Biblical

With God’s direction, grace, and power we will reproduce the Acts 2 community in our context as closely as possible – both individually and collectively.


Ekklesia and each of its members affirm the beliefs and practices of historic orthodox Christianity.  These include:

God

God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe.  He has eternally existed in three personalities:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  These three are equal and of the same essence.  Genesis 1.1, 26-27, 3.22, Psalm 90.2, Matthew 28.19, 1Peter 1.2

Jesus Christ

Jesus is the only begotten Son of God, not created as was humanity.  He is equal and of the same essence with God.  He lived a sinless life, gave himself as the perfect sacrifice for whoever would believe in him by dying on the cross.  By arising on Easter, he claims power over sin, death, and the enemy.  When he returns, it will be as King and his kingdom will know no end.  Matthew 1.22, 23, Isaiah 9.6, John 1.1-5, 3.16, 14.10-30, Hebrews 4.14-15, 1Corinthians 15.3-4, Romans 1.3-4, Acts 1.9-11, 1Timothy 6.14-15, Titus 2.13

The Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is co-equal with the Father and the Son of God.  He is present in the world to make us aware of the need for Christ.  He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation and gives every believer at least one spiritual gift as evidence of God’s redeeming grace and power.  He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right.  He gives every believer a spiritual gift when they are saved.  As Christians we seek to live under His control daily. 2 Corinthians 3.17, John 16.7-13, 14.16-17, Acts 1.8, Ephesians 1.13, Galatians 5.25

The Bible

The Bible is perfect in its ability to reveal who we are (conviction), who God is (revelation), and who in Christ we may become (instruction and salvation).  It is God’s word to us, written by human authors under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit.  While it is the supreme source of truth in matters of belief and practice, it is most of all a story of God’s redeeming love for His people.  Each passage shall be interpreted and understood in its context and in relation to the whole written counsel of God.  2 Timothy 3.16, 2 Peter 1.20-21, 2 Timothy 1.13, Psalm 119.105, Proverbs 30.5

The Church

The church is cherished by Christ as his bride, his flock, and even his own body in the world.  The church is his chosen vehicle to accomplish his purposes in the world, despite its human frailty.  All Christians are called to deep and active participation in the church.  Further the church is organized and functions on the basis of spiritual gifts rather than distinctions of gender, class, ethnicity, wealth, or any other system of human distinction.  The New Testament church is led by a plurality of leaders, commonly called elders, who provide spiritual leadership to the body.  It is also served by those called deacons who provide care for the physical needs of the body.  Being Baptist in our heritage and practice, Ekklesia will be elder led, but congregationally accountable in all matters. – Matthew 16.18, Revelation 19.7, Acts 2 and 3, Galatians 3.28, Acts 6, 1 Peter 5.1-3, 1 Thessalonians 5.12-13, 1 Timothy 5.17

Salvation

Salvation is God’s free and unmerited gift to us by grace alone through faith alone.  As with any gift, we must accept it – which is not the same as some work that we do, only allowing it to work in us.  Christ’s sacrificial death is the only deliverance from sin’s inevitable effect of death, and his resurrection is the only source of full and eternal life.  Because salvation is not earned, neither can it be “unearned.”  Christ cannot deny himself once present in the life of a believer.  Likewise, those who have denied him will experience spiritual death.  John 10.29, 2 Timothy 1.12, Hebrews 7.25, 10.10, 14, 1 Peter 1.3-5, Ephesians 2.8-9, Romans 6.23, Revelation 20.15

Giving

We recognize that the tithe of a life and its resources is the biblical standard (Leviticus 27.30) that Jesus himself affirmed (Matthew 23.23).  We believe giving is the only antidote to a life that is self serving, and that the biblical ideal is that each gives out of what heshe has and is a tangible act of worship to a generous God.  We believe that giving includes but is not limited to our financial lives.  Since giving is an act of sacrifice within worship, it should rightly come from every area of life: time, money, spiritual gifts and abilities, relationships, etc. – Luke 6.38, Matthew 6.3-4