We believe there is one living and true God, who in essence, while eternally existing, is three distinct Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, all having the same nature, attributes, and perfections. The Lord our God is one and has made known his name as the great I AM. He has revealed himself as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The one true God lives in this community of Trinity, marked with mutual love, submission and honor. He comes to us in love and receives our awe, reverence, worship, honor and obedience.
( Matthew 28:18-19 | Mark 12:29 | John 1:14 | Acts 5:3-4 | 2 Corinthians 2:13 | 2 Corinthians 10:11 | 2 Timothy 3:16 | 2 Peter 1:21 )
God The Father
God the Father is the creator of the universe and is a personal God who desires a relationship with all people. He is a supernatural being who has always existed. He is the ruler of all creation who also hears and answers prayer. He is perfect in holiness, wisdom, power, and love. God the Father is the source of all things visible and invisible. With the Son and the Holy Spirit, he has created man, as male and female, in his image. He chooses to relate to the human race as Father, sending his Son and waiting for humankind to reconcile our broken relationship.
(Genesis 1:1 | Psalm 89:26 | Isaiah 9:6 | John 6:27, John 45-46 | 1 Corinthians 8:6 | 2 Corinthians 1:3 | Galatians 4:6 | Ephesians 5:20)
God The Son
Jesus Christ is God’s only begotten Son. We believe in His conception by the Holy Spirit, virgin birth, sinless life, miracles, teachings, and that He offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on the cross. He rose from the dead on the third day to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He has no beginning because he is eternally begotten of the Father; he has no end because he has been raised to life everlasting. Through Christ the universe was created. He was virgin born through the Holy Spirit and is both very God and very man. He was born without sin and committed no sin. He was confirmed to be the Son of God through the miracles he performed. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God. He prays for the church and sends the Holy Spirit on believers. Jesus is coming again in a visible, physical return for the church.
(Ephesians 4:1-8 | Isaiah 9:6 | John 1:1-5 | John 5:20 | Isaiah 53:3-12)
God The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is present in the world to make people aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. The Holy Spirit is God present with us. He is the divine person, equal with the Father and the Son. In the days of the Old Testament, he visited only prophets, priests and kings. Since the Day of Pentecost, he has come to all believers. He is sent by the Father and the Son as the agent of the new birth. By him, believers cry, “Abba, Father.” Through him we are cleansed from the old nature. The Holy Spirit guides, teaches, and empowers Christ followers for service.
(John 14:16-17 | John 14:26 | John 15:26 | John 16:7-14 | Galatians 5:18 | Galatians 5:22-25 | Acts 1:8 | 1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
The Bible is God’s Word to all people, written by human authors through the guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the foundational source of truth and authority for all Christian beliefs and living. God inspires it without error. The Bible is the inspired and infallible word of God and our final authority of faith and life. No other authority is greater. Only what is taught in the Bible can be required for us to believe and obey. Scripture alone is our only source of doctrine. It cannot be added to, subtracted from or superseded in any way. Our value of divine inspiration is demonstrated through our submission to the Bible’s instruction, correction and reproof.
(John 17:17 | 2 Timothy 3:16-17 | Psalm 119:105 | Proverbs 30:5)
Man, as male and female, was made from the dust of the ground into the image of God. We are created to live in fellowship with God and to enjoy him forever. Through willful sin, the image of God in man has been broken beyond our ability to repair. This state of original sin has made it impossible for human beings to choose right and only capable of choosing wrong. Without Christ we are unable to change our condition.
The true Church is composed of all people who trust in Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Believers are united together in the “Body of Christ,” of which Jesus is the head. The Friends Church is a group of believers who have organized themselves for doing the work of God’s ministry. Our church is responsible to provide opportunities for fellowship, growth, teaching, and serving by using one’s spiritual gifts as given by the Holy Spirit. The local church is the presence of Christ on earth, and through it he ministers to the world. The church is built of people, born anew by the Spirit, in fellowship with one another in love and submitted to spiritual leadership. Believers are called to devote themselves to one another in love to enable the church to grow. Elders are the spiritual leaders of the local church who oversee the church. Leaders enable health to flourish in the church by overseeing spiritual discipline to speak truth in love in order that believers mature in Christ.
(Romans 12:5 | 1 Corinthians 12:12-28 | Ephesians 3:6 | Ephesians 4:11-16 | Ephesians 5:23)
Through the death of Jesus Christ on the cross, the penalty for the sins of the human race was paid. Through Christ’s atonement, forgiveness of sin is available to all, but is effective only in those who believe in Jesus as Christ as Lord.
Salvation from sin is the experience of deliverance from death into newness of life. A believer has been saved through the death of Christ on the cross, he is being saved in the present time through the gift of salvation and he lives in hope of salvation on the last day standing in the presence of God. Salvation is a free gift, received by faith in Jesus Christ, confessing him as Lord and the repenting of sin. Through salvation, believers are adopted into the family of God and brought into covenant relationship with Christ.
Our relationship to God as believers provides us with the privilege of moment-by-moment communion with God. It is this silent communion of our spirit with the Spirit of God that is essential to our continued walk with Him. With this in mind, Paonia Friends gladly offers communion with the elements quarterly if not more often as an expression of worship for what Christ has done for us. It is a spiritual object lesson, a tangible lesson of sight, touch and taste as well as a corporate act of unity within the church.
(John 6:33 | John 6:48 | John 6:51 | John 14:16 | Romans 8:11 | Ephesians 3:14-17 | 2 Corinthians 13:5 | Revelation 3:20)
The “Lord’s Supper” is a time of remembering the death of the Lord Jesus Christ and for examining one’s life and can provide the believer with a physical method of remembrance in a Scripturally approved manner.
(1 Corinthians 11:23-28 | 1 Corinthians 10:16-17 |Luke 22:17-20)
At the moment we become Christians we are baptized into the body of Christ, and this spiritual baptism is completely sufficient for the believer.
(Mark 1:8 | Ephesians 4:4-6 | Romans 6:3-4 | Colossians 2:11-12 | Luke 3:16 | 1 Peter 3:21)
The physical act of water baptism by immersion after accepting Christ as personal Lord and Savior is not needed for salvation or spiritual standing, but is a person’s testimony of death to sin, and resurrection to a new life in Christ and therefore we encourage and provide for that experience.
(Acts 2:28 | Acts 8:12 | Acts 8:16 | Acts 8:36-39 | Acts 10:47 | Matthew 28:16-20)
Gifts and Fruit of The Holy Spirit
The gifts of the Holy Spirit are a divine enablement beyond human ability to reveal Christ through a human life. The purpose of the gift is to glorify Jesus and to strengthen the body of Christ. The spiritual gifts are given for the benefit of others. All spiritual gifts described in the Bible are available today as they were in the time of the apostles. The fruit of the Holy Spirit tempers the spiritual gifts so that all ministry is done in love.
God calls us to be holy through the work of Christ. Jesus calls people to be his disciples and to follow his teaching in everything. Growth happens through the choice to take up the cross of responsibility on a daily basis. Suffering is the way to growth, for through it Christ followers die to their old way of life and become more like Jesus. This work of sanctification is a work of grace.
Heaven and Hell
Jesus Christ is coming again to earth in a future second coming that will be both visible and personal. Those who have died will be resurrected from the dead, and along with Christ followers who are alive, will meet the Lord in the air. There is coming a last judgment where Christ will judge the eternal status of nonbelievers. In his perfect wisdom, the eternal judgment of hell awaits for the devil, his angels and those without faith in Christ. The eternal reward of heaven awaits those who Christ has redeemed.