Statement of Faith
The following are the core beliefs of Come to Life Bible Church based on the foundational truths taught in the bible. All of our teaching and ministry is rooted in and flows out of these biblical doctrines.
We believe the Bible consists of sixty-six separate books penned by over forty authors over the course of approximately 1500 years. The Old Testament contains thirty-nine books from Genesis to Malachi, and the New Testament contains twenty-seven books from Matthew to Revelation. The Bible is the inerrant Word of God given to us through divine inspiration through the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16). The Bible is the way in which God has revealed Himself to mankind and given us our best way to know Him and discover His divine plan. It is also our source of moral authority and doctrinal truth (Hebrews 4:12). We are called to meditate on it daily (Joshua1:8) and teach its content to the world (Deuteronomy 6:7; Matthew 28:18-20).
The authority of God’s word can be tested in several ways: textual, historical, and prophetic. The strongest of these is prophetic. It clearly comes from a divine source when the future is predicted in great detail long before it happens. We are commanded not to quench the spirit or to treat prophecies with contempt (1 Thessalonians 5:19-22). In doing so, we get a clear picture of Jesus as the Messiah.
Prophecy: A Prophet like Moses (Deuteronomy 18:15)
(Exodus 1:22-2:10) Birth of Moses at a time the Pharaoh attempted kill all male babies born to prevent an uprising
Fulfillment: (Matthew 2:13-18) Jesus born as Herod orders all male children under two killed in Bethlehem to prevent the prophesied king
(Exodus: 2:1-10) Moses escapes death by being adopted as an Egyptian
Fulfillment: (Matthew 2:13-14) Jesus escapes death as a baby by going to Egypt
(Exodus 20) Moses is the Law Giver
Fulfillment: (Matthew 5:18) Jesus is the fulfillment of the Law
(Numbers 21:9) Moses lifted up a symbol of sin (Bronze Serpent) to heal the people
Fulfillment: (John 3:14; 2 Corinthians 5:21) Christ became sin and was lifted up on our behalf to pay the debt of sin
Prophecy: (Micah 5:2) Messiah must be born in Bethlehem
Fulfillment: Matthew 2:1; Luke 2:1-8
Prophecy: (Isaiah 53:5; Psalm 22:16) Messiah will be pierced (in his hands and feet) for our transgressions. (Psalm 22:18) At His death they will cast lots for His garments; (Isaiah 53:9) He will die with the sinners and be buried with the rich
Fulfillment: (Matthew 27:35-38; Mark 15:24; Luke 23:32; John 19:18) Jesus crucified (piercing his hands and feet) between two criminals (dying with the wicked), where the soldiers cast lots for his garments. (Matthew 27:57-60) Jesus was buried by Joseph of Arimathea (a rich man)
Prophecy: (Psalm 22:27-31) Because of the Messiah, all nations will worship YHWH
Fulfillment: (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts; 2:38-41, Acts 9:15-16; Acts 10) Jesus instructs to tell the good news to all nations, Peter preaches to the Jew first in Acts Chapter 2 and then becomes the one to first convert a Gentile, Paul in Acts Chapter 10. Paul becomes the instrument God uses to reach the Gentiles
And many more…
The Bible is the inerrant, inspired word of God through which He reveals Himself, His plan, and His story to mankind, and it points from Genesis to Revelation to Jesus.
We believe the Bible points to the Triune God in the Old and New Testaments. Three distinct persons (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit) exist as one being: God. Math may offer the best explanation to this mystery. In one dimension, we have a line segment. In two dimensions, we have four line segments that make up a square. However, in three-dimensional space, we have six squares or twelve line segments to make up one cube. In a higher dimension, multiple cubes would make up one object. God is beyond our reality in extra dimensions. In our four-dimensional world (length, height, width, and time), we have one person and one being. Beyond our reality, perhaps three distinct persons make up one being. While this mystery is difficult to grasp, it can be found throughout the Old and New Testaments. Genesis 1:1 utilizes Elohim as the word for God. The syntax indicates that Elohim is a singular noun, but the “im” dictates a plurality. The Hebrew language allows for the plurality of persons within one being. Beyond that, there is only reference to one God in the Old Testament. However, multiple persons show up in the text who are described as God.
(Exodus 33:20-23) The glory of God passes by Moses, but Moses is not allowed to see His face. “For no one may see Him and live.” This appears to be “The Father” God rather than the other members of the Trinity. (Judges 13) The Angel of the LORD appears to Samson’s parents. Following the Angel of the LORD’s appearance, they say they have seen God face to face and are afraid they may die, but they do not. The Angel of the LORD, who is referenced as God, is likely the preincarnate Jesus showing up in the Old Testament. At the end of Judges 13, The Spirit of the LORD began to stir in Samson. The Spirit is mentioned separately from The Angel of the LORD in this passage, representing another person of the Trinity. The Spirit is mentioned as a separate person in the Creation (Genesis 1:2), hovering over the face of the waters.
The Old Testament clearly paints three persons as one God. This picture becomes evident through the teaching of Jesus. In John Chapter 14, we see the clear teaching on the trinity by Jesus (John 14:20-21). Jesus points out the relationship between God the Father and God the Son. Jesus indicates that the Father and Son are one. In John 14:16-17, Jesus teaches his disciples that when he leaves (ascends), He will send “another” helper, the Spirit of Truth. The Word gives us another clue. The Greek word used is “allos,” meaning another of the same kind. This equates the Spirit with the Father and the Son as God. If He had a different intention, He could have used the Greek word, “heteros,” to describe another of a different kind. For example, if I have a grape and I ask you for “another” with “allos,” I would expect another grape. If I asked for “another” using “heteros,” I would be expecting something related but not the same (ex. cherry. While this may be difficult to grasp and remains a mystery, the Scripture teaches clearly three persons one God and math may be the best hope we have to somewhat understand this.
The distinction and relationship between the Triune God is also given to us by Jesus in John 14. Jesus (God the Son) teaches that He is the way to the Father; no one gets to the Father except through Jesus (the Son). Because of our relationship with Jesus, the Father will send us the Holy Spirit, who will teach and remind us of Jesus.
God the Father
We believe the first person of the Trinity is God the Father. He is slow to anger and abounds in love (Exodus 34:6; Psalm 103:8). He is singled out as the Creator (1 Peter 4:19). The title, “God the Father,” is in relation to the rest of the trinity and all of creation as described by Jesus throughout the Gospels (John 14, John 20:17; Matthew 11:27). Ephesians 4:6, points out that the Father is the Creator of all and is over and in all. However, one verse later (Ephesians 4:7) points out that Christ is the connection point. As much as God created, the familial bond is reserved for those who follow Christ. He is the Father of those who have come to Christ and received the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 6:16-18).
God the son
We believe that Jesus, the Son, is uncreated, everlasting, but begotten (John 3:16). The Father is the creator. John chapter 1 describes the Son as the Word of God through which creation was made. The Son had an active role in the creation. The Son has existed from the beginning, and Jesus made these claims himself when Jesus stated, “Before Abraham was, I am” (John 8:58). This is supported by the writer of Hebrews (Hebrews 6:20) stating that Jesus is high priest in the order of Melchizedek. Melchizedek was a high priest (Genesis 14:18) and King of Salem; This points to the priesthood prior to the Levites and a greater priesthood and a parallel as King of Jerusalem, pre-dating Abraham and a foreshadowing of the Messiah (Psalm 110:4)
The Son’s work is in the atoning of sins (John 19:30; Daniel 9:24-26; Isaiah 53: 8-10) and bridging the gap between man and God through that atonement (1 Timothy 2:5; Job 9:33).
He also has future work to rule the nations (Daniel 2:45; Isaiah 9:6; Revelation 20).
God the holy spirit
We believe the Holy Spirit dwells within us and testifies of the Son (John 14; John 15:26). The Spirit also grants gifts to the believers to do the work which they have been called to do (1 Corinthians 12:1-11). The Holy Spirit has been there from the beginning (Genesis 1:2) and has always come upon servants of God to do His work (1 Samuel 11:6; 1Samuel 16:13; Judges 15:14; Acts 2:3-4). However, in the New Covenant we have direct access to the Spirit that dwells in us at all times as believers (John 20:22; John 14:15-18; 1 Corinthians 6:19; Romans 8:9-14).
The Holy Spirit also intercedes on our behalf (Romans 8:26) to God the Father.
We believe humanity was created in the image of God, both male and female. (Genesis 1:27). As images of God, we were given dominion over the Earth (Genesis 1:28-30). This dominion was usurped by the serpent in the Garden of Eden. Through the failure to adhere to God’s command, sin was introduced to humanity and became a part of our nature (Genesis 3:1-6; 1 Corinthians 15:45-49; Psalms 51:5). Thus, the images of God were tainted and separated from their Creator, and left in need of redemption.
We believe the Bible paints a picture of the redemptive work from the point of human failure in Genesis 3 forward. The scriptures point to one person and two advents. These two advents are dealing with the spiritual redemption through the atonement of sins and the physical redemption of creation. Salvation is a matter of the bridging the spiritual gap sin had left between man and God. This was accomplished through Christ fulfilling the atoning work of sin on the cross. While sin was passed on to humanity through Adam, the redemption from that stain would be accomplished by Christ (1 Corinthians 15:45-49). After the fall of man, Eve was given a promise of redemption through her descendants (Genesis 3:15). This redeemer is a descendant of woman, such as he will be conceived by a virgin (Isaiah 7:14; Luke 1:27-32) and born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1). He will be betrayed for thirty pieces of silver, which will be thrown to the potter (Zechariah 11:23-13; Matthew 26:15; Matthew 27:7). These details and hundreds of others point to Jesus as this redeemer. His work of atonement was completed on the cross and the events are foretold in great detail (Genesis 22, Psalm 22, Isaiah 53). It is through this moment that salvation is possible (Hebrews 2).
This process is described in 3 steps.
Justification is the forgiveness of sins for the repentant believers in Christ (John 3:16-18; Luke 15:21-24; Romans 5:1-2). Justification is given to those who accept the invitation of Christ’s forgiveness and atoning work (Luke 14:15-24; Romans 10:11). This moment is echoed on the cross as the Thief on the cross humbles himself before Jesus (Luke 23:42-43). Jesus sums up this work on the cross with His final words, “it is finished” (John 19:30) or in the Greek “tetelestai.” The same word was found on business deals or receipts meaning, “paid in full.” The debt of sin has been paid in full, the invitation has been given, and those who accept the invitation are justified. You are saved at the point of justification.
Sanctification is the process during which we are made into the likeness of Christ through the work of the Holy Spirit (2 Thessalonians 2:13-14). The struggle of the sin nature and the work of the Spirit is embodied in Paul’s struggles (Romans 7:19). The Spirit calls us and convicts us to be more like Christ, but the flesh pulls us in the direction of sin. The struggle between flesh and spirit as we are sanctified is a battle won at the cross (Galatians 2:20-21).
Glorification is the final step in which the flesh officially loses the battle. We receive new bodies and the physical matches the spirit. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; 1 Corinthians 15:51; Revelation 4:4). We are clothed in white and the stain of sin is removed (Isaiah1:18).
The complete work of salvation allows us to become free from the bondage of sin through the processes of justification, sanctification, and glorification.
We believe angels are created by God (Nehemiah 9:6; Colossians 1:16) and are spiritual beings (Hebrews 1:13-14). They, as spiritual beings, are not bound by the physical boundaries of space (Genesis 28:12). They exist in multiple categories: Cherubim (Ezekiel 10; Psalms 99:1; Genesis 3:24), Seraphim (Isaiah 6:2-6), and Archangel (Daniel 10:13; Jude 9).
Some angels are named: Michael the Archangel (Jude 1:9), Gabriel (Luke 1:19), and Lucifer (Isaiah 14:12). Cherubim appear to be guardians. As Genesis 3:24 states, Cherubim are placed outside Eden as guardians. Ezekiel writes about Satan as once a guardian Cherub in Eden (Ezekiel 28: 12-16). The Archangel (Jude 9) appears to also be a Cherub in his contention with Satan over the body of Moses. Cherubim also appear as guardians around the throne of God (Ezekiel 10). There may be more than one archangel as an unnamed archangel shouts at the rapture of the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:16)
Seraphim, however, are only referred to in Isaiah 6 and are concerned with the holiness before God (Isaiah 6:2,6). Seraphim means “burning ones.” They may also be depicted in 2 Kings 6: 17-18 the moment Elisha opens the eyes of his servant. The servant sees an unnamed angel. This is only a potential possibility from context. Gabriel appears as a messenger of God, providing insight to future events (Daniel 8:16; Luke 1:19). Though not physical beings, they are described as looking like men when they appear to mankind (Genesis 18:2; Daniel 10:16; Luke 24:4).
We believe that demons appear to be the fallen angels who followed Satan/Lucifer after he fell from Heaven (Revelation 12:7-9). They serve him by helping to lead man away from God, creating false doctrines (1 Timothy 4:1) and tormenting mankind through possession (Matthew 8:28-34). They assist in the spiritual war over man’s soul (Ephesians 6:12). Some of the fallen angels appear to have been cast into Hell before the time of the flood for their sin (1Peter 4:12). This may be in reference to the Nephilim and unnatural relations with women (Genesis 6:2) just as the Sons of God is a reference in the Old Testament to angels (Job 38:7).
We believe that the Lord, Jesus Christ instituted two ordinances for the church: the full-immersion water baptism of believers and the Lord’s Supper (Matthew 28:19; Luke 22:19-20; Acts 2:38; I Corinthians 11:23-26).
We believe the Church is made up of those who have repented from their sin and accepted the sacrifice of Christ. They are justified by their faith and are being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. Every individual who does that is brought into the Body, as a member of the bride of Christ (Romans 12:5; Matthew 25:1-13). The Church was born on Pentecost (Acts Chapter 2) to the Jew and expanded to the Gentile in Acts Chapter 10. Thus fulfilling Jesus’ promise to Peter (Matthew 16:18) to be the rock on which Jesus would build his Church. As Peter preached the message at Pentecost, three thousand men were brought into the Church in Jerusalem. He was the first one to expand the Church to the Gentiles when he baptized Cornelius. This happened in the order Jesus described, to the Jew first, then to the Gentile (Acts 1:8).
The Church is separate from the promises of Israel (Ruth chapter 4). Boaz (representative of Christ), the kinsman-redeemer, married a Gentile bride, Ruth (representative of the Church), and redeemed the land for Naomi (Representative of Israel). The Church and Israel have separate destinies, though the Church was grafted in (Romans 11:17). The promises to Abraham and his Covenant were unconditional (Genesis 15) and God’s promises to Israel will be fulfilled (Romans 9-11; Revelation: 6-18; Zechariah 14:4; Daniel 9:27). That process started with the rebirth of Israel in one day, which allowed the return of the people to the land and the return of prosperous vegetation (Isaiah 66:8; Ezekiel 36-37).
Leadership in The church
We believe in the pattern and principle of male leadership and responsibility in both the home and the church, according to original creation (Genesis 2) confirmed in the Curse (Genesis 3:16) followed by the sacrificial example of Jesus, and reaffirmed in the New Testament writing of Paul (1 Timothy 6:1-7; Ephesians 5:22-33). We believe this limits the role of Elder to qualified men (I Corinthians 11:1-12).
End Times: Eschatology
We believe in the pre-millennial, pre-tribulation, and futurist view of eschatology. This means, we believe in a literal one-thousand-year reign of Christ in the future after his return, as described in Revelation 19&20. That event is still future, and there will be a rapture of the Church (Harpazo in the Greek / 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) before the tribulation period, or Daniel’s seventieth week (Daniel 9:27).
This interpretation seems to be the most logically consistent with all of Scripture and the reading of Revelation. The Book of Revelation gives us its own key (Revelation 1:19) when Jesus orders John to write what he has seen (Chapter 1 the vision of glorified Christ), what is (Revelation Chapters 2 and 3 The Church age), and what is yet to come (“Meta Tauta” in the Greek) (Revelation 4-22 The future Tribulation period, return of Christ, millennial kingdom, and eternity)
The end of the Church age will come when the full number of the Gentiles has come in (Romans 11:25). God’s attention will be shifting back to primarily Israel and Israel’s redemption. When the Church age ends, we believe the rapture will take place and God will remove the righteous before the coming judgment of the 7-year tribulation period. This fits the patterns of Scripture. Just as Enoch was raptured and removed before the coming judgment of the flood (Genesis 5:24; Hebrews 11:5), Lot was removed before the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19). Scripture also tells us that the man of lawlessness cannot be revealed until the restrainer is removed (2 Thessalonians 2:6-8). The restrainer can be interpreted as the Holy Spirit, which dwells in the Church. The Church must be removed before the man of lawlessness is revealed. Revelation 6:1-2 details the first seal being opened on the scroll, which begins the Tribulation. With the opening of the first seal, the “Anti-Christ” appears. He is a rider on a white horse, but his crown is not a diadem; it is a victor’s crown. The “Anti-Christ” appears like Christ, on a white horse, but is an impostor because he does not have a royal crown. This is further confirmed when the twenty-four elders are in Heaven in Revelation 4. This begins with the Greek phrase, “meta tauta” as the scrolls are being opened. Revelation 4:4 describes the twenty-four elders as being dressed in white and wearing crowns. This fits descriptions of the Church that Jesus gave in Revelation Chapters 2 and 3. In Revelation 5:9, the elders worship Jesus, claiming that He has redeemed “us.” This further solidifies the identification of the twenty-four elders representing the Church. The Church is the only entity that Jesus has redeemed by His blood. If the Church is present before the seals are opened, the Church is in Heaven before the Tribulation period starts.
The following 7 year judgment known as the tribulation period, or Daniel’s seventieth week or the time of Jacob’s trouble (Daniel 9:27; Jeremiah 30:7), is detailed in Revelation 6-18. It culminates with the return of Christ (Revelation 19), where He will reign for one thousand years (Revelation 20:4-6). Though there is a lot of symbolism in the book of Revelation, I take this to be literal. The symbolism in Revelation is either defined by John, the author, (ex. the seven lampstands are the Churches (Revelation 1:20) and the Dragon is Satan (Revelation 12:9)) or is defined by parallels to the Old Testament. For example, the woman with the sun, moon, and the twelve stars (Revelation 12:1) is representative of Israel. The parallel is drawn from Joseph’s dream (Genesis 37:9) as Jacob (Israel) and his sons (the heads of the 12 tribes) are pictures as the sun, the moon, and the stars bow to Joseph. They ultimately do when Joseph ends up ruling Egypt and the family flees there to avoid famine. This means we can separate the symbolism from the literal through knowledge of the Old Testament. Since the only reference to one thousand years is 2 Peter 3:8 and Psalm 90:4 where one day is like a thousand years and a thousand years is like a day to God, the second coming of Christ is often referred to in the Old Testament as the Day of the Lord (Amos 5:18; Ezekiel 30:3; Zephaniah 1:14; Joel 3:14). We can assume the thousand years is literally one thousand years.