Statement of Belief
I believe in God the Father Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
Was crucified, dead, and buried:
He descended into hell;
The third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
And sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Ghost;
The holy catholic (universal) Church;
The Communion of Saints;
The Forgiveness of sins;
The Resurrection of the body,
And the Life everlasting.
(taken from Book of Common Prayer)
What We Believe
We believe that every human life has value and meaning because each one of us has been created in the image of God. We believe, therefore, that each person has a distinctive God-given purpose in life. It is regrettable; however, that many people live out their lives never discovering what that purpose is. That is where the church can help. We exist to helping people find God, assisting them in their spiritual journey, and encouraging them to fulfill their unique purpose in life. We believe that the Bible – the inspired Word of God – is our authority and guide for living. It tells us that God loves us and wants us to enjoy life ‘to the max’, the way He intended. This is the effect when we put the values and principles of Scripture into practice on a day-to-day basis.
The Christian message is best summarized in a single verse of the Bible: "God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) We believe that the decision to place our faith in Jesus Christ is the most important decision a person can make. To learn how you can have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, please contact one of our pastors.
Statement of Faith
We, at Meaford Bethany Church of the Nazarene, embrace the doctrines and teachings of the International Church of the Nazarene whose Articles of Faith are part of the Constitution of the church in our official organ, The Manual of the Church of the Nazarene. We embrace the historic Christian creeds, which come from the scriptures, and confess our faith.
I-III. Our God is Trinity
There is one living and infinite God, everlasting Sovereign of the universe. He only is God, creative and administrative, holy in nature, attributes, and purpose. He, as God, is revealed in unity as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Jesus Christ, the Word, is the Son, and eternally God. He took man's nature through the Holy Spirit and was born of a virgin named Mary so that in Him Godhood and manhood, were united in one Person. Jesus died for our sins and truly rose from the dead, after which He ascended into His Father's presence and is there making intercession for us. He is God with us, Emmanuel.
The Holy Spirit is God going forth from the Father and the Son. He is ever present and active in the Church of Christ. He convinces humans of sin and gives life to those who repent, as well as guiding believers into all truth as it is in Jesus. He is God in us, His church.
IV. The Holy Scriptures
We believe in the inspiration of God's Spirit of the Holy Scriptures, by which we understand the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments were given to reveal the will of God concerning us in all things necessary to our salvation, so that whatever is not contained in them is not to be held as binding to our faith.
V. Original Sin and Personal Sin
Original sin is depravity, the corruption of the nature of all Adam's descendants. We are very far gone from the original pure righteousness of our first parents at the time of their creation. We were born without spiritual life and are inclined to evil. Original sin is the source of personal sin.
Personal sin is an act against the known law of God. These sins are a violation of the law of love, and in relation to Christ may be defined as acts committed in unbelief. Through our personal sin we are guilty and stand in condemnation before God. Through original sin we are corrupt and in need of new creation.
The single suffering and death of Jesus Christ as the offering of God is the only hope of salvation. This Atonement (Christ's provision making us at-one-with God) provides forgiveness of sins and cleansing of all human sin. It is sufficient and able to save anyone completely.
VII. Free Grace
We were originally created in Godlikeness. This includes the ability to choose between right and wrong. We are morally responsible. Through the fall of Adam we became depraved so that we cannot now turn and prepare ourselves by natural strength or faith to call upon God. God through Jesus Christ is enabling us to turn from sin (grace) to righteousness by believing in Jesus Christ for pardon and cleansing and for living a life pleasing in His sight. We know we may fall from this grace and apostatize (turn away from Christ our God).
We believe that repentance (a sincere and thorough change of the mind toward sin and grief for our personal sins) is demanded of all. The Spirit of God gives to all who will repent pardon and spiritual life. He guides into all righteousness.
IX. Justification, Regeneration, and Adoption
Justification (a legal term) comes only from God when He grants full pardon of sins committed and acceptance as righteous of all who believe on Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Those who are justified before God are new creations (regenerated). As new people we are children of God (adopted).
X. Entire Sanctification
Entire sanctification is also known by various terms representing different histories, such as "Christian perfection," "perfect love," "heart purity, "the Lordship of Christ," "full salvation," and "Christian holiness." We believe that Christ leads all believers into the spirit of pure obedience and devotion to God. We all are called into His righteousness. The grace of entire sanctification must be consciously nurtured and carefully given attention for spiritual development and improvement in Christ-likeness.
XI. The Church
The Church is the community that confesses Jesus Christ as Lord, the covenant people of God made new in Christ, the Body of Christ called together by the Holy Spirit through the Word. God calls the Church to express His life in the unity and fellowship of the Spirit - in worship through the preaching of the Word, the observance of the sacraments, and praise of His name - by obedience to Christ and mutual accountability.
The mission of the Church in the world is to continue the redemptive work of Christ in the power of the Spirit. God calls the Church to live under His rule in anticipation of the coming and reign of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We believe that Christian baptism is a sacrament signifying acceptance of the benefits of the atonement of Jesus Christ and is to be administered to believers as declarative of their faith in Jesus Christ as their Savior and of full purpose of obedience in holiness and righteousness. Baptism being the covenant-symbol of the New Testament grace, infants may be baptized. Baptism may be administered by sprinkling, pouring, or immersion, according to the choice of the applicant.
XIII. The Lord's Supper (Eucharist)
We believe that the Memorial and Communion Supper instituted by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is essentially a New Testament sacrament, declarative of His sacrificial death. It is distinctively for those who are prepared for reverent appreciation of its significance, and by it they show forth the Lord's death until He comes again.
XIV. Divine Healing
We believe in the Bible doctrine of divine healing and urge our people to seek to offer the prayer of faith for the healing of the sick. Providential means and agencies when deemed necessary should not be refused.
XV. Second Coming of Christ
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ will come again and that we who are alive at His coming shall not precede them that are asleep in Christ Jesus, but that, if we are abiding in Him, we shall be caught up with the risen saints to meet the Lord in the air so that we shall ever be with the Lord.
XVI. Resurrection, Judgment, and Destiny
We believe in the resurrection of the dead, that the bodies both of the just and of the unjust shall be raised to life and united with their spirits - some to the resurrection of life and some to the resurrection of the damned. Every person shall appear before God to be judged according to his or her deeds in this life. Everlasting life is assured to all who are saved and obediently follow Jesus Christ our Lord.
Just what do we believe at Meaford Bethany?
We are a CHRISTIAN PEOPLE: as members of the Church Universal, we unite with all true believers in proclaiming the Lordship of Jesus Christ and in holding fast to the Trinitarian statement of faith found in the Christian creeds. We value our Wesleyan/Holiness tradition and believe it to be a means of understanding the faith that is true to Scripture, thought, custom and experience.
We are a HOLINESS PEOPLE: God, who is holy, calls us to live lives that are holy. We believe that the Holy Spirit searches for ways to complete a second work of God’s grace in the life of each Christian, referred in several ways, including “entire sanctification” and the “baptism with the Holy Spirit.” We believe that this work cleanses us from all sin; restores us back into God’s image; empowers us to love God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength, and in do so doing, we also love our neighbours as we do ourselves; and re-creates in us the character of Jesus Christ. Holiness in the life of the believer is best understood in Christlikeness – becoming “living object lessons of Christ’s love.”
We are a MISSIONAL PEOPLE: We are a sent people, in response to the call of Christ and his commission, and thus empowered by the Holy Spirit to “go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” (Mathew 28:19 NLT) In obedience to the call of Christ, we become witnesses to the Lordship of Jesus Christ in the world, and involve ourselves with God in the building of His church – the body of Christ, and the extension of His kingdom (2 Corinthians 6:1). Our mission begins in worship, ministers to the world through evangelism and compassion, encourages believers toward Christian maturity through discipleship and equips men and women for Christian service through Christian higher education.