At Redeemer City Church, Orillia we believe that the church is called to preserve and contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 1:3). The Baptist Confession of Faith has been used within the Baptist community as a reliable summary of the Biblical faith for over 300 years. While the full length confession is a useful primer in the doctrines of our faith, it is unlikely that every member of a church will be able to study it or understand it in detail. Therefore this Abstract of Principles will serve to provide a more brief and accessible statement of our distinctive and core beliefs. It will function as the standard for church sanction and discipline within the membership. Subscription to this document is required for all members of Redeemer City Church, Orillia.
I. Of The Holy Scriptures
The Holy Scripture, given by inspiration of God, is the only sufficient, certain, inerrant and infallible rule of all saving knowledge, faith and obedience.
2 Tim. 3:15-17; Isa. 8:20; Luke 16:29,31; Eph. 2:20; Rom. 1:19-21, 2:14,15, 15:4; Psalm 19:1-3; Heb. 1:1; Prov. 22:19-21; 2 Pet. 1:19,20
II. Of God In Holy Trinity
There is but one only living and true God, the Maker, Preserver and Ruler of all things, infinite in being and perfection and to Him all creatures owe the highest love, reverence and obedience. God is revealed to us in Holy Scripture as Father, Son (or the Word) and Holy Spirit each with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence or being; which doctrine of the Trinity is the foundation of all our communion with God, and comfortable dependence upon Him.
Cor. 8:4,6; Deut. 4:15-16, 6:4; Jer. 10:10; Isa. 46:10, 48:12; Exod. 3:14; John 4:24; 1 Tim. 1:17; Mal. 3:6; 1 Kings 8:27; Jer. 23:23; Ps. 90:2; Gen. 17:1; Isa. 6:3; Ps. 115:3; Prov. 16:4; Rom. 11:36; Exod. 34:6,7; Heb. 11:6; Neh. 9:32,33; Ps. 5:5,6; Exod. 34:7; Nahum 1:2,3
A. God The Father
God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe and all creatures contained therein. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God as Father is the wellspring and fountain of salvation, choosing His elect in Christ before the foundation of the world.
B. God The Son
Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, is the divinely appointed mediator between God and man. Having taken upon Himself human nature, yet without sin, He perfectly fulfilled the law; suffered and died upon the cross for the salvation of sinners. He was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended to His Father, at whose right hand He ever lives to make intercession for His people. He holds the offices of Prophet, Priest and King in the church and He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to consummate His redemptive mission.
C. God The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He inspired men of old to write the Scriptures and through illumination enables men and women in every generation to understand the truth contained therein. He convicts the world of sin, of righteousness and of judgment. He calls people to the Saviour and effects regeneration. The Holy Spirit glorifies Christ and pours out the love of the Father in the hearts of true believers and gives witness to the believer that he or she is a child of God. The Holy Spirit is the guarantee of our inheritance and the seal of faith. He liberally and prudentially gives gifts to all believers unto the edification of the church. The Holy Spirit becomes in our hearts the Spirit of supplication.
III. Of God’s Providence
God has decreed in himself, from all eternity, all things that come to pass; yet so as thereby is God neither the author of sin nor has He fellowship with any therein; nor is violence offered to the will of the creature, nor yet is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.
Isa. 46:10; Eph. 1:11; Heb. 6:17; Rom. 9:15,18; James 1:13; 1 John 1:5; Acts 4:27,28; John 19:11; Num. 23:19; Eph. 1:3-5; Rom. 11:32-34; 2 Sam. 24:1; 1 Chron. 21:1; 2 Kings 19:28; Ps. 76:10; Gen. 1:20; Isa. 10:6,7,12; Ps. 1;21; 1 John 2:16
IV. Of Election
Election is God’s eternal choice of some persons unto everlasting life – not because of foreseen merit in them, but of His mere free grace and mercy – in consequence of which choice they are effectually called, justified, adopted, sanctified and glorified.
John 15:16-19; 1 Cor. 1:27-28; 1 Cor. 4:7; Eph. 1:4-11; Rom. 8:29-30; Rom. 9:11-18 ; Rom. 11:5-7; 1 Thess. 1:4; 1 Thess. 5:9; 2 Peter 1:10; Acts 4:28; Acts 5:31; Acts 13:48; 2 Thess. 2:13; 2 Tim. 1:9; Matt. 11:25-26; 1 Peter 1:2; Eph. 2:8-10; Rev. 22:17
V. Of Creation and Fall
In the beginning it pleased God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit to make the world and all things therein for His own glory and all very good. He created man, male and female, being made after the image of God, in knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness; having the law of God written in their hearts,and power to fulfill it, and yet under a possibility of transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own will, which was subject to change.
Although God created man upright and perfect, through the temptation of Satan, he transgressed the command of God and fell from original holiness and righteousness; whereby his posterity inherit a nature corrupt and wholly opposed to God and His law, are under condemnation and as soon as they are capable of moral action, become actual transgressors.
Gen. 1:26-31;Gen. 2:7, 17; Gen. 3:6-13; Eccles. 7:29; Rom. 2:14,15; John 1:2,3; Heb. 1:2; Job 26:13; Rom. 1:20; Col. 1:16; 2 Cor. 11:3; Rom. 5:6, 8:7; Eph. 2:1,5; Titus 3:3-5; John 6:44
VI. Of Effectual Calling
Those whom God has predestinated unto life, He is pleased in His appointed time effectually to call, by His Word and Spirit, out of that state of sin and death in which they are by nature, to grace and salvation by Jesus Christ; enlightening their minds spiritually and savingly to understand the things of God; taking away their heart of stone, and giving to them a heart of flesh; renewing their wills, and by His almighty power determining them to that which is good, and effectually drawing them to Jesus Christ;yet so as they come most freely, being made willing by His grace.
Rom. 8:30, 11:7; Eph. 1:10,11; 2 Thess. 2:13,14; Eph. 2:1-6; Acts 26:18; Eph. 1:17-20; Ezek. 36:26; Deut. 30:6; Ezek. 36:27; Eph. 1:19; Ps. 110:3; 2 Tim. 1:9; Eph. 2:8; 1 Cor. 2:14; Eph. 2:5; John 5:25
VII. Of Saving Faith
The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls, is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts, and is ordinarily wrought by the ministry of the Word; by which also, and by the administration of baptism and the Lord’s supper, prayer, and other means appointed of God, it is increased and strengthened.
2 Cor. 4:13; Eph. 2:8; Rom. 10:14,17; Luke 17:5; 1 Pet. 2:2; Acts 20:32; Acts 24:14; Ps. 19:7-10, 69:72; 2 Tim. 1:12; John 15:14; Heb. 11:13; John 1:12; Acts 16:31; Gal 2:20; Acts 15:11
VIII. Of Repentance Unto Life And Salvation
Saving repentance is an evangelical grace, whereby a person, being by the Holy Spirit made sensible of the manifold evils of their sin, does, by faith in Christ, humble themselves for it with godly sorrow, detestation of it, and self-abhorrancy, praying for pardon and strength of grace, with a purpose and endeavor, by supplies of the Spirit, to walk before God so as to please Him in all things.
Titus 3:2-5; Eccles. 7:20; Luke 22:31,32; Zech. 12:10; Acts 11:18; Ezek. 36:31; 2 Cor. 7:11; Ps. 119:6,128; Luke 19:8; 1 Tim. 1:13,15 Rom. 6:23; Isa. 1:16-18, 55:7
IX. Of Justification
Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal of sinners, who believe in Christ, from all sin through the satisfaction that Christ has made; not for anything wrought in them, or done by them, but on account of Christ’s active obedience unto the whole law, and passive obedience in his death for their whole and sole righteousness by faith,which faith they have not of themselves; it is the gift of God.
Rom. 3:24-26, 4:5-8, 17-19, 25, 5:17, 8:30-32, Eph. 1:6-7, 2:7-10; 1 Cor. 1:30,31; Phil. 3:8,9; John 1:12, 10:28; Heb. 10:14; 1 Pet. 1:2,18,19; Isa. 53:5,6; 2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 3:8; 1 Tim. 2:6; Col. 1:21,22; Titus 3:4-7; Matt. 6:12; 1 John 1:7,9; Ps. 89:31-33
X. Of Adoption
All those that are justified, God conferred, in and for the sake of his only Son Jesus Christ, to make partakers of the grace of adoption,by which they are taken into the number, and enjoy the liberties and privileges of the children of God, have His name put on them, receive the spirit of adoption, have access to the throne of grace with boldness, are enabled to cry Abba, Father,are pitied, protected,provided for,and chastened by Him as by a Father, yet never cast off, but sealed to the day of redemption, and inherit the promises as heirs of everlasting salvation.
Eph. 1:5; Gal. 4:4-6; John 1:12; Rom. 8:15-17; 2 Cor. 6:18; Rev. 3:12; Eph. 2:18; Ps. 103:13; Prov. 14:26; 1 Pet. 5:7; Heb. 12:6; Isa. 54:8, 9; Lam. 3:31; Eph. 4:30; Heb. 1:14, 6:12
XI. Of Sanctification
They who are united to Christ, effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them through the virtue of Christ’s death and resurrection, are also further sanctified, really and personally, through the same virtue, by His Word and Spirit dwelling in them. This sanctification is progressive through the supply of Divine strength, which all saints seek to obtain, pressing after a heavenly life in cordial obedience to all Christ’s commands.
Acts 20:32; Rom. 6:5-6, 14; John 17:17; Eph. 3:16-19; 1 Thess. 5:21-23; Gal. 5:17, 24; Col. 1:11; 2 Cor. 7:1; Heb. 12:14; 1 Thess. 5:23; Rom. 7:18, 23; 1 Pet. 2:11; Rom. 7:23; Eph. 4:15,16; 2 Cor. 3:18
XII. Of The Perseverance Of The Saints
Those whom God has accepted in the beloved, effectually called and sanctified by His Spirit, and given the precious faith of His elect unto, can neither totally nor finally fall from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved, seeing the gifts and callings of God are without repentance. Though they may fall through neglect and temptation into sin, whereby they grieve the Holy Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, bring reproach upon the church and temporal judgment upon themselves, yet they shall be renewed again unto repentance, and be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
John 10:28,29; Phil. 1:6; 2 Tim. 2:19; 1 John 2:19, 3:9; Ps. 89:31,32; 1 Cor. 11:32; Mal. 3:6; Rom. 8:30, 9:11,16, 5:9, 10; John 14:19; Heb. 6:17,18; Jer. 32:40; Matt. 26:70,72,74; Isa. 64:5,9; Eph. 4:30; Ps. 32:3,4, 51:10,12; 2 Sam. 12:14; Luke 22:32,61,62
XIII. Of Religious Worship And The Lord’s Day
The reading of the Scriptures, preaching, and hearing the Word of God, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing with grace in our hearts to the Lord and joyfully bringing tithes and offerings; as also the administration of baptism, and the Lord’s supper, are all parts of religious worship of God, to be performed in obedience to Him, with understanding, faith, reverence, and godly fear; moreover, solemn humiliation, with fastings, and thanksgivings, upon special occasions, ought to be used in a holy and religious manner.
The first day of the week is the Lord’s Day in honour of His glorious resurrection. It is a Christian institution for regular observance and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion, both public and private. Activities on the Lord’s Day should be thoughtfully considered and commensurate with the Christian’s conscience under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.
Jer. 10:7; Mark 12:33; Deut. 12:32; Exod. 20:4-6; Matt. 4:9,10; Col. 2:18; Rev. 19:10; Ps. 65:2, 95:1-7, 107; John 6:23, 14:6, 13,14; Rom. 1:25, 8:26; 1 John 5:14; 1 Tim. 2:5, 4:13; 2 Tim. 4:2; Luke 8:18; Col. 3:16; Eph. 5:19; Matt. 4:9-10, 12:1-13, 28:19,20; 1 Cor. 11:26, 14:16-17; Esther 4:16; Joel 2:12; Exod. 15:1-19; Isa. 58:13; Neh. 13:15-22
XIV. Of Marriage
Marriage is to be between one man and one woman; neither is it lawful for any man to have more than one wife, nor for any woman to have more than one husband at the same time; neither is it lawful for a man to marry another man, nor for a woman to marry another woman. Marriage is a gift and was ordained by God for the mutual help and comfort of husband and wife, for the increase of mankind with legitimate offspring,and the preventing of sexual immorality.
Gen. 1:27-28, 2:18, 24; Mal. 2:15; Matt. 19:5,6; 1 Cor. 5:1, 6:9-11, 7:2,9, 39; Heb. 13:4; 1 Tim. 4:3; Neh. 13:25-27; Lev. 18:6-18, 22; Mark 6:18; Rom. 1:18-32
XV. Of The Church
The Lord Jesus is the head of the Church, which is composed of all His true disciples, and in Him is invested supremely all power for its government. According to His commandment, Christians are to associate themselves into particular churches; and to each of these churches He has given needful authority for administering that order, discipline and worship which He hath appointed. The regular offices of a church are Overseers, Pastors or Elders, and Deacons.
Heb. 12:23, 13:17; Col. 1:18; Eph. 1:10,20-23, 4:11, 5:23,27,32, 6:18; 1 Cor. 1:2, 5:4-5,13, 9:6-14; Acts 2:41-42, 6:3-6, 11:26, 14:23, 15:2-25, 20:17-28; Rom. 1:7, 16:1-2; Col. 1:18; Matt. 18:15-20, 28:18-20; John 10:16, 12:32; 2 Cor. 1:24, 2:6-8; Phil. 1:1; 1 Tim. 3:2, 4:14; 5:17,18; Gal. 6:6,7; 2 Tim. 2:4; 1 Thess. 5:14; 2 Thess. 3:6,14,15; Ps. 122:6; 1 John 4:1; 3 John 8-10
XVI. Of Baptism
Baptism is an ordinance of the New Testament, ordained by Jesus Christ, obligatory upon every believer, to be unto the party baptized, a sign of their fellowship with Him, in His death and resurrection; of their being engrafted into Him; of remission of sins; and of giving up into God, through Jesus Christ, to live and walk in newness of life. It properly follows intelligent profession of faith and is prerequisite to church membership. The outward element to be used in this ordinance is water, wherein the party is to be baptized, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Immersion, or dipping of the person in water, is necessary to the due administration of this ordinance.
Matt. 3:16, 28:19,20; Rom. 6:3-5; Col. 2:12; Gal. 3:27; Mark 1:4; Acts 2:41, 8:12, 8:36-38, 18:8, 22:16; John 3:23;
XVII. Of The Lord’s Supper
The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of Jesus Christ, to be administered with the elements of bread and wine, and to be observed by His church till the end of the world. It is in no sense a sacrifice, but is designed to commemorate His death, to confirm the faith and other graces of Christians, and to be a bond, pledge and renewal of their communion with Him, and of their church fellowship. It is not to be partaken of unworthily nor without due preparation.
1 Cor. 10:16-21, 11:23-29; Heb. 9:25,26,28; Matt. 7:6, 26:26,27, 2 Cor. 6:14,15
XVIII. Of The Resurrection
The bodies of human beings after death return to dust, but their souls immediately return to God who gave them – the righteous to rest with Him; the wicked, to be reserved under darkness to judgment. At the last day, the bodies of all the dead, both just and unjust, will be raised.
Matt. 25:34; Mark 9:47-48; Luke 16:22-23; 1 Cor. 15:35-57; 2 Cor. 5:8; 1 Thess. 4:16; Rev. 20:15, 21:3
XXI. Of The Last Judgment
God has appointed a day wherein He will judge the world in righteousness, by Jesus Christ; when everyone shall receive according to their deeds; the wicked shall go into everlasting punishment; the righteous, into everlasting life.
Acts 17:31; John 5:22,27; 1 Cor. 6:3; Jude 6; 2 Cor. 5:10-11; Eccles. 12:14; Matt. 12:36, 25:32-46; Rom. 9:22-23, 14:10,12; 2 Tim. 4:8; Mark 9:48, 13:35-37; 2 Thess. 1:5-10; Luke 12:35-40; Rev. 20:11-15, 22:20