THE LIVING GOD
God is Almighty, Eternal and Unchanging. He is just and holy, gracious and merciful. He is the Maker and Ruler of all things and deserving of all praise and glory for ever.
THE WRITTEN WORD
God’s greatness and holiness are such that, without His aid, man can neither understand God nor find the way to a right relationship with Him. In His mercy, however, God has made Himself known. He has done this, partially through Creation, but explicitly through the Old and New testaments of the Bible. We therefore accept all that was written in the Bible as not merely containing, but being, the inspired and infallible Word of God and the final and sufficient authority in all matters of Christian faith and life.
God is one, existing through all eternity in three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
THE SOVEREIGN GOD
God exercises sovereign power in Creation, Providence and redemption.
MAN THE SINNER
God created man perfect, but after being tempted by the devil, man by his own free choice, disobeyed God and became a sinner. Man’s whole nature is now perverted by sin, and his fellowship with God is broken.
JESUS THE SAVIOUR
God alone can deal with man’s sin and bring about reconciliation to Himself. To achieve this, God became man in Jesus Christ. Jesus was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He lived a sinless, human life and taught entirely without error. He suffered and died in the place of sinners, bearing their sin, and its guilt and punishment. He thus sets all believers free from the domination of the devil and the corruption of their own sinful nature, and removes from them, forever, sin’s lasting consequences.
THE GRACE OF GOD
God in His grace forgives and reconciles to Himself all who turn to Him in true repentance and who trust in Christ’s atoning death. God imputed to them the righteousness of Christ Himself, and adopts them as His own children.
THE RISEN LORD
The Lord Jesus Christ was shown to be the Son of God by His miracles and by His bodily resurrection from the dead. He has ascended in power and glory to the presence of God, where he now pleads on behalf of those who call upon Him in truth.
THE HOLY SPIRIT
God the Holy Spirit must work in a man before he can enter into salvation. He leads the sinner into an awareness of his sinfulness, and brings him to repentance and trust in Christ. He brings to birth in him a new and eternal life, and by His continuing work, develops in this new life the fruits of love and holiness.
THE SECOND COMING
God is bringing all human history to a climax which will be marked by the visible return to the earth of the Lord Jesus Christ.
JESUS THE JUDGE
God has appointed Jesus as judge and there will be a final judgment. Those who are saved will be raised in a glorified body and enjoy eternally and to the full the presence of their Lord. Those who have rejected Christ will be banished from God forever.
THE ONE CHURCH
All who have been redeemed with the precious blood of Christ, and upon whom God has bestowed His righteousness as a free gift, belong to Christ. They alone may be rightly called Christians. They alone are members of the one universal and eternal Church of Christ.
THE GATHERED CHURCH
Each local church is a fellowship of believers gathered by Christ, and has no need of, nor should acknowledge, any other authority than His. Through Him, it has direct access to God and enjoys fellowship with other assemblies of His people in a unity which transcends all barriers.
· We believe that Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church universal, which is His body, and of each local Church.
· We believe that each local Church is in itself a complete Church, therefore autonomous, possessing all the rights and responsibilities of the Church by the Holy Spirit as set forth in the Scriptures.
· We believe that Jesus Christ exercises His authority in each local church by the Holy Spirit and through the Scriptures.
· We believe that each local Church, through its Church Meeting, is answerable only to Jesus Christ, and not to any association, conference, council, synod, or any other ecclesiastical body.
· We believe it is proper and beneficial for each local Church to seek fellowship and counsel of other Churches that are like minded in the Lord.
Taken from 'Evangelical and Congregational', The principles of the Congregational Independents.
Published on behalf EFCC England.