MIDDLETOWN CHRISTIAN CHURCH
What We Believe...
About God the Father – God, the Great I AM, is the Creator and Supreme Ruler of all that exists. God is Spirit, and He has revealed Himself to humans through the Old Testament law and prophets and, most perfectly, through Jesus, so that we may know Him and have a relationship with Him. God is always truthful, just, merciful, holy, righteous, and loving.
About Jesus Christ the Son – Jesus is the Son of God and is coequal with the Father. Jesus was born of a virgin and lived a sinless life on earth, yet He died on a cross so that we could be forgiven of our sins. Three days after His death, He was resurrected bodily from the dead and was seen by many people. He then ascended into Heaven, where He continually intercedes for us with the Father. Jesus has promised to return for His people, and He will come at an unknown time. Jesus is the only way to the Father, and salvation comes only through Him.
About the Holy Spirit – The Holy Spirit is the Guide and Comforter promised by Jesus, and He, too, is coequal to the Son and the Father. He is living and active in the life of every believer, convicting us of sin as He guides us into truth. Believers are continually being transformed by the Holy Spirit to become more like Christ. His presence is our guarantee of salvation, and He is identifiable by His glorification of the Father and the Son.
About the Trinity – The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are all coequal in the Godhead. There is only One God. God is unfathomable by humans, for He transcends that which we can know in full. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are One in essence and will, yet they each have their own unique characteristics.
About the Bible – The Bible is the Word of God. The Holy Spirit guided many people over hundreds of years to write God’s message to humanity. The Bible is our standard and guide for our faith and our lives. The Bible is of supreme importance and position for the Christian regarding matters of faith and practice.
About Humanity – God created mankind in His own image, and He loves each person individually. He desires a relationship with everyone, yet each person has rebelled against God, making such a relationship impossible. Only through forgiveness can that relationship be restored. God has unique plans for each individual, which can only be realized to their fullest extent when that person places himself/herself completely in submission to the will of God.
About Sin and Forgiveness – Sin is the state of rebellion against God. God desires a perfect relationship with each individual, but that relationship is broken through disobedience to God. Such disobedience to God is called sin. Sin can only occur where knowledge of good and evil exists, and because of this it is impossible for infants and the very young to sin. There is no other remedy for sin than that of forgiveness, and there is no other place to find forgiveness than in the person and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Through forgiveness our sin is wiped away and we are restored to a right relationship with God. In order to find forgiveness, we must trust in Christ and obey that which He has said.
About the Church – The Church is the community of believers serving Christ together. The Church is a universal body, recognizing no boundaries except that of obedience to Christ. Together, believers build up and encourage one another in the Church and serve God in a corporate fashion as they serve God individually. No believer can stand alone. Upon joining with Christ, a person is automatically added to the Church universal, which is expressed as individual congregations. Membership in the Church does not imply that a state of perfection has been attained; it merely shows that the member is working toward becoming like Christ.
About Life after Death – The Bible teaches that humans have a soul which continues to live on after the death of the body. After death, people are separated based on their reaction to Jesus Christ. Those who accepted Him as their Savior and their Lord and lived in obedience to Him are taken to Heaven, where they live forever in the presence of God. Those who maintained their state of rebellion against God are punished in an everlasting torment known as hell.
About Baptism – Baptism is the point which can be forever identified as the moment at which a person is saved. Baptism by full immersion in water was the original New Testament practice, and it is what we practice today. Baptism symbolizes our identification with Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection. It is at baptism when the Holy Spirit is given to the believers to assist them in their Christian walk. Baptism is done out of obedience to Jesus Christ and is a part of the salvation process. Baptism alone does not bring salvation, but it is a very important part of claiming that salvation. We believe that only those who have knowingly sinned against God and who are consciously willing to change their lives and obey God are candidates for baptism. Thus, infants and the very young have no need of baptism, because they have not knowingly rebelled against God. Those who are unwilling to change their lives in obedience to God will realize no benefit from baptism.