The River Believes

 

The Inspiration of the Bible

We believe the Holy Scriptures, composed of the thirty-nine books of the Old Testament and the twenty-seven books of the New Testament are the verbally inspired Word and Revelation of God. The Bible is inerrant, infallible-God-breathed. The initial miracle of divine inspiration of the original autographs also extends to the divine preservation of a pure text to this day. We have, therefore, the very Word of God preserved through the Hebrew Masoretic Text and the Greek Textus Receptus. Psalm 19:7-11; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:16-21; Luke 24:13-28; John 16:12-16; Psalm 12:6-7; Isaiah 40:8; Psalm 138:2.

 

The Trinity

We believe in the Triune God-God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit-coequal and coeternal. Each has His individual identity and separate responsibilities for the purposes of redemption, yet perfectly united as three Persons in One. 1 John 5:1-8; John 16:7-18; Matthew 28:19; Genesis 1:26.

 

The Deity of Jesus Christ

We believe in Deity of Jesus Christ. He is the only begotten, virgin born Son of God, the second Person in the Trinity, God the Son, God manifest in the flesh. 1 Timothy 3:16; John 1:1-14; John 14:9; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:18-25; John 10:36.

 

The Work of Christ and Salvation

We believe in the substitutionary atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. He, by the grace of God, experienced death for every man, and all must be born again or be forever lost. Hebrews 2:9; John 6:44-69; John 3: 118; Romans 3:25; Revelation 1:5; Hebrews 9:22; 1 Peter 1:18-19. Even though the Lord’s atonement is limited to whom God’s salvation is offered, His shed blood is sufficient for all sin and, therefore, whomever believes and may be saved. 1 John 2:2; Hebrews 7:22-25; Revelation 22:17.

 

The Resurrection

We believe in the physical resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. He ascended bodily into the heavens and is now at the right hand of God as our Mediator, Priest, and Advocate. Acts 3:12-26; John 20; Hebrews 9:24; 1 Corinthians 15:12-28; 1 John 2:1.

 

The Second Coming

We believe in the Rapture-the personal, imminent return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ “in the air.” At that time He will receive to Himself the resurrected bodies of those who have “died in Christ” and also all those who are presently alive and “in Christ.” 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 5:6-10; 1 Corinthians 15:50-55; Acts 1:11; Titus 2:13. He will return “with His saints” after a seven year tribulation period to execute judgment upon the ungodly nations before the inauguration of His earthly millennial reign at His second coming to the earth. Jude 14,15; Matthew 25:31-46.

 

The Evil forces of Darkness and Satan

We believe in the existence of Satan, “that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceives the whole world.” He is actively opposing the cause of Christ on every hand and is the arch enemy of every true believer. His warfare incorporates the deception of mixing error and truth. 2 Corinthians 11:1-15; 2 Peter 5:8-9; Revelation 12:9-10; Matthew 4:2-11; Isaiah 14:12-17; John 8:24. He marshals a host of fallen angels that can also serve to deceive the unsuspecting.

 

Heaven and Hell

We believe that Heaven is a real place of eternal blessedness prepared by God for those whose garments have been “made white” through faith in the shed “blood of the Lamb.” Hell is a real place of eternal suffering for those whose names are not written in the “book of life.” There is no intermediate state in which the unsaved can atone for his own sins. John 14:1-6; Revelation 7:13-17; 20:11-15; 21:22-27; 2 Corinthians 5:1-10; Luke 16:19-31.

 

Creation and Man’s Fall

We believe God created all things as he planned. Man was created by a direct act of God and subsequently fell into sin in the Garden of Eden. I believe in the universality and exceeding sinfulness of sin as a result of man’s disobedience. In Adam all have sinned and, therefore, are guilty before God by nature as well as by deed. Romans 5:12-21 Ezekiel 18:4; Romans 3:10-26; 6:23; Psalm 51:5 Genesis 1-3.

 

Justification by Faith

We believe that man is justified on the single ground of faith in the shed blood and bodily resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1 Ephesians 2:8-9. The all-sufficient and completed work of Redemption accomplished through His death and resurrection is fully appropriated at the moment in time by those who receive by faith the free gift of salvation offered in the one true Gospel. Galatians 1:6-10; Romans 1:16 1 Corinthians 15:1-4; John 5:24; Ephesians 5:8.

 

Eternal Security

We believe in the eternal security of all believers in our Lord Jesus Christ. Once a lost sinner has become a “new creature in Christ,” he can never lose that new relationship in the family of God which is based upon Christ’s imputed righteousness and not his own. 2 Corinthians 5:14-21; John 10:25-29. Sin in the life of the believer affects his fellowship with the Father not sonship. 1 John 1:5-10; Hebrews 12:6-13 1 Corinthians 3:11-15. All who are in Christ are sealed unto the day of redemption and will be glorified. We are to “work out” our salvation not “work for” our salvation; Philippians 2:12. 1 Corinthians 3:8-15; 2 John 8; Revelation 3:11; Romans 8:29-30; 1 Timothy 1:12; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30.

 

The Holy Spirit and Body of Christ

We believe all regenerated people are baptized into the Body of Christ by the Holy Spirit the moment they receive Christ as their Savior. 1 Corinthians 12:13; 1 Corinthians 10:32; Ephesians 2:13-18. The Holy Spirit indwells all who have been born again from above. I Cor. 3:16; 6:19. The Church which is Christ’s Body consists of all those who, truly believe and accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Romans 8:14-27; James 1:18; John 1:12; 1 Corinthians 1:2; Matthew 16:16-16.

 

The Local Church and Its Mission

We believe God has ordained the ministry of local, independent, indigenous assemblies of believers to accomplish His work in this day extending from Pentecost until the Second Coming of Jesus  Christ. The church’s membership is to be composed of regenerated, baptized believers. The two ordinances of the local church are believer’s baptism by immersion, and the memorial of the Lord’s supper until He returns. The church is to be missionary and evangelistic in spreading the Gospel into all the world. Acts 2:41-47; 20:17-32; Matthew 28:16-20; Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Corinthians 11:23-34.

 

Sanctification and Spiritual Gifts

We believe that all followers of the Lord Jesus Christ should maintain good works, a “good work” being that which is done in obedience to the will of God as revealed in the Word of God. Works will determine the reward or loss of reward at the Judgment Seat of Christ before which every Christian will stand. Every believer must realize his responsibility before God to “maintain good works,” i.e., walk in the light of the Word of God. The Bible is the believer’s absolute Standard of faith and practice, his perfect Counsel. The Word provides him with “all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” Each believer is to find his or her gifts and exercise them for the edification of the body. Ephesians 2:8-10; Titus 2:11-14; 3:1-11; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 1 Corinthians 1:18-29; 3:8-15; 2 Corinthians 5:9-11. I believe all spiritual gifts are for today and are to be used by believers to minister in the body and in the world. I Corinthians 12-14.