification, and glorification.
All men know God and reject Him Romans 1:18-32 3:10-12 3:23. They do this because they can do nothing else, as they are dead in their sins and trespasses and are incapable of pleasing or submitting to God Ephesians 2:1-3 Romans 8:7-8. For this rejection, mankind is born under the wrath of God. God is perfectly justified in His wrath toward us because our first father Adam was our representative in the garden of Eden, meaning that his rebellion is representative of what we would have done if we had been there. Therefore, in Adam we all stand condemned Romans 5:12 1 Corinthians 15:22 and the due penalty for our sin must be paid Romans 6:23.
In His mercy and kindness, God the Father sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ into the world that He made John 3:16-17 to live a perfect, sinless life 1 John 3:5 and to die a gruesome death Matthew 27:26-54. This He did as a substitute for His people Isaiah 53:5 that He may give us His righteousness 2 Corinthians 5:21 and take from us the penalty for our sins Hebrews 10:12-14. Only in Christ Jesus can man be saved John 14:6 Acts 4:11-12. We receive the benefits of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection by faith, which is the gift of God's Grace given to His elect people. Ephesians 2:8-9
Christ does more than save His people from the penalty of sin through His death on the cross, He also progressively saves them from sinning Romans 6:6-7 Philippians 1:6 as they grow into the likeness of Christ through the process of sanctification. This work is empowered by and superintended by the Holy Spirit John 14:16-17, John 14:26 1 Thessalonians 5:23 and actively pursued by the believer in Christ. Romans 6:1-4 2 Corinthians 7:1 Galatians 3:2-3 Galatians 5:16-18 Colossians 3:1-10
When Christ returns to usher in the fullness of His kingdom John 14:3 Revelation 19:11-16 Revelation 21:1-7, He will complete our sanctification and restore us to a full humanity, even like unto Himself, that is untainted by sin and its affects. Romans 8:29-30 2 Corinthians 3:18 Colossians 3:4 Philippians 3:20-21 1 John 3:2