As an autonomous evangelical church we stand on the absolute authority of the Bible in all matters of belief and behaviour. We believe it is imperative to understand and promote healthy doctrine, which never changes (2 Tim. 3:16). We believe that good doctrine is not only important for faith and practice, but vital to garrison a defence against deception and evil. Much of the New Testament warns about the subtleties of false teaching in the form of masquerading and pretence (2 Cor. 11:4, 13-15). We are acutely aware of the dangers of subjective Christianity, and prefer to hold fast to objective truth as revealed in the Bible. Cape Grace church is non-charismatic, and we do not embrace any New Age philosophies (Tit. 1:9; John 17:17).
We embrace historical, orthodox Christian beliefs, espoused by the early church and delineated most comprehensively in the New Testament, and especially, as a local church, the church epistles.
Our Beliefs Include
1. The verbal inspiration and plenary authority of the BIBLE in its original writings, inerrant and infallible (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:21).
2. The eternal Trinity of the GODHEAD (Deut. 6:4; Eph. 4:4-6; Matt. 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14). There is only one and true living God, who subsists in three equally divine Persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each the same in nature, essence, and being; but distinct in personal attributes (Heb. 1:1-3, 8).
3. The eternal deity, virgin birth, vicarious and substitutionary death, and spotless humanity of the LORD JESUS CHRIST (Luke 1:35; Phil. 2:6-9; Rom. 1:3-4, Col. 1:15-17; John 10:30-33, Rom. 9:5, Tit. 2:13). Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person with two natures, who bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate (John 1:1; Eph. 1:15-23; 1 Tim. 2:5-6; Heb. 1:8).
4. The deity and personality of the HOLY SPIRIT (John 16:8; Titus 3:5; 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 1:13, 3:16). The Holy Spirit now permanently indwells all believers, as well as illuminates, guides, equips, fills and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service (John 7:38-40; 16:8, 13-14; Gal. 5:16-18, 22-23). The Holy Spirit imparts gifts to every believer, but only those for the building up of the Body of Christ and as such proclamatory by nature, rather than those sign gifts which where revelatory in function and hence temporary during the apostolic era of receiving God’s truth. After the completion of the canon of Scripture, revelatory gifts were no longer necessary (Eph. 4:7-16; 1 Cor. 1:22-23; 13:8-13; Rev. 22:18).
5. MANKIND is by nature sinful and under condemnation of God (Eph. 2:1-3; Rom 3:9-12; 1 Cor. 1:18-31). Originally, mankind was created in God’s image and likeness in perfection and innocence, but lost that innocence through Adam’s sin of disobedience. Mankind subsequently incurred the penalty of spiritual and physical death (Gen. 1:26; 2:16-17, Rom. 3:23).
6. Personal SALVATION is by God’s grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone, who is crucified, risen, and glorified (Rom. 3:24-28, 5:1,9; Eph. 2:8-9; 1 Cor. 15:1-4).
7. The ETERNAL SECURITY of all the saved (Col. 3:1-4; Phil. 1:6; Rom. 8:1, 29-34, 38-39; John 10:27-29; Eph. 1:13-14).
8. The essential unity of all believers of the present dispensation of grace as members of the one true CHURCH, the BODY OF CHRIST (Eph. 1:22-23; 1 Cor. 12:13).
9. All believers are made members of the body of Christ through one divine BAPTISM (1 Cor. 12:13), by which we are also identified with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection (Rom. 6:3-4).
10. The privilege and duty of all the saved to WALK by faith as children of light (2 Cor. 5:7; Eph. 5:11), and in a manner worthy of our calling being not conformed to this world, but being transformed by the renewing of our minds (Eph. 4:1; Rom. 12:2). The saved are ambassadors of the Lord Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 5:17-20).
11. The practice of COMMUNION as revealed through Paul for the members of the Body of Christ until He returns (1 Cor. 11:23-26). Communion is a commemoration of the New Testament made possible through the death and life of the Lord Jesus Christ.
12. The eternal blessedness of all saved in HEAVEN, the entry upon which is immediate at the very moment of death (Rom. 6:23; Col. 1:5; Phil. 1:23, 3:20; 2 Cor. 5:6).
13. The RESURRECTION of the body (Luke 24:39-43; 1 Cor. 15:40-44).
14. The pretribulational RAPTURE of the Church, where Jesus Christ will return personally, bodily and imminently for His church in the air (1 Thess. 4:13-18; Titus 2:13-14; 1Cor. 15:51-53; Phil. 3:20-21). All saved will receive rewards according to their works (1 Cor. 3:11-15).
15. The personal, premillennial RETURN OF CHRIST to reign on earth. When the future millennial kingdom is established, the national promises given to Abraham will be fulfilled and Israel shall be restored to the glory predicted in the Scriptures, with Christ ruling from Jerusalem (Zech. 14:4, 9; Acts 1:10-11; Rev. 19:11-16, 20:4-6; Hab. 2:14).
16. The ETERNAL PUNISHMENT of the unsaved dead (Luke 16:23-28; 2 Thess. 1:9; Rev. 14:11, 20:14-15). Unbelievers who die are conscious in Hades and will eventually be resurrected to face the Great White Throne judgment and eternal punishment in the lake of fire (Matt. 25:46; Rev. 20:11–15).
17. The establishment by God of a NEW HEAVEN AND EARTH after the Great White Throne Judgment and the dissolution of all the elements. The heavenly city, the New Jerusalem, will come down out of heaven (2 Peter 3:10; Rev. 21:1-2).
18. The existence and personality of ANGELS. We believe that all angels were created by God but that a part of their number fell into sin under the leadership of Satan, who in his original rebellion against God is the cause of sin in the universe. Satan will be cast into the Lake of fire in the future (after the thousand year reign of Christ), but presently occupies the territories of ‘principalities and powers’ and is the ‘god of this world’ (Job 38:7; Col. 1:16; Heb. 1:14; Is. 14:12; John 8:44; Rev. 20:10; Eph. 6:12; 2 Cor. 4:4).
19. The distinction between ISRAEL and the CHURCH, the former being a physical, national people, who are currently under blindness for their rejection of the Messiah, but whose future determination will be realised at the return of Christ to establish His promised kingdom on earth; and the latter being the mystery of a spiritual organism comprising all Christians irrespective of their background, of which Christ is the Head. Distinguishing between Israel and the Church and their respective differing programmes/dispensations is vital in the discipline of correct interpretation of Scripture (Rom. 11:25-27, 16:25; Gal. 2:7, 3:38; Eph. 1:3, 3:1-9; Is. 2:2-5; Luke 1:30-33; Jer. 31:37).