Do You Believe Baptism Is Necessary To One’s Salvation?
A. The Bible makes clear the necessity and role of baptism in one's salvation. We are told: "repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins..." (Acts 2:38). Through baptism our sins are washed away by the blood of Christ (Acts 22:16). When we are baptized, we put on Christ (Gal. 3:26-27) so that we may share in both his death and resurrection (Rom. 6:3-5). Baptism is an act of obedient faith, a submission to the will of Christ (Mk. 16:15-16).
What Does The Bible Say About Speaking In Tongues?
A. Speaking in tongues was the miraculous ability to speak in a foreign language or dialect, without any previous study or experience (Acts 2:1-11). Therefore, it is incorrect to claim that this was the ability to speak in an angelic or heavenly language. And neither was this gift used exclusively or even primarily for private prayers (1 Corinthians 14:14-16). Non-Christians could perfectly understand the tongue-speaker (Acts 2:11). This gift was not the proof that one was a genuine Christian. For all Christians didn't possess this gift (1 Corinthians 12:30) and some very unspiritual individuals did (1 Corinthians 3:1-3). This gift ceased, as did all the miraculous gifts when God's revelation (the New Testament) was complete (1 Corinthians 13:8-13).
The Thief On The Cross Wasn’t Baptized!
A. The thief lived under a different covenant and was forgiven under a covenant that ceased at the death of Jesus. Upon His death the First Covenant ended (the Law of Moses) and the Second Covenant was instituted (Hebrews 9:15-17; 10:9-10). The command to be baptized in water to obtain the forgiveness of sins is found following the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ (Mark 16:16). Since the death and resurrection of Jesus, all who live, are accountable to the instructions found in the New Covenant. This is a universal covenant for all mankind (Mark 16:15; Matthew 28:19). Included in this covenant is the command to be immersed in water for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; 8:35-38; 10:47-48; 18:8; 22:16; Ephesians 4:5; Colossians 2:12-13; 1 Peter 3:21). In addition, it is purely assumed that he wasn't baptized. He may have been baptized under John's baptism, for he knew about the Kingdom of God (Luke 23:42).
Were the Days In Genesis 1, Millions Of Years In Length?
A. Each day in this chapter had an evening and a morning (1:5). The word ‘day’ in this context is used of a literal day, as opposed longer periods of time such as seasons and years (1:14). God had Moses parallel the week of Creation with a literal work week (Exodus 20:9-11), making it clear that the week of Genesis 1 is identical with what we understand to be a week. Jesus placed Adam and Eve at the beginning of Creation and not millions or billions of years from the beginning (Mark 10:6 "from the beginning of Creation, God made them male and female"). Through Paul, God made it clear that from the beginning of Creation, the human race has existed to perceive that the physical Creation reveals the power of its Creator (Romans 1:20). Finally, any honest expert in scientific dating methods will tell you that there is no reliable long-term dating method for fixing the age of the universe or the age of the earth.
Can Evolution Be Harmonized With The Bible?
A. Evolution denies: (a) Life was created (Genesis 1:1). (b) Creation has ceased (2:2). (c) God created men and women in His image (Genesis 1:26), and that God created the two genders (Matthew 19:1-4). (d) The statement made by Jesus, that men and women were created from the beginning of creation (Mark 10:6). (e) Man was originally in a garden (an orderly--not a chaotic place, Genesis 2:8). (f) All living things produce after their kind (Genesis 1:11). (g) Man fell from a state of innocence (Genesis 3:1ff). (h) Mankind needs a Savior (John 3:16).
Do You Believe We Are Saved By Grace?
A. Man is saved by the grace of God. The scriptures plainly state, "For by grace are ye saved..." (Ephesians 2:8). Grace is "the idea of kindness which bestows on one what he has not deserved" (Thayer's Greek English Lexicon). Hence, man is saved by the kindness of God; man does not merit salvation through his works (Romans 3:23; 4:4).
God saves man by grace through the redemption, or forgiveness of sins, that is in Christ Jesus (Romans 3:24; Ephesians 1:7). This does not mean, however, that a man does not have something to do to be saved. Just as clearly as the scriptures avow that one is saved by grace, they also teach that one must "do the will of the Father" to "enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 7:21). If salvation was dispensed wholly by grace without man having to do anything to be saved, salvation would be universal (everyone saved) or by the arbitrary selection of men by God. The scriptures teach neither universalism nor the arbitrary selection of men by God for salvation. They teach that "whosoever will" may come to Jesus and be saved (Matthew 11:28; John 3:16; Revelation 22:17), but that not all will come so that they may be saved (Matthew 7:13,14).
When a man sins, he forfeits all rights to heaven; if he is ever saved, it must be by an act of favor on the part of God, for God owes him nothing. This grace or favor that we all need- the forgiveness of sins- can be obtained only through Christ. There may be conditions to receiving forgiveness in Christ. However, whether there be one condition for salvation or a dozen conditions required for salvation, no amount of works that a condemned sinner can perform will ever bring salvation to him as a debt. Salvation is always by grace!
Is The Sabbath Day Binding Upon Christians?
A. The Sabbath Day was part of the covenant God made with Israel at Sinai (Exodus 31:13-18). The seventh day had not been a day or worship previous to this covenant (Deut. 5:1-3; Nehemiah 9:13-14). This covenant ended when Jesus died on the cross (Colossians 2:14-17). It is part of a covenant that is now obsolete and has been removed by God (Hebrews 8:13-9:4). To ignore these facts and insist on religiously observing this day, is to cut oneself off the grace of God (Galatians 5:1-4). In contrast, the day of worship (not a mandatory day of rest), under the New Covenant is the first day of the week (Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 16:1).
Is Once-Saved-Always-Saved True?
A. The the doctrine of once-saved-always-saved is based on the false assumption that God has predestined every individual for salvation or condemnation, regardless of our own personal choices. In contrast: (a) The Bible asserts the freewill of mankind (Genesis 4:7; Ezekiel 18:20; Acts 17:30). (b) None have been locked into either salvation or condemnation (Ezekiel 18:21-32; Acts 10:34-35). (c) Salvation is always presented as available to all--if they want it (2 Peter 3:9; 1 Timothy 2:4-6). (d) Christians are repeatedly warned about the possibility of forfeiting their salvation (Matthew 18:15-17; Hebrews 6:4-6; 10:26-31; 2 Timothy 2:11-13)
Do You Use Instrumental Music During Your Worship Services?
A. We do not use instrumental music in our worship service as it cannot be found within the New Testament pattern of worship. Rather, the New Testament instructs us to "sing and make melody in your heart to the Lord" (Eph. 5:19). We are told: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God" (Col. 3:16).