The Bible is the Authoritative and final word of God.
The Trinity One God in Three Persons… Father, Son, Holy Spirit.
People are created in His image, male and female, for a relationship with Him. We ALL have fallen in sin and are redeemed only by Jesus Christ.
Salvation is in Jesus Christ by grace through faith.
The Church is God’s people, His Bride, The Body, God’s representation here on earth in His absence.
Works or fruits reveal salvation. We can’t earn it!
Judgment to those in Christ to reward with God, those without Christ to separation without God, final.
a. The Bible: authoritative, final, complete revelation of God.
The Bible is the God inspired, authoritative, final, complete standard that reveals God, doctrine, and theology. The Bible reveals the truth from God and is not relative.
b. The Trinity: One God-Three Persons, Father, Son, Holy Spirit.
The Trinity is the One living true God. Infinite in love and holiness. The unified Godhead is three persons of one substance, power, and eternity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
c. People: created in His image male and female, for relationship with Him, fallen in sin, redeemed only by Jesus Christ.
God created people in His image both male and female to have relationship with Him. They together sinned and disobeyed God causing separation from Him, in this Original Sin they then passed the sin disease to all generations. All people are spiritually bankrupt and spiritually dead, separated from God, and out of relationship and fellowship with Him. Everyone is in need of redemption from the sin debt through Jesus Christ.
d. Jesus Christ: God in the flesh, 100% man 100% God, sinless, death on a cross, bodily resurrected from the dead, ascended into heaven.
Jesus, the eternal Second person of the Trinity, became incarnate to live on the earth, God born in human flesh, born but not created. He lived a sinless life, was crucified on a cross by His rebellious human creation, was bodily resurrected by the power of God from the dead, and He then physically ascended into heaven.
e. Salvation: in Jesus Christ by grace through faith.
Jesus Christ is the only way for salvation. Grace is God’s unmerited favor. People are created to have a relationship with God, that relationship is broken by sin, so God, compelled by his love for people, sent His Son Jesus to be the final atonement so that we might have the opportunity, all by his sovereign prevenient (preceding), to choose repentance, make effectual this atoning sacrifice, and enter in relationship with Him. Salvation is for bringing us to the relationship we are created to enjoy. No other person, religion, or philosophy can bring anyone to this relationship. His love and a right standing with Him cannot be earned, but can only be received from God freely. The sinner can only receive this gift by faith, not by works.
f. The Church: God’s people, his Bride, the Body, God’s representation here on earth in His ‘absence’.
The Church is the assembly or called out, God’s people. It is the body of Christ, it is His bride, it is His representative here on earth. It is not a building nor a structure, it is the disciples, it is the temple of God where His spirit resides. God has called people to be disciples, not just believers, in this people become the Church. The Church is called to regular public worship. This practice is an essential part of spiritual growth and Christian fellowship. Jesus desires to draw all people to become the Church, so He commanded us to go into all the world making disciples of all nations, baptizing and teaching them to obey all He commands.
g. Works: fruits reveal salvation, never earns it.
Fruitful works will result if God is truly in relationship with a person. This fruit is natural growth from roots in God, they do not cause nor earn salvation, they are a result of it. Though Christians are in a relationship with God and have been liberated from sin, spiritual growth is still needed. Christians must actively decide to honor their relationship with God and daily make Jesus their Lord. People can be transformed and made holy by submission to the Holy Spirit. In spiritual growth, fruit results.
h. Judgment: those in Christ to reward with God, those without Christ to separation without God, final.
Those who are in relationship with God through Jesus Christ are in that which God created people for, so in judgment they will continue to live with Him forever in His presence. For those who are not in relationship with God through Jesus Christ, they will continue to live without Him forever, not in His presence.
The Apostles Creed
I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy universal Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. AMEN.
Approach to Doctrine
There are at least three different ways to approach the beliefs in Christianity.
1. Dogmatically determine answers for each and make all our Church Doctrine, clearly answering all, many will find a number of them they disagree with and not be a part of our body.
2. Never deal in detail with the issues below and be vague about most things.
3. Determine the Essential Orthodox Issues, and let many exist in the same family of the local church, but also be willing to discuss and co-exist with others.
Twelve Mile Creek Church will follow #3.
Over 1,500 years ago Augustine said “In Essentials, unity. In non-essentials, liberty. In all things, love.” We will endeavor to take this approach.
For example, consider the following list of “issues.” The staff at TMCC have particular views on almost all of them (they are in no specific order). Mark Patterson enjoys asking others their responses to these issues. TMCC is interested in the Orthodox essentials to be dogmatic in a church. But on many of the remainder grace will be extended as we endeavor to understand what God has communicated to His Church and obey. We desire to explore the whole counsel of God and understand, where possible, a Christian view of the world. So, dive in, and explore the great questions in life and culture and give grace to all.
1. Orthodoxy, Doctrines, Theology, Essentials, Non-essentials
2. Sacraments: Baptism and Lord’s Supper
3. Church Government
5. Pastoral Salaries, too high, too low, equality, tent makers
6. Missions Commitments, set budget, percent of revenue, or other
7. Closed Country Outreach
8. Women in Pastoral/Authority Leadership
9. Worship Pastor
10. Worship Service Styles, music and liturgy.
11. Super Pastor / Priesthood of Believers
12. Expository / Topical / 3 Point Preaching
13. Sermon length: 15 minutes, 30 minute, 45 minute, 1 hour
14. Worship length: 45 minute, 1 hour, 1.5 hours
15. Video Venues
16. Denominations / Networks
17. Mother Church / Plant locations
18. Vision / Mission / Goals
19. Free Will / Sovereignty
20. Book of Revelation, End Times
21. Genesis Account, Evolution, Intelligent Design
22. Alcohol, Tobacco, Drugs, Eating, Skydiving, and Motorcycles
23. Earrings, Tattoos, Botox, Face Lifts, and Long Hair
24. Small Groups, Sticky Church, Sermon Based
25. Bible Teaching Classes
26. Buildings / Facilities, own or lease, debt, cash, none
27. Schools, Gyms, Programs, and Ball Fields
28. Simple Church / Town Center
29. Church / State
30. Just War / Pacifism
31. Leadership Development, interns, seminary, pastors, laity
32. Church Planting
33. Statement of Faith
34. Apostles Creed / Nicene Creed
35. Doctrinal Agreement Requirements, leaders, teachers, pastors
36. Pluralism – under large umbrella / No pluralism – all must agree
37. Eternal Security
39. Home Schooling / Public Schools
40. Sexuality / Homosexuality / Masturbation (oops did we write that)
41. Charismatica, tongues, miracles
42. Apostles miracles, cannon closed, miraculous again End Time
43. Tithing, giving
44. Slavery, human dignity
45. Music Development Venue / Recording
46. Excellence in Ministry / Unassuming Ministry
47. Covenant Partnership
48. Church Growth. Methods.
49. Biblical education method (college, self study, doctorate, PhD?), value, and importance
50. Ministry renumeration: royalties, fair pay, riches unhindered, poverty vows, effort/motivation for leaders
51. The Arts
52. Music: “Christian”, “Secular”
53. Imagination, Dungeons & Dragons, Disney, Lion Witch Wardrobe
54. Facebook, Myspace. Internet benefits and dangers.
55. Abortion (God is for Life!).