What We Believe

For any institution to work in harmony it must be reared and grounded in faithful truths that its members are unified in following.  We do not use any creeds, profession of faiths or doctrines crafted through councils or negotiations between men. We believe that God has provided these truths through the revelation of His word through the Bible. Our Lord Jesus told Peter than on his confession he would build his church and the gates of hell would not prevail against it (Matthew 16:18). Notice the church is singular not plural. Moses warned the children of Israel regarding false prophets (teachers) and idolaters to take heed and not to be enticed by family or a friend who they love as their own soul by disregarding the Lord’s commandments by following after idolatry or false teachings (Deuteronomy 13:5).  Isaiah says that God’s thoughts are neither ours nor our ways His (Isaiah 55:8).  Likewise, Paul corrected the church at Corinth on divisions.  He admonished them to “speak the same thing” and have no divisions among them (1 Corinthians 1:10).  He further revealed how they were carnal for there was envy, strife and divisions among them (chapter 3:3).  But the foundation he built upon was Jesus and man must be careful how to build upon it (verses10-11).  We believe in searching the scriptures to form our beliefs based upon contextual support and harmony in light of the entire scriptures. The following are some of the truths that this body of believers affirm in regards to what Paul spoke when the church builds upon the foundation of Jesus Christ and him crucified.

We Believe that there is a God and He Created the Heavens and Earth:

The heavens and the earth were created by God and are not a result of a big bang explosion or evolution.  Even science acknowledges that at no time did something ever come from nothing. We must conclude that something has always existed.  Could the world and life come into existence by their selves?  Or, is it even provable that non-intelligent matter simply brought forth life from non-life without any assistance or intellect?  A rational individual can only conclude, no; for the Bible tells us in Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” David tells us in Psalms 14:1, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God.” Paul writes to the Romans in Romans 1:19-22, “Because that which may be know of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, either were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.”  We see that God says He has shown Himself to man and it is clearly visible through creation and is understandable.  Thus, man has NO defense in not believing.  God through the prophet Isaiah in chapter 44:6 states, “Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his Redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last, and besides me there is no God.”  A careful reasoning of the matter reveals that life was not haphazard through an evolutionary process.  It was a specific, relational plan resulting from a careful design by a wise and powerful God who place value on His creation and its life. Hebrews 11:3 tells us that, “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” Thus God has revealed Himself to us by the evidences found in creation and His inspired word contained within the Bible.

We Believe that the Bible is the Complete, Inspired Word of God and is How He Communicates With to Us Today:

Since we have established there is a God and we are His creation, we know that He communicates to us through His word, and that word was penned over the centuries as the Holy Spirit guided the prophets and apostles.  God no longer speaks to man as He did in the past but “in these last days have spoken unto us by His son” (Hebrews 1:2).  The Jews were astonished in the first century from the manner in which Jesus taught for he spoke as one having authority (Matthew 7:28-29).  Jesus told his disciples that “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth” (Matthew 28:19).  Jesus told his disciples that He would send the Comforter to them, the Spirit of truth; he will guide them in all truth because he will speak not of himself but things from God (John 16:7-13).  Even though the Bible was written by man we know that these men where guided by the Holy Spirit and was not of any private interpretation. Their words did not come by the will of man but by these holy men that were moved by the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:20-21).  Jesus asked God to “sanctify them through thy truth, thy word is truth” (John 17:17).  Therefore, the Bible claims that all scripture is given by inspiration of God, meaning “God-breathed” for our learning which equips man unto all good works (2 Timothy 3:16-17).  However, we are charged to study this word to be approved of God in order to rightly understand and follow the word of truth (2 Timothy 2:15).  We commit ourselves to studying this word as the word of truth not as words of men (1 Thessalonians (2:13), with all readiness of mind so we can reason with one another as the Bereans (Acts 17:11).  We are instructed to contend for the faith as it, the word of God, has once and for all been delivered (Jude 3). Thus, there are no new revelations that God is speaking to someone today or in the future.

We Believe that His Will for Us Today is Found in the New Testament and Intended for Us to Obey:

We “do believe” the Old Testament was given of God and is meant for our learning (Romans 15:4; 1 Corinthians 10:11) but we understand that the “Old Law” was our tutor to bring us to Christ.  The first law could never redeem man (Hebrews 9:11-14). The first covenant (Old Law/ Testament) ended and the second covenant (New Law/Testament) began when Jesus died on the cross as a perfect sacrifice on our behalf ( Colossians 2:14).

Since the Old Law was taken away, the New Testament provides us with examples and instructions that Christ revealed to his disciples (John 14:26). Furthermore, Christ showed us the truth behind God’s love towards us in His commandants that in order for His creation to be reconciled to him, he gave the perfect sacrifice, His Son, by which we are made prefect if we keep His commandments (Colossians 1:20-22).  We know that even though Jesus was the son of God, he had to learn obedience by the things which he suffered (Hebrews 5:7-8).  If Christ was expected to be obedient, why would we think that God wouldn’t expect us to be obedient (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9)?  James tells us to look into the perfect law of liberty (James 2:12). These books guide and direct our hearts in learning the mind of God so we do not find these commandants burdensome (1 John 5:3). 

The Hebrew writer tells us to hold fast to the faith by adhering to sound words without wavering (Hebrews 10:23) so that by sound doctrine which we were taught allows us to exhort and convince the gainsayers (Titus 1:9). 

We Believe that God Provided Specific Instructions How We Are to Become Reconciled (Saved):

There have always been religious bodies who have indicated different ways that a sinner can become saved.  God has never allowed man to determine how he was to become reconciled to Him.  Jeremiah says that it is not in the way of man who walks to determine his steps (Jeremiah 10:23). God has always provided a specific pattern for redemption.  In the Old Testament there were various laws and ordinances given to Moses for Israel to adhere.  But once the Old was dissolved, because of the perfect sacrifice of Christ, his instructions supersede any previous ordinance.  Thus, salvation comes by the blood of Christ and if man is to be redeemed today, they must not be disobedient to the heavenly instruction (Acts 26:19).  Luke tells us in Acts 4:12 that salvation is only found in the name of Jesus. You can look high and low in the scriptures and you will not find where a sinner’s prayer and belief alone puts a person in a saved state. Believing in God and Christ is just one of the steps a person must take in their walk towards becoming a child of God. So then, what is the Biblical pattern?

First, we must hear what God has to say.  How do we do that?  We look into the word of God and listen to what God has instructed in that word.  Paul asked the church at Rome how could someone call upon someone for salvation if they haven’t believed or how can they believe if they haven’t heard (Romans 10:13-14).  In order to obtain faith one must hear the word of God (Romans 10:17).  The Hebrew writer shows us the power of God’s word in that it is sharper than a doubled-edge sword so that it penetrates the soul and spirit to expose the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). Now hearing the word of God we develop faith so that we can believe on him which allows us to seek the salvation made available through the blood of Christ.  So the first step in becoming a Christian must entail hearing.

Jesus told Nicodemus that those who believe upon the Son of man will have eternal life (John 3:15-16).  John the Baptist speaking of Jesus said he was sent from above and speaks the words of God and the Father loves the Son and put all things in his hand.  Those that believe on him live eternally and those that don’t will obtain the wrath of God (John 3:34-36).   Paul tells us that God declared His righteousness by His grace through the propitiation of faith in Christ for the remission of our sins that we might be justified if we believe on Him (Romans 3:24-16).  Paul tells the people at Athens that they should seek the Lord (Acts 17:27). The writer of the book of Hebrews expands this even further by professing that we must come to God for we cannot please Him unless we believe that He is and an awarder of those who diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6).  You see, belief is more than just saving “I believe”.  We must seek God and be earnestly searching Him out because James tells us that even the devils believe but tremble (James 2:19).  But the most compelling argument is that God commands us to believe on His Son, Jesus Christ (I John 3:23).  So those who say that all of a sudden we believe on God because He had preordained who was to believe should re-examine what we established in the first step that in order to believe we must hear God’s word.

Once a person hears the word of God and sincerely believes, the next thing a person will do is to confess their belief.  Confession works hand and hand with believing for if a person believes in something then they are going to profess what they believe to others.  If everyone has sinned and fallen short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23), and we have, then an individual who reads what God explains is transgression of His will and then believes will become convicted of these sins. Thus, they will acknowledge the need to confess these sins.  We know that when all the area of Judea went forth to John the Baptist to be baptized they confessed their sins (Matthew 3:6).  Jesus said that those that confess him before men, he will likewise confess them to God but if we confess not before men, he will not confess us to the Father (Matthew 10:32-33).  Paul explains that by confessing with our mouths and believing we shall be saved (Romans 10:10).  Finally, Paul says that every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus is Lord (Philippians 2:10-11).

So as an individual becomes aware of their sins because they believe that Jesus is the Son of God after hearing the word of God, they confess these sins and now they know that they must change the way they have been living.  This is a natural progress in understanding and building their faith in God.  As they look into the prefect law of liberty they see that even John the Baptist said to bring forth fruits meet for repentance (Matthew 3:8).  So we become convicted to turn from our former lives towards the life that Christ expects his disciples to follow.  Peter said that we need to repent and be converted that our sins may be blotted out (Acts 3:19).  Paul speaking in Athens said that God winked in the past of ignorance towards Him but now commands everyone everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30).  Repentance is more than just saying we are sorry.  God expects that our repentance to be so heartfelt that it is a repentance of Godly sorrow that works to our salvation (2 Corinthians 7:10).  Thus, Peter reveals that God is not slow to carry out his promises but he patiently desires that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).  Notice God expects all, not a predetermined or selected group.

Having repented of our sins because of the word of God that caused us to believe in his Son and thereby confessing those sins we have repented of, we understand and know that we must be baptized into his death.  Yes, we believe in the essentiality of baptism for an individual to be saved.  The Bible is clear.  Many will say that baptism is a work.  This is far from the truth of the gospel.  Baptism is not a work but how we get into Christ and his death (Romans 6:3).  Baptism is no more a work than believing.  Jesus told the people who asked what they needed to do in order to do the works of God, they must believe on him who He sent as believing is the works of God (John 6:29).  Believing as well as baptism are things we are instructed by God to show forth in order to be reconciled to Him.  Peter on the day of Pentecost told those who had been convicted when they heard the truth that everyone must repent and be baptized for the remission of their sins (Acts 2:38).  You see they heard, believed, confess they had sinned and then those that gladly received the word were baptized (Acts 2:41).  Philip taught the Ethiopian eunuch from the book of Isaiah about Jesus.  When they came upon water he said here’s water what hinders him from being baptized.  Philip said if he believed with all his heart he may (Acts 8:32-37).  And so, they went down into the water and he was baptized (Acts 8:38). This is example of applying necessary inference for immersion.  They were in a desert, if baptism is not essential to salvation why did the eunuch want to be baptized if it were not required?  When Jesus appear to Saul on the road to Damascus he told him to go into the city when he had blinded him and he would be told what he must do (Acts 9:6).  That must do was told to him by Ananias, baptize (Acts 9:18; Acts 22:16). When Peter was called to Cornelius he asked how they could forbid water since they had received the Holy Ghost and commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord (Acts 10:44-48).  Finally, Jesus told Nicodemus that unless a man is born of water and of the spirit there is no entrance into the kingdom of God (John 3:5).  He also stated those who believeth and are baptized shall be saved (Mark 16:16).  When we reflect on these verses which indicates what we must do and those which command us to be baptized we can only conclude that baptism is essential unto salvation. Baptism is an immersion, not a sprinkling or pouring over the head.  When John was baptising in the River Arneon he did that because here was much water (John 3:23).  Baptism is a burial so in order for a body to be buried it must be covered and that element is water (Romans 6:3). 

The last thing we must do in order to be saved is faithfulness.  Many today teach that once we are saved we are always saved.  Again, that is a teaching that is in opposition to that taught in God’s holy and divine word.  Paul told the Romans that we are not in the flesh but in the Spirit if we let the Spirit of God dwell inside us; so if the Spirit doesn’t dwell in us we are none of his (Romans 8:9).  He is speaking to Christians here so he uses if and means that we can, even as Christians, choose for the Spirit of God not to live within us.  Paul told the church at Corinth not to keep company with a brother if he be a fornicator, covetous, an idolater, railer, drunkard or an extortioner.  He instructs the church to remove that wicked brother from among them (I Corinthians 5:11-13).  Notice if the brother needs to be removed from the church, is the brother in a saved state?  He also told them he brought his body unto subjection lest he be a castaway and chastened them to take heed from falling (I Corinthians 9:27; 10:12).  Paul also declared unto them the gospel that if they kept it in memory they were saved (I Corinthians 15:1-2).  Paul asked the church at Galatia who had deceived them why they no longer obeyed the truth (Galatians 3:1).  Can one still be in a saved state if they are no longer obeying the truth? He also tells them to stand fast in the liberty of Christ which had made us free (Galatians 5:1).  If we don’t stand fast in the liberty of Christ are we saved?  No, because Christ is become of no value to us and we are fallen from grace (Galatians 5:4).  Paul also spoke to the church at Colossae that we are unblamable and unreprovable in his sight if we continue in the faith (Colossians 1:22-23).   Paul told Timothy that the end of the commandment is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a faith unfeigned which some have turned aside (1Timothy 1:5-6).  The necessary inference here is they no longer stand righteous before God and if not righteous, not saved, if they continue down that path. He encourages Timothy to be committed to the things he has entrusted for some have erred concerning the faith (1 Timothy 6:20-21).  The Hebrew writer cautions the Jewish Christians to guard their hearts lest there are any with an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God.  But exhort one other daily unless they find themselves hardened through the deceitfulness of sin in order to be partakers of Christ if we continue steadfastly unto the end (Hebrews 3:12-14).  Peter tells us that we need to be diligent to make our election sure for if we do we shall never fall (2 Peter 1:10).  He further reinforces this by saying that it would be worse for those who returned to unrighteous living after having knowledge of the truth (2 Peter 2:20-21).  He closes his letter by telling us to be careful that we are not turned away with the error of the wicked and fall from our steadfastness (2 Peter 3:17).  Christ himself says that we need to listen to what the Spirit said to the churches that we should be faithful unto death (Revelations 2:10).

Friends, with a careful study of the God’s holy and divine word, we can see that all these we have discuss, an individual must do, in order to be justified in God’s sight.  You cannot leave out one from the other.  A closer look at God’s word shows that we need to hear, believe, confess, repent, be baptized and remain faithful to death in order to receive a crown of life.  None of these are a work but are commandments from God.  Man cannot save himself by any work as all have sinned.  It took the perfect sinless life of Christ and the seed of man combined to be the perfect sacrifice on our behalf (Hebrews 2:15-17).

We Believe the Use of Instrumental Music in Worship is Not Authorized in the Scriptures:

There are a lot of religious bodies today along with some of our progressive and liberal brethren who teach and accept the use of instrumental music in worship today.  We do not agree nor practice this ideology.  There is no defensible position a Christian can make from the New Testament which can support the use of instrumental music in worship.  There are no passages which directly or indirectly support their use. Peter instructs us that we must speak with the oracles of God (1Peter 4:11).  Now since there is no direct commandment in scripture for use of mechanical instruments in worship, we can only use two other forms of support in authoritative direction.  We must have a thus sayeth passage (commandment), an apostolic example or a necessary inference to support any practice in worship.  Paul tells Timothy that in latter times some will depart from the faith because of seducing spirits and doctrines (1Timothy 4:1).  He continues by telling him to put these things to the remembrance of the brethren by nourishing the words of faith based on good doctrine (1 Timothy 4:6), and to command and teach these things (1 Timothy 4:11).  In his last epistle to Timothy he exhorts him to preach the word with long suffering and doctrine because some will not endure sound doctrine who will have itching ears and will appoint worldly teaches that will turn them from the truth (2 Timothy 4:1-4). Many try to support the use of instruments of music by citing the Old Testament.  While it is true you will find instrumental music in the temple, you will also find they performed animal sacrifices, burning incense and other items under the Mosaic Law.  What was lawful and exercised under the old law, we cannot use that defense to justify adding them into the New Testament worship.  This practice would defray the sufficiency of the New Testament and transgress the authority of Christ (Ephesians 1:21-22).  The Hebrew writer shows us the superiority of Christ over Moses (Hebrews 3:5-6) so to try and use the Old Testament in support of use of instrumental music shows the lack of knowledge in Christ’s authority.  Some say that it isn’t expressly forbidden in the New Testament.  This logic puts undo precedence on the silence of the scriptures by indicating more what the Bible doesn’t say as oppose to what it does say.  Can one practice anything the Bible doesn’t expletively forbid? God forbid.  Another argument used is that instrumental music is merely an expedient, an aid in worship, in song.  Instrumental music is not an aid but an addition to that expressed (Ephesians 5:19) by speaking to yourselves with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs making melody in your heart to the Lord. Thus, there is no New Testament scriptural reference that this pleases God.  The apostolic example here is singing not playing.  The use of instrumental music is therefore not an expedient but an unauthorized addition to worship (Revelations 22:19).  Another common claim is they use instrumental music in heaven.  Granted we can read in the book of Revelations where harps and trumpets are used but that is in heaven but the church is not in heaven, it is on earth.

What we must conclude is that in order to use mechanical instruments in worship we must have a commandment, apostolic example or necessary inference.  Under no circumstance can the use of instrumental music be supportive under any of these conditions.  Therefore, there is no authoritative support available for their use.  All truth was revealed to the apostles by the Holy Spirit (John 16:13) and, therefore, since we cannot tie instrumental music to one of the above examples, to use it would violate sound doctrine and worship practice.  There is no divine pattern in the New Testament for its use and therefore we make our worship vain if we introduce these into our worship.  Finally, we fail to walk by faith and practice in doing so (2 Corinthians 5:7).

We Believe That We Are to Observed the Lord’s Supper Each Lord’s Day Until He Returns:

The primary purpose the first century church assembled was to come together on the first day of the week and break bread (Acts 20:7). Today it seems that many churches only observe the Lord’s Supper on specific timeframes, holidays such as Easter, Christmas, etc. and timed dates; quarterly.  Many say the Bible does not specify the frequency of observing the Lord’s Supper so it gives us the lead way to determine when each church can feel comfortable without violating the divine memorial. This cannot be further from the truth.  The Bible does give us clear instruction for its freuquency of observance.  As we have already established, there are three ways to establish divine authority and example: command, apostolic example and necessary inference.  The Bible clearly uses both apostolic example and necessary inference to illustrate to the church on when we are to observe the Lord’s Supper. 

Luke tells us in Acts 20 that Paul had sailed from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread where he went to Troas in five days and abode for seven days.  Then upon the first day of the week the disciples gathered to break bread (vs. 6-7). Paul tells the church at Corinth that he had received of the Lord and conveyed unto them the instructions for observing His memorial feast (1 Corinthians 11:23).  Paul goes on to tell the church to follow the same instructions he gave the churches of Galatia that upon the first day of the week let everyone lay by him in store as God hath prospered (1 Corinthians 16:1-2).  We see the apostolic example of Paul instructing in these verses to the church on how often they were to come together and what they were to observe. Also, he states his instructions were commandments of the Lord and were to be done in decent order (1 Corinthians 14:37,40).  Luke tells us in Acts 2 that those who received the word and were baptized on Pentecost continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship and in breaking of bread. This too shows that they were instructed on what, when, where and how they were to observe the memorial instruction and where steadfast in its observance (Acts 2:41-42).

Now that we have looked at the apostolic example let’s apply the necessary inference in this matter.  Necessary inference is a truth that is deducted or inferred based on application of scripture.  In layman terms we draw conclusions from context of the scripture in how it is being applied or specified evidence used to draw that conclusion. Necessay inparts the meaning of inescapable – logical, unavoidable.  It means it cannot be denied without contradiction which is absolutely needed or essential to the matter being considered.

In Acts 20:7 as well as 1 Corinthians 16:1-2 we read “Upon the first day of week.”  The scriptures indicate the first day of week.  If the scriptures specified a specific week it would be one thing but it says the first day of the week.  Consider the instructions the Lord spoke unto Moses and Aaron concerning the Passover in Exodus 12.  They were to take a lamb on the tenth day of the first month and keep it until the fourteenth day which they were to kill and partake of it keeping it as a memorial throughout their generations.  Here we see specificity of a commandment on when they were to observe the feast. Likewise, since each week has a first day and since no single week was specified as such, the necessary inference must be drawn that the scripture is specifying each week.  In 2 Timothy 2:15, we must study to show ourselves approved of God.  The necessary inference here is not studying makes us disapproved of God, and we cannot rightly divide the word of truth. When the Eunuch say here’s water and they went down in to it, we must infer that a sufficient amount of water was necessary to be baptized or Philip would have simply used the water from the drinking container.  We use necessary inference in our secular lives.  When we use the facilities at a restaurant, we typically see a sign that says “Employees must wash their hands before returning to work.”  Is this just those that handle food or is it every employee?  Those employees as well as we must infer the sign means all employees not selected employees.

We Believe that Marriage is Between One Man and One Woman and Some Unions Instituted by Man are Unlawful to God:

Today we see society running to embrace a union contrary to what God has established in His holy word.  Because of the pressures of worldly-minded and liberal positions, our politicians and ministers of God’s word are moving farther away from God’s word by changing what constitutes the institution of marriage.  Significant erosions are being made into who may enter into the marriage bond.  Yes, marriage is a bond.   Paul asks the Corinthians if they are bound, “Deo” – Greek, to a wife not to seek to be freed (1 Corinthians 7:27).  “Deo” refers to an obligation by law, a binding; to be bounded to one, a wife, a husband.  Thus, a man and a woman are bound by law and this law is enforced as long as both live except in a case of adultery (Luke 16:18; Romans 7:2).

So let’s look to see how God defines marriage.  Man shall leave his parents and be joined unto his wife where they shall be one flesh (Genesis 2:24). Notice a man and wife, being woman (Genesis 2:22-23).  In verses 20 and 21 notice when Adam was giving names for the living creatures God created, he found no help meet for himself.  Nothing here about any other authorized form of union. Our Lord Jesus quotes from that point of the scriptures in Matthew 19:4-6 when questioned by the Pharisees regarding putting away a man’s wife.  Marriage is a lawful union where a man and wife cleave as one flesh by the will of God, and Christ states that what God joined man shall not divide. Mark also tells us that from the beginning God made both male and female and when joined in the marriage bond shall not be dissolved.  He goes on to add that if either put one another away, except for adultery, and are married to another, they commit adultery (Mark 10:1-12).  The disciples tell Jesus that if man cannot remarry after divorce except for adultery then it wasn’t good for man to marry. Jesus tells them that not everyone is a candidate for marriage, only those who can receive the constraints of the marriage bond (Matthew 19:10-12). Nowhere does Christ say that marriage is any other form besides that of a man and a woman and allowed to be put away and remarry another for any other reason than adultery. 

Considered what Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well when she came to draw water. Jesus speaks to her about the living water he offers and she asks to receive this water.  Jesus tells her to call her husband to come and she says she doesn’t have a husband.  Jesus acknowledges the truth she indicated and says she has had five husbands and he whom she lives with is not her husband (John 7-18).

When the Pharisees where trying to tempt Jesus regarding divorce, Jesus defined marriage as God intended from the beginning.  They continued their examination by asking why Moses commanded to give a writing of divorcement when putting her away (divorce).  Jesus tells them it was the result of the hardness of their hearts that God allowed the putting away of his wife but says whosoever divorces his wife except for fornication and marries another commits adultery and the individual marrying her put away also commits adultery (Matthew 19:4-9).  Many ignore this command by Christ and indicate Paul says that if the unbelieving spouse leaves a believer, the believer is then permitted to remarry.  Again, those taking this position are not applying the correct meaning in its proper biblical context.  Paul does not use the word bound “Deo” in this relationship but the Greek word “Douloo”, servitude.  This word is never used in scripture referring to the marriage bond “Deo” (1 Corinthians 7:15).  Paul does use the word “Deo” at the end of the chapter when stating a wife is bound (Deo) “by law” as long as he lives but is loosed at death to remarry but only in the Lord (1 Corinthians 7:39). Thus, a marriage may be unacceptable to God if not under God’s divine instructions.

We are being bombarded with images and ideology that whoever a person wants to marry to engage in a relationship is okay.  God has never authorized any other marriage other than that between a man and a woman.  Moses instructs Israel not to go after the ways of Egypt and after the doings of Canaan which He gave them.  Leviticus 18 instructs them in unlawful marriages, and they shall not lie with mankind as with womankind or with beast (verses 22-23).  Paul tells the Corinthians that fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, neither effeminates nor abusers of themselves with mankind shall inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9).  Those that say the Bible and God does not exclude a relationship other than a man or women just aren’t looking in His word and applying it in its proper contextual setting.  Paul tells the Romans that because man changed the truth of God into a lie He gave them up to vile affections so that women did change the natural use into that which is against nature as well as men leaving the nature use of women (Romans 1:25-27).  Therefore, since they willingly did not want to follow God’s law, He gave them over to a degenerate mind (verse 28). Many will rightly state that any relationship outside of a marriage between a man and a woman is not following God’s divine pattern for marriage, but fail to view an unauthorized marriage between a man and woman in the same balance. We affirm that marriage is only between a man and women as God has defined based upon the qualifications commanded by Christ.

Finally, whether we are speaking about instrumental music, the Lord’s Supper, salvation, marriage or what is to be taught and practice within the church we must always adhere our worship and actions according to a commandment, apostolic example or necessary inference drawn only from God’s word and not from what we think how we should worship God.  Paul writing to the church at Corinth tells them he came to them not to know anything but Jesus Christ and him crucified.  He says that his speech and preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom but from God that their faith should be formed in the wisdom of God and not of man (1 Corinthians 2:2-5).   He says in verse 11 that man only knows that of a man but the deep wisdom of God the Holy Spirit revealed unto the apostles (verses 10-14).  Christ is the foundation of our faith and each man should take heed how he builds upon the truth of God (chapter 3:10-13).

Let us be reminded that Paul instructed Timothy how to behave inside the house of God, the church of God grounded in the truth so controversy would not abound in the church (1 Timothy 3:14-16). He further instructs Timothy to hold fast the form (example, pattern) of sound doctrine he taught him (2 Timothy 1:13).