Statement of Faith
Our Statement of Faith is a summary of the beliefs we hold in common as a church. Every member of South Durham believes what's written here. A list of Scripture references follows each section, pointing back to the biblical basis for our shared faith. We begin with Scripture because we would not be able to know God unless He had first revealed Himself to us.
The Bible was written by God through men inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Bible is God’s revelation of Himself to us. It is truth without error. It reveals the way of salvation and is the full and final authority on all matters of truth and discipleship. It is important to the believer for teaching and training in righteousness.
Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-12; Joshua 1:7-8; Nehemiah 8:1-8; Psalm 19:7-10; 119; Isaiah 40:8; Matthew 5:17-19; John 5:39; Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Hebrews 1:1-2.
There is one living and true God. He is Creator, Redeemer, Sustainer, and Ruler of the Universe. He is holy and perfect. God is intelligent, spiritual, and personal. God is triune, eternally existing in three persons — God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. God the Father rules with care over His universe. God the Son is revealed in the person of Jesus Christ, who was born of a virgin, lived, died on a cross, and was raised from the dead. God the Holy Spirit inspired the Bible, convicts of sin, guides in truth, and empowers the believer and the church.
Genesis 1:1; Exodus 3:14; 15:11; Deuteronomy 6:4-5; 32:6; 2 Chronicles 29:10-16; Isaiah 6:3; Matthew 3:16–17, 6:9; 7:11, 28:19; Luke 1:35; 23:33; 24:6; John 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2 Peter 1:1-2.
We were created by God and in the image of God. Therefore, all people possess inherent dignity. We were created to worship God and to bring Him glory. Because of the Fall, we are by nature sinners and have each sinned against God. On our own without Christ, we stand condemned before God. We need forgiveness of sin to be brought into right relationship with God. Forgiveness and righteousness were accomplished through the gracious work of Christ on the cross.
Genesis 1:26-27; 2:7; Psalm 8:4-8; Isaiah 53:6; Romans 3:23; 5:8; 1 Corinthians 1:9; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21.
Salvation is offered freely to all who repent of sin and by faith accept Christ as Savior and Lord. It involves election, which is God’s gracious choice of us; regeneration, which is the new birth in Christ; justification, which declares us right with God; redemption, which purchases our release from sin; reconciliation, which brings peace with God; adoption, which makes us children of God; sanctification, which is spiritual growth by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit; and glorification, which is eternal fellowship with God in heaven.
Matthew 1:22; Luke 5:32; John 3:1-18; Acts 2:21;38; Romans 6:23; 8:29-30; 10:9-13; Ephesians 1:3-8; 2:8-9; Titus 3:3-8; 1 Peter 1:2; 2:2; 2 Peter 1:3.
The universal church consists of all the redeemed past and present. Jesus Christ is its only authoritative Head. This church is made visible in local churches, where members covenant together to worship God, preach the Word, celebrate baptism and the Lord's Supper, care for each other through service and loving discipline, and mobilize for evangelism and ministries of mercy.
Matthew 16:15-19; Acts 2:41-47; 6:1-7; 13:1-3; 2 Corinthians 1:2; 2 Corinthians 11:2-3; Ephesians 1:22-23; 3:6-10, 20-21; 4:4-16; 5:26-27; Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 10:23-25; Revelation 19:7.
Evangelism and Missions
Every believer and every church is to be involved in the commission of Christ to make disciples of all nations. We seek to win lost people to Christ personally and by supporting the efforts of the local church. Local churches undertake missionary endeavors to make disciples in their community and in all the world.
Genesis 12:1-3; Isaiah 6:8-9; Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; 13:1-3; Romans 1:16; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; Colossians 1:28-29; 1 Thessalonians 1:8; 2 Timothy 4:5.
Discipleship involves growing in the knowledge of God through the Holy Spirit and application of the Bible, in Christ-like character and imitation of Him, in love for and service to the family of God, and in ministry to the world. Discipleship is growing in Christ until we stand before Him, perfect and complete.
Matthew 28:18-20; Luke 9:23-26; 14:25-35; John 8:31-32; 13:34-35; 15:1-17; Philippians 1:6; 2:12-13; Colossians 1:28; 2 Peter 3:17-18.
God will bring the world to its appropriate end in His own time and in His own way. Jesus Christ will return personally to the earth. The dead will be raised, and Christ will judge all people. Unbelievers will be separated from God in hell, which is the place of everlasting punishment. Believers will receive their reward and will live forever with the Lord, according to His gracious will.
Matthew 16:27; 24:27; 25:31-46; Romans 14:10; Philippians 3:20-21; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 5:1-11; 2 Thessalonians 1:5-12; 2 Peter 3:7-13; Revelation 3:11; 20-22.