We teach that there is but one living and true God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 45:5-7; 1 Corinthians 8:4), infinite, all-knowing, spirit (John 4:24), perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14)—each equally deserving worship and obedience.
God the Father
We teach that God the Father, the first person of the Trinity, orders and disposes all things according to His own purpose and grace (Psalm 115:3; Daniel 4:34-35; Romans 11:33-36). He created all things (Genesis 1:1-31; Revelation 4:11) in six twenty-four hour days (Genesis 1:31; Exodus 31:15-17). As the absolute and omnipotent ruler in the universe, He is sovereign in creation, providence, and redemption (Psalm 103:19; Romans 11:36). He has decreed for His own glory all things that come to pass (Ephesians 1:11-12; 1 Chronicles 29:11). He continually upholds, directs, and governs all creatures and events (Romans 11:33-36). In His sovereignty He is neither author nor approver of sin (Deuteronomy 32:4; Habakkuk 1:13; 1 John 1:5), nor does He abridge the accountability of moral, intelligent creatures (1 Peter 1:17). He has graciously chosen from eternity past those whom He would have as His own (Ephesians 1:4-6); He saves from sin all who come to Him through Jesus Christ; He adopts as his own all those who come to Him; and He becomes, upon adoption, Father to His own (John 1:12; Romans 8:15; Galatians 4:5; Hebrews 12:5-9). His fatherhood involves both His designation within the Trinity and His relationship with humankind. As Creator He is Father to all (Ephesians 4:6), but He is spiritual Father only to believers (Romans 8:14; 2 Corinthians 6:18).
God the Son
We teach that Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, possesses all the divine excellencies, and in these He is coequal, consubstantial, and coeternal with the Father (John 1:1; 10:30; 14:9; Colossians 2:9; Hebrews 1:3).
We teach that God the Father created according to His own will, through His Son, Jesus Christ, by whom all things continue in existence and in operation (John 1:3; Colossians 1:15-17; Hebrews 1:2).
We teach that in the fullness of time God the Father sent His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to be conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary (Galatians 4:4; Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23, 25; Luke 1:26-35).
We teach that Jesus Christ is truly God and truly man in indivisible and unconfused oneness (John 14:9-10; Colossians 2:9). In the incarnation, the eternally existing second person of the Trinity took on all the essential characteristics of humanity while surrendering nothing of the divine essence, either in degree or kind (Philippians 2:5-8; Colossians 2:9). Jesus Christ is, therefore, God incarnate (John 1:1, 14); and the purpose of the incarnation is to reveal God, redeem men, and rule over God’s kingdom (John 1:14-18; Philippians 2:5-11; Hebrews 2:14-18).
We teach that Jesus Christ was subject to physical infirmities and temptation as a true human but lived a perfect and sinless life (Hebrews 4:15). He preached and taught with unparalleled authority (Mark 1:27; Matthew 22:16; John 7:46). He worked miracles, which bore witness to His divine glory, authority, and identity (Matthew 8:27; John 2:11), and which heralded the breaking in of the new creation (Matthew 4:23; 11:4-6). He fulfilled the Law and all the Old Testament prophetic hopes concerning the coming One (Matthew 3:15; 5:17-19; Luke 24:25-27; John 5:39; 15:1).
We teach that Jesus Christ was tried (Mark 14:53-65; John 18:28-19:16), that He was crucified under Pontius Pilate (Acts 4:27-28), and that He died, was buried, and on the third day rose from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
We teach that our Lord Jesus Christ accomplished our redemption through the shedding of His blood and sacrificial death on the cross and that His death was voluntary, vicarious, substitutionary, propitiatory, and redemptive (John 10:15; Romans 3:24-25; 5:8; 1 Peter 2:24).
We teach that on the basis of the efficacy of the death of our Lord Jesus Christ, the believing sinner is freed from the punishment, the penalty, the power, and one day the very presence of sin; and that he is declared righteous, given eternal life, and adopted into the family of God (Romans 3:25; 5:8-9; 2 Corinthians 5:14-15; 1 Peter 2:24; 3:18).
We teach that in the literal, physical resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave, God vindicated Jesus’ life and righteousness, gave proof that He has accepted the atoning work of Christ on the cross, and confirmed our justification (Romans 1:4; 4:25; 1 Corinthians 15:17; Philippians 2:9; 1 Timothy 3:16). Jesus’ bodily resurrection is also the guarantee and first-fruits of a future resurrection life for all believers (John 14:19; Romans 6:5-10; 1 Corinthians 15:20, 23).
We teach that for a span of forty days after His resurrection, Jesus Christ appeared bodily to many (Acts 1:3; 1 Corinthians 15:5-7), and then ascended bodily to the right hand of the Father (Acts 1:9-11; 2:33), where He now mediates as our Advocate and High Priest (Romans 8:34; Hebrews 4:14; 7:25; 9:24; 1 John 2:1).
We teach that Jesus Christ will return to receive the church, which is His body, unto Himself at the rapture and, returning with His church in glory, will establish His millennial kingdom on earth (Acts 1:9-11; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Revelation 20).
We teach that the Lord Jesus Christ is the one through whom God will judge all humankind (John 5:22-23):
(a) Believers (1 Corinthians 3:10-15; 2 Corinthians 5:10)
(b) Living inhabitants of the earth at His glorious return (Matthew 25:31-46)
(c) Unbelieving dead at the Great White Throne (Revelation 20:11-15)
God the Holy Spirit
We teach that the Holy Spirit is a divine person, eternal, underived, possessing all the attributes of personality and deity including intellect (1 Corinthians 2:10-13), emotions (Ephesians 4:30), will (1 Corinthians 12:11), eternality (Hebrews 9:14), omnipresence (Psalm 139:7-10), omniscience (Isaiah 40:13-14), omnipotence (Romans 15:13), and truthfulness (John 16:13). In all the divine attributes He is coequal and consubstantial with the Father and the Son (Matthew 28:19; Acts 5:3-4; 28:25-27; 1 Corinthians 12:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Jeremiah 31:31-34 with Hebrews 10:15-17).
We teach that it is the work of the Holy Spirit to execute the divine will with relation to all humankind. We recognize His sovereign activity in creation (Genesis 1:2), the incarnation (Matthew 1:18), the written revelation (2 Peter 1:20-21), the work of salvation (John 3:5-7), and all of history (Exodus 31:3; Judges 3:10; 1 Samuel 16:13; Mark 1:10; Acts 2:4).
We teach that a unique work of the Holy Spirit in this age began at Pentecost when He came from the Father as promised by Christ (John 14:16-17; 15:26; Acts 1:5; 2:4) to initiate and complete the building of the body of Christ, which is His church (1 Corinthians 12:13). The broad scope of His divine activity includes convicting the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; glorifying the Lord Jesus Christ and transforming believers into the image of Christ (John 16:7-14; Romans 8:11; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 2:22).
We teach that the Holy Spirit is the supernatural and sovereign agent in regeneration, baptizing all believers into the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:13). Grace Church believes that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a one-time event that occurs at salvation (Ephesians 4:1-6; 1 Corinthians 12:13; Romans 6:3-4; Mark 1:8; Luke 3:16). The Holy Spirit also indwells, sanctifies, instructs, empowers them for service, and seals them unto the day of redemption (Romans 8:9; 2 Corinthians 3:6; Ephesians 1:13).
We teach that the Holy Spirit is the divine teacher who guided the apostles and prophets into all truth as they committed to writing God’s revelation, the Bible. Every believer possesses the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit from the moment of salvation, and it is the duty of all those born of the Spirit to be filled with (controlled by) the Spirit (John 16:13; Romans 8:9; Ephesians 5:18; 1 John 2:20, 27).
We teach that the Holy Spirit administers spiritual gifts to the church. The Holy Spirit glorifies neither Himself nor His gifts by ostentatious displays, but He does glorify Christ by implementing Christ’s work of redeeming the lost and building up believers in the most holy faith (1 Corinthians 12:4-11).
We teach, in this respect, that God the Holy Spirit is sovereign in the bestowing of all His gifts for the perfecting of the saints today and that speaking in tongues, or others of the more dramatically miraculous spiritual gifts, were never intended to be characteristic of the lives of believers, nor the mark of true conversion or a heightened spirituality. While no single spiritual gift is the mark of a true Christian, nevertheless all believers are gifted by the Holy Spirit, and this gifting continually manifests itself for the good of the body (Romans 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, 27-31; Ephesians 4:7-12; 1 Peter 4:10-11).