What We Believe
Purpose of the Church
The church exists to glorify God through the fulfillment of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) in the spirit of the Great Commandment (Matthew 22:37-39). The commission is fulfilled as disciples of Jesus Christ are made and grow in their relationship with Him. God is glorified as we manifest His presence as we do His work (2 Timothy 2:2; 1 Corinthians 10:31).
Salem Chapel has five core values that are priorities for our church. Hopefully, as you are around the church you will see us living these values out week after week in our Sunday service and as you spend time with Salem Chapel people. All ministries and service projects will be run through these core values. Our core values are:
Doctrine: What We Believe About...
We believe in the only true God (John 17:3), often referred to as “YHWH” (the LORD) in the Old Testament and “God” in the New Testament. He created all things (Revelation 4:11) and upholds all things by the Word of His power (Hebrews 1:3). In Him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28). He is a God of truth and without iniquity, He is just and right (Deuteronomy 32:4), and He shall judge the world (Psalm 9:8).
We believe that the Godhead eternally exists in three persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. These three are one God, having precisely the same nature, attributes, and perfections, and are worthy of precisely the same homage, confidence, and obedience (Mark 12:29; John 1:1-4; Acts 4:3-4).
We believe in the total deity and sinlessness of the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe He is the manifestation of God in the flesh. We believe He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. We believe Him to be true God and true man (John 1:1, 1:14, 1:18, 14:8-9; 1 Timothy 3:16).
We believe in the total deity of the Holy Spirit and that His ministry is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ (John 16:14). The Holy Spirit regenerates the sinner upon belief in Christ, baptizing the believer into one body of which Christ is the head. The Holy Spirit indwells, guides, instructs, fills, comforts, and empowers the believer for godly living (Mark 13:11; John 14:26; John 16:13; Romans 5:5; 1 Corinthians 6:19). The Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, of God’s righteousness, and of coming judgment (John 16:8-11).
We believe the Scriptures of the Old Testament and New Testament are verbally inspired, breathed out by God, and inerrant in their original writings. We believe the 66 books of the Old Testament and the New Testament are God’s complete and sufficient revelation and therefore carry God’s authority for the total well-being of mankind (Psalm 119:97-104, 119:160; Matthew 5:18; John 5:46-47, 10:35; 2 Timothy 3:15-16).
We believe man was created in innocence under the law of his Maker but by voluntarily transgressing fell from his sinless and happy state. Consequently, all mankind is sinful. All people are sinners not only by inheritance but by their own choice and therefore are under just condemnation without defense or excuse. We believe that without exception every man and every woman is totally depraved and needs a Savior (Genesis 3:1-6; John 8:24; Romans 1:18-20, 1:32, 3:10-19, 5:12).
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice. We believe that each person who by faith receives Him as personal Savior is justified on the basis of Jesus Christ’s shed blood on Calvary. Each person who receives Christ as personal Savior is born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby becomes eternally secure as a child of God. We believe the Holy Spirit baptizes each believing person into the body of Christ at the moment of salvation and that there is no second baptism of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:37-39, 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 12:13; 2 Corinthians 5:21).
We believe in the resurrection of the body of our Lord Jesus Christ, His ascension into heaven, and His present ministry for us as High Priest and Advocate (Acts 1:3, 1:9; Hebrews 7:25-26).
Heaven, Hell and the Return of Christ
We believe in the “blessed hope”: the personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ. His return has a vital bearing on the personal life and service of the believer (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). We believe in the bodily resurrection of both the saved and the lost. The saved are raised to eternal, conscious bliss in heaven (Matthew 25:34; John 14:2-3; 2 Corinthians 5:1; Revelation 2:7), and the lost are raised to eternal torment in hell in conscious separation from God (Matthew 8:12, 10:28, 13:49-50; Mark 9:47-48; Luke 12:5; Revelation 21:8).
Upon accepting the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior, a believer becomes part of His body, which is the church. There is one church universal, composed of all those throughout the world who acknowledge Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. The Scriptures command believers to gather in order to devote themselves to worship, prayer, teaching of the Word, observance of the ordinances (baptism and communion), fellowship, service to the body through the development and use of talents and gifts, and outreach to the world in fulfillment of the command of Christ to make disciples of all believers (Ephesians 5:23; Romans 12:1; Acts 2:42-47; 1 Corinthians 14:26; Matthew 28:18-20; Hebrews 10:23-25).
Wherever God’s people meet regularly in obedience to this command, there is the local expression of the church – under the oversight of elders and other supportive leadership. The church’s members are to work together in love and unity, intent on the ultimate purpose of glorifying Christ (Ephesians 4:15-16).
Realizing that the cause of Christ extends beyond any one local fellowship, we commit ourselves to an ongoing ministry of extending the call of Christ to make disciples around the world (Matthew 28:19-20).