Doctrines of Grace Empire
Grace Empire, Inc. embraces the following statements concerning the truth. The Bible is our all-sufficient rule for faith and practice. This Statement of Fundamental Truths is intended simply as a basis of fellowship among us (i.e., that we all speak the same thing; I Corinthians 1:10; Acts 2:42). No claim is made that it contains all biblical truth, only that it covers our need as to these fundamental doctrines. We do not presume to say the phraseology employed in this Statement of Fundamental Truths is inspired or that it is the final work on Bible truth. However, we are persuaded it is proper and consistent with the Holy Scriptures to “set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us” (Luke 1:1).
Jesus Christ, the Son of God and the Son of Man
Jesus was born miraculously of the Virgin Mary (Matthew 1: 23; Luke 1:31, 35).
He lived a sinless life (Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 2:22).
He came into the world to save men from the guilt and condemnation of sin (John 3:16), offering His blood as atonement (1 Corinthians 15:3; 2 Corinthians 5:21) and making it available to all who exercise faith in Him.
He resurrected from the dead (Matthew 28:6; Luke 24:39; 1 Corinthians 15:4).
He is exalted to the right hand of God (Acts 1:9, 11; 2:33; Philippians 2:9-11; Hebrews 1-3).
His divinity is proved from His titles, His attributes, and His works (John 1:14; Luke 1:26-35; Acts 4:12; Acts 16:31).
He is presently seated at the right hand of God the Father, interceding for His redeemed.
We also acknowledge Jesus Christ as Lord over all things in Heaven, and in Earth, and under the Earth (John 1:12-14; 1 Timothy 3:16; Acts 7:37-38; Philippians 2:9-10; Hebrews 7:25).
Assurance of Salvation
Assurance means that you, a believer in Jesus Christ, have confidence that you are in the family of God and therefore have eternal life. Assurance looks at our eternal salvation from man’s viewpoint. The central passage is 1 John 5:13. Each clear verse about eternal salvation, such as John 3:16, stresses the basis for assurance because God keeps His Word.
We believe the New Testament teaches at least three baptisms. First, there is the baptism whereby the repentant sinner, upon trusting Jesus Christ as his Savior, is baptized by the Holy Spirit into the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13). Secondly, there is water baptism by immersion for believers only. This we believe to be an ordinance of the church, whereby the believer experiences the reality of co-crucifixion and co-resurrection with the Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 28:19-20; Romans 6:3-6). Thirdly, there is the filling or baptism in the Holy Spirit by the Lord Jesus Christ, which may occur at or subsequent to conversion. We believe that speaking in tongues as the Spirit gives the utterance is the normative, but not necessarily initial, evidence of this baptism. Further, we believe that by the believer’s continued submission to the Holy Spirit, his very weakness is transformed into strength to witness for Jesus Christ in power, and to live according to the will of God (Acts 1:5-6; 10:46; 11:28; 19:6).
The resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Christ and their translation together with those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord is the imminent and the blessed hope of the church (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; Romans 8:23; Titus 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51).
Of the World: God spoke into existence the world and all things that it contains, for His own pleasure, and the enjoyment of His creatures (Revelation 4:11; 1 Timothy 6:17).
Of Man: God created man in His image according to Genesis 1:26 as a triune being consisting of spirit, soul (which is made of the mind, will, and emotions), and a body.
As a result of original sin, all mankind is subject to the death of the body. The soul does not die with the body, but immediately after death enters into a conscious state of happiness or misery according to the character here possessed either by rejection or acceptance of the Savior (Romans 5:12; Ecclesiastes 12:7; Philippians 1:23).
Deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement and is the privilege of all believers. The ministration of the laying on of hands accompanied with the anointing of oil for the healing of the sick shall be granted as request is made and the need may require (Isaiah 53:4-5; Matthew 8:16-17; Mark 16:17-18; James 5:14-15).
Fellowship with God
Fellowship with God emphasizes the friendship relationship with God the Father and the Son. Sin breaks the fellowship; confession of sin restores the fellowship. When in fellowship with God, believers partner with God in service and enjoy a close friendship. The central passages are 1 John 1 and John 13. Since one is no longer walking in darkness (sin), the Holy Spirit also leads and controls the believer as Galatians 5 teaches. John 15:1-9 uses the term “abide” which also refers to fellowship with Jesus Christ.
Gifts of the Spirit
The nine gifts of the Spirit set forth in 1 Corinthians 12 should be and must be operative in the church to enjoy the fullness of God. These gifts are imparted by the sovereignty of the Holy Spirit and only work or are operated by this one and the self-same Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:11).
Help of the Poor
We believe that it is the intent of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to feed the hungry (Matthew 25:34-40; Isaiah 58:7-8); to care for the poor (Matthew 19:21; Psalm 112:9; 2 Corinthians 9:6-9); and to care for the widows and orphans (James 1:27). We further believe that such ministry should be toward His name to both saints and unbelievers (Hebrews 6:10).
The Holy Bible, and only the Bible, is the authoritative Word of God. It alone is the final authority in determining all doctrinal truths. In its original writing, it is inspired, infallible and inerrant (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Proverbs 30:5; Romans 16:25-26).
Justification is the legal act whereby God declares the sinner to be innocent of his or her sins. It is not that the sinner is now sinless, but that he/she is "declared" sinless. This declaration of righteousness means the person is justified before God. This justification is based on the shed blood of Jesus, "...having now been justified by His blood..." (Rom. 5:9) where Jesus was crucified, died, buried, and rose again (1 Cor. 15:1-4). God imputed (reckoned to our account) the righteousness of Christ at the same time our sins were imputed to Christ when He was on the cross. That is why it says in 1 Pet. 2:24, "And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed." Also, 2 Cor. 5:21 says, "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." Additionally, we are justified by faith (Rom. 5:1) apart from works of the Law (Rom. 3:28).
Law and the Gospel
The Law is the do’s and don’ts of moral behavior. God gave the Law so that people would have a guide to live by and a standard by which they might recognize God’s purity and their sinfulness. There are 613 commandments in the Old Testament. They oversee moral, judicial, and religious behavior.
The Law is a reflection of the character of God, because the Law comes forth from the very heart of God. Since it is not possible for us to keep the Law and therefore earn our position with God, we then need the holiness of God given to us - because there simply isn’t any way for us to attain to the standard of God. Therefore, "...The law was put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith," (Gal. 3:24).
The Lord’s Supper is a memorial of the covenant made with God through the blood of Christ. It is a continuation of the Passover Feast, which God commanded His covenant people to observe. Those who have made covenant with God through the blood of Christ and have been water baptized are instructed to participate. The church participates in the Lord’s Supper as a body or family, with each covenant partner in fellowship adding to the blessedness of the experience (Exodus 11, 12; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:19-20; 1 Corinthians 10:16; 11:23-26).
Missions are the whole task, endeavor, and program of the Church of Jesus Christ to reach out across geographical and/or cultural boundaries by sending missionaries to evangelize people who have never heard or who have little opportunity to hear the saving gospel. (Acts 1:8)
Music and song are a product of, reflection of, and appreciation of God’s word, works, and person inside a believer. Biblical music honors God, teaches and recalls Bible doctrine, and encourages people. Biblical music expresses the thinking, free will, emotion, conscience, and self-consciousness, though it especially joins the learned doctrine in the soul and human spirit with the emotion of the soul and human spirit. In church assembly, the ministry of music prepares the congregation for the ministry of God’s Word (Psalm 30:4, Psalm 57:9, Colossians 3:16, 1 Chronicles 15:16; 25:1, Exodus 15:1-18, 1 Samuel 16:23, Acts 16:25, James 5:13).
This is the new covenant of the Messianic age where the law of God is written upon the hearts of men (Jer. 31:31,33); it was promised in Eden (Gen. 3:15); it was proclaimed to Abraham (Gen. 12:3), and it was fulfilled in Christ (Luke 1:68-79).
The Holy Spirit
The Scriptures ascribe to the Holy Spirit the acts and attributes of an intelligent being. He guides, knows, moves, gives information, commands, forbids, sends forth, reproves, as the instrumental segment of the God Head in the liberal dispersion of spiritual gifts, and can be sinned against (John 16:13; 1 Corinthians 2:11; Genesis 1:2; Acts 10:19; 13:2; 16:6; 13:4; John 16:8; Mark 3:29; Acts 7:51; Ephesians 4:30; 1 Corinthians 12).
The works of God are ascribed to the Holy Spirit; creation; inspiration, giving of life, and sanctification (Job 33:4; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 Peter 3:18; 1 Corinthians 6:11).
There is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These three are coequal and co-eternal (1 John 5:7; Genesis 1:26; Matthew 3:16-17, 28:19; Luke 1:35; Isaiah 9:6; Hebrews 3:7-11).