What We Believe

FOUNDATIONAL DOCTRINES

Our "foundational doctrines" form the basis of our beliefs. We believe that these foundational doctrines are the essentials of true Christianity and that there is no room for divergence from these essentials. These are the doctrines that all of our leadership and those connected to us hold to.

The Scriptures
The Scriptures are the Word of God. Every word in the original writings was inspired by God and is, therefore without error. The Holy Spirit inspired the human authors of the Scriptures and used their unique personalities to compose and record God's revelation to man. The Scriptures are accurate in all matters to which they speak, spiritual, historical, and scientific. The sixty-six books in the canon of the Old and New Testaments of the Bible are the foundation of the faith and the practice of Pillar Church. The Bible was designed for man's practical instruction. (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:21)

God
There is one God, the Creator and Preserver of all things. God exists eternally in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The three have distinct personalities and yet are of the same substance. They have the same nature and attributes, they are equal in power and glory, and they are worthy of the same homage, confidence and obedience. (Gen. 1:1; John 4:24; Deut. 6:4, Matt. 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14)

Jesus Christ
Jesus Christ is the second person of the Trinity and is the eternal Son of God and has been coequal with the Father from all eternity. He is not merely the highest among creation, but he is God in the same sense and the same degree as the Father. He is fully man and fully God. Jesus Christ was conceived by the Holy Spirit, supernaturally apart from a human father, and was born of the Virgin Mary. This incarnation was the sovereign, supernatural initiative of God and is beyond all mere human possibilities or explanations. Jesus Christ was born without a sinful nature and though he was truly tempted, he committed no sin. Due to this sinless life, he could offer himself as an unblemished sacrifice to God on behalf of a sinful creation. The eternal Son of God assumed a true and entire human nature in the incarnation. He became flesh and lived on the earth. He died physically on the cross, was bodily resurrected three days later, and thereafter bodily ascended to heaven. One day every knee shall bow and every tongue confess and acknowledge Jesus as Lord. (John 1:1, 14, 18; John 5:18; Heb. 1:2-3; 1 John 5:20; 1 Tim. 2:5; 1 Cor. 15:1-5; Phil. 2:9-11)

Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity and has been coequal with the Father and the Son from all eternity. He is active in the lives of believers and the affairs of men. The Holy Spirit guides, inspires, reveals, and continues the work and ministry of Jesus Christ. He regenerates, indwells, baptizes, and seals all believers in Christ and empowers those yielded to God. He is a person and not some vague force. He is one with the Father and the Son. Through Salvation, all are united to Christ in one body and He is the source of all power. The Holy Spirit also bestows certain special gifts upon believers within the body of Christ. These gifts are identified and discussed in detail in our Structural Doctrine. (Matt. 28:19; John 3:3-7, Acts 2:1-4; Titus 3:5; 1 Cor. 6:19, Rom. 8:9; Rom. 12:6-8; 1 Cor. 2:12; 1 Cor. 12:4-11; Eph. 4:30)

Salvation
Salvation is received by repentance and faith alone in Christ. The only means to salvation is belief in Christ's substitutional death and resurrection, which satisfied the wrath of God against the sins of the individual. Man's sin is a violation of the will of God and it results in separation from God. Due to this universal death of man through sin, no one can enter the kingdom of God. A restoration of the broken relationship between God and man is necessary. However, no degree of personal reformation, no life of morality or no life of good works can help a person take one step toward heaven. Man's redemption has been accomplished solely by the sacrifice and the blood of Jesus Christ, who died as a substitute for man. His sacrifice is sufficient for salvation; man can do nothing to add to the value of this sacrifice. Salvation is the miraculous transformation of the individual and the Holy Spirit is the agent who produces salvation. The new birth of the believer comes only through repentance of sin and faith in Christ, therefore the just shall live by faith. There is an eternal state of punishment for the unsaved and an eternal state of blessing for the saved. (Acts 4:12; Acts 13:38-39; 1 Cor. 15:1-4; Rom. 4:4-5; Rom. 5:1; John 3:16; Eph. 2:8-9; Acts 16:31; Eph 1:4-5; Rom. 8:29-30)

Man
Man was created in the image and likeness of God to enjoy God's fellowship and to fulfill God's will on earth. Adam, at the suggestion of Satan, fell from his sinless state through his disobedience. The consequence for his sin was the loss of spiritual life. This fall plunged all men into a state of sin and spiritual death. As a result of sin, all men are spiritually dead, justly condemned to eternal judgment and can do nothing to merit salvation. All men are born with a sinful nature and lead a sinful life in thought, word and deed. From this condition, man can only be saved by the grace of God. (Gen. 1:27, Rom. 2:3, 5; Rom. 3:23; Rom. 5:12; Eph. 2:1; Eph. 2:8-9)

STRUCTURAL DOCTRINES

We consider our "structural doctrines" to be extremely important. They help to define who we are as a church. However, we also acknowledge that there is some room for disagreement among committed believers over these important issues. These structural doctrines are an important part of our beliefs, but are not a requirement to be connected to the Pillar.

Sanctification
Sanctification is the continuing work of God in the life of the believer. Every believer is promised positional, progressive, and ultimate sanctification. Positional sanctification, based on the death of Christ, occurs at conversion when the believer is set apart in the family of God. Through the continuing work of the Holy Spirit, the believer undergoes a progressive transformation of character. Ultimate sanctification will only occur when the believer sees Christ and becomes like Him. (Heb. 10:10, 14; John 17:15-17; Phil. 1:6; Eph. 5:26-27; 1 Thess. 4:3-4; 1 John 3:2; 1 Cor. 6:11)

Church
The church is composed of all believers. It is the body and bride of Christ, formed by the baptism of the Holy Spirit and existing in two aspects, universal and local. The universal church is an elect company of believers, baptized by the Holy Spirit into one body. Its mission is to witness to its Head, Jesus Christ, preaching the Gospel among all nations making disicples and occupying till He returns to recieve His Kingdom. The local church is a group of believers voluntarily joined together in love to worship God with praise and thanksgiving, and to glorify Jesus Christ through an aggressive effort to disciple others by the preaching of the Gospel, and the exercise of spiritual gifts. Pillar Church is a independant, multi-denominational and missional church. (Eph. 1:22-23; Eph. 5:24-30; 1 Cor. 12:4-13, 27)

Gifts
Spiritual gifts are God-given abilities for service, i.e., "for the equipping of the saints for the work of service to the building up of the body of Christ." The Holy Spirit bestows certain special gifts upon believers within the body of Christ. In Paul's writings there are three different lists of the gifts; a fourth list is included in 1 Peter. (Rom. 12:1-8; 1 Cor. 12:4, 11; Eph. 4:1-16; 1 Peter 4:8-11)

Christian Life
Christians are called to a holy life of service and testimony in the power of the Holy Spirit, which service includes the propagation of the gospel message to the whole world. There is promised reward in heaven for faithfulness in such service. (1 Pet. 1:15-16; Acts 1:8; 1 Cor. 3:12-17; John 14:1-3)

Ordinances
Water baptism and the Lord's Supper are the two ordinances that Christ gave to His church to be publicly observed after His death and Resurrection. Baptism is a one-time act of obedience and is an outward testimony of a person's belief in Christ. Baptism is a symbol of unity among believers and signifies a spiritual identification with Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection. Only those persons who profess a personal faith in Jesus Christ may be baptized. Immersion is the ideal means set forth in Scripture. The Lord's Supper is to be celebrated regularly as a memorial in remembrance of Christ's death on the cross, and in expectation of His return. The elements of the Lord's Supper represent the body and blood of Christ and are available to all believers who have confessed their sins to God. (Matt. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-16; Acts 8:12, 36-38; Acts 9:18; Acts 10:47; 1 Cor. 11:23-26