We align with historic, orthodox Christianity in our assent to the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, and we use a couple of more specific statements to describe some of our other beliefs. You will find our Church Covenant below, in addition to a working draft of our Statement of Faith, which we hope to reaffirm in January 2019. We hope this gives you a broad sense of where we lean in our beliefs. If you have questions about any of this, please get in touch!
As we trust we have been brought by divine grace to embrace the Lord Jesus Christ and, by the influence of His Spirit, to give up ourselves to Him, so we do solemnly covenant with each other, as God shall enable us, to walk together in brotherly love;
That we will exercise a Christian care and watchfulness over each other
and faithfully warn, rebuke, and admonish our brethren, as the case shall require;
That we will not forsake the assembling of ourselves together,
nor omit the great duty of prayer, both for ourselves and for others;
That we will participate in each other’s joys
and endeavor, with tenderness and sympathy, to bear each other’s burdens and sorrows;
That we will seek divine aid to enable us to walk circumspectly and watchfully in the world,
denying ungodliness and every worldly lust;
That we will strive together for the support of a faithful evangelical ministry among us;
And through life, amidst evil report and good report we will seek to live to the glory of Him who hath called us out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Adopted May 1840 – Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Statement of Faith
Adapted from the New Hampshire Confession of Faith (1833) and the Middle Street Baptist Church Statement of Faith (1840)
Having been enabled, through God’s divine grace, to give ourselves to the Lord, and likewise to one another, we deem it a duty, for the honor of Christ and the glory of his name, to make the following declaration of our faith and practice; knowing that “with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (Romans 10:10)
We believe that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament are the word of God—wholly inspired by God, true, authoritative, powerful, and beautiful—and the only rule of faith and practice.
(Joshua 1:8; Psalm 19:7–11; Psalm 119; Proverbs 30:5–6; 2 Timothy 3:16–17; 2 Peter 3:15–16)
We believe in one living and true God who has revealed himself to us and who eternally exists as three distinct persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These are the same in essence, equal in divine perfection, and execute distinct but harmonious offices in his work.
(Deuteronomy 6:4; Psalm 83:18; Matthew 3:16–17; John 4:24; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Ephesians 2:18)
We believe that God created everything that exists, and it was good; that he created all people in his image as holy; that we fell from that happy and holy state through voluntary sin, and all people are now sinners by choice; that by nature we are without that holiness which is required by God. Being wholly given to sin, we stand therefore under just condemnation.
(Genesis 1:27, 31; 2:16–17; 3:6–24; 6:12; Psalm 51:5; Isaiah 53:6; Romans 3:9–20; Ephesians 2:1–3)
We believe that before the world began, God planned salvation for all who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit.
(Isaiah 53:4–5; John 1:1–14; Titus 1:2)
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, being set up from everlasting as the Mediator of the new covenant, became the surety of His people. In the fullness of time he assumed human nature, being at once fully human and fully divine. Completely without sin, he obeyed the law of God perfectly. He suffered death in our stead and thereby made atonement for sin, which the just law of God required. On the third day he rose from the dead, affording all those who believe in him freedom from sin and new, eternal life.
(Isaiah 53:4–5; John 3:3, 16; Romans 5:6; 10:9–10; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Galatians 4:4–5; 1 John 4:10)
We believe that the eternal redemption, which Christ has obtained by the shedding of His blood and His resurrection, is sufficient for all people and offered to all people; but that it is effective only to those who repent and believe in Him.
(Acts 13:48; Romans 5:18; 11:32; Galatians 2:20–21; 2 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 7:25; 9:13–15)
We believe that the justification of believers is only by faith in the righteousness of Christ being imputed to them; and that the full and free pardon of sins and promise of new life is granted only through the merits of Christ, according to the riches of divine grace, and not through their own works of righteousness.
(Genesis 15:6; Isaiah 53:11–12; Romans 1:17; 4:13–25; Galatians 3:11–14; Ephesians 2:8–9)
We believe that the work of regeneration, conversion, justification, and sanctification is the work of God through the Holy Spirit, which is carried out in perfect consistency with human freedom.
(Exodus 33:18–19; Isaiah 42:16; Jeremiah 31:3; Acts 13:48; Romans 11:33–36; James 1:17–18)
We believe that the Holy Spirit progressively sanctifies all Christians; that we are called to participate in his work by attention to the Word of God, self-examination, self-denial, watchfulness, and prayer; and that the mark of a true Christian is joyful obedience to God, sacrificial love for neighbors, and continual growth in the fruit of the Spirit.
(Matthew 7:13–27; 22:34–40; Romans 12:1–2; Galatians 5:16–26; 1 Thessalonians 4:1–12; 2 Peter 3:14)
We believe that nothing can finally separate true believers from the love of God; but that they will be kept by his mighty power unto eternal salvation.
(Job 17:9; Psalm 121:3; John 10:28–29; Romans 8:28, 38–39; Philippians 1:6; 2:12–13; Jude 24)
We believe that Christian baptism is the immersion in water of a believer, into the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; that it is the testimony of our faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Christ and of our death to sin and resurrection to new life; that it is prerequisite to the privileges of a church relation; and that the Lord’s table, at which we commemorate together the dying love of Christ, is open to all who have professed faith in Christ.
(Matthew 28:19–20; Acts 2:38, 41–42; 8:12, 35–38; Romans 6:4; 1 Corinthians 11:17–34)
We believe that it is our duty to assemble ourselves together continually in order to worship by attending to the preached word, offering up our prayers and thanksgivings, and by singing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs.
(Luke 4:16; Acts 2:42–47; 17:2; Ephesians 5:19; Philippians 4:6–7; Hebrews 10:25)
We believe that Christ will come a second time with great power and glory; that there will be a general resurrection and day of final judgment when all shall be judged according to the deeds done in the body; and that then those who shall be found unreconciled to God shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous shall be received into his kingdom and glory, and so shall they ever reign with the Lord.
(Daniel 12:2; 2 Corinthians 5:6–10; 1 Peter 4:7; Revelation 20:11–15; 21:3, 7–8, 27; 22:5)
We believe that God is powerful and victorious over sin, death, suffering, and evil; that he will establish a new heaven and a new earth; that he will dwell with us in endless joy and peace; that he will be the eternal light and life of his people; and that Jesus will reign forever in his everlasting kingdom.
(John 1:4; Philippians 2:9–11; Revelation 11:15; 19:6; 20:11–12; 21:1–7, 22–27; 22:1–5, 14, 17)