Knowing God is man's greatest privilege in life. A person's
concept of God has all to do with his or her faith and
stability. If we have the wrong concept of God, we are
wrong in every way. We believe in the Holy Trinity and
stand on this truth; and that this doctrine is sufficiently
evident in our English versions, in language laymen can
understand. We believe the only way one can possibly
understand differently is by wrestling the Scriptures.
Thus, Jesus Christ was clearly the one in reference in the Old
Testament. There are many other references in the Old
Testament of the Spirit of God also.
The Trinity in the New Testament
Evidence of the Trinity in the New Testament is
definitely clear and to further verify the doctrine and the Old
Testament. The New Testament abounds in references to prophesies
which confirm the doctrine.
The epistles abound in statements that are clearly Trinitarian.
So, we believe and affirm: There is but one living and true God,
the great Creator, and there are three persons in the Godhead:
The Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
There is no shadow of doubt, that the Bible claims to be the
Book of God. Luke 1:70, "As he spake by the mouth of his holy
prophets which have been since the world began." The Bible is
what "God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets." 2 Timothy
3:16, "All scripture is given by the inspiration of God..." The
word "inspiration . . . spiro-inspiro . . . It means, "to
breathe into." The Bible is a "God-breathed Book." Therefore,
the scriptures are the result of divine in-breathing. 2 Peter
1:20-21, "Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture
is of any private interpretation. For the prophesy came not in
old time by the will of man. But holy men of God spake as they
were moved by the Holy Ghost."
The Spirit of God was within the authors, and the supernatural
Holy Ghost upon their minds caused them to write in obedience to
the command of God and gave them guidance that kept them from
error. Psalm 12:6 "The words of the Lord are pure
words, as silver tried in a furnace of earth purified seven
times." 2 Timothy 3:16 "ALL SCRIPTURE"
This includes Genesis, this includes Jonah, parts you understand
and parts you do not understand; all scripture. Someone
has defined inspiration as: "Inspiration" denotes that
sacred action of the Spirit on the faculties of a living
messenger by which he is enabled to receive, utter or record the
divine message. Scripture is the result of that sacred influence
embodied in written form.
I. JESUS CHRIST BELIEVED IN THE
INSPIRATION OF THE SCRIPTURES
Luke 24:27, "And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets,
he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things
concerning himself." So Jesus set His seal of approval on
all the Old Testament. Matthew 5:18, "...One jot or one tittle
shall in no wise pass from the law till all be fulfilled." Jesus
not only taught word for word inspiration but the inspiration of
the very letters. He said that the "jot" which is the smallest
letter in the Hebrew alphabet, and the "tittle" a diacritical
marking of some kind was perfect. John 10:35, "...and the
scripture cannot be broken."
Jesus Declared the Books of the Law Were Inspired
Adam broke a direct transgression of God's law when he sinned.
Although he was created to be immortal, his sin separated him
from God, bringing him to a spiritual death. Because Adam was
the federal head of mankind, this spiritual death was passed to
the unborn generations that followed. Romans 5:12-14, "Wherefore
as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and
so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. For
until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when
there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses,
even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of
Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to
Our problem is, we are all sinners. Our predicament is, we
cannot save ourselves. So, we need a Redeemer, someone to
satisfy God's justice by paying the penalty for our sins. The
believer's justification is obtained by satisfaction of God's
standard. Christ did not cancel the Law, but He fulfilled it.
Man is justified without the deeds of the Law. The Law condemns,
or gives knowledge of sin, but it does not have the power to
save. Christ's atoning sacrifice satisfied God's holy law, thus
making it possible for God to forgive sinners and remain just
Himself. Thus, Jesus Christ became our Redeemer, to give us
deliverance from sin and its penalties. Galatians 4:4-5, "But
when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son,
made of woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were
under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons."
II. Justification by Faith
The scripture teaches us, that the Just shall live by
Faith (Galatians 3:11). Only faith in Christ will pardon and
cancel the death penalty on our lives inherited through Adam's
sin. God cannot declare one righteous or remit one's sin without
faith in the atonement. Therefore, we are justified (just as if
I had never sinned) by faith not works. Abraham was justified by
faith, 430 years before the Law, without the deeds of the law.
David was justified by faith, while under the Law. Therefore,
Abraham and David were justified, by faith, apart from the Law
We call Abraham the Father of all believers, not in connection
with law or circumcision, but by Grace. He was the physical
Father of the Jews, but he is also the Father to all who follow
his steps of faith. True faith is counting things that are not
as though they were. Paul describes Abraham's faith to give an
example of what gospel faith is like. Abraham and Sarah were
well past childbearing age, but God had promised a child.
Abraham was fully persuaded that what God had promised, He could
do. He, against hope, believed in hope that he might become the
father of many nations. Therefore, it was imputed to him for
righteous (Romans 4:16-22).
God has declared us righteous through Jesus Christ. His
righteousness can now be imparted, by faith, to penitents, and
they are justified purely based on His grace. Jesus died for our
sins and was resurrected for our justification.
III. Peace With God (Romans, 5)
Therefore, being justified by faith, we now enjoy the
blessings of peace with God. The atoning blood of Jesus
Christ has settled our account in full on the cross. We now have
access to God, through Jesus Christ, our High Priest. Our hope
is in the atoning blood of Christ, not in our works, good
intentions, gifts, or prayers. God's love has been proven to us
at the cross. When we were weak, enslaved by sin, always missing
the mark of perfection, haters of God, Christ died for us. How
much more will God do for us, since His blood has justified and
reconciled us as His children. If His death has saved us, how
much more can He save us by His life? The basis of our
justification is found on level ground at the cross. Through
Adam's sin, a sentence of death without a promise of
resurrection, was passed upon all human flesh. However, by the
obedience and willingness of Christ to take man's place, the
sentence of death was completely eradicated, and complete
reconciliation was restored. We were made sinners through Adam.
We are made righteous through Christ!
It is the purpose of this article to emphasize the Church's
position on the doctrine of sanctification. We take the stand
that sanctification is a definite work of grace subsequent to
salvation. We believe sanctification to be an experience
to be received and enjoyed.
To understand the purpose of the baptism with the Holy Ghost we
must look beyond the external manifestation. It is essential to
recognize that it required a dynamic inward experience to
account for the outward demonstration. The baptism of the Holy
Ghost is to empower us to be witnesses of the Grace of God. "But
ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon
you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in
all Judea and in Samaria and unto the uttermost parts of the
earth" (Acts 1:8). According to John 14:26, He imparts wisdom:
"But, the comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father
will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring
all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto
you." The Holy Ghost empowers us to stand against the wiles of
Satan. He is that inner strength needed to face the
difficulties, heartaches and disappointments of life. He is
peace in the midst of turmoil.
Now concerning speaking in tongues: first, it is the initial
evidence, or outward manifestation of the Baptism of the Holy
Ghost, as mentioned in the previous scriptures. When the Holy
Ghost was given, the evidence was that. they spoke in tongues,
magnified God and prophesied. Speaking with tongues edifies the
believer (1Corinthians 14:4). This makes speaking with tongues
an important exercise in the Christian life and in his worship.
Speaking with tongues is a direct spiritual communication with
God (1 Corinthians 14:2). The words, "Speaketh not unto men, but
unto God," "he speaketh mysteries" and "no man understandeth
him" indicate that it is a private line of communication between
the believer and his God. Its incomprehensibility neither
negates its genuiness nor diminishes its value to the believer
or to the church. Speaking with other tongues is a sign to the
unbeliever (1 Corinthians 14:22). This supernatural
manifestation of God has a particular significance to the
unsaved person. It is a sign to show him that God is present
among His people. The Holy Ghost witnesses to his heart's need
and makes him aware that he is outside the fold and needs a
The promise and precious Baptism of the Holy Ghost of God is
available to all, along with the accompanying evidence of
speaking with other tongues (Joel 2:28-39; Isaiah 28:11; John
7:37-39; Acts 2:4; Acts 2:28-39; Acts 10:46; Acts 19:6, Mark
11:8; Matthew 3:11; Acts 1:4-5); to all who ask God (Luke 11:13)
for the gift of His Spirit and obey Him (Acts 5:32), they will
become the recipient of the most wonderful and
never-to-beforgotten experience of the Baptism of the Holy Ghost
with the evidence of speaking with other tongues.
We could go on and list scriptures for Sarah, Hannah, and the
widow's son, but space will not permit. We must admit that God
healed His people in the Old Testament. Two, possibly, three
million Jews left Egypt and there "was not a feeble one among
them." (Psalm 105:37), "He brought them forth also with silver
and gold; and there was not one feeble person among their
After Jesus ascended to the Father, the followers of Christ
continued to heal the sick by the power of the Holy Ghost. They
would lay hands on the sick, anoint them with oil, or minister
to them through the gifts of healing. In the New
Testament, we see the healing of a variety of sicknesses and
In ( Acts 10:38), we see how Jesus was used to heal all that
were oppressed of the devil. In (Mark 16:18), Jesus empowers us
and sends us forth to do the same. "They shall take up
serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt
them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover."
According to (John 14:12), we shall do those same things.
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the
works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these
shall he do, because I go unto my Father." First Peter
2:24 tells us, "Who his own self bare our sins in his own body
on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto
righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed."
By now you may be asking, "If all this is true, why is not
everyone healed?" We do not know everything that is between God
and another person. Some things will hinder a person from
receiving healing. It would be good for us to review them.
We may take certain steps that will help us receive our healing
for the Lord. Some of these are:
"In the imminent, personal,
premillennial, second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."
"For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout,
with the voice of the Archangel, and with the trump of God" (1
The Sounding of the Trumpet
Five days before the most celebrated presidential inauguration
of the century, the young president-Elect, John Fitzgerald
Kennedy asked Dr. Billy Graham a question that is being asked by
many in our day. "Billy," he asked, "Would you tell me about the
second coming of Jesus Christ?" This is the greatest question of
our day and carries a wonderful answer. Then he asked a second
question. "What does my church teach about the second coming of
I would like to deal with that subject from our church view and
the Bible view. "What does my church teach about the second
coming of Jesus Christ?" We believe in the imminent, personal,
premillennial second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. These are
the words of one of our Articles of Faith. Let us look at this
The World Book Encyclopedia says that this word imminent means:
"likely to happen soon; about to occur." This is what we believe
about the coming of our Lord. "It is likely to occur soon." The
greatest day in history did not take place on July 20, 1969,
when Astronaut Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, as former
President Richard Nixon said. Up till that time, the greatest
day had occurred on Easter Sunday morning, some two thousand
years ago, when the crucified Savior rose again from the dead!
But soon God is going to have an even greater, grander, and more
glorious day than the resurrection of His Beloved Son - and that
event is His return to earth again! Surely John the Apostle must
have penned the following words with grapesized goose pimples!
"And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in
heaven, saying, the kingdoms of this world are become the
kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for
ever and ever" (Revelation 11:15).
Paul said, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; we shall not all
sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the
twinkling of an eye, at the last trump -for the trumpet shall
sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall
be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and
this mortal must put on immortality" (1 Corinthians 15:51-53).
Have you ever wondered how fast a "twinkling of an eye" is? When
a preacher spoke to a group on the topic, "In the Twinkling of
an Eye," he noticed a young man in the front row take out a pad
of paper, a pen, and a small slide rule. For the rest of the
preacher's message, this young man looked at his slide rule and
wrote on the pad. Being a curious fellow, the preacher finished
speaking and walked over to the young man. "Forgive my
curiosity," he said, "But may I ask what you have been doing
with your slide rule, paper and pen?" The young man replied,
"Oh, I was just trying to figure our how fast a twinkling of an
eye was." "Well, what did you come up with?" "I figured," said
the young man, "That a twinkling of an eye is one-sixth of a
nanosecond." "A `whato' second?" countered the preacher. "A
nanosecond! A microsecond is one-millionth of a second, and a
nanosecond is one-billionth of a second. I figured that a
twinkling of an eye is one-sixth of a nanosecond."
The preacher asked the young man how he had come up with such a
number. He replied, "I figure that a twinkling of an eye is the
time it takes for light entering the iris to reach the retina at
the rear of the eye. That is a distance of about one inch at the
speed of 186,000 miles per second!" Will the calling out of
believers only take one-sixth of a nanosecond? I do not know,
but it is bound to be dazzling! Just think this event is
imminent. This coming is also to be personal. "The Lord himself
shall descend from heaven." There will be no substitute. The One
who comes is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ. As the first
coming was literal in every sense, so will His second coming be
literal in every sense. There will be a personal, visible,
bodily, glorious reappearing of Jesus Christ.
Let me remind you that when Christ comes, there will be a
resurrection. ". . .The dead in Christ shall rise first" (1
Thessalonians 4:16). Those who die out of Christ are not blessed
and holy. They must stay in their graves another one thousand
years. Then after the millennium, they will be raised and
brought in judgment before the Great White Throne where they
will receive the condemnation of Hell.
"Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first
resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they
shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him
a thousand years (Revelation 20:6). ". . . Blessed are the dead
which die in the Lord. . ." (Revelation 14:13). There are
sleeping Christians in many different places of the earth. Most
of them are in manmade graves. However, many Christians have
gone down into the seas while many have been burned to death.
Some have been lost in the wild places of the earth, and their
bones have been picked clean by the birds of the air. Others
have suffered and died in the deserts, their bones have been
left to bleach in the broiling sun. Some have been torn to
pieces in explosions, some have flown away in airplanes and have
never been found. None of this matters to Jesus for He knows
everything. He knows where they are, and He will show forth His
power over death when He comes, for His loved ones will rise
from everywhere and not one of them will be lost.
When we attend a funeral of a Christian, we can truly say to
him, "Goodby, I will see you with Jesus after a little while."
We can say this of all who know Jesus, for we know that it is
well with them.
Now when the dead are taken up, this is the first resurrection .
. . it is not a resurrection of the dead but a resurrection from
the dead. The lost dead will be left in their graves, but the
saved ones will be raised incorruptible.
Not only is it the imminent and personal, but the premillennial
second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. His coming will be
before the millennial reign, but not after, as some teach. The
word millennium is a Latin term that signifies "One thousand
years." ". . . and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand
years" (Revelation 20:4).
.In the first seven verses of Revelation 20, John mentions the
thousand-year period no less than six times! In spite of this,
some have argued that, since this number is found in only one
New Testament passage, one cannot insist that the thousand-year
period will really come to pass! To emphasize their point,
reference is made to 2 Peter 3:8,
" . . . one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a
thousand years as one day." It is interesting (and perhaps
revealing) to note that the same group that attempts to shorten
the thousand-year period of Revelation to one day (and thus do
away entirely with the millennium) also attempt to expand the
six days of creation in Genesis to thousands of years! One is
tempted to ask, "Why can't God mean exactly what He says?"
This reign of Jesus on earth is no incident nor accident, but
the purpose of God. This kingdom, ordained from the beginning,
is no post creation afterthought of God, but a pre-creation
thought in His mind from all eternity. When Jesus comes, the
pattern prayer of the saints, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be
done on earth as it is in heaven," will be heard. Jesus, the
rejected, will seize the reigns of government and rule in
beneficent power and victory. Since the millennium is to be a
time of righteousness and peace, it is absolutely necessary that
Satan be removed from the earth. How can you have a Golden Age
without getting rid of the devil? Satan, too strong to be
overcome by any human power, will be locked up by the Omnipotent
Christ. The arrest of Satan before the millennium! A thousand
years of peace in a Satanless world! Think of it - and rejoice!
Satan is silenced. This is what we call the millennium.
"Be ye, also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not the Son
of man cometh" (Matthew 24:44).
[We Believe Index]
By Bishop Cullen Hicks
"In the eternal redemption of all
saints who are faithful to the end (Matthew 24:13) and
(Revelation 2:10). But, we reject the theory of `Once in grace,
always in grace' regardless of conduct" (1 Corinthians 10:12 and
What about "Eternal Security?" Does the Bible teach `Once in
grace, always in grace'? We, as a church, reject the doctrine
outright. We understand the doctrine of `Eternal Security,' to
fall without foundation in view of the scriptures as a whole. No
man can boast of being eternally saved in this world. Not until
we reach heaven will we be able to say we are eternally saved.
Space would not permit an extensive study on the subject, nor do
we intend to answer every argument on the subject, but the
following is given for your consideration.
The Bible, to a degree, teaches eternal security, but not the
way many are teaching it today We mean that it teaches eternal
security to this extent; that God's grace is eternally secure,
and it will keep us from sin in this life and save us at last in
heaven. Yet, it is up to the individual whether he continues in
the faith and serves God or goes back into sin. One does not
become a puppet when he is born again. He still retains his
At first let us say that we do not believe in backsliding as
many seem to practice it. There are those who claim to receive
Christ and salvation in every revival. An experience of that
nature leaves room for doubt, and we question the validity of
such an experience. If every person who has professed a
born-again experience would have truly been born-again, we are
certain that we would not have heard so much about back sliding.
We have reason to hope that those who are truly born-again will
continue in the faith and be saved by God's all sufficient
grace. Yet the Bible issues too many warnings and statements of
caution to the Christian, warnings against backsliding and
apostasy, to say that a believer cannot fall away and make
shipwreck of his faith. These warnings would be useless words if
one cannot fall. The last and closing threat of the Bible is
that "If any man shall take away from the words of the book of
prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the Book of Life,"
signifying that he to whom this could happen did have a part in
the Book of Life.
Is it possible for a righteous man to turn away from God and die
in that condition and be lost? Let scripture answer that
(Ezekiel 18:24-26), "But when the righteous turneth away from
his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according
to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he
live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be
mentioned; in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his
sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die. Yet ye say, The
way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O House of Israel; is
not my way equal? Are not your ways unequal? When a righteous
man turneth away from his righteousness and committeth iniquity,
and dieth in them; for his iniquity that he hath done shall he
Now the last word of the above scripture, "die" must certainly
have reference to death of the soul rather than physical death,
for the following verse (27) says, "Again, when the wicked man
turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and
doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul
alive." Consequently, if the wicked person's soul is saved by
his turning from his wickedness and doing the right, then
likewise will the righteous person's soul be lost if he turns
from his righteousness and does that which is wrong.
To teach `once in grace, always in grace' is not only
unscriptural, it is an encouragement to carelessness concerning
a holy life and separation from the world. If one cannot be
lost, then why be concerned about self-examination as Paul
exhorts the Corinthian Christians in (2 Corinthians 13:5)
"Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own
The writer to the Hebrews was writing to Christians rather than
sinners when he wrote in Chapter 2, "Therefore we ought to give
the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at
any time we should let them slip." The Revised Version reads
thus, "Lest at any time we drift away from them." The writer
continues, "For if the word spoken by angels were steadfast, and
every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense
of reward: How shall we escape if we neglect so great
Jude relates to us, "How that the Lord, having saved the people
out of the land of Egypt, afterwards destroyed them that
believed not. And the angels which kept not their first estate,
but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting
chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day." These
are examples set forth for our warning and admonition. Yet, why
the warning if we are eternally saved now?
It is possible to draw back unto perdition after once having the
Faith. For (Hebrews 10:38) says, "Now the just shall live by
faith; but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure
in him." Still, some would answer, "But the next verse says that
`We are not of them who draw back unto perdition, but of them
that believe to the saving of the soul." Yes, that is true, we
are not of them that draw back unto perdition, but there is the
possibility that one can draw back or verse 38 would not have
said, "But if a man draw back..." Again, (2 Peter 1:9-10) reads,
"But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar
off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sin.
Wherefore, the rather brethren, give diligence to make your
calling and election sure; for if you do these things, ye shall
It is a dangerous thing to backslide, to go away from God. In
the words of the scripture it is worse to know God, and then
turn back, than to never be saved. The backslider is really more
responsible than the sinner who has never known God because of
having had the greater light. (2 Peter 2:20-22), "For if after
they have escaped the pollution of the world, through the
knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again
entangled therein and overcome, the latter end is worse with
them than the beginning." David said, "The wicked shall be
turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God" (Psalm
9:17). Now it is unreasonable to assume that you can
forget something or someone whom you did not know. So David is
saying that the nation (and a nation is made up of individuals)
that forgets God, whom they knew, shall be turned into hell, or
shall be lost. Again he states in (Psalm 50:22), "Now consider
this ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be
none to deliver."
To the Hebrew Christians the warning was given as follows: "Take
heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of
unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one
another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be
hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made
partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence
steadfast unto the end."
In the strictest sense of the word, a backslider (and by that
terminology we have reference to a person who begins the
Christian life and for some reason turns back into sin) is
nothing more than a sinner and to get back to God he must be
converted again. James 5:19-20 reads: "Brethren, if any of
you do err from the truth, and one convert him, let him know,
that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way
shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of
It has been offered as an argument in favor of eternal security
that once a person is born into a family he cannot be unborn. To
that we may heartily agree. However, though he cannot be unborn,
he can certainly die. Many parents have had sons to be born into
their homes and have lost their sons, not because they were
unborn, but because they died. Remember, scripture says, "The
soul that sinneth, it shall die."
In the Apostle Paul's last words to Timothy, he emphasized the
fact that "I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."
According to the doctrine of eternal security, he had to finish
his course and he could not help but keep the faith, for he
could not lose it. Now if he could not lose his faith, why would
he tell Timothy that he had kept it?
The Apostle Peter penned his first Epistle to the "Elect
according to the foreknowledge of God the Father . . . " to
Christians, mind you, and to them he said, "Be sober, be
vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion,
walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." The word "devour"
means the same as "destroy."
Jesus said in ( St. John 17:12), speaking to His Father, "Those
that thou gavest me I have kept," and many would stop there. Yet
it continues, "And none of them is lost, but the son of
perdition . . . " Here He has references to Judas whom the
Father had given Him. Jesus must have had Judas at one time in
order to lose him. However, some have argued that Judas was a
devil from the beginning. However, the Bible makes no such
statement. Jesus did say of him in (St. John 6:70), "Have not I
chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil." Jesus did not say
Judas was a devil but that he is a devil. Just at what time
Judas became of such character the Bible does not say, but one
thing we do know, Judas `fell by transgression' (Acts 1:25).
We are aware that most any belief can be proven by scripture if
that scripture is lifted out from its context and from the whole
of the scriptures. However, when a doctrine is substantiated by
the general teachings of scripture rather than by an isolated
quotation, we can then without fear, preach and teach such a
We have briefly touched on a few of the scriptures relative to
our teachings, but many, many more could be mentioned. Our
admonition to all men is found in the words of Jesus when He
said, "Watch ye therefore . . . lest coming suddenly he finds
you sleeping" (St. Mark 13:35-36).
[We Believe Index]
By Rev. Annie Mae Sproles
Our eternal hope is based on the death
and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Christ's personal, literal, and undeniable rising from the grave
is fundamental to the existence of the church. The hope of every
believer rests in the fact that ". . . every one which seeth the
Son and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life: and I will
raise him up at the last day" (John 6:40).
For example, when the church met to choose someone to replace
Judas, the criteria for this ordination into apostleship was
that he must be ". . . a witness with us of His resurrection"
(Acts 1:22). Therefore, Jesus' resurrection was the life-giving
message of the church, for He laid the foundation in His own
preaching. Then, the church structured all that it taught and
practiced on the assurance of the resurrection of its Founder.
Thirdly, to propagate this message, the church leadership must
bear witness of this vital truth. Finally, as He stated, ". . .
Because I live, ye shall live also"
(John 14:19), the resurrected Christ Conqueror and head of the
church. Besides the resurrection being the life-giving message
of the church, it was also the power that prepared the believer
for a bodily resurrection with the righteous, but the ungodly
were resurrected to eternal destruction.
THE FOUNDATION OF THE CHURCH WAS LAID
UPON CHRIST'S OWN PREACHING OF THE RESURRECTION:
Jesus' resurrection became the doctrine upon which all that the
church taught was established. His death and resurrection
provided eternal life for all believers. As He promised near the
grave site of His friend Lazarus, "I am the resurrection and the
life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he
live" (John 11:25).
Consequently, to take away this demonstration of Christ's
authority; His death and resurrection would destroy the
foundation of the church. In essence, to take away the
resurrection of Christ, Christianity would be nothing more than
the admiration of a man and his teachings. So the faith of the
`born again' was grounded in His resurrection. Without the
resurrection, the church would never have been born; or it would
have died leaving little to the journals of history. The
resurrection and the existence of the church depended totally
upon each other in that they would either stand or fall
Jesus used two Old Testament examples in which He explained
figuratively His death and resurrection. He did not give the
sign to the Pharisees that they expected. The fact that He could
cleanse the temple should have been sufficient proof of his
authority. Yet, He responded with an example, "Destroy this
temple and in three days I will raise it up" (John 2:19).
He told of His death and resurrection in terms normally denoting
something else. Another example, He called it "the sign of the
prophet Jonas," For as Jonas was three days and three nights in
the whale's belly, so shall the Son of man be three days and
three nights in the heart of the earth" (Matthew 12:39-40).
Jesus had already given throughout His ministry an abundance of
signs that proved Him to be sent from God.
Likewise, the preaching of Jesus should have been sufficient as
in the case of Jonah, "They repented at the preaching of Jonah."
Jesus was greater than both the temple and Jonah. He knew they
would continue to disbelieve in spite of all that He said or
Signs confirmed faith, but Jesus denied giving them, when they
demanded them, because of unbelief. Yet, the message contained
here would be reserved for their conviction. Furthermore, it was
intended to be the evidence that Jesus was the Messiah. John
explained the later response of His followers to the destruction
and raising of the temple. "When, therefore, He was risen from
the dead, His disciples remembered He had said this unto them;
and they believed the Scriptures, and the word which Jesus said"
THE RESURRECTION ESTABLISHED WHAT THE
CHURCH TAUGHT AND BELIEVED:
The Apostles, in their earliest preaching days, were staggered
by Jesus' proclamation of His death and resurrection. "From that
time forth began Jesus to shew unto His disciples, how that He
must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and
chief priests and scribes and be killed, and be raised again the
third day. Then Peter took Him, and began to rebuke Him, saying,
be it far from Thee, Lord, this shall not be unto Thee. But He
turned, and said unto Peter, get thee behind Me, Satan: Thou art
an offence unto Me: for thou savourest not the things that be of
God, but those that be of men" (Matthew 16:21-23).
When He arose, His place as the Messiah had been approved,
justified, and glorified by the Father. Because of this, the
resurrection and the preaching of the Gospel became primary and
basic to their faith in Christ. Paul declared to the church at
Corinth. "If Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain,
and your faith is vain" (1 Corinthians 15:14). The witness of
the disciples to the resurrection of Jesus was so empowered by
the Holy Ghost that they said of themselves, "We cannot but
speak of the things which we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:20).
As a result, the resurrection of Christ upheld what Jesus taught
and did and what the disciples believed due to their
relationship with Him. Indeed, those who had deserted Him and
the one who had denied Him would not have been rallied again if
it had not been for His resurrection. It is reasonable to assert
that the Gospels illustrate how the foundation of the church was
laid in His death and resurrection. Then, in the Acts, they
raised the church upon the power of His resurrection under the
official authority of the Holy Ghost. Thirdly, anointed men
developed in the Epistles the explicit details for the church as
they opened the mysteries of Christ's resurrection.
THE EXPANSION OF THE CHURCH DEPENDED ON
ITS LEADERSHIP'S KNOWLEDGE OF WHOM JESUS WAS AND WHO THEY WERE
Jesus had given hints of His sufferings when He said "Destroy
this Temple." Again, when He spoke of "the Son of man being
lifted up" and of "eating His flesh and drinking His blood." He
continually directed their minds toward His mission in the
world. Beginning in Matthew 16:20, Jesus commenced to show them
more plainly that He would have to suffer and die. It was
evident from Jesus's rebuke of Peter that His followers did not
understand or know Him for who He was.
Admittedly, His disciples needed to know much more about Him.
Then, they needed to understand His work of grace in their lives
before they would be fit, or able, to confess Him before men.
Sometimes, as the experience of the Apostle Peter displayed, the
most unfitted of all for the preaching of the Gospel, his death
and resurrection, are those who suppose themselves the most fit.
Peter was an excellent example. He must know who Jesus was, and
He must know what His work of grace meant.
When Christ spoke of His death, He always combined it with His
resurrection. The Lord loved the work of redemption. No doubt,
for Him, the resurrection took away the reproach of death on the
cross, and for His disciples, it should have taken away the
grief. A. T. Robertson explained, "They continued not to
understand. They were agnostic on the subject of the death and
resurrection even after the Transfiguration experience." As they
came down the mountain, they were puzzled again over the
Master's allusion to His resurrection (Mark 9:10). Matthew 17:23
notes that "they were exceeding sorry" to hear Jesus talk this
way again, but Mark adds that they "were afraid to ask Him . . .
" Luke 9:45 explains that "it was concealed from them," probably
by their own preconceived ideas and prejudices" (Word Pictures
in the New Testament Vol. l p. 344).
Each of the Gospel writers gave an account of Christ's
resurrection. They presented it with the assurance of true
church leaders. Those upon whom Jesus would depend to build His
church must exchange their conflicting ideas and prejudices for
a solid faith in His death and resurrection. Each recorded from
different perspectives, but their accounts enhanced and gave
full proof that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. What Jesus told
His disciples of His suffering actually happened. They tried
Him, abused, convicted, and killed; but He arose.
Although He had given notice to his disciples of His suffering,
when it came, they were both surprised and terrified. To Peter,
it was as if he had never heard what the Lord had repeatedly
told them. Yet, it was Peter who called for one to be chosen who
can speak from his own experience of the ministry, resurrection,
and ascension of the Lord. Also, his message of Acts 2, at a
time when it was possible to test the validity of its content,
openly proclaimed the resurrection as a fact. He needed no
evidence, for what he declared was known to his hearers. Not
only that, but the Apostle goes back to the Old Testament, Psalm
16, the resurrection Psalm, to support what they witnessed.
God used unbelievers, both political and religious, to announce
who Jesus was. He intended it to be the proclaiming of Christ
upon the cross, the king of the Jews. Pilate did not know what
he wrote when he placed the words "the King of the Jews" on the
cross. Neither did Caiaphas who said, "And this spoke He not of
himself, but, being high priest that year, he prophesied that
Jesus should die for that nation" (John 11:51).
Christ emptied Himself: not of His divine nature, that was
impossible. He continued to be the Son of God. He gave up His
environment of glory, and took upon Himself the limitations of
place. He was without sin, though He was tempted as a man. He
stripped Himself of the insignia of majesty. His humanity was as
real as His deity. It was a voluntary humiliation on the part of
Christ. He came as God's Son incarnated in the flesh as Mary's
Son to the most despised death of all, a condemned criminal on
the accursed cross (Philippians 2:6-8). Paul said in 1
Corinthians 1:15, proclaimed His resurrection and its benefits
for the believer, "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and
become the first fruits of them that slept. For since by man
came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead" ( 1
Corinthians 15:20-21). Christ is the Conqueror!
THE CRUCIFIED, RESURRECTED CHRIST IS
THE CONQUEROR AND HEAD OF THE CHURCH:
When He hung on the cross, He conquered His and His people's
enemies. Not only that, He triumphed over them, "Blotting out
the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was
contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His
cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a
show of them openly, triumphing over them in it" (Colossians
When Christ took on our human flesh and stepped upon the field
as the Captain of our salvation, the conflict man faced from the
fall reached its climax. In dying, the crucified Christ stripped
off the evil forces of Satan that man could not overcome
himself. It is evident. The victory of man is involved in the
victory of Christ. In the cross, there was the greatest triumph:
for the law was fulfilled, God's program was vindicated, death
was robbed of its prey in his resurrection, then Satan "the
prince of this world" was cast out. The world that was
imprisoned had been set free. Christ conquered!
The resurrection message gave life to the church, and it was the
power of the Holy Ghost that gave it witness. In the Bible,
there were two methods by which God's power was gaged. In the
Old Testament, Micah 7:15 explains it as the power which God
brought Israel out of Egypt. The New Testament, according to the
Apostle Paul, says it is " . . . His mighty power, Which He
wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him
in at His own right hand in the heavenly places" (Ephesians 1:
THE SPIRITUAL RESURRECTION is
identified as the power exerted by Christ's resurrection, and it
is brought to bear in raising divine life in a person who is
dead in trespasses and sins. Furthermore, the aspirations of the
believer results in the desire to achieve something higher and
greater. That is, to know ever more the power of His
resurrection. "That I may know Him, and the power of His
resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made
conformable unto His death" (Colossians 3:10). This passage not
only gives the believer the promise and assurance of the present
power and victory, but also of future glorification.
THERE WILL BE A BODILY RESURRECTION OF
As Paul explains, "For as in Adam all die, even so is Christ
shall all be made alive" (1 Corinthians 15:22). Christ's
appearance to the disciples in bodily form was evidence of His
bodily resurrection. In fact, it was so important that He
remained forty days upon the earth after His resurrection.
During this time, He gave infallible proofs to the claims of His
As long as Christ lay in the grave, there was no assurance that
His redemptive work had been acceptable to God. But as Paul
explains, "Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died,
yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand
of God, who also maketh intercession for us" (Romans 8:34). The
apostle is speaking of physical death in Adam, and physical
resurrection in Christ. Christ's work gave assurance to the
redemptive work in the lives of believers.
William Evans describes the resurrected body in this manner.
"What was the nature and likeness of Christ's resurrection body
which our resurrection body is to resemble. It was a real body
(Luke 24:39); recognizable (Luke 24:31; John 20:16); powerful
(John 20:19). Summing up these passages, we may say that the
resurrection body of the believer will be like the glorified
body of Christ" (The Great Doctrines of the Bible p. 248).
Further characteristics of the believer's resurrected body are
discussed in 1 Corinthians 15.
The resurrection of the believer is connected with the return of
Christ. Indeed, the reality of the resurrection of the body
convinces the believer of salvation and the hope of immortality.
The Old Testament is not as clear on the resurrection of the
saints as the New Testament, because Christ brought light on the
subject. Job 19:25-27 stated, ". . .
In my flesh shall I see God . . . " Isaiah 26:19 declared, " . .
. Together with my dead body shall they rise . . . " The people
of the Old Testament were not without hope.
They believed that God's Holy One would redeem them from Sheol.
Psalms 16:10 and: Ps 49:15- point to the fulfillment of this in
Jesus' death (Matthew 12:40; Luke 23:42-43).
The resurrection of Christ ensures that all men, both the wicked
and the good, the unbelieving and the believing, shall be
raised. They will not be raised at the same time. Christ was the
first fruit of the resurrection. True believers will come forth
at His second advent (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). The unbelievers
will be raised to come before God for judgment.
THE RESURRECTION OF THE WICKED is
defined as those who never accepted Jesus Christ as the Son of
God and the Savior of the world. For a person to be a part of
the first resurrection, that individual must know Jesus in the
power of His death and resurrection. Because Christ has been
made head over all things for the church, everyone must become
subject to Him. This decision separates the believer from the
unbeliever. It separates the church from the world, and it
separates the righteous and the wicked in the resurrection.
Furthermore, it will separate their eternal destinies.
There is no message more powerful than that of the resurrection.
When it is embraced into the church life with the same fervency
as the New Testament Church in its doctrine, practices, and
leadership, it will bring reformation and revival to the church.
Christ, the Head of the church, is in charge of His work here.
He is more than able to lead people with resurrection lives from
sin and destruction to victory. His victory is the victory of
the church. In His resurrection, He was more than the Conqueror.
[We Believe Index]
The Bride of
By Rev. David L. Hodges
"The Bride of Christ is composed of the
entire spiritual church" (1 Corinthians 12:25; 2 Corinthians
11:2; Galatians 3:28, 29; Ephesians 4:16, Eph 5:23-33;
While we do believe this and the above scriptures indicate this,
I would like to say that there is a wide range of parallels
between the Church and a Bride.
First, I want to look at the entire spiritual church. The word
"church" means an assembly or the "called out" ones. Paul
teaches in Romans 12:4-8 that the church is like a human body
and in Ephesians 5:23 and Colossians 1:18 that Christ is the
Head. Every believer, like every part of the human body, has
individual functions to do. Christ is the Head of the church,
which means He has the authority over the church to guide it.
This also means that Christ (the Head) and the church (the body)
exist together in organic unity.
We must remember when this body is attacked (and it will be
attacked as our physical bodies are attacked) that Christ is the
Head. A body cannot drown until the Head goes under, and He is
never going under. Paul states in 1 Corinthians 12:18 that
God "set the members every one of them in the Body, as it
pleased Him." This signifies that God has chosen each member and
that each member is of equal importance to God, as every body
part is important to the body. In 1 Corinthians 12:15-17,
Paul shows why, as members of this body, we should not feel we
are more important than another member. In verse 17, he states,
"If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the
whole were the hearing, where were the smelling?" In
Ephesians 4:3-6, Paul exhorts this body to unity based on the
oneness of the body. He states in these verses that there is one
Spirit, Hope, Lord, Faith, Baptism, and one God and father of
Christian unity in the body of Christ is damaged by mistrust,
anger, unwholesome talk, bitterness, wrath, and clamor. All of
this among fellow members (Ephesians 4:25) is to be put away. To
be able to put these things away, we must be kind,
tenderhearted, and forgiving to one another.
Secondly, when the Word of God speaks of the Church being the
Bride of Christ, it is referring to both the symbolic and the
actual Bride of Christ (Ephesians 5:31, Revelation 19:7; 21:9).
Figuratively speaking, the church is likened to the marriage
relationship between a husband and a wife. The reason being that
the relationship is monogamous and is a commitment for life. The
Children of God, who comprise the church, are to have a "one and
only one God" relationship. That is, a life-long commitment on
the part of the Husband (Christ) as well as the Wife (Church).
In Revelation 19:7 she is not called His bride, but His wife.
That is a deeper, dearer, more matured word than "bride." "His
wife hath made herself ready." The Church has now come to the
fullness of her joy and has taken possession of her status as
"His Wife." What does "hath made herself ready" mean? It means
first, that she is willingly and of her own accord, coming to
her Lord to be His, and to be with Him forever. This she does
with all her heart: "she hath made herself ready." She does not
enter this engagement with reluctance.
Notice the preparation! It is described in the eighth verse: "To
her was granted." This speaks for itself. Whatever preparation
it was that she made, in whatever apparel she was arrayed, it
was granted to her. Look at the apparel of the wife: "To her was
granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and
white." How simple her raiment! Only fine linen, clean and
white! Noting the first, and only, Hebrew word in the Revelation
is `worthy'. Alleluia is the supreme shout of praise, and is not
heard until the marriage celebration takes place (Revelation
19:1). It is a beautiful, loving relationship with which
we, as mortal man, can identify. The intimacy, caring and
affection pictured in the marriage relationship are a longing
and a desire felt and known by all those who claim the name of
What a wonderful view we have into the very heart of God as we
are likened to a Bride. At any moment, the trumpet could sound,
and we could be summoned to the glorious Marriage Supper of the
Can't you hear the wedding bells ringing?
[We Believe Index]
The Virgin Birth
By Bishop Ronald Wilson
"That Jesus Christ is the only begotten
Son of the Father, conceived of the Holy Ghost, and born of the
The doctrine of the virgin birth is one of the most precious
beliefs that all true Christians hold dear to their hearts.
Through the years, the ungodly have tried to dispute and destroy
this great Bible truth. To attack the virgin birth, in effect,
attacks the deity of Christ. The entire Gospel message falls
apart if Christ were not God in the flesh. If belief in the
virgin birth is destroyed, salvation for the sinner does not
exist, we have no hope of deliverance and healing in this life,
and certainly no home in heaven when this life is over. If the
conception and the cradle of Christ are treated as myths, His
cross and tomb have no value either, for they were built upon
Those who deny the virgin birth do so in complete disbelief and
rebellion against God's Word. They also deny the power of
Almighty God. In their blindness, these unbelievers seem to have
forgotten that God created all things in the beginning by simply
speaking them into existence. If God could create Adam without a
man or a woman, and if God created Eve from the rib of Adam
without a woman, causing the birth of Jesus without an earthly
father would be easy for God. As many preachers before me have
said; "The same God who brought a motherless woman from the body
of a man brought a fatherless man from the body of a woman."
In chapter 7, verse 14, Isaiah prophesied the virgin birth of
Jesus; "Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign;
Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call
His name Immanuel." Mary acknowledged her virginity and her
purity when she asked the angel Gabriel this question; "How
shall this be, seeing I know not a man?" (Luke 1:34).
The idea that Mary was just a young woman, which is how the
Revised Standard Version translates Isaiah 7:14, and not a
virgin, cannot be validated with any scripture in the Bible. In
fact, whether Mary was a young woman or not, has nothing to do
with the issue. Mary could have been a young woman and not a
virgin, or she could have been a virgin and not a young woman.
However, if Mary had been with child out of wedlock, she
certainly would not have been highly favored with God as Gabriel
said to her. "Hail, thou that art highly favored, the Lord is
with thee: blessed art thou among women" (Luke 1:28). The Bible
makes it clear that Mary had never had any sexual relations with
a man when she was found to be with Child.
In the book of Genesis, after Adam and Eve sinned, God promised
them a Savior would be born into the world. "And I will put
enmity between thee (Satan) and the woman (Eve), and between thy
seed and her seed; It shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt
bruise his heel" Genesis 3:15. From the beginning, the prophecy
said nothing about the seed of man, but the seed of woman. Jesus
would be born of a woman, yet the method of His conception would
be unlike anything the world had ever known. It would be a
special birth for earth's most special Child.
As we come back to the Gospel of Luke, in response to the
question Mary asked, the angel Gabriel said to her; "The Holy
Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall
overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be
born of thee shall be called the Son of God" (Luke 1:35). The
clear meaning of this scripture is that Jesus was to be born of
Mary without a human father. The Holy Ghost conceived the Child
In the Gospel of Matthew, we read this account of the birth of
Jesus. "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as
His mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came
together, she was found with Child of the Holy Ghost. Then
Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make
her a public example, was minded to put her away privily. But
while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord
appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David,
fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is
conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth
a Son, and thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His
people form their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be
fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
Behold, a virgin shall be with Child, and shall bring forth a
Son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being
interpreted is, God with us. Then Joseph being raised from sleep
did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him
his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her
firstborn son: and he called His name Jesus" (Matthew 1:18-25).
The fact that Joseph was not the father of Jesus is perfectly
clear if one reads the Scriptures. Mary was espoused to Joseph,
but the marriage had not been consummated. When Joseph learned
that Mary was to become a mother, he decided to divorce her.
Joseph reached this decision because he knew that Mary's Son was
not his son. However, the customs of that day forced Joseph to
make a choice. If he divorced her openly, both parties must
present themselves to the elders of the city in a public
meeting. If the woman was found to be with child by another man,
she would be taken outside the gates of the city and stoned to
death. Joseph knew this would happen to Mary if he publicly
divorced her. He did believe Mary had been unfaithful to him,
but he loved her so much that he did not want her to die. The
only other option Joseph saw was to put her away privately,
which is what the Bible tells us he intended to do.
If Joseph were not the father of Jesus, who was? If Jesus was
not born of a virgin, then Mary was a woman of ill repute. If
Jesus was not begotten of God and conceived by the Holy Ghost,
then two unmarried and immoral people who were responsible for
His birth concocted the most incredible story ever perpetrated
upon the world to cover up their sin. If that is true, then
Christianity is built upon the most horrible fraud of all time.
If you take away the virgin birth, what is left?
If Jesus were an illegitimate child, do you think the angels
would have rejoiced? "And there were in the same country
shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock
by night. And lo, an angel of the Lord came upon them, and the
glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore
afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for behold I
bring you. . ." Did the angel say that he brought sad news from
heaven that a woman who had given birth to a child conceived out
of wedlock? Was that the news that caused heaven to rejoice? No!
The angel said: "Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings
of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born
this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the
Lord. And this shall be sign unto you; Ye shall find the Babe
wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly
there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on
earth peace, good will toward men" (Luke 2:8-14). Heaven
rejoiced because God's Son and earth's Savior had been born!
John 3:16 is said to be the most quoted verse in the Bible, but
notice the wording. "For God so loved the world, that He gave
His only begotten Son. . ." Begotten means to be the father of.
I know many people like to skip all the begats of the Bible, but
you miss something when you do. Take the begats of the New
Testament. In Matthew's account of the genealogy of Jesus, he
begins in verse two with Abraham and proceeds toward the birth
of Jesus with a total of 39 "begats." Abraham begat Isaac, Isaac
begat Jacob, Jacob begat Judas, and so on until he comes to
Joseph. When he gets to Joseph, this is what the Bible says.
"And Jacob begat Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born
Jesus who is called Christ" (Matthew 1:16). Matthew did not say
that Joseph begat Jesus. Why? The reason: an earthly father did
not sire Jesus.
The genealogy of Jesus in the book of Luke, which is the lineage
of Mary, goes all the way back to Adam. This was done to show
that Mary was the woman through whom the "promised Seed" had
come. Just as God had promised, her Seed would bruise the head
of the serpent.
When the angel of the Lord instructed Joseph to go into Egypt,
he did not say to him, take your wife and your son. But rather,
"Take the young Child and His mother." Joseph had nothing to do
with the conception of Jesus.
Throughout the Gospels, Jesus is called the Son of Mary, the Son
of David, the Son of man, the Son of God, the Only begotten of
the Father, the Son of the Highest, and the Son of the most
High. With one exception, only His enemies called Him the Son of
Joseph. The exception was the occasion when Jesus was twelve
years old. During the celebration of Passover, He became
separated from His earthly family. When Mary and Joseph found
Him in the Temple, she said; "Son, why hast Thou thus dealt with
us? Behold, Thy father and I have sought Thee sorrowing." The
answer Jesus gave to His mother was a gentle rebuke. He said to
her; "How is it that ye sought Me? Wist ye not that I must be
about My Father's business?" (Luke 2:48-49). Mary had spoken of
Joseph as his father. Jesus reminded her that God was His
If Jesus were in fact the Son Joseph, then years later the
Jewish leaders were correct when they charged Him with
blasphemy. They were right to demand His death. They knew the
Son of Joseph could not save us from our sin. You see, it does
make a difference whose Son Jesus was. Divine birth proves
Sonship, and only divine Sonship provides divine redemption.
If Jesus were not born of a virgin, then He had a human father.
If He had a human father, He inherited the sin nature of that
father. If He were born in sin, He was under the curse and
penalty of sin Himself. When He claimed that He had power over
His own life and no one could take His life from Him, if He were
only the son of an earthly father, that was nothing more than
another lie. If Jesus had a finite father, he would have been a
finite son. If Jesus were a finite son, He could not have been
an infinite Person. If He were finite, He was not God. If He
were not God in the flesh, then salvation is nothing more than a
cunningly devised fable.
A person who denies the virgin birth snatches the robe of divine
royalty off our Lord. They strip Him of His sinless humanity,
denounce His deity, make the cross a failure and disgrace, and
tell us we have to face eternity with no hope. In essence, they
Let the agnostic and infidels say what they please, but we
believe the Bible speaks with clarity on this most vital
doctrine; "Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of the Father,
conceived of the Holy Ghost, and born of the virgin Mary."
[We Believe Index]
By Rev. Wayne Hicks
"In Water Baptism by immersion, and all
who repent should be baptized in the name of the Father, and of
the Son, and of the Holy Ghost."
New Testament Christianity cannot be labeled a ritualistic
religion. At the very heart of Christianity is man's direct
contact with God through the Spirit. These are two ceremonies
that are essential because they are divinely ordained. These two
ceremonies are Water Baptism and the Lord's Supper. The
characters of these are very sacred and, because of this, they
are sometimes described as sacraments . . . literally, "sacred
things," or "oaths consecrated by a sacred rite." They are also
described as ordinances because they are ceremonies "ordained"
by the Lord, Himself.
In this article we will study the sacrament of Water Baptism.
Both the words `baptism' and `baptize' have their root in the
Greek word, "Bapto," meaning to immerse, dip, or plunge under
water; to wash. As strange as it may seem, baptism was not an
invention of Christianity. Both Judaism and the pagan mystery
religions used baptism as initiation into their group. Baptism
first appears in the New Testament when we read of John the
Baptist. Crowds were "Baptized of him in the river Jordan,
confessing their sins" (Mark 1:5). His baptism was accompanied
by repentance and was symbolized by the same. Jesus, Himself,
was baptized by John, showing the continuity between their
ministries. Baptism is in the name of the Father, the Son, and
the Holy Ghost. Baptism is into Christ, or His Name, signifying
union with Him. This union involves sharing in His death,
burial, and resurrection, of which baptism is an obvious symbol.
Two of the verses that emphasize the significance of baptism are
Acts 2:38, "Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized
every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission
of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost," and
Acts 22:16, "And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized,
and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord."
Baptism is an initiatory rite. Though the act of baptism is not
the act of joining the church, it is signifying through public
proclamation that the believer is joined to Christ and is
identified with Christ and His Church. This sacrament was
instituted by Christ when He gave the "Great Commission" in
The Biblical formula for baptism is also stated in the Great
Commission, "Baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of
the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19). This formula
worships the Triune God in the administering of the sacrament.
When we baptize in the name of the Father, then we are
recognizing Him as the Father of our Lord Jesus, and as the
Author of redemption. When we baptize in the name of the Son, we
are recognizing Him as the begotten of God. When we baptize in
the name of the Spirit, we are recognizing Him as the eternal
Spirit and as the Administrator of divine graces through
redemption. Since this formula recognizes the divine Trinity and
the distinction of the three persons in the Trinity, this is the
only formula of baptism that the Congregational Holiness Church
recognizes and accepts.
The word "Baptize" used throughout the New Testament means
literally to "dip or to immerse." Therefore, the mode of baptism
recognized in the scriptures is immersion. Even scholars
belonging to churches that baptize by sprinkling admit that
immersion was the earliest mode. For several years, the
Congregational Holiness Church allowed candidates to be immersed
or sprinkled. This was later changed, and the only mode accepted
now is baptism by immersion. The Scriptural, original mode of
baptism is by immersion, which is true to the symbolic meaning
of baptism: namely death, burial, and resurrection (Romans
All who sincerely repent of their sins and accept Christ as
their Lord and Savior are eligible for water baptism. Baptism is
a spiritual duty and privilege. All of those who receive Christ
as their Lord and Savior are to receive this sacrament, and to
willfully neglect it is sinful (James 4:17; Luke 7:30).
Water baptism, itself, has no saving power. People are baptized
not to be saved, but because they are saved. Therefore, we
cannot say that Water Baptism is essential to salvation, but we
may say that it is essential to full obedience to God's Word.
Water baptism is our public inauguration as a member of the
Church of Christ.
Baptism is not a sacrament that the believer needs to repeat.
Baptism is the initiating sacrament showing the believer's
continuing faith. Though baptism is not normally repeated, all
believers can have a re-experiencing of the spiritual blessing
of this sacrament if they so desire.
The very act of baptism shows that the convert has been
spiritually identified with Christ. The immersion declares that
Christ died "for" sin so that man might die "to" sin. The
raising from the water declares that Christ arose from the dead,
so this man might live a new life of righteousness.
When a convert is baptized, he has "put on" the very character
of God. As a soldier wears the uniform of his country, so does
the baptized convert don the uniform of the Kingdom of Christ.
[We Believe Index]
Supper and Feet Washing
By Kenneth Law
"In the Lord's Supper and Washing of the Saint's Feet."
The Lord's Supper speaks special truths, and all point to the
cross. The bread and wine both say, "Remember Me and My Death."
They show the violence of His death and tell us of the blessing
that flows to us therefrom. When we remember the Divine
Covenant, the forgiveness of sins, the new life and the fullness
of Joy, we should all glory when we think of the Lord's Supper.
(Matthew 26:26-30) says, "And as they were eating, Jesus took
bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the
disciples, and said, take eat; this is my body. And he took the
cup, and gave thanks, and gave It to them saying, Drink ye all
of it; For this is My Blood of the New Testament, which is shed
for many for the remission of sins. But I say unto you, I will
not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day
when I drink it new with you in my Father's Kingdom. And when
they had sung an hymn, they went out into the Mount of Olives."
The lesson that Jesus was setting forth was that the Passover
would not be needed anymore because of the new agreement He
brought through the shedding of His Blood.
He then gave the ordinances to be practiced by His followers
until He comes again. Jesus wants us to remember that His body
was broken and His Blood was shed so that we might be redeemed
from the curse of sin. Like the Passover Lamb that was slain and
the blood applied to the doorpost for the saving of the
firstborn, so did Jesus die that His blood could provide life
for all if we would accept it. He then tells us to remember His
death by eating the Lord's Supper.
The Apostle John gives additional accounts of the Lord's Supper
in (St. John 13:4,5), "He riseth from supper, and laid aside his
garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. After that, he
poureth water into a basin, and began to wash the disciples'
feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded."
This lesson recorded by John gives us a great example in being
servants one to the other. Jesus, King and Lord took the role of
a servant then, with marvelous self-abasement, washed the
disciples' feet. The disciples were twelve strong men, yet they
could not do without a servant: therefore their Lord supplied
the vacant place. Christ is gone into Heaven, and His church
still needs servants, and we will never be so clean that we will
have no need of feet washing.
Because of the nature of self-love, men sometimes say, "If he
needs his feet washed, let him wash his own feet," but the
nature of a Christian is: "I am willing to let others help me
become holy, and I also want to help others become the same."
You will often find it more humbling to have your own feet
washed, than to wash another's feet.
The lesson goes far beyond the realm of the walls that they
enclose us in, for we see that Jesus was teaching that to those
who needed a service, there had to be someone to be the server.
To find the real blessing, we must sometimes go past the
ceremonial foot-washing service within the church, into the
place of residence of an individual who stands in a real need of
the service that, we as his servants could supply
If we could hear the Apostle Peter acclaim now in person, I am
sure he would say unto us. "All of you gird yourselves with
humility to serve one another, for God resisteth the proud, but
giveth grace to the humble."
There are some who try to discount the account that John
recorded, by saying that it was a custom of those days. I find
no record anywhere that it was a custom for Kings to wash
peasant's feet. Christ provided us a great example in washing
His disciples' feet, and went on to proclaim that when we
realize that the servant is not greater than his Lord, how happy
we could be if we would perform like-services.
When we realize the great importance of partaking of the Lord's
Supper and can grasp the great lesson He taught about being real
Christians one to another, we can certainly have a greater
influence upon the humanity among which we dwell.
[We Believe Index]
By Bishop Chet Smith
"Holiness" is God's standard of living for His people; this
is what the Congregational Holiness Church teaches.
The Psalmist wrote, "Thy testimonies are very sure: Holiness
becometh thy house, O Lord forever" (Psalm 93:5). From the pen
of the Psalmist comes the assurance that holiness will never be
superseded nor become obsolete. The teachings of holiness will
always be sure and steadfast. In these last days, with
liberalism, worldliness and permissiveness abounding, holiness
must be proclaimed with a loud voice. Holiness of belief and
practice is not optional, but required. Under "The Condition of
Membership" the Discipline of the Congregational Holiness Church
states: "He or she must be in harmony with the Articles of
Faith, also must abstain from the use of tobacco in every form,
the use of slang language and other things that are contrary to
holy living and take the Bible as his or her rule of conduct."
God's holiness is proclaimed throughout the pages of the Bible.
Holy Scriptures reveal the holy nature of God from Genesis to
Revelation. The Apostle Peter wrote, "But as He which hath
called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
because it is written, be ye holy for I am holy" (1 Peter
1:15-16). This admonition was written to the early Christians
who were scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia
and Bithynia. Peter was calling these scattered Christians to a
life of holiness. He reminds them that the God who declares His
holiness in the Old Testament also declares His holiness in the
New Testament. In His unchanging essence of what He was, He
still is, and what He is, He will always be. Moses wrote of a
God who is holy. Malachi wrote of a God who changes not.
The Greek word for holy is "hagios." Hagios translated means "to
be righteous, pure, sinless and godly." It also means to be
separated and entirely different from all other beings and
things. In the Living Webster Encyclopedic Dictionary of the
English Language, "Holy" is described as "consecrated to God,
saintly in character and of divine origin." What becomes
increasingly evident in the Old Testament is overwhelmingly
evident in the New Testament: that holiness means the pure,
loving nature of God, separated from evil, and it is
aggressively seeking to universalize itself. Peter wrote,
"According as his divine power hath given unto us all things
that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of
him that hath called us to glory and virtue, whereby are given
unto us exceeding great and precious promises; that by these ye
might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the
corruption that is in the world through lust" (2 Peter 1:3-4).
God's plan of universalizing His holiness is for every believer
to be translated from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom
of his Son.
It then can be said of the believer that he is to be holy. God's
divine power will enable him to live a separated life that is
entirely different from all who live worldly. The Apostle Paul
wrote of Jesus, "Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separated
from sinners, and made higher than the heavens" (Hebrews 7:26).
Holiness is of a divine origin and not of laws passed down from
traditions or man-made philosophies. The best righteousness that
man could produce would not satisfy the demands of a God who is
righteous, pure and the embodiment of absolute holiness. All
self-made righteousness is as filthy rags to God and would never
produce holiness of heart, mind, and body.
He who is holy has called believers to be holy in mind, spirit
and body. He does not want the Christian to be corruptible and
dying with the world. To live with God eternally, the believer
must be like Him. Therefore, the believer must live a holy, pure
and righteous life. He must pursue, seek and go after holiness.
Scripture demands holiness, for it is written, "Ye shall
therefore be holy for I am holy" (Leviticus 11:45). The Apostle
Paul wrote, "Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved,
let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and
spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God" (2 Corinthians
7:1). In the book of Hebrews, there is the great cry for the
paths of holiness, "Follow peace with all men and holiness
without which no man shall see the Lord" (Hebrews 12:14).
The words `holiness,' `saints' and `sanctification' are all
translated from the one Greek word, "Hagios." The Old Testament
equivalent Hebrew word is "Kadosh." The basic meaning of
"Kadosh" is "to be set apart, separated and different from all
others or things". When it is applied to individuals, it means
pure, sinless, righteous, holy. The believer has been separated
from the world and set aside for God to use. We are thereby
called holy unto the Lord. There are several things in scripture
called holy unto the Lord because of their special connection to
him. The ground that Moses stood upon was called Holy Ground
(Exodus 3:1-5). The temple that worldly King Herod built was
called Holy (Matthew 24:15). Within the holy temple was the
Holiest of Holies (Hebrews 9:2-3). The Apostle Peter called the
Mountain of Transfiguration the Holy Mount (1 Peter 1;18). The
gospel and scriptures are called Holy (Matthew 7:6; Romans 1:2).
Anything that becomes associated with God is separated unto God
in a very special sense and becomes different from all other
Israel, A Holy Nation Unto God:
In the Book of Exodus the children of Israel were called a holy
nation. They were set apart in a very special way unto God. God
had said to them, "Ye shall be holy unto me; For I, the Lord am
holy and have severed you from other people, that ye should be
mine" (Leviticus 20:26). Israel was to be holy in that they were
to be different from all other nations. They were to believe God
and serve Him faithfully. The promise to Israel was, "Now
therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my
covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all
people: For all the earth is mine; and ye shall be unto me a
kingdom of priests, and an holy nation" (Exodus 19:5-6). The
people were to be holy, the priests were to be holy, the tithe
was to be holy, and the temple was to be holy. However, the
children of Israel refused to participate in the great plan that
God had designed for them. Sadly, National Israel rebelled in
unbelief. Their ultimate sin was the rejection and crucifixion
of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Church Is Holy Unto the Lord:
The church is now the holy people of God. The Apostle Peter
wrote, "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an
holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the
praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His
marvelous light" (1 Peter 2:9). The privileges and
responsibilities of following God were taken away from the Jews
and given to the church. However, Jews are not excluded from the
church. The church is set apart unto God as holy, separated and
different. The Apostle Paul wrote of the church, "In whom all
the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple
in the Lord; in whom ye also are builded together for an
habitation of God through the Spirit" (Ephesians 2:21-22).
The Individual Is Holy Unto the Lord:
The individual believer is holy unto the Lord. The Apostle Paul
wrote, "What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the
Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not
your own? For ye are bought with a price; Therefore glorify God
in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's (1 Corinthians
6:19-20). The body then becomes the dwelling place for God's
presence and replaces the Holy of Holies within the inner
Sanctuary of the temple. Every believer is called a saint, or
holy one. Paul wrote that believers were chosen in Christ before
the foundation of the world and that they should be holy and
without blame (Ephesians 1:4). "God hath from the beginning
chosen the believer through sanctification of the Spirit and
belief of the truth."
Only in holiness can we resemble God. God has not summoned us to
great learning but unto holiness of heart. God has not called us
to be conformed to this world's mold but to be transformed by
the renewing of our minds. We are called not only to holiness of
speech but holiness of conduct. Our roots are in His holiness.
Holiness permeates heaven and holiness will be the song of the
ages. All the redeemed will one day sing out the refrain, "Holy,
holy, holy, Lord God Almighty." God has called us unto holiness.
[We Believe Index]
By Rev. Allen Skelton
"There are few greater joys in life
than the joy of giving."
It seems God releases His abundance in the lives of those who
gladly invest in His Kingdom. (Luke 6:38), "Give and it shall be
given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together,
and running over, shall men give into your bosom . . ." What a
blessing it is to experience the kindness of God in such
overflowing fashion. All because we give!
Paul reminded us in his letter to the Corinthians that, "God
loves a cheerful giver." In essence, that is what stewardship is
- The cheerful sharing of our blessings God has trusted us with.
(Psalm 24:1), Stewardship is not just a mandated Biblical truth.
We are given the opportunity to involve ourselves in the grace
of giving and experiencing fulfillment at the same time. God is
always more accepting of the attitudes of our heart than the
calloused accomplishment of our missions.
There have been endless arguments concerning our role in giving.
Some have made the `sharing of our blessing' very rigid.
Others have cleverly excused themselves from any part in God's
plan of giving. When someone gives just to appease a religious
system, he loses the spirit of giving. "Every man according as
he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or
of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver." 2 Corinthians
9:7 exhorts us not to give grudgingly. We do not honor God in
giving what we really wish we could keep.
Those who excuse themselves from giving altogether also miss the
spirit of giving. Stewardship is our responsibility as kingdom
people, but even more than that, it is our privilege. We do not
give of our blessings just because it is asked of us. Neither do
we withhold of our ability to give because we live in an era of
grace. We are joyful, non begrudging stewards because our giving
blesses God and blesses us. We would not be complete if all we
did was receive.
In Genesis 1:26, God said, "Let us make man in our image." We
are created to be like Him. Our stewardship comes from our
Father. God is a giver. Everything we have has been given to us
by God. He has withheld nothing from us. He has given us life,
His promise, His Son, and His Word. John 15:16 reminds us we can
ask whatsoever we will of the Father in Jesus' name and He will
give it to us. Of course, it must be according to His will, but
the idea is God wants to minister to our needs. If God is a
benevolent God, who, according to Romans 8:32, has freely given
us all things, how can we, who are created in His image, be
anything less than abundant givers? Nothing pleases the Father
more than His children imitating Him.
Wayne Gretzky, the great hockey player said, "I miss 100% of the
shots I never take." We, too, will miss 100% of the blessings we
could receive, if we never learn the joy of giving. The best way
to avoid the pitfalls of selfish living is to cultivate the
attitude of giving as a lifestyle. Every time we receive income,
our greatest act of worship should be to share our blessing with
whom it belongs. In the Old Testament, God taught His people to
give tithes and offerings. In the New Testament, Jesus taught us
to continue in the pattern of giving. Paul, the apostle, taught
us to give continually and regularly.
Our faithfulness to give is a great indication of our love for
Him. He has proven His love for us. We have the privilege to
honor His place in our lives, by joyfully sharing our blessings
as good stewards.
Because we understand the spirit of giving, we remove all
roadblocks to giving.
Every born-again believer is to be a giver.
Our wants and desires materially do not precede the priority
of giving to the kingdom.
We are not asked to decide if or when to give. We give from
every blessing God shares with us.
Our place is not to compare our giving with what others
give. We give no matter what others give.
Our local churches are the beneficiaries of our tithes and
offerings because that is God's plan to sustain and prosper
We should also give offerings to other worthy ministries God
places on our hearts.
By being good stewards, we participate in God's plan to cover
the earth with the message of "Good News." It is our happy
privilege to invest our blessings in our churches and in
ministries who carry forth the plans of God.
[We Believe Index]
present-day Pentecostal movement had its beginning at the
Azusa Street Revival. People of all races and both
genders participated. However, the movement soon
divided along racial lines, and in some cases, women were
relegated to subordinate roles.
understand that the body of Christ makes no allowances for
discrimination based on carnal prejudices such as race and
gender. The Bible teaches that Adam and Eve were, in
fact, the parents of all people on the earth, themselves
being created by God the Father, and He declared His
handiwork to be very good and acceptable to Him.
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED, That
we as a people, redeemed by the atoning blood of Jesus
Christ, commit ourselves to reconciliation and harmony among
people of diverse races. The Congregational
Holiness Church, recognizing the ethnic diversity in the
body of Christ, will work for and strengthen the unity of
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That
we, of the Congregational Holiness Church, pray and trust
that all members of the body of Christ will lead the way in
initiating effective racial reconciliation.
reveals that all human life begins at the moment of
conception, and that all human beings are "fearfully and
wonderfully made" in the image of God; and,
the period from 1973 to 2001, since the Supreme Court
legalized unrestricted abortion, there have been millions of
abortions performed in the United States of America; and,
every third baby conceived in America is killed by abortion;
of unborn children have lost their lives to abortion, and
countless thousands of women have suffered the destructive
physical and emotional pain of abortion; and,
vast number of the abortion procedures are performed on
healthy mothers who are five months pregnant with a healthy
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, That
the Congregational Holiness Church is opposed to all
abortions except to save the life of the mother; and,
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, That
the Congregational Holiness Church is opposed to selective
technology abortion where unborn babies are killed favoring
males over females, favoring health over sick; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, That
we, of the Congregational Holiness Church, are committed to
protecting the lives of the unborn, and will speak out
against the social injustice and the grievous sin that
plagues our beloved land.
Pornography and Obscenity
declares that all persons are made in the image of God, and
therefore to be treated with dignity and respect, and
Scripture affirms that sex is a gift from a loving Creator
to be enjoyed within the sacred bonds of marriage between
husband and wife; and,
sharp decline in moral values and beliefs continue to mark
our society, resulting in increasing rates of unmarried
adolescent and adult sexual activity, the birth of children
to unwed mothers, the spread of sexually transmitted
diseases, and decreasing marital fidelity; and,
and obscenity are increasingly available through movies,
television, print media and the Internet, causing a
powerfully corrosive effect within society; and,
and obscenity cause harm to those who are abused in the
production of it (often women and children), as well as
those who use it, damaging healthy relationships and
distorting God's gift of loving, mutual sexuality between
husband and wife;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, That
the Congregational Holiness Church opposes pornography and
obscenity and supports efforts by Christian education,
appropriate law enforcement and other means to combat it,
and supports ministry to those who have been harmed by its
destructive efforts; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That
we encourage all pastors and youth leaders to protect youth
and children from exposure to these materials by emphasizing
Biblical standards of character and holiness; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That
we call upon businesses, schools and libraries, as well as
parents, to participate in efforts to shield children and
youth from being harmed by these materials; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That
we urge local, state, and federal agencies to aggressively
prosecute those who break the laws in producing and
distributing illegal explicit sexual materials in the form
of pornography and obscenity; and,
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That
we openly and publicly commend lawmakers, leaders of the
broader faith community, and others who lead in the efforts
to combat pornography and obscenity.
and the Lottery
Congregational Holiness Church has, from its beginning,
opposed the lottery and games of chance (gambling); and,
states are now allowing legal state lotteries and gambling
and a national lottery is being advocated by some; and,
governments become, by tacit approval of the so-called
benefits of gambling, a predator rather than a protector of
its constituents; and,
commercial advertisement of gambling and state lotteries
further increases the negative effect on society; and,
tide of gambling and state-controlled lotteries can only be
turned back by God's people praying and publicly confessing
their convictions against gambling;
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED, That
the Congregational Holiness Church expresses our deep
concern for the millions of families which are being hurt by
gambling and the lottery; and,
BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED, That
the Congregational Holiness Church calls on all Christians
to exercise their influence by refusing to participate in
any form of gambling or the promotion thereof; and,
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, That
we urge our political leaders to enact laws restricting and
eventually eliminating all forms of gambling and lottery.