Within Christianity it is not hard to find many different beliefs; we do not believe it should be this way. God’s Word is our manual in everything, and differences His followers have in how to interpret His Word come exclusively from our own human frailties, not from flaws within His Word. It is important to note that it is God’s very Spirit, the Holy Spirit, who lives inside of us is our teacher (John 14:6). That said, listed below are our positional statements on several fundamental truths:
1. The Scriptures Inspired
The Scriptures—both the Old and New Testaments—are verbally inspired of God and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct (2 Timothy 3:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21).
2. The One True God
The one true God has revealed Himself as the eternally self-existent, “I AM,” the Creator of heaven and earth and the Redeemer of mankind. He has further revealed Himself as embodying the principles of relationship and association as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost (Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 43:10,11; Matthew 28:19; Luke 3:22).
3. The Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ
The Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. The Scriptures declare:
- His virgin birth (Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:31, 35).
- His sinless life (Hebrews 7:26; 1 Peter 2:22).
- His miracles (Acts 2:22, 10:38)
- His substitutionary work on the cross (1 Corinthians 15:3; 2 Corinthians 5:21)
- His bodily resurrection from the dead (Matthew 28:6).
- His exaltation to the right hand of God (Acts 1:9, 11; 2:33; Philippians 2:9-11; Hebrews 1:3)
4. The Fall of Man
Man was created good and upright; for God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” However, man by voluntary transgression fell and thereby incurred not only physical death, but also spiritual death, which is separation from God (Genesis 1:26,27; 2:17; 3:6; Romans 5:12-19).
5. The Salvation of Man
Man’s only hope of redemption is through the shed blood of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
- Conditions to Salvation. Salvation is received through repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. By the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghost, being justified by grace through faith, man becomes an heir of God according to the hope of eternal life (Luke 24:47; John 3:3; Romans 10:13-15; Romans 10:9-10 Ephesians 2:8; Titus 2:11; 3:5-7).
- The Evidences of Salvation. The inward evidence of salvation is the direct witness of the Spirit (Romans 8:16). The outward evidence to all men is a life of repentance and true holiness (Ephesians 4:24; Titus 2:12).
6. Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality
We affirm that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female, and that these two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God (Genesis 2:18-25).
We believe that God created marriage to be exclusively the union of one man and one woman, and that intimate sexual activity is to occur exclusively within that union (1 Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4).
7. The Ordinances of the Church
- Baptism in Water. The ordinance of baptism by immersion is commanded in the Scriptures. All who repent and believe on Christ as Savior and Lord are to be baptized. Thus they declare to the world that they have died with Christ and that they also have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life (Matthew 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 10:47, 48; Romans 6:4).
- The Lord’s Supper, consisting of the elements—bread and the fruit of the vine—is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:4); a memorial of his suffering and death (1 Corinthians 11:26); a prophecy of His Second Coming (1Corinthians 11:26); and is enjoined on all believers “till He comes!”
8. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit
All believers are entitled to and should ardently expect and earnestly seek the promise of the Father, the Baptism in the Holy Ghost and fire, according to the command of our Lord Jesus Christ. This was the normal experience for all in the early Christian church. With it comes the endowment of power for life and service, the bestowing of the gifts and their uses in the work of the ministry (Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4,8; 1 Corinthians 12:1-31). This experience is distinct from and subsequent to the experience of the new birth (Acts 8:12-17; 10: 44-46; 11:14-16; 15:7-9). With the baptism in the Holy Ghost come such experiences as an overflowing fullness of the Spirit (John 7:37-39; Acts 4:8), a deepened reverence for God (Acts 2:43; Hebrews 12:28), an intensified consecration to God and dedication to His work (Acts 2:42), and a more active love for Christ, for His Word and for the lost (Mark 16:20).
9. The Evidence of the Baptism in the Holy Ghost
The baptism of believers in the Holy Ghost is witnessed by the Biblical evidence of speaking with other tongues as the Spirit of God gives them utterance (Acts 2:4). The speaking in tongues in this instance is the same in essence as the gift of tongues (1 Corinthians 12:4-10, 28), but different in purpose and use.
Sanctification is an act of separation from that which is evil and of dedication unto God (Romans 12:1,2; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews 13:12). The Scriptures teach a life of “holiness without which no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). By the power of the Holy Ghost we are able to obey the command: “Be ye holy, for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:15, 16).
The believer is sanctified by recognizing his identification with Christ in His death and resurrection, and by faith relying daily upon the fact of that union, and by offering every faculty continually to the dominion of the Holy Spirit (Romans 6:1-11,13; 8:1,2,13; Galatians 2:20; Philippians 2:12,13; 1 Peter 1:5).
11. The Church
The Church is the Body of Christ, the habitation of God through the Spirit, with divine appointments for the fulfillment of her great commission. Each believer, born of the Spirit, is an integral part of the General Assembly and Church of the Firstborn, which are written in heaven (Ephesians 1:22,23; 2:22; Hebrews 12:23).
Since God’s purpose concerning man is to seek and to save that which is lost, to be worshipped by man, and to build a body of believers in the image of His son, our priority reason for being is:
- To be an agency of God for evangelizing the world (Acts 1:8; Matthew 28:19,20; Mark 16:15,16).
- To be a corporate body in which man may worship God (1 Corinthians 12:13).
- To be a channel for God’s purpose of building a body of saints being perfected in the image of His Son (Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Corinthians 12:28; 14:12).
Tried Stone Christian Center exists expressly to give continuing emphasis to this reason for being in the New Testament apostolic pattern, by teaching and encouraging believers to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. This experience:
- Enables them to evangelize in the power of the Spirit with accompanying supernatural signs (Mark 16:15-20; Acts 4:29-31; Hebrews 2:3,4).
- Adds a necessary dimension to a worshipful relationship with God (1 Corinthians 2: 10-16; 1 Corinthians 12-14).
- Enables them to respond to the full working of the Holy Spirit in their expression of fruit and gifts and ministries as in New Testament times for the edifying of the body of Christ (Galatians 5:22-26; 1 Corinthians 12:28; 14:12; Ephesians 4:11,12; Colossians 1:29).
12. The Ministry
A divinely called and scripturally ordained ministry has been provided by our Lord for a two-fold purpose: (1) The evangelization of the world, and (2) The edification of the body of Christ (Mark 16:15-20; Ephesians 4:11-13).
13. Divine Healing
Divine healing is an integral part of the gospel. Deliverance from sickness is provided for in the atonement, and is the privilege of all believers (Isaiah 53:4,5; Matthew 8:16,17; James 5:14-16).
14. The Blessed Hope
The resurrection of those who have fallen asleep in Christ and their translation together with those who are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord is the imminent and blessed hope of the Church (1 Thessalonians 4:16,17; Romans 8:23; Titus 2:13; 1 Corinthians 15:51,52).
15. The Millennial Reign of Christ
The Second Coming of Christ includes the rapture of the saints, which is our blessed hope, followed by the visible return of Christ with His saints to reign on the earth for one thousand years (Zechariah 14:5; Matthew 24:27,30; Revelation 1:7; 19:11-14; 20:1-6). This millennial reign will bring the salvation of national Israel (Ezekiel 37: 21,22; Zephaniah 3:19-20; Romans 11:26-27) and the establishment of universal peace (Isaiah 11:6-9; Psalms 72:3-8; Micah 4:3,4).
16. The Final Judgment
There will be a final judgment in which the wicked dead will be raised and judged according to their works. Whosoever is not found written in the Book of Life, together with the devil and his angels, the beast and the false prophet, will be consigned to everlasting punishment in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death (Matthew 25:46; Mark 9:43-48; Revelation 19:20; 20:11-15; 21:8).
17. The New Heavens and the New Earth
“We, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness” (2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21-22).