WHAT WE BELIEVE
Short Version: The church of Christ believes, follows, and stands for what the Bible teaches—and whatever the Bible teaches—regardless of time, culture, or temporal circumstance.
But here are some of the more specific things we stand to defend:
1. There is One God, consisting of three distinct Persons: God the Father, God the Word/Son (see John 1:1,14; Luke 1:32), and God the Spirit.
2. There is salvation in no other name given among men but Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12).
3. Salvation from one’s past sins (Rom. 13:11) is attained as a result of:
A. Hearing/Believing the Gospel (Rom. 10:10-17);
B. Repenting (i.e., turning away from, exiting, ceasing) of current/past sins (Acts 2:38; Lk. 13:3,5);
C. Confessing before men that Jesus Christ is, in fact, the Son of God (Rom. 10:10);
D. Being Immersed in Water, “unto [in order to] the remission of sins” [cp. Matt. 26:28 & Acts 2:38] (Acts 2:38; 22:16; Mk. 16:16; Jn. 3:3-7; Rom. 6:3-7; Gal. 3:27; 1 Pet. 3:21). At this point, the sincere soul is cleansed of his past sins (Acts 22:16), and he is added to the one and only (now and forever) kingdom of Jesus Christ—he is added to the Lord, Himself (Gal. 3:27), by the Lord, Himself (Acts 2:47).
[This we believe, not because it is our “church tradition,” but because it is what Jesus taught His disciples, what the inspired apostles taught everyone, and what the word of God teaches all mankind today (see Acts 2:37,38; Acts 22:16; Mark 16:15,16; John 3:3-7; Romans 6:3ff; Galatians 3:26,27; 1 Peter 3:21).]
4. Salvation (i.e., continuous cleansing) is maintained by living faithfully and sincerely for the Lord—to the very best of one’s ability (cf. Rom. 4:3; Gen. 15:6)—unto death (Jn. 3:36; 2 Cor. 5:15; 1 Jn. 1:7; Rev. 2:10).
5. The worship of the New Testament church is simple and plain, and is regulated—both permissively and prohibitively—by the written word of God (see 2 Cor. 4:6).
The church which God purposed, prophesied, and planned, and which Jesus prepared, promised, and purchased with His blood worshiped Jehovah God by means of prayer, song (without the accompaniment of mechanical instruments), preaching/studying Scripture, partaking of the Lord’s Supper (each Lord’s day [see Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:2), and giving of their means to support the various works with which the local congregation is involved.
6. Mankind today is obligated to live exclusively under the New Testament of Jesus Christ—i.e., God’s “new covenant” (Jer. 31:31-34; Lk. 22:20; 2 Cor. 3:6; cf. Heb. 7:22; 9:15-17), He having “set aside” the old (cf. Matt. 7:12; 22:40; Lk. 16:16; Acts 13:15; Rom. 3:21), by way of “nailing it to the cross” (Col. 2:14; cf. Heb. 8:6-13).
Notwithstanding, we passionately believe in the divine inspiration, and thus in the immense profitability (cf. 2 Tim. 3:16,17), of the Old Testament. We believe the apostle Paul when he said, “whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Rom. 15:4; cf. 1 Cor. 10:11). In other words, we “believe in” the OT just as much as the NT; however, we recognize and acknowledge the reality that one cannot believe in the NT without believing that God “nailed [the old covenant] to the cross” (Col. 2:14).
7. ALL authority is contained in the written word that God has provided for man (i.e., the Bible), and thus that it—and, as of A.D. 30, the New Testament especially—is authoritatively binding upon men today, governing man’s behavior in private, his treatment of others, his manner/mode worship, and even his thoughts.
In other words, man must find authority for his actions (including his means of worship) in the Bible, as it was delivered to us ultimately by God Himself, via the Lord’s apostles and other inspired men (Matt. 28:18; 18:18; John 14:15-26; 16:4-15; 2 Tim. 3:16,17; 2 Pet. 1:19-21; cp. 1 Cor. 14:37; Heb. 1:1-3; see also Acts 13:49; 15:35,36; 16:32; 19:10; 19:20; 1 Thess. 1:8; 4:15; 2 Thess. 3:1; 1 Pet. 1:25). Since God no longer speaks to man as He once did (Heb. 1:1-3; 1 Cor. 13:8-10; etc.), divine authority can be found in NO other place than the written Word of God.