“You will find all true theology summed up in these two short sentences: Salvation is all of the grace of God. Damnation is all of the will of man.”Charles Spurgeon
Providence is God’s exercise of His will over His creation; His absolute sovereignty and authority. (Psalm 103:19)
The word reformed is in reference to the 16th century Reformation begun by Luther and built upon by Calvin. The reformers, after careful reading of the Scriptures, stood in opposition to the popular teaching of their day. They encapsulated the truths of the Bible that were against the popular beliefs of the times as the five Solas. They are:
Sola Scriptura: (Scripture Alone) Scripture alone is the sole source of God’s written revelation to us. (Alliance, 1996)
Solus Christus: (Christ Alone) It is through Christ alone that our salvation is accomplished. (Alliance, 1996)
Sola Gratia: (Grace Alone) In salvation, we are rescued from God’s just wrath by His grace alone. (Alliance, 1996)
Sola Fide: (Faith Alone) “…justification is by grace alone through faith alone because of Christ alone (Alliance, 1996)
Soli Deo Gloria: (To the Glory of God Alone) It is to God alone that the glory for our salvation belongs. (Alliance, 1996)
All of this brings out the basic principle of the Reformed Faith – the sovereignty of God. God created this world in which we find ourselves, He owns it, and He is running it according to His own sovereign good pleasure.” (Boettner, 1996, The Sovereignty of God section, ¶ 10)
Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Savior, gave two sacraments (visible manifestations of the new covenant). One is baptism, the symbolic participation in the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. As Baptist, we recognize the importance of believer baptism and practice baptism by immersion. Baptism is a once and for all rite of initiation into the body of Christ, a sacrament, a ceremonial washing. It signifies inward cleansing and remission of sins, regeneration by the Holy Spirit and adoption into the family of God. It is a sign by which God seals His pledge to the elect that they are included in the covenant of grace. (Acts 22:16, I Corinthians 6:11, Titus 3:5)
Reformed and Baptist
Reformed and Baptist together identify a particular doctrinal view of the truths espoused in the Bible. The Bible is the only inspired word of God. In addition to the Bible, Reformed Baptist regard the 1689 London Baptist Confession of Faith (LBC) as an excellent, though not inspired, document which expresses the teachings of the Word of God. Scripture (see below) is the only inspired Word of God. The LBC assists in controversy, teaching, and edification.
This ancient document is the most excellent epitome of the things most surely believed among us. It is not issued as an authoritative rule or code of faith, whereby you may be fettered, but as a means of edification in righteousness. It is an excellent, though not inspired, expression of the teaching of those Holy Scriptures by which all confessions are to be measured. We hold to the humbling truths of God’s sovereign grace in the salvation of lost sinners. Salvation is through Christ alone and by faith alone. (Spurgeon, 1855)
The church is literally the body of Christ and Christ is its head. It is God’s people together in a worshiping community. The church is catholic or universal. Yet, it is found only in local congregations. Despite the many local congregations, it is one in Christ. The church is a supernatural work, not man-made. It exists in, through and because of Jesus Christ. It is the fulfillment of Old Testament teachings and prophecies.
The marks of a true church are preaching the gospel, proper administration of the ordinances and church discipline. The goal of the church is the glory of God in the edification of the saints. (Acts 2:42, Ephesians 2:19-22, Ephesians 4:12)
We believe that God has called us to be set apart from the world. God has called us to set apart a day for Him. Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection established this day, the Lord’s Day, as the first day of the week. While we do not view it in a legalistic manner, the Lord’s Day is God’s gift to us, a day set apart to rest in Him. (Genesis 2:3, Deuteronomy 5:12, Acts 20:7, Revelation 1:10)
As God is the head of the church, the focus of our worship is God. Our worship is to glorify and praise Him and Him alone. What we do during our worship time is specifically prescribed by God in the Scriptures. This approach is commonly called the Regulative Principle of Worship. Consequently, our communal worship is comprised of four parts: prayer, music, sacraments and preaching. (Ephesians 2:19-22)
To worship God truly, is to worship him in the manner which he himself has prescribed in his word. (Ursinus, 1852)
We can only speak where God has spoken, but if there is any subject upon which He has pronounced Himself clearly, it is worship. . . . The first commandment tells us that we must worship the correct God, while the second tells us that we must worship the correct God correctly. (Horton, 1997, pplication of These Resources section, ¶ 3)
We preach Christ crucified. (I Corinthians 1:23)
The song portion of our worship is based on Scripture. All of the songs are carefully chosen for their lyrical content in that it is Christocentric. In as much as possible, we use songs whose lyrics come from Scripture since God alone can best give us the words with which we worship Him.
We do not have soloists or a choir where the attention is put on a group of people or an individual. We delight in singing as a congregation; putting all our attention and focus on Jesus Christ and God the Father: our Creator, our King, and our God. (Psalm 149: 1 – 6, Col. 3:16, Ephesians 5:19)
God made man to fellowship with Him. Prayer is one of the ways we do that. It is our on-going conversation with God. God instructs us to pray both privately and with each other. We ask for forgiveness, express praise, give thanks and make petitions according to God’s will. Additionally we recognize that as a praying community we are assured that God is in our midst. Providence is first and foremost a house of prayer. (Matthew 6:5-13, Luke 11:2-4, I Thessalonians 5:17, Acts 1:14, Matthew 18:20)
The other sacrament that Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ gave to the church is the Lord’s table or Lord’s supper. Partaking of this meal, we are reminded of our Lord’s death for us sinners and that He will come again. Believers are to partake of this meal by first examining themselves, confessing our sin, and receiving forgiveness. To do otherwise, as Paul says in I Corinthians 11:29, is to eat and drink judgment to ourselves. (John 6:32-35, Matthew 26:26-29, I Corinthians 11:23-32)
Our pastors administer the Lord’s table every Lord’s day. Anyone who is a believer in good standing with a local church and not under church discipline is invited to partake of the Lord’s table with us.
We believe that the Scriptures are the inspired Word of God, that they are God breathed.
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (II Timothy 3:16 – 17)
Every Lord’s Day, we at PRBC make the following confession:
We confess that God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory – therefore – Death is swallowed up. Oh death, where is thy sting? Oh grave, where is thy victory?” (I Timothy 3:16, I Corinthians 15:54-55)
Boettner, Loraine. (1996, July). The Reformed Faith. Reformed Network Library Fine Reading Collection. Retrieved August 12, 2004 from this article.
Horton, Michael. (1997). “Leading The Church Into The 21st Century.” ACE. Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, Inc. Retrieved August 17, 2004 from this article.
Spurgeon, Charles. (1855). Preface to the republishing of the 1689 London Baptist Confession. London, England. Spurgeon.
Ursinus, Zacharias. (1852). Commentary on the Heidelberg Catechism. New Jersey: Reprinted by Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company.