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What We Believe
God is the Creator and Ruler of mankind and the universe (Genesis 1:1, 26-27; Psalm 90:2). He has eternally existed in three Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and are one God (Matthew 28:19; I John 5:7).
Jesus Christ is the Son of God. The Lord Jesus Christ is fully and literally God in a human form (I Timothy 3:16). He was conceived of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35) and in the womb of a virgin named Mary (Isaiah 7:14) received a human body. He was tempted by Satan in all points like we are, yet without sin (Matthew 4:1-11; Hebrews 4:15; I John 2:16). Jesus allowed Himself to be crucified in order to pay the penalty deserved for all our sin (Romans 5:11-21, II Corinthians 5:21), He literally and bodily rose again from the grave on the third day (I Corinthians 15:3-4), and now sits on the right hand of the Father in heaven (Colossians 3:1).
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is fully God and is the current, earthly manifestation of God through His indwelling of the believer in the Lord Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 3:16; John 16:7). The Holy Spirit seals the believer and baptizes (immerses) him into the body of Christ at the moment of salvation (I Corinthians 12:13; Ephesians 1:13) with the goal of teaching God’s word and conforming the believer to the very image of Christ (Ephesians 1:3-14; I Corinthians 2:9-16). All spiritual blessings are received at the time of salvation (Ephesians 1:3). The Holy Spirit gives gifts to every believer as He wills so the believer might effectively communicate the love of Christ (I Corinthians 12-14; Ephesians 4:11-16). As believers, we seek to live under the control of the Holy Spirit daily (Galatians 5:22-25).
The Bible is God’s word. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. All Scripture was given by inspiration of God (II Timothy 3:16) and God has promised to preserve every jot and tittle of what He inspired (Matthew 5:18). The Bible was written by human authors under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit, and is therefore the truth of God without any mixture of error (II Peter 1:20-21). We hold to the Authorized Version (King James Bible) as the inerrant standard for English speaking people and believe we find within it the certainty of the words of truth (Psalm 12:6-7; Proverbs 22:20-21).
Mankind is the supreme object of God’s creation (Genesis 1:26-27; Psalm 8:3-6). Mankind was created by God in complete innocence in a perfect environment, but of his own free will, chose to sin against God (Genesis 2:15-17; 3:6). The result of Adam’s sin is not only physical death and spiritual death (separation from God for all eternity) for all mankind, but the fall also endowed upon all mankind a sinful nature (Romans 5:12). Therefore, all people are sinners, not only by constraint, but by choice, and are unable to regain their former position of innocence, and are under just condemnation without defense or excuse before God (Romans 3:23; Isaiah 53:6; 59:1-2).
Salvation is by God’s grace alone on the basis of the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross and in His resurrection power. Anyone who will recognize and believe by faith that their sin separates them from God, and will turn from their sin to God by personally believing in their heart and confessing with their mouth that Jesus Christ is Lord will be saved (Romans 10:9-10, 13). Salvation is God’s free gift to us, but we must accept it. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvement or good works (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5). To become a Christian you must receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior for the forgiveness of sin and to be saved from sin’s penalty (Romans 6:23; John 1:12; 14:6). When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith we are saved. Eternal life begins the moment one receives Jesus Christ into His life by faith. The act of salvation is just as definite and decisive as physical birth (John 3:1-7).
Because God gives us eternal life through Jesus Christ, the true believer is secure in that salvation for eternity (Romans 8:35-39). If you have been genuinely saved, you cannot lose that (I John 2:19). Salvation is maintained by the grace and power of God, not by the self-effort of the Christian. It is the grace and keeping power of God that gives us this security (John 10:28-29; I Peter 1:3-5).
The local assembly of believers (the church) is God’s instrument in this age. While all genuine, born-again believers in Christ share an organic, family relationship, the overwhelming number of references of the word “church” in the Bible apply to a local, visible assembly of believers (Acts 14:23; Ephesians 1:22-23; 4:11-16). At the second coming of Christ, all genuine believers from the time of Christ’s ascension will be united together as the body of Christ (I Thessalonians 4:13-18). Until then, it is the responsibility of each local church to continue in evangelism, discipleship and missions both independently and interdependently (Matthew 28:18-20). Each local assembly should be as self-governing, self-supporting and self-propagating as possible, practicing the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper and operating under the leadership of those who hold the office of pastor (also known as bishop or elder) and assisted by those who hold the office of deacon (Matthew 28:18-20; I Corinthians 11:23-34; I Timothy 3:1-13; I Peter 5:1-4; Hebrews 13:17). Every member of the local church has the responsibility to minister the word of God and support the ministry through prayer, holy living, tithes, and offerings (I Corinthians 16:2; Malachi 3:10; Acts 4:34-37; II Corinthians 8:7; Acts 2:41-47; 13:1-4).
People were created to exist forever. We will either exist eternally separated from God by sin, or eternally with God through forgiveness and salvation (Romans 6:23). Those who reject Christ will be eternally separated from God in a literal place called hell. Those who receive Christ as Lord and Savior will gain eternal life and be with God forever (John 3:16; I John 5:11-13; Revelation 20:14-15).
Satan is a real, created, historical being, not allegorical or figurative. Satan is God’s enemy and seeks to keep unbelievers lost (II Corinthians 4:3-4; Acts 26:18) and Christians defeated (I Peter 5:8; Daniel 7:25). Satan is a fallen cherub who was lifted up in pride and rebelled against God, leading an army of angelic beings with him (Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:11-18; II Peter 2:4; Jude 1:6; Revelation 12:4). His defeat was sealed by the work of Christ on the cross (Hebrews 2:14). His final destiny is the lake of fire forever (Revelation 20:10).
Adam & Eve
The Genesis account of creation is historical, not allegorical or figurative. Adam was a real, historical person, created by the direct act of God and in God’s image (Genesis 1-2). Adam chose to sin against God through the free will God gave him and reaped the wages of death. As the originator of the human race, Adam passed his sinful nature to all mankind (Romans 5:12). All men are sinners by birth and become sinners by experience (Romans 3) for which the wages of sin are death (Romans 6:23).
The Return of Christ
There will be a literal, physical return of Jesus Christ to the earth in power and great glory to judge the world and reign (Acts 1:11; II Thessalonians 1:7-10). We believe in a pre-tribulation view of the rapture, meaning shortly before Christ’s second coming, all genuine believers will be raptured out to meet the Lord in the air (I Thessalonians 4:13-18; I Corinthians 15:51-52) followed by a seven year period of tribulation on earth during which time God will judge His people Israel and all without Christ (I Thessalonians 5:1-11; Matthew 24). We also believe in a pre-millennial view of Christ’s return, meaning that period of tribulation will be ended by Christ’s personal return to rule for a literal period of a thousand years (Revelation 20:1-6; Matthew 25:31-46).
All mankind will spend eternity either with Christ or eternally separated from Him. The lost who die wait in a literal hell for the day of final judgment where they will be punished for their sin in a literal lake of fire. This is an event known as the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15). Those who have accepted Christ as Savior will immediately be with the Lord when they die physically (II Corinthians 5:6-8) and one day experience a bodily resurrection to everlasting life (Philippians 3:20-21; I Thessalonians 4:13-18; I Corinthians 15:51-58). The saved will appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ to receive either rewards or loss of rewards based upon their stewardship of faithful service to the Lord (Romans 14:10; II Corinthians 5:10)
Randy Copeland: Senior Pastor
Hope for Pleasant Grove
My desire for PGBC is for every member to find God’s plan for their life and how that fits into the ministries of PGBC. We do this by equipping each member to do the work of ministry which is evangelism and discipleship. When we all do that together we will reach our community and more of the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ.