What We Believe
"3 For I passed on to you as most important what I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures" - 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 (CSB)
Woodlawn Baptist Church holds to the central unifying beliefs of the Christian faith expressed throughout the Scriptures and accurately represented by the creeds of the early church, including the Apostles' Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Chalcedonian Creed. Woodlawn Baptist Church also supports the 2000 edition of the Baptist Faith and Message.
We believe that the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments in the Holy Bible are the completed, inspired Word of God and that men of God “were moved by the Holy Spirit” to write the very words of Scripture. The Bible is therefore without error (inerrant) in its original manuscripts. God has supernaturally preserved the Bible, and it is the sole and final authority for faith and life, providing encouragement, guidance, comfort and instruction for training in righteousness (Matthew 5:18; John 17:17; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:19-21; Revelation 22:18-19).
We believe there is only one, true God eternally existing in three distinct persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) each of Whom is fully and equally God, possesses all of the divine nature and attributes, and is totally worthy of our worship and service (Genesis 1:1; Deuteronomy 6:4; Psalm 18:30-31, 147:5; Matthew 28:19; Mark 12:29; Luke 3:22; John 1:14, 4:24, 5:23, 10:30, 14:9; Acts 5:3-4; 2 Corinthians 13:13; Hebrews 1:13).
We believe that God the Father is the first person of the Trinity and is the eternal, unchanging, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-wise, all-loving, completely just and perfectly holy, sovereign Ruler and Sustainer of the universe. He is the Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the Father of all true believers (Genesis 1:1; Isaiah 40:21-28, 43:10-13, 46:8-11; John 1:12-13, 5:19-21, 17:1-5; Romans 8:14-16; Ephesians 4:6).
Jesus Christ in God the Son, the promised Messiah, conceived in the flesh by the holy Spirit, born of a virgin, true God and true man, without sin, and the only mediator between God and Man (Isaiah 7:14, 9:6-7; Matthew 1:18-25; Mark 14:61-62; John 1:1-3, 14, 29, 5:18, 8:58, 10:30; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 2:9; 1 Timothy 2:5; Hebrews 1:2-9, 2:14-15; 1 John 5:20).
Jesus Christ, through His death on the cross, paid for all sin, completely satisfied the righteous wrath of God against sin, and provided redemption and forgiveness for all who believe. After His death, Jesus Christ arose bodily from the dead, was seen by many during a period of forty days, and then ascended into Heaven where He is seated at the right hand of God as our Advocate and High Priest, from which place He will someday return to establish His Kingdom on Earth (Isaiah 53:5-6; Luke 24:36-43; John 1:18, 3:16, 20:25-28; Acts 1:6-11; Romans 3:21-26; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8, 20-23; Galatians 3:13; Colossians 1:13-14; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Titus 2:13; 1 Peter 1:18-19. 2:24; 1 John 2:1-2; Revelation 20:6).
The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Triune Godhead who convicts men of sin, causes spiritual birth, indwells, seals, sanctifies, guides, equips, teaches, and fills the believer, thus enabling him to walk in obedience to God and His Word (John 3:5, 14:16-17, 26, 15:26-27, 16:7-15; Acts 1:8, 5:3-4; Romans 8:9, 14; 1 Corinthians 2:10-11, 6:11, 19, 12:4-13; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Galatians 5:16-18, 22-23; Ephesians 1:13-14, 4:30, 5:18-21).
We believe that mankind was created, male and female, in the image of God, full of dignity and worth, by direct act of God. Mankind was created to glorify God, worship and serve Him, and have fellowship with Him. Man fell through sin by disobeying God, thus incurring both physical and spiritual death, which alienated us from God. Mankind’s nature was thus corrupted and is utterly lost, “dead in trespasses and sins,” and totally incapable of saving himself and coming back into right relationship with God by his own merit or effort (Genesis 1:26-30, 2:6, 17, 3:17-24; Isaiah 59:1-2; Luke 18:26-27; Romans 3:9-19, 23, 5:8; Ephesians 2:13; 1 Corinthians 10:31).
We believe that Satan is the instigator of evil and a real spirit being, not simply the personification of evil. He is a fallen angel who, under the sovereign permission of God, has been given temporary rulership of the earth. He was utterly defeated at the cross, but the execution of his judgment has been postponed by God until after the Millennial Kingdom when he will be cast into the eternal lake of fire. In the meantime, he deceives the world and seeks to establish his counterfeit kingdom on earth to discredit and blaspheme God and to tempt, accuse, attack and destroy believers. He can be resisted by the believer through faith and reliance on the power of the Holy Spirit (Genesis 3:1-5; Isaiah 14:12-17; Ezekiel 28:11-19; Job 1:1-2:13; 2 Corinthians 11:14; 1 Timothy 3:6; 1 Peter 5:8-9; James 4:7; 1 John 5:19; Revelation 7:1-10:11, 12:9, 20:1-3).
We believe that the shed blood of Jesus Christ on the cross provides the sole basis for forgiveness of sins and salvation, which is the free gift of God's grace. Salvation is affected by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit and cannot be secured by man's works or personal merit. Salvation is only appropriated by a person placing his faith in the finished work of Christ. Repentance is a turning toward God and away from sin and is a part of but not separate from believing faith. "The Gospel is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes" and those who receive Jesus Christ by faith are born again, have their sins forgiven, become children of God, are a new creation in Christ, and "are sealed by the Holy spirit unto the day of redemption" being kept by the power of God (John 1:12-13, 3:1-7, 10:27-29, 14-16; Acts 26:20; Romans 1:16, 8:14-17, 31-39, 10:9-10, 14:6; Ephesians 1:7, 13-14, 2:8-10; 1 Peter 1:3-5).
At death, the redeemed pass immediately into the presence of Christ and there remain in joyful fellowship until their bodily resurrection unto life. The unsaved at death descend immediately into Hades where they are kept under punishment until their bodily resurrection resulting in damnation (Daniel 12:2; Luke 16:22-23, 23:43; 2 Corinthians 5:8, Philippians 3:10-11, 21; Revelation 20:11-15).
We believe that every Christian should live for Christ and not for himself and should, by the power of the indwelling Spirit, allow Christ to manifest His life through him to God's glory. By ever increasing obedience to the Word of God, each believer should mature and progressively become more like Jesus. In the power of the Spirit, each believer should live a holy life, not fulfill the lusts of the flesh, exercise his spiritual gifts to build up the body of Christ, witness for Christ, be personally involved in making disciples to fulfill the great commission, perform good works, and bear fruit to the glory of God (Matthew 28:18-20; John 15:8, 16; Acts 1:8; Romans 6:11-13, Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 2:10, 4:11-12, 22-24; Colossians 1:10; 1 Peter 1:15-16, 2:11, 4:10-11).
We believe that the church is the body of Christ of which Jesus is the Head and whose members are those who have truly received Christ by faith. The local church is a tangible expression of the body of Christ in a particular location. Since all members of the body of Christ are united in Christ by the same Spirit, they should live in love, harmony and unity, being intent on the same purpose and accepting those sectarian or denominational practices which are based on a sincere interpretation of the Bible, which do not relate to substantive doctrinal matters, and which do not in practice cause disunity or hinder the ministry. The purpose of the church is to make Christ known to lost men and to make disciples, and glorify God on earth (Matthew 28:18-20; John 17:1-26; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; Ephesians 1:20-23; 4:1-6, 12-16; Colossians 1:24-29).