[Below is the text of a document-the title of which is listed as the title of this post-that has hung on the wall in the older adult Sunday school class of Kosmosdale Baptist Church since before I first became a member there, about eight years ago. I do not think that other Baptist confessions lend themselves to such a summary-with the doctrines of grace so explicit-as readily as the 1689. The 1689 is, in the words of Dr. Tom Nettles, who once served as pastor for Kosmosdale, our "richest confessional treasure." As we at Kosmosdale are currently considering whether to amend our constitution regarding our confessional standard, I believe that it serves us to once again consider these things
We believe in the one true and living God, in three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who is invisible, personal, omnipresent, eternal, dependent on none, unchanging, truthful, trustworthy, almighty, sovereign, omniscient, righteous, holy, good, loving, merciful, longsuffering, and gracious.
We believe that Almighty God has revealed all that is necessary to life and salvation in the sixty-six books of Holy Scripture which are the Word of God. All Scripture was given by inspiration of God, is infallible and inerrant, and is the final arbiter in all disputes. Its authority is derived from its author and not from the opinions of men.
We believe that God made our first father Adam perfect, holy and upright. He was appointed representative and head of the human race thereby exposing all his offspring to the effects of his obedience or disobedience to God’s commands.
We believe that Adam fell from his original righteousness into sin and brought on himself and all of his offspring death, condemnation, and sinnership.
We believe that it is completely beyond the power of fallen man to love God.
We believe that God sent His Son into the world, conceived of the virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit, unchangeably sinless, brought God’s righteousness on behalf of His people.
We believe that God’s Son died upon the cross to effect propitiation, reconciliation, redemption, and atonement for His elect people. God bore testimony to His acceptance of His Son’s work by raising Him from the dead. The Lord Jesus Christ is now seated at the right hand of His Father and is enthroned in glory where He intercedes on behalf of His people and rules over all things for their sake.
We believe the elect, who are called by grace, are justified in the sight of God on account of the imputed righteousness of Jesus Christ which is received by faith alone.
We believe that such are regenerated, called, and justified shall persevere in holiness and never finally fall away.
We believe that baptism by immersion and the Lord’s Supper are gospel ordinances belonging only to believers.
We believe that the local church is under the authority of Christ alone. Nevertheless, He has appointed pastors (as His undershepherds) and deacons (as His ministers of mercy) to represent Him as they care for His body.
We believe that the local church is an assembly of baptized believers covenanted together for the furtherance of the Gospel and their mutual edification and fellowship. The worship and ministry of the church finds its primary expression in the exposition and application of the Word of God through preaching.
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ shall personally and visibly return to judge this sinful world, and that the righteous shall enjoy everlasting life and the wicked endure everlasting punishment.
Labels: Reformation Theology