What We Believe
First Baptist Church of Temple Terrace is founded on a core of beliefs derived from, and supported by, the Bible. These statements are not inclusive of every area of theology (theology means the study of God and religious doctrines) and life, but they are those beliefs that we deem central and essential to someone who is a Christian. Other doctrines and teachings that impact life, but which are not fully supported by the Bible, we leave to the individual’s interpretation.
In essential beliefs – we have unity.
“There is one body and one Spirit….one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God and Father of us all…” “Live in harmony with one another….” Romans 12:16
In non-essential beliefs – we have liberty (grace).
“Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters….Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls….So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God….So whatever you believe about these things, keep between yourself and God.” Romans 14:1, 4, 12, 22
In all our beliefs – we show charity.
“If I….can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.” 1 Corinthians 13:2
:: Some essentials we believe ::
1. About God
God is the creator and ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three personalities: God the Father; God the Son; God the Holy Spirit. We refer to this as the Trinity, or the “tri-unity” of God. Our God is one God, but He has revealed Himself in three co-equal dimensions. Genesis 1:1, 26-27; 3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; 1 Peter 1:2; 2 Corinthians 13:14
2. About Jesus Christ
Jesus Christ is the Son of God. He is co-equal with the Father. Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to heaven’s glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Matthew 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5; 14:10-30; Hebrews 4:14-15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Romans 1:3-4; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Timothy 6:14-15; Titus 2:13
3. About the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and the Son. He is present in the world to make human beings aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. He gives every believer a spiritual gift when they are saved. As Christians, we should seek to live under His control daily. 2 Corinthians 3:17; John 14:16-17; 16:7-13; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:12; 3:16; Ephesians 1:13; Galatians 5:25; Ephesians 5:18
4. About the Bible
The Bible is God’s word to us. It was written by human authors under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian belief and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is absolute truth, is free from error or mistake, and can be trusted as our authority. 2 Timothy 1:13; 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Psalm 12:6; 119:105; 160
5. About Human Beings
People are made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. People are the supreme object of God’s creation. Although every person has tremendous potential for good, all of us are marred by an attitude of disobedience toward God called “sin.” This attitude separates us from God, is the source of our problems in life, and must be dealt with if we are to have a relationship with God. Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6; 59:1-2; Romans 3:23
6. About Salvation
God makes salvation available to everyone as a free gift, but it must be accepted. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvement or good works. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ as God’s offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sin’s penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith, we are saved. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into his/her life by faith. Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 1:12; 14:6; Titus 3:5; Galatians 3:26; Romans 5:1
7. About Eternal Security
Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the true believer is secure in that salvation for eternity. If you have been genuinely saved, you cannot “lose it.” Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self-effort of the Christian. When Christ died on the cross, He provided a “once for all” sacrifice that resulted in “eternal redemption” for the believer. Hebrews 7:25; 9:12; 10:10, 14; John 5:24, 6:37-40, 10:27-29; 2 Timothy 1:12; 1 Peter 1:3-5; Ephesians 1:4-5, 13-14
8. About Eternity
People were created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation. The Bible calls eternal separation from God “Hell.” To be in eternal union with him results in eternal life in heaven. Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence. John 3:16; 14:17; Romans 6:23; 8:17-18; Revelation 20:15; 1 Corinthians 2:7-9