We believe the Holy Scriptures are verbally inspired in every word and absolutely inerrant in the original documents and are God’s complete written revelation to man. We affirm that they are thus, both authoritative and sufficient in all matters of faith and practice. As the primary resource of one’s spiritual growth, it is the responsibility of followers of Jesus Christ to apply the truth of the Holy Scriptures to their lives. (John 16:12-13; 2 Peter 1:20-21; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 4:12)
We believe that there is but one living and true God, an infinite, all-knowing Spirit, perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three Persons–the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. He is the loving, sovereign Creator and sustainer of all things, deserving of our worship and obedience. (Genesis 1:1-31; Deuteronomy 6:4; Psalm 103:19; Romans 11:36; Isaiah 45:5-7; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6)
We believe in the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is both fully God and fully man. We believe in His virgin birth, His sinless life, His miracles, His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, His bodily resurrection, His ascension to the right hand of the Father, and His imminent personal return to Earth in power and glory. (John 10:31; 14:9; Colossians 1:15-17; 2:9; Luke 1:35; Romans 5:8; 1 Peter 2:24; Romans 1:4; Acts 1:9-11)
THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third person of the triune God. As the supernatural and sovereign agent in regeneration, the Holy Spirit indwells all believers and baptizes them into the Body of Christ at the moment of their salvation. The Holy Spirit also sanctifies, instructs, illumines, empowers for service, and seals each believer unto the day of redemption. (John 3:3-6; John 14:16; 1 John 4:13; Romans 8:9, 26-27; 1 Corinthians 3:16; Ephesians 1:13-14)
We believe that God created man directly and immediately in His image and likeness. Subsequently, every person has value and dignity that is a direct result of that creation. Man was originally created free of sin with a rational nature, intelligence, volition, self-determination, and moral responsibility to God. (Genesis 1:26,27; 2:7,15-25; James 3:9)
We believe that God’s intention in the creation of man was that man should glorify God, enjoy God’s fellowship, live his life in the will of God, and by this accomplish God’s purpose for man in the world (Isaiah 43:7; Colossians 1:16; Revelation 4:11).
We believe that Adam, the first man, willfully disobeyed God, bringing sin and death into the world. As a result, all persons are sinners from conception, which is evidenced in their acts of sin; and they are therefore subject to eternal punishment, under the just condemnation of a righteous and holy God. Man is therefore, inherently corrupt and utterly incapable of choosing or doing that which is acceptable to God apart from divine grace. (Genesis 2:16-17; 3:1-19; John 3:36; Romans 3:23; 6:23; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Ephesians 2:1-3; 1 Timothy 2:13-14; 1 John 1:8)
We believe that the salvation of man, who is totally depraved and hopelessly lost, is a free gift for all who repent of their sin and put their trust in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross for the forgiveness of sins. This salvation is wholly of God, by grace, on the basis of the redeeming work of Jesus Christ and the merit of His shed blood, not on the basis of human merit or works. All the redeemed are kept by God’s power and are thus secure in Christ forever. (John 1:12; Ephesians 1:4-7;2:8-10; 4:30; 1 Peter 1:18-19; 2:24; John 3:3-7; 3:36; 5:24; John 6:37-40; 44; 10:27-30; Acts 2:38; 2 Corinthians 5:21;Titus 3:4-7; 1 Peter 1:5; Hebrews 7:25)
We believe that sanctification is the process of becoming more like Christ that begins at salvation and is completed when the believer reaches Heaven. At salvation the believer is justified and is declared holy by God. Through the empowering of the Holy Spirit and obedience to the Word of God, the believer is enabled to live a life of increasing holiness and growing victory over sin. (John 17:17,19; Romans 6:1-22; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Galatians 5:16-25; Ephesians 4:22-24)
We believe that the Church consists of all who have been regenerated by the Spirit, called out from the world, separated from sin and called to pursue holiness. The Church is expressed as local bodies of believers, operating under the direction of Jesus as Lord and Head of His body. The Church gathers in community for corporate worship and to equip the body of believers to build up one another and in turn, serve as salt and light to the world. (Acts 2:1-21; 1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Ephesians 1:22; 2:11-3:6)
We believe that Jesus Christ will physically return to Earth and that this return is imminent. This promise of His return should unite, comfort, and motivate all believers to holy living. Christ will bring His Kingdom to completion with His return by judging the world in righteousness and fulfilling His promises to His people. His future work on Earth will conclude with the destruction of all evil and the creation of a new Heaven and Earth. After death, man will exist eternally in a real physical place; either united with God in Heaven or separated from God in Hell. (Matthew 25:31,41; Acts 1:10-11; 1 Thessalonians 4:16; Titus 2:13; John 14:1-3; Revelation 20:10; 21)
We believe that marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, with complementary roles as delineated in Scripture. After God created Adam and placed him in the garden of Eden, He said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him” (Genesis 2:18). So God created Eve as his helper and companion. Eve was there to help, to comfort, to be as one with Adam. God says here that one purpose of marriage is to provide companionship and mutual help and comfort. In a broader sense, marriage exists so that through it humanity can serve God through children, through faithful intimacy, and through properly ordered sexual and family relationships. This is crucial for man to fulfill God’s first command “to be fruitful and multiply.” (Genesis 1:28; 2:18-25).
We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. We believe that God has commanded that there be no intimate sexual activity outside of marriage. (1 Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4)
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matthew 15:18-20; Romans 1:26-29; 1 Corinthians 5:1; 6:9-10; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-8)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Rom 10:9-10; 1 Cor 6:9-11)
We believe that every person is an image-bearer of God and must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect and dignity. We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. We believe men and women, equally made in the image of God, enjoy equal access to God by faith in Christ Jesus. One’s gender is God-given at birth and is irrefutable. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. Rejection of one’s biological sex is a distortion of the image of God within that person. (Genesis 1:26-27)
We believe that all followers of Christ are commanded to love all people. Any hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual or group are not reflective of the love of Christ and the Great Commandment. (Matthew 22:32-40; 28:16-20; Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31)
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Called to Obedience Ministries, and to provide a biblical role model to the world, it is imperative that all persons employed by Called to Obedience Ministries in any capacity, or who serve in an unpaid organizational leadership role, agree to and abide by the bylaws of the Corporation and this Statement of Faith. (Matthew 5:16, Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22)
This statement of faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For the purpose of Called to Obedience Ministries’ faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our Board of Directors is our final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.
- God is in the process of transforming us into the image of Christ: The Christian is called to a new life. (Col. 3:9-10, Eph. 4:1-2)
- God has given us all we need to be all that He desires: The Christian can turn to the sufficiency of Christ. (2 Pet. 1:3-4, 2 Cor. 9:8)
- God has sovereignly ordained the circumstances of our lives: The Christian can face life with confidence. (Rom. 8:28-29, Eph. 1:11-12)
- God often uses difficult circumstances and people to accomplish His purposes: The Christian is called to suffer. (James 1:2-4, 1 Pet. 1:6-7)
- God has given us His Word, His Spirit and His people as resources for change: The Christian must utilize the resources available. (2 Tim. 3:16-17, Heb. 3:13)
- God reveals the depth of our sin so we can understand the riches of His grace The Christian is called to confession and repentance. (Eph. 2:4, 1 Tim. 1:15-16, 2 Cor. 7:9-10)
- God has shown us that the primary battle ground is our mind: The Christian is called to renew his mind. (2 Cor. 10:3-5, Rom. 12:2)
- God has forgiven us and commands us to forgive others: The Christian is called to forgive others. (Eph. 4:30-32; Col. 3:12-14)
- God desires control of our lives to accomplish His kingdom purpose The Christian is called to live a surrendered life. (Luke 22:42; Gal. 2:20)
- We believe in the sufficiency of Christ and His Word as the basis for
- building a strong, vital relationship with Him.
- using the Bible as the primary resource for providing the solutions to the problems of life.
- understanding that all needs are already met through the believer’s relationship with Christ.
- We believe that the Holy Spirit and the Scriptures are
- the agents of change in the disciple.
- the primary teachers and counselors upon which the discipler must rely.
- We are committed to helping people
- understand that a loving sovereign God has ordained their difficult circumstances.
- seek to live life from God’s perspective, not man’s.
- have hope in difficult circumstances based on the character of God and His promises.
- understand that God will accomplish His goals for the believer through suffering
- We see the body of Christ to be the primary context for changed lives; therefore, we give priority to
- the role of the local church.
- the responsibility and authority of church leaders in shepherding the flock of God among them.
- the practice of identifying and dealing with sin biblically.
- the importance of biblical forgiveness in the body life context of the church.
- We believe that true Christian discipleship is best developed on a life-to-life basis between the discipler and the disciple. It is in this relationship that we
- understand our responsibility as believers to disciple others.
- view role modeling as a primary vehicle for imparting God’s truth to others.
- encourage the disciple to pass on what he has learned to others.
- give priority to equipping and providing support to disciplers.
- We see that the biblical model of discipleship should be part of the normal body life ministry of believers. Because of this, we
- do not charge a fee for discipleship time.
- do not allow the CTO approach to be used in any “fee” setting