DOCTRINAL STUDIES BIBLE CHURCH
of Birmingham, Alabama
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THE HOLY SCRIPTURES
We believe the Bible, in its 66 canonical books, in their original languages to be the inspired Word of God, authoritative, inerrant, and God-authored (2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Matthew 5:17-18; Psalm 119:11-40; Proverbs 30:5).
We believe in one Triune God, existing in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, eternal in being, identical in nature, equal in power and glory, each having the same attributes and perfections (Deuteronomy 6:4; Nehemiah 9:6; Isaiah 44:6; John 10:30; 13:31-32; 14:1-2; 6-7; 9-13; 16-21; 26-31; 17:1-26; 2 Corinthians 13:14).
SOVEREIGNTY OF GOD
We believe that God, existing as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is sovereign and exercises supreme and absolute rule over all creation as a part of and consistent with the essence and attributes of deity (1 Chronicles 29:11-12; Daniel 4:35; Psalms 24:1; Ephesians 1:11; 1 Timothy 6:15; but that He allows His creatures great freedom of volition, particularly about what they think of Jesus Christ and their obedience to His will (Genesis 2:16-17; John 3:16,36; Romans 5:8-10, 16:24-25; 1 Timothy 2:4-6).
We believe that God the Father, although equal in essence to the other two members of the Godhead, is the primary planner and first among equals of the Trinity; that He is the One who judged the sins of the world on Jesus Christ on the cross; that He is the object of our prayer directives; that we are to seek an intimate relationship with Him as exemplified by Jesus during His earthly ministry (Matthew 27:46, 54; Luke 11:2; 23:46; John 6:35-46; 8:42, 49, 54; 10:38; 11:41; 12:49-50; 14:9-31; 15; 16; 17).
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, became man, without ceasing to be God, being the only visible member of the Godhead, having been conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful man; that He accomplished our redemption through His death on the cross as the substitutionary sacrifice for the sins of the entire world; that our redemption is made sure to us by His literal resurrection from the dead; that the Lord Jesus is now in Heaven, still as undiminished deity and true humanity in His resurrection body, exalted at the right hand of God the Father, where as our High Priest He serves as representative, intercessor and advocate for His people (John 1:12, 14, 29, 34; Luke 1:35; Romans 3:24-25; 8:34; 1 Peter 2:24; Hebrews 9:24; 1 John 2:1-2).
THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe that the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Godhead, has the most active role with believers during the Church Age, in that He convicts the world of sin, indwells all believers in the present age, baptizes them into the body of Christ, seals them unto the day of redemption, and offers spiritual power for them to walk in dependence on Him (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Galatians 5:16-18, 22-23; Ephesians1:13-14; 5:18).
THE TOTAL DEPRAVITY
believe that man was created in the image and likeness of
God but that, in Adam’s sin, the race fell, inherited a
sinful nature and is therefore alienated from God, helpless
to retrieve his lost condition (Genesis
1:26-27; Romans 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:12).
believe that each individual is saved when he believes that Jesus Christ died as a substitute for his sin, was buried and raised from the dead on the third day, to give him eternal life. (1 John 5:11-13; Ephesians
2:8-9; John 3:16, 18, 36; 11:25-27; 1:12; Acts 16:30-31; Romans
1:16; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
LIFE OF BELIEVERS
We believe that every person who believes the gospel of grace salvation receives eternal life on the basis of God's grace and not on one's own merit or works.
(John 3:15-18, 36; 5:24, 36; 20:31; Rom.1:16; 5:21; 6:23; Eph.2:5-9; Heb.5:9; 1 John 5:12-13). We believe eternal life is protected by the sovereign omnipotence of God.
(Rom.8:35-39; Titus 1:2; 1 John 2:25; 5:11). We believe the entire Godhead is the source of the believer's eternal life.
(John 10:28-30; 17:2-3; Heb.5:9; Gal.3:26-29; Titus 3:4-7; 1 John 5:20).
A BELIEVER RECEIVES AT SALVATION
that every believer receives at least 50 permanent imputations, by grace
at the moment of salvation. A few of which include regeneration, baptism
and indwelling of the Holy Spirit, sealing, a spiritual gift, sanctification,
removal of all alienation from God, freedom from slavery to sin, justification,
propitiation, forgiveness, cleansing, holiness, righteousness, election,
assured victory in the angelic conflict, adoption as a child of God, membership
in God’s royal family, object of God’s maximum love, heir to all God’s
promises, ambassadorship, priest, slavery to Christ, and citizenship in
Heaven. (John 3:3-7; 7:37-39; Romans 3:22-26; 5:1, 8-9, 18; 6:6-8; 8:11, 14-17, 29; 15:16; 1 Corinthians 1:2; 6:19; 12:13; 15:20-26, 54-57; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22; 5:17, 20; Galatians 1:10; 4:4-7; 3:26-27; Ephesians 1:4, 7, 13, 14; 2:19; 4:7, 32; 5:25-27; 6:6-8; Philippians 3:9, 20; Colossians 1:21-22; 2:12; 2 Thessalonians
2:13; Hebrews 10:10; 1 Peter 1:1-2; 2:5, 9).
THE PERSON OF SATAN
We believe in the existence of Satan (also called Lucifer and the devil), the rebellious fallen angel, open and declared enemy of God and man, who throughout human history leads demonic warfare against God and against man’s understanding of and submission to His plan (Job 1:6-7; Isaiah 14:12-17; Matthew 4:2-11); that he and his followers, both fallen angels and unbelieving humans, will be sentenced for eternity to torment in the Lake of Fire.
We believe that God has divided human history in five periods characterized by different methods He uses to communicate to man, specifically the Age of Innocence (in the Garden of Eden), the Gentile Age (Adam to Abraham), the Jewish Age (Abraham to Jesus Christ, plus the Tribulation), the Church Age (50 days after Christ’s ascension to the Rapture), and the Millennium (Christ’s second coming plus 1,000 years).
We believe that the Church, which is now the body and shall be the bride of Christ, is a spiritual organism made up of all who believe in Jesus Christ during the Church Age, irrespective of their affiliation with Christian organizations (Ephesians 1:22-23; 5:25-27; 1 Corinthians 12:12-14).
THE RAPTURE OF THE
believe that the next great event in the fulfillment of prophecy will be
the coming of Jesus Christ in
the air to receive to Himself both the dead in Christ and believers who are
alive at His coming, otherwise known as the "Rapture" or "Translation" of
the Church, and that all Church Age believers will receive a resurrection
body like that of Christ at that time (1 Corinthians 15:51-57; 1 Thessalonians
4:13-18; Titus 2:11-14).
We believe that the Rapture of the Church will immediately be followed by seven years of great evil on earth, the fulfillment of Israel’s seventieth week, the latter half of which is the time of Jacob’s trouble, the great tribulation (Daniel 9:27; Jeremiah 30:7; Matthew 24:15-21; Revelation 6-18), and during which some individuals will believe in Christ for their salvation (Revelation 14:1; Matthew 24:31).
THE SECOND COMING OF
We believe that the great tribulation will be climaxed by the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to earth to remove all unbelievers and rescue believers (Zechariah 14:3-11; Matthew 24:15-31; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-10; Revelation 19).
MAN’S ETERNAL STATE
We believe that the soul and human spirit of those who have believed in Christ for salvation do at the moment of physical death pass into His presence, and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at the Rapture, when soul and human spirit unite with a new glorious resurrection body, to be associated with Him forever in Heaven; but the souls of unbelievers remain after death in conscious misery until the final judgment at the close of the Millennium, when the soul in an everlasting body shall be cast into the lake of fire, not to be annihilated, but to be punished with everlasting destruction (Luke 16:19-26; 23:43; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Philippians 1:23; 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9; Jude 6-7; Revelation 20:11-15).
We believe that all believers should walk in a manner to bring honor to their Lord and Savior; that we do this by employing His power in our lives through faith, not through our own effort or ingenuity; that the mechanics of glorifying Jesus Christ is walking constantly in the power of the Holy Spirit (filling of the Spirit), learning and applying to life the promises, principles and doctrines contained in the Bible about God and His plan, identifying and functioning in service to others under the abilities of our spiritual gift, to love others as Christ loved us, and to obey authorities under divine establishment (Romans 12:1-21; 13:1-14; Galatians 5:16-26; Ephesians 5:1-6, 18; 1 Timothy 2:4; 6:11-12; 2 Timothy 1:8, 13-14; 2:15; 1 Peter 2:2; 2 Peter 1:5-11; 3:18).
We believe that spirituality, or the ability to understand and operate in God’s plan and strength, is a direct function of allowing the Holy Spirit to control one’s life; that such a decision must be made habitually and constantly; that the Spirit’s control is lost temporarily by decision to commit a sin, whether the individual realizes it or not; that the Spirit’s control can be immediately restored by simple confession of one’s personal sin to God the Father (1 John 1:9); that the Holy Spirit, when in control, supernaturally produces good fruits in the believer’s soul that reflect the attitudes of Jesus Christ (Galatians 5:16-25) and both teaches and recalls Bible doctrine to the believer as he needs it in application to life.
that spiritual maturity is a measure of the believer’s ability to apply God’s
thinking and perform His will under both stress and blessing situations of
life; that the believer grows more spiritually mature as he learns and believes
Bible doctrine, storing it in his soul through the ministry of the Holy Spirit,
and applies doctrine from his soul under the filling of the Holy Spirit to
life situations; and that God is glorified when the believer uses His three
power systems (filling of the Holy Spirit, knowledge of Bible doctrine, and
spiritual gift function), even under maximum stress situations, and when
He is able to fulfill His promises and to bless the mature believer. (Galatians 5:16-25; Matt.4:4; 2 Tim.2:15; 1 Pet.2:2; 3:18; Heb.5:12-14 )
believe that the Holy Spirit, in grace and apart from human
merit, administers a spiritual gift to each believer in
the Church Age; that the nine spiritual gifts active in
the Church today include pastor-teacher, evangelist, administrator,
helper, giving, mercy, exhortation, service ministry and
leadership (Romans 12:4-8; 1 Corinthians
12-14; Ephesians 4:7-12); that ten other spiritual
gifts, provided temporarily for completion of the Canon
of scripture and establishment of the Church in the first
century A.D., are no longer active, including apostle, prophet,
healing, miracles, discerning spirits, faith,
tongues, interpretation of tongues, word of wisdom and word of knowledge. (1
Corinthians 13:4-7). We believe that God still works
miracles, healing's and other supernatural interventions
in the world, not through the spiritual gifts of individual
believers, but through response to the spiritual growth
and prayers of believers.
We believe that Jesus Christ instituted one ritual, or ordinance, for the Church, that of the Eucharist, or Lord’s Supper, to be performed in remembrance of Him (1 Corinthians 11:23-36). We believe that the ritual of water baptism is suggested as an aid to teach young believers about their entry into the body of Christ and position in Him, not a commanded ordinance for the Church to observe in public worship (Matthew 28:19).