What We Believe
Harvest Bible Chapel exists to glorify God through the fulfillment of the great commission. Our focus is to honor God by fulfilling the mission the Lord gave His followers to make disciples, baptize the disciples, and teach them to follow His ways. Matthew 28:19-20; Colossians 1:28-29
Our obedience to the Lord’s command is revealed in our lives as we worship Christ, walk with Him, and work for Him.
We believe the disciples of Jesus Christ should minister to one another in the local church. It’s not about one or a small number of pastors bearing total responsibility to care for the entire congregation. It’s about all disciples using their God-given spiritual gifts to provide mutual ministry in the context of the vibrant and strong local church. Ephesians 4:11-12
Our Four Pillars
Our foundation is Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:11 says “For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” Our church stands on the reality of who He is and what He has done. Anything built on less will ultimately be torn down. Building on this foundation guarantees success – whether it is in our church or our individual lives – this foundation stands for eternity.
Our church is founded on Jesus Christ and supported by four pillars. These pillars are not specific to Harvest Bible Chapel as they are derived from Biblical truths, but they help us understand and clarify what we are committed to as well as explain what we choose to emphasize throughout our church. These pillars will define our church at every level from children’s ministry to small groups.
I. Proclaiming the Authority of God’s Word Without Apology
2 Timothy 4:2 – “Preach the Word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
Each week, we all devote time to opening the Bible to a specific passage to explain the truth it contains and apply the principles to our lives. We believe this Book and the God it reveals can make a significant impact in our daily lives.
II. Lifting High the Name of Jesus Through Worship
John 4:24 – “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.”
We seek to worship Jesus for who he is and what he has done in our lives. Our worship team will lead us in songs each week to help us engage our minds and hearts and give him the praise he deserves. Our hope is that all who join us will experience God’s presence and develop a hunger for God.
III. Believing Firmly in the Power of Prayer
Colossians 4:2 – “Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.”
We started our church with prayer and will continue to pray as we’ve seen God free us from sin, heal our hurts, exceed our expectations and raise up a group of faithful leaders who desire to love, support and pray for you.
IV. Sharing the Good News of Jesus with Boldness
Ephesians 6:19-20 – “and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.”
When you’ve embraced the truth of who Jesus is, you develop a desire to share this truth with others. We encourage you to go tell others about the change God has made in your life, and we provide many opportunities for you to reach out to the community and the world.
We believe the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments to be the full record of God’s selfdisclosure to mankind. Different men, while writing according to their own styles and personalities, were supernaturally moved along by the Holy Spirit to record God’s very words, inerrant in the original writings. Therefore, those applying themselves to study its literal, historical-grammatical context can accurately understand God’s Word. Scripture is fully trustworthy as our final and sufficient authority for all of life (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21).
The Triune God
God the Father
God the Son
God the Spirit
Baptism and Communion
Things to Come
What We Believe About:
Assimilation and Church Membership
We believe in the importance of serving the body of Christ by offering clear paths for people to start and develop healthy and growing relationships with others in the church body. We value an intentional plan to help every interested person enjoy godly relationships in the church. Church membership is a byproduct of people who are growing in Christ and who grasp the importance of serving the Lord by using their gifts to serve others in the local church.
Baptism and Communion
Baptism and communion are the two ordinances required in the church. We believe that Christian baptism by immersion in water is a public identification with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. Although baptism is not required for salvation, it is commanded of all believers and is for believers only (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:38, 41; Acts 18:8). Scripture shows that a person was baptized after personally receiving forgiveness of sin through accepting Jesus Christ. The waters of baptism are a symbol of our death, burial, and resurrection to newness of life that happens when we become new creations in Christ—Colossians 2:12; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 6:1-4.
Communion is the commemoration by believers of Christ’s death, and a reminder—through the bread and the juice—of the Savior’s broken body and shed blood. Communion is to be a time of confession of our sin and should be preceded by careful self-examination according to Acts 4:13; Romans 6:3-6; 1 Corinthians 11:20-29.
We believe all of the Christian life is supernatural. The Holy spirit empowers every believer with spiritual gifts for the purpose of building up the church. (1Peter 4:10-11, 1Corinthians 12:4-7,12)
Much debate surrounds the question of whether certain gifts we read about in the New Testament are still in operation today. We see nothing in scripture that would convince us these gifts have ceased. We believe the spiritual gifts we see on display in the New Testament are still active today in varying degrees.
Unfortunately, we live in an age where spiritual gifts have been abused. When spiritual gifts are not exercised biblically, the church can drift into extreme forms of subjective personal experience that detract from the clarity of the gospel. For this reason, all expressions of spiritual gifts exercised in meetings of Harvest Bible Chapel are to be characterized by clarity and order.
We also recognize that spiritual gifts are often neglected in the church. We encourage every believer to use their Spirit-given gifts for the upbuilding, encouragement, and consolation of others in the body of Christ (1Corinthians 14:3) while recognizing the God-given role of spiritual leaders to ensure that all things are done decently and in order. (1Corinthians 14:40)
By God’s grace, the application of our various spiritual gifts will not be a source of division at Harvest Bible Chapel. Rather, we will be a church that loves one another as we experience the power of the Holy Spirit on display in spiritual people using their spiritual gifts to make disciples to the glory of God. (1Corinthians 13:1-2)
The church exists to glorify God through the fulfillment of the Great Commission, and in the spirit of the Great Commandment—Matthew 28:19-20, Matthew 22:37-38.
The Great Commission is fulfilled as disciples of Jesus Christ are made and grow in their relationship with Him and likeness to Him. God is glorified as we manifest His presence as we do His work—2 Timothy 2:2; 1 Corinthians 10:31.
In seeking to act upon the church’s purpose, we recognize the extraordinary value in multiplying the reach of His ministry by planting local churches and by associating with existing, like-minded local churches. God is glorified when Harvest Bible Chapels and other like-minded churches associate with one another in order to foster relationships that edify, protect, encourage, support, and admonish.
The governing members, serving as directors of the Harvest Bible Chapel Elders Council, lead the association of Harvest Bible Chapels and affiliating churches and oversee church planting. The Elders Council assists affiliate churches to more effectively spread the Word of God and the ways of God in order to build His kingdom. The Elders Council desires to bless all affiliate churches through the mutual exchange of pulpit and music ministry, consulting services, research, conferences, and seed money devoted to church planting and pastoral education programs.
The Lord changes lives and accomplishes His purposes directly through reading and applying the Scriptures, meditating on the truths of the Scriptures, and prayer. The Lord also uses those who minister His Word as they encourage, exhort, admonish, edify, implore, reprove, rebuke, and console others toward godliness. God needs no new or unique insight into the human condition in order to change lives, regardless of whether that insight is gained through psychology or some other tool of human origin.—Colossians 2:8-10.
When psychology and other social sciences step beyond observing human behavior and seek to explain the causes of human behavior, they enter spiritual territory. Only the God of the Scriptures can explain causes and offer solutions that lead to godliness and a fruitful, joyful life. God has given us everything we need for life and godliness—2 Peter 1:3. He changes us as we discipline ourselves through obedience to the Word of God in the power of the Holy Spirit—1 Timothy 4:7; 2 Peter 1:5-11.
Each Christian’s passion should be to become more like Christ and fulfill the Great Commandment to love the Lord with the entire heart, soul, mind, and strength—Romans 8:29; 1 John 3:2, Deuteronomy 6:5; Mark 12:30; Matthew 22:37-38.
The Christian who learns and applies the Word becomes mature and, in turn, can help others mature—2 Timothy 2:2.
Creation, Evolution, and God’s Sovereignty
We believe God created the universe in six twenty-four hour days and that, before He created the universe, nothing except God existed—Genesis 1; Exodus 31:17; Psalm 33:6-9; Acts 17:24; Hebrews 11:3; Colossians 1:16.
God chose to create the universe and all that is in it to reveal His glory, divine nature, eternal power, infinite wisdom, and supreme authority—Isaiah 43:7; Psalm 19:1-2; Jeremiah 10:12; Romans 1:20; Revelation 4:11.
We deny the theory of evolution, which states that nonliving substances gave rise to the first living material, which then reproduced and diversified to produce all living creatures. We believe that all people are descendants of Adam and Eve, whom God created personally and individually and as complete human beings—Genesis 1:26-27; Genesis 2:7; Genesis 2:21-22; 1 Corinthians 11:8-9. The fall of Adam and Eve infected all people with sin and death, but the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ gives the opportunity to receive God’s gift of eternal life—Romans 5:18-19; 1 Corinthians 15:21-22.
God rules over His creation, and cares about, and is involved in the lives of individual people—Job 12:10; Acts 17:25; Acts 25:28; Colossians 1:17; Hebrews 1:13; Ephesians 4:6.
Eternal Security of the Believer
It is God’s divine decision to save a person and it is God’s kindness, forbearance, and patience that lead that person to repentance—Romans 2:4. All glory for the salvation and security of every believer belongs to God alone—Romans 3:21-31; Ephesians 1:7-9; Ephesians 2:8-9, Jude 1:24-25. We believe that everyone who is born again by the Spirit through Jesus Christ is eternally assured of salvation from the moment of conversion. This assurance relies on God’s decisive grace rather than on the works of the Christian. Obedience, good works, and fruit-bearing do not earn or retain the believer’s salvation, but indicate the reality of the person’s love of Christ and profession of faith—Luke 6:46; John 14:21; James 2:17-18. Eternal security in salvation relies on the Lord’s guarantee of each believer’s adoption as His son or daughter—Galatians 4:4-7, and His seal of the believer by the Holy Spirit—2 Corinthians 1:21-22; Ephesians 1:13-14, and the conviction that God gives the Holy Spirit to each believer as a down payment toward future bliss in heaven—2 Corinthians 1:21-22. A person who professes genuine faith in Christ immediately becomes His possession—Luke 23:42-43; Acts 2:40-41; Acts 16: 30-34, and nothing can snatch that person out of His hands—John 10:27-29. Having been bought with the price of Jesus Christ’s crucifixion as complete payment for sin, Christians are not their own. They are Christ’s possession—1 Corinthians 6:19-20. This assurance is absolutely certain, reserved in heaven, protected by God’s unlimited power—1 Peter 1:4-5.
Process of Sanctification and Maturity
Mature disciples walk with Christ, worship Christ, and work for Christ. A person committed to a relationship with Christ focuses on a personal walk with Him, worshiping Him, and working for Him. That person will experience significant growth in personal sanctification and, therefore, will experience a closer personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and will become “complete in Christ” (Colossians 1:28). We are committed to multiplying the godly characteristics of leaders’ lives into others—2 Timothy 2:2. This multiplication of ministry is key to the healthy growth of the church. We believe the disciples of Jesus Christ should minister to one another in the local church, rather than one or a small number of professional pastors bearing total responsibility to care for the entire congregation. God has given spiritual gifts to all of His people to provide mutual ministry in the context of the healthy and strong local church—Ephesians 4:11-12.
Satan and his demonic servants viciously oppose the work God performs in and through His people—1 Peter 5:8; Genesis 3:1-7; Ephesians 6:12. God, who by His nature is infinitely more powerful than Satan, in due time will have complete and total victory over Satan—1 John 4:4; Revelation 20:1-10.
Although it is appropriate to pray in Jesus’ name for protection against demonic activity, the Scriptures do not instruct the Christian to “bind Satan in Jesus’ name.” Rather, the Scriptures instruct the Christian to combat Satan by:
- Humbly drawing near to God, knowing that He will give grace, mercy, and strength—2 Corinthians 12:7-9; Hebrews 4:15-16; James 4:8; 1 Peter 5:6-10.
- Resisting Satan’s temptations—James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8-9.
- Rightly applying the truth of the Scriptures—Matthew 4:1-11; John 8:44; Ephesians 4:24-27.
- Forgiving offenses—2 Corinthians 2:10-11.
- Putting on the armor of God’s truth, righteousness, readiness to share the Gospel, faith, salvation, and prayer—Ephesians 6:11-20.
- Demonstrating faithfulness to the Lord by enduring trials—Revelation 2:10; Revelation 2:13; Revelation 3:9-10.
Sufficiency of Scripture
We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration of the Scriptures and that they contain all the words of God that we need in order to completely trust and obey Him. The Scriptures are inerrant in their original writings—Psalm 119:97-104; Psalm 119:160; Matthew 5:18; John 5:46-47; John 10:35; 2 Timothy 3:15-16, and are infallible in their instruction—Proverbs 6:32; 2 Peter 1:19, eternal in duration—Isaiah 40:8; 1 Peter 1:23-25; the final authority and the standard for faith and practice (Matthew 4:4; Psalm 119); and sufficient for counsel in every issue of life (Psalm 19:7-14; 2 Timothy 3:16). We believe that the very words of Scripture in the original Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic are inspired by God. Therefore, we believe that the Bible versions, which translate God’s Word, most literally into modern English should be preferred.
Roles of Men and Women
We celebrate the equal, yet complementary roles of men and women. Scripture clearly teaches God has made men and women equal, but he has not made them the same. God has given men and women distinct roles in the church and in the home. (Genesis 1:27; Galatians 3:28)
Qualified men are called to serve in the office of Elder. (1 Timothy 3:1-2; Titus 1:6-9) Women are not to serve in positions in which they exercise authority over men or in which they teach doctrine to men. (1 Timothy 2:12) Qualified women are encouraged to serve in every leadership position in the church that is not specifically reserved for men in the scripture.
Men are called by God to show honor and respect to all women and exercise loving, servant leadership in the home and church. (1 Peter 3:7)
The chief purpose of mankind is to glorify God by loving Him with the entire heart, soul, mind, and might—Deuteronomy 6:5; Isaiah 43:7; Matthew 22:37. All believing men, women, and children are to glorify God and thus fulfill the purpose of their existence. Worship glorifies God through adoration—Psalm 95:6, praise—Psalm 99:5, prayer—Daniel 6:10-11, thanksgiving (Nehemiah 12:46), and a complete yielding to Him (Romans 12:1). Worship declares His worth, pays Him homage and celebrates Him in a life of devotion. We seek to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth—Exodus 15:1-21; 2 Samuel 6:14-16; Psalm 5:7; John 4:23-24; Revelation 4:11; 5:12.
Several tenets guide our worship. We seek to:
- Lift high the name of Jesus Christ—John 4:22-26; John 12:32; John 14:6.
- Lead God’s people to lift their hearts and voices to Him, giving Him praise and thanks in music and lyrics Nehemiah—12:45-46; Psalm 66:1-4; Psalm 95:1-2.
- Prepare hearts to hear the Lord speak through the proclamation of Scripture—Psalm 95:6-9; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42.
- Emphasize fresh and contemporary expressions while retaining traditional elements that recognize the richness of our heritage in the faith—Deuteronomy 32:7; Psalm 33:3; Isaiah 46:8-9; Matthew 13:32, Ephesians 5:19; Revelation 5:9.
Pursue excellence in worship, knowing that God is worthy of our best—Exodus 12; Deuteronomy 17:1; Psalm 33:3, 1 Timothy 4:14-15; Hebrews 11:4.