HANNAH’S CREEK BAPTIST CHURCH
For the purpose of preserving and making secure the principles of our faith described in the divinely inspired and authoritative Word of God, and to the end that “all things might be done decently and in order,” and for the purpose of preserving the liberties inherent in each individual member of the church, we, being born-again and Bible-believing Christians bonded together as a body of immersed believers in Jesus Christ, do declare and establish this Constitution.
Article I. Name
This body shall be known as the Hannah’s Creek Baptist Church, of Benson, Johnston County, North Carolina.
Article II. Purpose
The purpose of this body shall be to consistently seek and accomplish the will of God through providing regular opportunities for Christian fellowship and public worship directed by the Holy Spirit of God, and based on instruction preached and taught exclusively from the Word of God for the exaltation of our Savior, the edification of the saints, the propagation of the gospel of Christ to lost sinners everywhere, and for the observance of the ordinances. This church is established to exhibit the Holiness of God to the world through the lives we live and through church discipline, maintaining a pure body of obedient believers representative of Christ.
Article III. Statement of Faith
A. The Holy Scriptures. We believe the Holy Scriptures, consisting of the
Old and New Testaments only, to be the plenarily, verbally inspired Word of God, inerrant in the original manuscripts, authoritative, infallible, and God-breathed; and that they are the only supreme and ultimate authority for all faith and practice (II Tim. 3:16-17; II Peter 1:20-21; Matt. 5:18; I Cor. 2:10-13). While we understand that different translations may be used for personal study, this church receives the authorized King James Version of the Holy Bible to be the best, most accurate, most reliable, literal English translation and it shall be the only version used in the teaching and pulpit ministry of this church.
B. The Godhead. We believe in one triune God, existing in three persons;
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; eternal in being, identical in essence, equal in power and glory, and having the same divine attributes and perfections; yet exercising them in varied offices (Deut. 6:4, Matt. 28-19, John 14:7-12, John 16-17, II Cor. 13-14).
C. The Person and Work of Jesus Christ.
1. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God,
became man, without ceasing to be God, having been conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin, Mary, in order that He might reveal God and redeem sinful man (Matt. 1: 19-20, John 1:1,2,14,18; Luke 1:35).
2. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins according
to the Scriptures, as a substitutionary sacrifice, and that all who receive Him are justified on the ground of His shed blood (Rom. 3:24-26, 4:25; I Cor. 14:3-4, II Cor. 5:21).
3. We believe in the resurrection of the crucified body of our Lord
Jesus Christ and that our redemption and salvation is guaranteed to us by His literal, physical resurrection from the dead; in His bodily ascension into heaven; and in His present life there for us as a High Priest and Intercessor (Matt. 28:5-6;
I Cor. 15:12-19, Acts 1:9; Heb. 4:14-16, 7:23-25, 9:24; I John 2:1-2).
4. We believe in “that blessed hope” which is the personal, visible,
pretribulational, premillennial, and imminent return of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (I Cor. 15:51-53, I Thes. 4:14-17, Tit. 2:13, I John 3:2-3).
D. The Personality of the Holy Spirit. We believe that the Holy Spirit is a
Divine person, equal with the Father and the Son and of the same substance and nature; that He convicts the world of sin, righteousness and judgment; bears witness to the truth; is the agent of the new birth; and that he seals, endures, guides, teaches, witnesses to, sanctifies, and helps the believer; that He baptizes them into the church, the body of Christ, indwells them permanently, seals them unto the day of redemption, bestows spiritual gifts upon each one, and fills for service those yielded to Him. We believe that certain of the spiritual gifts of the Holy Spirit to the Church such as apostleship, prophecy, and tongues, were temporary, were needed only in the infancy of the church and are not to be expected today. We believe that the Holy Spirit testifies concerning Jesus Christ and never leads any person at any time contrary to the teaching of the Bible (John 3:8, 14:16, 15:26-27, 16:7-15;
Acts 5:1-4, I Cor. 12:4-13, I Cor. 15:8-10, Eph. 4:30, 5:18).
E. The Total Depravity of Man. We believe that man was created in the
image and likeness of God, but that in Adam’s sin the race fell and thereby incurred not only physical death, but also spiritual death, which is separation from God, and eternal death of the immortal soul in the lake of fire for ever; and that all mankind have inherited a sinful nature and the guilt of sin, and become willful sinners with the first expression of personal choice, are totally unable to regain their former position, and are without excuse before God (Gen. 1:26, 3:1-24; Rom. 3:23, 5:12, 1:20; Eph. 2:1-6, 12).
F. Salvation, Regeneration, Eternal Security of the Believer.
1. We believe that salvation is a gift of God brought to men by grace
and is received by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, whose blood was shed on Calvary for the forgiveness of sins. Salvation is solely through faith in the work, person, and promise of the Lord Jesus Christ, being a gift, is not earned by any good works whatsoever. All those who receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are justified, or legally declared by God to be completely forgiven and no longer liable to punishment.(Eph. 1:17, 2:8-9; John 1:2, 3:5-7; Rom 4:5; 8:30).
2. We believe that the Scriptures teach that regeneration, or the new
birth, is that change in the inner man by the Holy Spirit by which a new nature and spiritual life, not before possessed, are imparted, and the person becomes a new creation in Christ Jesus; and without regeneration salvation is impossible (John 3:3-6; II Cor. 5:17; I Peter 1:23, Titus 3:5).
3. We believe that the salvation of every believer is secure for all
eternity from the moment of regeneration. This security is guaranteed to each believer by the fact that the life received is eternal life, by the keeping power of God, by the sealing ministry of the Holy Spirit, and by the interceding ministry of Christ (John 5:24, 10:27-30; Rom. 8:1,29,30,38,39; Eph. 4:30, Heb. 7:25).
G. Santification. We believe that immediate, positional santification is the
act of God whereby believers are, at the time of regeneration, eternally set apart as belonging to Him by redemption, thereby being placed in the family of God as children, joint heirs with Jesus Christ (I John 3:1, Rom. 8:14-17, I Cor. 1:2, Heb. 10:10-14).
We believe that progressive sanctification is the process by which, according to God’s will, we are made partakers of His holiness; that it is progressive; that it is begun in regeneration; that it progresses if the believer is yielded to the Holy Spirit’s control; that it is carried on in the hearts of believers by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit through the Word of God, self-examination, watchfulness and prayer (I Thes. 4:3, 5:23, Prov. 4:18, I John 2:29, Phil 2:12-13, Eph. 6:18, John 17:17).
We believe that ultimate sanctification, or glorification will be the portion of every believer then finally in the presence of the Lord, complete and entire, with soul and spirit united in the resurrected body free from every trace or effect of sin and rebellion (1 John 3:2, I Cor. 15:52-54, Eph. 4:30, 5:27; Phil. 4:20-21).
H. Separation. We believe in the biblical doctrine of separation which
encompasses three things: (1) the separation of the local church from all affiliation and fellowship with those who deny the verities of the “faith once delivered to the saints,” (2) the separation of the individual believer from all worldly practices that may dishonor the Savior; and (3) the separation of church and state, defined as: while individual members are encouraged to participate in the political process and vote as they are lead of the Holy Spirit, no government entity may at any time control or influence the program of the church. (II Tim. 3:1-5, Rom. 12:1-2, 14:13; I John 2:15-17, II John 9-11, I Cor. 6:11-7:1).
I. The Church. We believe in the church—a living, spiritual body of which
Christ is the head and of which all regenerated people in this age are members; and that all in this age who are truly born again are baptized by the Holy Spirit into vital union with Christ and into the universal church which is His Body and Bride (Matt. 16:16-19, I Cor. 12:12-13, Gal 3:27, Eph. 1:2, 23; 5:25-27).
We believe that each local church is a visible expression of the Body of Christ and is a congregation of believers in Jesus Christ, immersed upon a credible confession of faith, and associated together by covenant for worship, evangelism, and observance of the ordinances, and fellowship. We believe that the local church is the center of God’s program for this age, and that every Christian is bound by Scripture to give his unhindered cooperation to the program of the local church. Each member bears the responsibility of maintaining a clean and pure testimony of Christ in his/her life as an expression of the Holiness of God in the world until He returns. Each member is to be held accountable to this responsibility through Church discipline in accordance with scripture. (Acts 2:41-47, 14:27, 20:17; I Tim. 3:1-16, Titus 1:5-11, I Cor. 3:10-17, 5:1-5, 11:2).
J. The Church’s Ordinances. We believe that the Lord Jesus instituted two
Ordinances, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper, to be observed by all believers until his return.
We believe that baptism is the immersion in water of a believer in Christ, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to show forth by solemn and beautiful symbolism, the believer’s identification with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection, and that it is a Scriptural prerequisite to church membership, a believer’s first act of obedience to the scriptures (Matt. 28:1-9, Acts 8:36, Rom. 6:3-5, I Pet. 3:21, Acts 2:38-41).
We believe that the Lord’s Supper is partaking of unleavened bread and the fruit of the vine, as symbols of Christ’s body and blood, commemorating His suffering and death for us and our continual benefit therefrom; that participation should be limited to those who have united to the local church by baptism and testimony, and that participation should be preceded by careful self-examination, individually through reflection and collectively through church discipline (I Cor 11:23-25, 5:1-5; Matt. 18:15-17).
K. The Great Commission. We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ has
commissioned the church to take the Gospel to the world, and that evangelism at home and abroad should be primary in the program of the local church (Matt. 28:19-20, Acts 1:8).
L. Creation. We believe that God created the heavens and the earth, including all life, “Each after its own kind,” by direct act, and not by any process of evolution. That creation was wrought by the Word, who was God, and by Him all things consist (Gen. 1 and 2; Col. 1:16-17; John 1:3.)
M. The Second Coming of Christ. We believe in the personal,
pretibulational, imminent coming of the Lord Jesus Christ for His own, the church, and His subsequent personal, premillennial return visibly to the earth to establish His kingdom and to reign for a millennium over the entire earth from the throne of David (II Sam. 7:12,16; Zech. 14:4-11, Luke 1:30-33, Acts 15:14-18, I Thes. 4:13-18, I Cor. 15:51,52; Rev. 19:11-16, 20:6).
N. The Tribulation. We believe that the Tribulation or the Great
Tribulation is that period of seven years recognized as “the seventieth week of Daniel” and “the time of Jacob’s trouble” and that it shall be characterized by the wrath and judgment of God upon both unbelieving Jews and Gentiles, upon satanic worship and oppressive Gentile dominion; that it is primarily Jewish and is to be climaxed by the return of Israel’s Messiah, Jesus, to rule and reign over the whole earth (Jer. 30:7; Dan. 9:24-27, 12:1; Matt. 24:21,22; I Thes. 5:3,9; Rev. 6:15-17, 3:10).
O. The Eternal State. We believe that the souls of those who have trusted in
the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation do at death immediately pass into His presence and there remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of the body at His coming when soul and body reunited shall be associated with Him forever in glory; but, that the souls of unbelievers remain after death in conscious misery in Hell until the final judgment of the Great White Throne at the close of the millennium, when soul and body reunited shall be cast into the lake of fire, not to be annihilated, but to be punished with everlasting separation from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power (Luke 16:19-26, II Cor. 5:8, Phil 1:23, II Thes. 1:7-9, Rev. 20:11-15).
P. The Responsibility of Believers. We believe that all believers should seek
to walk by the Spirit, not bringing reproach upon their Lord and Savior, exercising Christian liberty regulated by love, separated from worldly pleasures and practices, separated from organizational association with apostate groups (Rom. 12:1,2; Gal. 6:16, II Cor. 6:14-7:1, I Cor. 8:1-13).
We believe that it is the responsibility of all believers to witness by life and by word to the truths of the Holy Scriptures and to assume responsibility for the propagation of the Gospel to the entire world (Acts 1:8).
We believe that it is the responsibility of all believers to remember the work of the local church and its extension ministries in prayer, to support it with their tithes and offerings as the Lord prospers them, to participate in all the regular services of the church as the Lord enables, and to voluntarily submit to the watchcare and discipline of the local church (I Cor. 16:2, Heb. 10:19-25; 13:17,18).