What we believe…
This a pretty hefty read, but you’ll find descriptions of the church’s major stances on some key issues. This is designed to help you know where the church lands on some key points about faith, God, the bible, and some major things that make up the Christian belief.
We believe in the plenary, verbal inspiration of the original writings of the sixty-six books of the Bible, the Word of God, and that it is the full and complete revelation of God’s will for man, wholly infallible in all its parts, including scientific and historical accuracy, as well as the supreme and final authority of all matters of faith and practice (II Tim. 3:16; II Pet. 1:20; Jude 3).
We believe in one God, eternally existing in three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – co-eternal in being, co-identical in nature, co-equal in power and glory, and having the same attributes and perfections (Deut. 6:4; II Cor. 13:14; Matt. 28:18,19).
We believe that God is the direct and active Creator of the universe and of all life in it (Gen. 1:-2:9), and that, as God, Jesus Christ played a Creator’s role in all that exists (John 1:3; Col. 1:15-17). We believe that God created life with distinct boundaries between life forms (Gen. 1:11-12, 20-21, 24-25).
THE PERSON & WORK OF JESUS CHRIST
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary, that He might reveal God and redeem sinful men (John 1:1-2,14,18; Lk 1:35). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our complete redemption through His death on the cross as a representative, propitiatory and substitutionary sacrifice, a redemption made sure to us by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead (Rom. 3:24-25; 5:8-10; I Pet. 2:24; Eph. 1:7). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven and is now exalted at the right hand of God the Father where, as our High Priest, He fulfills the ministry of Representative, Intercessor, and Advocate. Acts 1:9-11; Rom 8:34; I Tim. 2:5; Heb. 1:3; 6:9, 20; 7:24; 9:24; I John 2:1-2).
THE PERSON & WORK OF HOLY SPIRIT
We believe that the Holy Spirit is a divine Person, possessing all the attributes of deity, and that in essence, He is equally God (Acts 5:3-4; II Cor. 1:14). We believe that the Holy Spirit is the Supernatural Agent in regeneration and sanctification, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ, indwelling equally and permanently all believers, and sealing them unto the day of redemption (Rom. 8:9; I Cor. 6:11; 12:12-14; Eph. 1:13-14).We believe that every un-regenerated person, the moment he exercises faith in Christ as Savior, immediately possesses the Holy Spirit (Rom. 8:9; I Cor. 3:16;; 6:19; Gal. 4:6; I Thess. 4:8). We believe that the Holy Spirit is the Divine Teacher who guides believers into all truth; that He sovereignly bestows one or more spiritual gifts upon each believer; and that it is the privilege and duty of all the saved to be filled (controlled) with the Holy Spirit (Jn. 16:13; I Cor. 12:4-7; Eph. 5:18).
SINFULNESS OF MAN
We believe that man was created in the image and likeness of God but through Adam’s sin the whole race fell, became alienated from God, inherited a sin nature, possesses no spark of divine life, and of itself is utterly helpless to remedy its lost condition apart from the grace of God (Gen. 1:25-27; Rom. 3:22-23; 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3, 12).
We believe that salvation is the gift of God brought to sinful man by grace and received solely by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who accomplished complete redemption by His substitutionary death and shedding of His precious blood (Jn. 3:18; Gal. 2:16; Eph. 1:7; 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; I Pet. 1:18-19).
We believe that sanctification is a setting-apart unto God (Jn. 17:17, 19) and that it involves three dimensions in the believer’s life: Positional: Every believer, by his being “in Christ” and partaking of all He is, has a complete standing before God (I Cor. 1:2, 30; 6:11; Heb. 10:10, 14). Progressive: Yet every believer, because he retains a sin nature which cannot be changed nor eradicated in this life, lives in a present state that is imperfect to the extent that he fails to appropriate the power of the Holy Spirit by which to live the Christian life, and therefore, he is in need of a progressive sanctification by growing in grace unto spiritual maturity (II Cor. 3:18; 7:1; Eph. 4:24; Heb. 12:10). Ultimate: Every believer will be fully and completely sanctified when he shall see the Lord and shall be like Him (Rom. 8:39; Eph. 5:25-27; II Cor. 3:18; I Jn. 3:2).
ASSURANCE OF SALVATION
We believe that all the redeemed, once saved, are kept by the power of God, indwelt by the Holy Spirit, and interceded for by Christ and therefore secure in Christ forever (Jn. 6:37-40; 10:27-30; 17:11; Rom. 8:1, 9, 30, 38, 39; I Cor. 1:4-8; II Tim. 1:12; I Pet. 1:5; Jude 24). We believe that God, as holy and righteous Father of all the redeemed, cannot overlook the sin of His children, and, when they persistently sin, will chasten and correct them in infinite love (I Cor. 11:17-32; Heb. 12:5-11). We believe that it is the universal privilege of believers to rejoice in the assurance of their salvation, which assurance excites within God’s children love, gratitude and obedience (I Jn. 5:10-13; 3:14; II Cor. 5:6-8;Rom. 13:13, 14; Gal. 5:13; Titus 2:11-15).
We believe that all born again persons make up the universal Church, which is a spiritual organism (Eph. 1:22-23; I Cor. 12:12-14; Rom. 12:5; 16:16-18; Acts 2:42-47).
We believe that the establishment and continuance of local churches is clearly taught and defined in the New Testament ( Acts 14:27; 20:17, 28-32; I Tim. 3:1-13; Titus1:5-11).
THE MINISTRY & SPIRITUAL GIFTS
We believe that God through His Holy spirit sovereignly bestows spiritual gifts upon all believers for the primary purpose of building up the Body of Christ (Eph. 4:11-12; I Cor. 12:20-27), that no particular gift is more of an evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit than another (I Cor. 12:1-13), that all gifts are given to glorify the Giver of the gift rather than the receiver (I Cor. 14), that manifesting the character of Christ is of greater importance to God than exercising a spiritual gift (I Cor. 13), and that all exercise of gifts is restricted by Biblical guidelines (I Cor. 14:23-40).
MARRIAGE & HUMAN SEXUALITY
We believe God intentionally designed and created humanity male and female. (Gen. 1:27; Gen. 5:1-2;Matt. 19:4; Mark 10:6)
We believe marriage is ordained and instituted by God and according to the Scriptures can only exist and be fulfilled between a man and a woman. (Gen. 2:21-24; Mark 10:2-12; Matt. 19:3-11; Eph. 5:21-33;1 Tim. 3:2, 12). We believe marriage is a picture of the relationship of Christ and the Church and is to be a lifelong, covenant relationship between a man and a woman based on love, respect, mutual submission and personal sacrifice. (Eph. 5:21-33; I Peter 3:1-7; Mal. 2:14-16; I Cor. 7:10-16; Matt. 5:31-32; 19:3-11)
We believe God intended sexual intimacy to be enjoyed only within the context of the male and female marriage relationship; and that all other sexual relations outside of marriage are personally destructive, sinful and forbidden by God. ( Heb. 13:4; Gen. 1:28; 2:25; I Cor. 7:2-5; Lev. 18:1-30; Rom. 1:24-32; I Thess. 4:1-8; Jude 1:7)
Because God has ordained marriage and defined it as the covenant relationship between a man, a woman, and Himself, Shelter Cove will only recognize marriages between a biological man and a biological woman. Further, the Pastors and staff of Shelter Cove shall only participate in weddings and perform marriages between one man and one woman. Finally, the facilities and property of Shelter Cove shall only host weddings between one man and one woman.
We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen 1:26-27.) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
SANCTITY OF LIFE
We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life. (Ps 139.)
THE CHRISTIAN WALK
We believe that the Christian life consists in a positive abiding in union with the living Christ and by living in the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit so that the fruit of the Spirit is produced in the life in contrast to the lusts of the flesh (John 15:1-16; Gal. 5:16-23; Eph. 4:22-24). We believe that believers should live in such a manner as not to bring reproach upon their Savior and Lord, and should separate themselves from practices and associations which detract from the Christian life and walk (Rom. 12:1-2; 14:13, 21; II Cor. 6:14-7:1; II Tim. 3:1-5; I Jn 2:15-17; II Jn 9-11). We believe that every believer should be a faithful steward accountable to God for His time and resources (I Cor. 16:2; II Cor. 9:6-8).
The Lord Jesus Christ has entrusted the local church with the authority and responsibility to discipline Family for flagrant sin or serious doctrinal error, with the goal of the restoration of the offender. This discipline is entrusted to the Pastoral Staff and Elders and is to follow the biblical pattern as set forth in Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Corinthians 5; 2 Corinthians 2:7-8; Galatians 6:1; 2 Thessalonians 3:6; Titus 3:10-11; and 2 John 7-11. Any Family member of this church who practices or affirms a doctrine or conduct that, in the judgment of the Pastoral Staff or Elders, is opposed to the teaching of the Word of God, or is threatening to the testimony of this church, or is divisive to the body, shall be subject to church discipline.
THE GREAT COMMISSION
We believe that it is the obligation of all believers to do their part to obey the command of Christ to proclaim the good news of salvation to the whole world in the power of the Spirit, to disciple believers, and to baptize and instruct them in the things of Christ (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15; Luke 24:46-49; II Cor. 5:19-20; Rom. 10: 11-17).
THE PERSONALITY OF SATAN
We believe that Satan is a personal being, the author of sin and the cause of the fall of man; that he is the open and declared enemy of God and man; that he is active in our world today and that he is destined for total defeat and punishment (Gen. 3:1-19; Is. 14:12-17; Matt. 4:2-11; 25:41; Rev. 20:10).
THE CHRISTIAN'S HOPE
We believe in the imminent, personal coming of our Lord in the air to receive to Himself into heaven both His own and who are alive and remain unto His coming, and also all who have fallen asleep in Jesus, and that for this we should be constantly looking (Jn.14:1-3; I Cor. 15:41-42; Phil. 3:20; I Thess. 1:10; 4:13-18; Titus 2:11-14; Rev. 3:10).
THE ETERNAL STATE
We believe in the bodily resurrection of all men, the saved to eternal life, and the unsaved to judgment and everlasting punishment (Matt. 25:46; Jn. 5:28-29; 11:25-26; Rev. 20:5-6, 12-13) We believe that the souls of the redeemed are, at death, absent from the body and present with the Lord (Lk. 23:43; II Cor. 5:8; Phil. 1:23; 3:21; I Thess. 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4-6).We believe that the souls of the unbelievers will, after death, suffer everlasting conscious punishment (Matt. 25:41-46; Mk. 9:43-48; Lk. 16:19-26; II Thess. 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Rev. 20:11-15).