What we believe
We believe that the Bible provides the basis for salvation, the Christian walk, the Spirit-filled life, and the afterlife. Martindale Christian Fellowship adopts the following statement of beliefs from the Foursquare Church. However, Martindale is not affiliated with Foursquare.
The Plan of Redemption
We believe that Christ died for all of us while we were still sinners; He took the punishment for our sin. With His own blood, He purchased salvation and redemption for all who believe in Him (John 3:16; Isaiah 53:5; Titus 2:14).
Salvation Through Grace
We believe that salvation is totally an act of God’s grace that is accessed through faith in Jesus Christ. No person can be good enough to earn salvation, and “being good” does not contribute to receiving God’s love and favor (Ephesians 2:8, 13).
Repentance and Acceptance
We believe that, when people repent for their sins and accept Christ, they are justified through Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross. To repent means to be sorry for sins, but it also means to turn away from a sinful lifestyle. Accepting Christ means believing in Him as the only Savior. To be justified means being declared “not guilty” in regard to sin (Romans 10:9-10; 1 John 1:9).
The New Birth
We believe that the change that takes place in people when they are “born again” is very real. They receive righteousness through Jesus Christ, and they are empowered by the Holy Spirit; therefore, they should have new desires, interests and pursuits (John 3:3; 2 Corinthians 5:17).
Daily Christian Life
We believe that people who have been born again grow in sanctification—which means that they separate themselves from the value system of the world and embrace and live according to the values of the kingdom that Jesus proclaimed. As they do so, they increase in holiness, faith, power, prayer, love and service (2 Corinthians 7:1).
We believe that evangelizing and making disciples is the primary “business” of the church; every hindrance to worldwide evangelism should be removed (James 5:20; Mark 16:15).
Tithing and Offerings
We believe that tithing (giving 10 percent of earnings) and offerings (amounts determined by the individuals) are God’s instruments to carry on His ministry, spread the gospel, and release personal blessing (Malachi 3:10; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2).
The Fall of Man
We believe that Adam and Eve, the precursors of the entire human race, were created in the image of God; however, they disobeyed God and became sinners. Through Adam, all people inherited sin’s nature and consequences, and all are in need of a Redeemer (Genesis 1:27; Romans 5:12, 19).
We believe that it is essential for all believers to join with and become part of a congregation of other believers. It is important to worship together, observe the ordinances of the church, encourage and support one another, and work together to advance the Lord’s kingdom (Hebrews 10:24-25).
We believe that civil government is established by divine appointment; civil laws should be upheld at all times except when they are in opposition to the Word of God (Romans 13:1-7).
The Holy Scriptures
We believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God; it is absolutely true, enduring, and unchangeable (2 Timothy 3:16-17. Matthew 24:35).
The Eternal Godhead
We believe in the Trinity of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The three parts of the Trinity are coexistent and coeternal, which means that they always have existed and always will exist together; they are coequal in divine perfection, which means that no person of the Trinity is more powerful or more perfect than any other person in the Trinity (1 John 5:7).
Water Baptism and the Lord's Supper
We believe that people who have been born again should be baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Jesus Himself was baptized and instructed His followers to be baptized. Baptism also confirms that Christ is the Lord and King in each believer’s life (Romans 6:4). We believe in observing the Lord’s supper, or communion, just as Jesus instructed. This means that born-again believers take the broken bread and the fruit of the vine as a remembrance and celebration of the new life that is theirs because of Jesus’ death on the cross and His resurrection. It is also looking forward to His return as triumphant King (1 Corinthians 11:24-26).
Baptism with the Holy Spirit
We believe that the baptism with the Holy Spirit is an experience that follows salvation. All believers have God’s Spirit within them. Holy Spirit baptism empowers believers to exalt Jesus, to live lives of holiness, and to be witnesses of God’s saving grace. We believe that those who experience Holy Spirit baptism today will experience it in the same manner that believers experienced it in the early church; in other words, we believe that they will speak in tongues—languages that are not known to them (Acts 1:5, 8; 2:4).
We believe that Jesus Christ heals people who are sick. God does not change; He is still willing and able to heal the body, as well as the soul and spirit, in response to faith (Mark 16:17-18; James 5:14-16).
The Spirit-Filled Life
We believe that born-again believers should be people who pray and who allow the Holy Spirit to shape their values and behaviors every day; their lives should exemplify love, honesty and sincerity (Ephesians 4:30-32).
The Gifts & Fruit
of the Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit gives ministry gifts to believers; in other words, the Holy Spirit gives people special abilities for ministry. These gifts will build up groups of believers and help them mature in Christian faith (1 Corinthians 12:1-11). Further, Spirit-filled believers should show the spiritual “fruit” that has been given to them: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control (Romans 12:6-8; Galatians 5:22-25).
Second Coming of Christ
We believe that the second coming of Christ is personal and imminent; we are as certain that His second coming will occur as we are that His first coming is a historical fact. No one knows the exact time of His coming, but believers will continue to spread the gospel around the world until He does come again. At that time the Lord Himself will descend from heaven, the dead Christians will be resurrected, and believers will be taken up to meet the Lord in the air (Matthew 24:36, 42, 44; 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17). We believe that everyone will stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Born-again believers will be sent to a place of everlasting life, and nonbelievers will be sent to a place of everlasting punishment (Revelation 20:11-12; 2 Corinthians 5:10).
We believe that everyone will stand before the judgment seat of Christ. Born-again believers will be sent to a place of everlasting life, and nonbelievers will be sent to a place of everlasting punishment (Revelation 20:11-12; 2 Corinthians 5:10).
We believe that heaven is the habitation of the living God and the eternal home of born-again believers (John 14:2; Revelation 7:15-17).
We believe that hell is a place of darkness, deep sorrow and unquenchable fire, which was not prepared for man but for the devil and his angels; it will become the place of eternal separation from God for all who reject Christ as Savior (Matthew 13:41-42; Revelation 20:10, 15).