What We Believe

Understanding what we believe, knowing how we view key aspects of scripture

In our modern world, through the power of the internet, we have wide access to people’s views and opinions. As Elders we believe it is important to be clear on the key aspects of our faith and what we, as members of God’s church here at SCF, believe. The following statements provide a summary outline of that belief.

 

We believe in:

1. The one true holy God, eternally existing in three equal persons—Father,
Son and Holy Spirit. Everything in heaven and on earth, all that is seen and unseen, comes from the Father; everything that has been created has come through the Son;

2. The divine inspiration and supreme authority of the Old and New Testament Scriptures (Scripture / The Bible), which are the written Word of God—fully trustworthy for faith and conduct. We believe Scripture in its entirety originated with God and that He revealed it to chosen authors. Scripture speaks with the authority of God while simultaneously reflecting the backgrounds, styles, and vocabularies of these human authors. We hold that the Scriptures, in their original manuscripts, are infallible and inerrant; they are the unique, full, and final authority on all matters of faith and practice. There are no other writings similarly inspired by God. In all matters of faith and practice, Scripture is the final authority. In matters where Scripture is silent, believers should conscientiously seek to be led by God because it is to Him alone he or she is ultimately responsible;

3. The dignity of all people. We have all been made in His image to love, to be holy and care for creation; yet the human race has been corrupted by sin, which incurs divine wrath and judgement. We also believe teaching within Scripture that: God created humankind in His image, male and female, but with equal personal dignity; marriage, as defined in The Bible, is a permanent and exclusive consecrated union between one man and one woman established by God; sexual activity outside marriage is prohibited as sinful.

4. The love, grace and sovereignty of God in creating, sustaining, ruling, redeeming and judging the world. The central purpose of God’s revelation in Scripture is to call people into fellowship with Him;

5. The salvation of humanity is completely a work of God’s free grace; it is not in any way the result of human works or goodness. Everyone can have a relationship with Jesus Christ by receiving salvation through repentance and faith. God’s Word assures us that He will continue His saving work forever, in those who have accepted him as their Lord and Saviour;

6. The incarnation of God’s eternal Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. He was born of the virgin Mary; he was truly divine and truly human, yet without sin;

7. The atoning sacrifice of Christ on the cross: dying in our place, paying the price of sin and defeating evil, so reconciling us with God. Whilst on Earth he lived in perfect obedience to the Father, and voluntarily paid the price for the sins of all people by dying on the cross as their substitute. Through his death he satisfied divine justice, and brought salvation to all who trust in him alone. After his physical death, Jesus Christ rose from the dead and ascended into heaven to regain his full dignity and majesty within the Godhead, as the only intercessor between God the Father and humankind;

8. The bodily resurrection of Christ, the first fruits of our resurrection; his ascension to the Father, and his reign and mediation as the only Saviour of the world. He promises to return to earth, personally and visibly, to fulfil history, when he will hand over The Kingdom of God to the Father;

9. The ministry of God the Holy Spirit, who was sent by the Father and the Son. The Holy Spirit leads us to repentance, unites us with Christ through new birth, empowers our discipleship and enables our witness. As disciples of Jesus Christ we are called to live in accordance with his teaching; this includes submitting to guidance by the Holy Spirit who renews us, and comes to live within each of us, as we commit our lives to following Christ. The Holy Spirit guides believers in understanding and applying the Bible; he also becomes our source of assurance, strength, wisdom, and gifting, so that we can play our part in building up the church. The Holy Spirit’s work in us, as disciples of Jesus Christ, empowers us to lead a life of Christ-like character and bear fruit for the Father’s glory;

10. The Church, the body of Christ both local and universal, the priesthood of all believers—given life by the Holy Spirit and endowed with the Holy Spirit’s gifts to worship God and proclaim the gospel, promoting justice and love. All of us, who acknowledge Jesus Christ as our Saviour and Lord, are united with Him as members of his body, the one true church. Scripture commands believers to gather for worship, prayer, fellowship, and the teaching of the Word; to observe Baptism and Communion as established by Jesus Christ; to offer service to the body through development and use of talents and gifts and outreach to the world. The local expression of the church is wherever God’s people meet regularly in obedience to this command. Cared for and led by Elders and leaders, church members are to work together in love and unity for the ultimate purpose of glorifying Christ;

11. The personal and visible return of Jesus Christ to fulfil the purposes of God, who will raise all people to judgement, bring eternal life to the redeemed and eternal condemnation to the lost, and establish a new heaven and new earth. Death seals the eternal destiny of each person. All humanity will experience a bodily resurrection and a judgment that will determine the fate of each individual. Having rejected God, unbelievers will suffer eternal condemnation apart from Him. Believers will be received into eternal communion with God and will be rewarded for works done in this life;

12. Baptism is an outward expression of an inward commitment to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Scripture teaches that all of us, who have: accepted Jesus Christ as our saviour and as Lord of our life, and have committed our lives to following him; are commanded to be baptised. When to get baptised is an individual decision; at that point the person being baptised must fully understand what it means for Jesus Christ to be the centre of their life;

13. Communion: during Jesus’ last days, He gathered the disciples in a room for the Passover Meal, during which they took bread and wine. His command was that, we should continue to remember him by sharing bread and wine (“Communion”); as we do this we remember the price He paid for our salvation “For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.” (1Cor11:26)