© Elnora Bible Institute, 2019
Doctrinal Statement
Article 1. God and His Attributes We   believe   in   almighty   God,   the   eternal   Spirit   who   is   infinite   in   His   attributes   of   holiness,   love,   righteousness,   truth, power,   goodness,   and   mercy.   This   one   and   only   God   has   revealed   Himself   as   existing   eternally   as   Father,   Son,   and Holy Spirit. The Father We   believe   that   God   is   the   Creator   of   all   things,   a   God   of   providence,   and   the   Author   of   our   salvation   through Christ.   Although   He   is   too   great   to   be   comprehended   by   the   human   mind,   through   Christ   we   can   truly   know   Him. In   redeeming   love   He   entered   into   a   covenant   relationship   with   Abraham,   later   with   the   people   of   Israel,   and   has now   made   through   Christ   an   eternal   covenant   in   which   He   offers   to   the   human   race   the   forgiveness   of   sins   and   the blessings of divine sonship to those who will repent and believe. The Son We   believe   in   Jesus   Christ   the   divine   Son   of   God,   who   was   with   the   Father   from   all   eternity,   who   for   our   salvation took   upon   Himself   human   nature,   and   who   by   His   redemptive   death   and   resurrection   conquered   the   forces   of   sin and   Satan   and   atoned   for   the   sins   of   mankind.   He   was   conceived   by   the   Holy   Spirit,   born   of   the   Virgin   Mary,   lived   a sinless   life,   and   in   God's   redemptive   purpose   was   crucified.   He   rose   from   the   dead,   ascended   into   heaven,   and   now as   Lord   and   Christ   at   the   right   hand   of   the   Father   intercedes   for   the   saints.   He   is   the   Lord   and   Saviour   of   all Christian   believers,   and   the   coming   judge   of   the   living   and   the   dead.   We   believe   in   His   full   deity   and   full   humanity according to the Scriptures. The Holy Spirit We   believe   in   the   Holy   Spirit,   who   was   sent   by   the   Father   and   the   Son   to   bring   to   individuals   the   redemption   of Christ.   We   believe   in   His   personality   as   set   forth   in   the   Scriptures:   that   He   loves,   searches,   testifies,   guides, empowers, and intercedes for the saints. Deuteronomy   6:4,   5;   Matthew   22:37;   John   1:18;   John   3:16;   Romans   8:1-17;   2   Corinthians   13:14;   1   Timothy   3:16; Hebrews 11:6.* Article 2. Divine Revelation We   believe   that   the   God   of   creation   and   redemption   has   revealed   Himself   and   His   will   for   men   in   the   Holy Scriptures,   and   supremely   and   finally   in   His   incarnate   Son,   the   Lord   Jesus   Christ.   God's   purpose   in   this   revelation   is the   salvation   of   all   men.   Although   God's   power   and   deity   are   revealed   in   His   creation,   so   that   the   nations   are without   excuse,   this   knowledge   of   Him   cannot   save   men,   for   it   cannot   make   Christ   known.   God   revealed   Himself   in saving   word   and   deed   to   Israel   as   recorded   in   the   Old   Testament;   He   fulfilled   this   revelation   of   Himself   in   the   word and   deed   of   Christ   as   recorded   in   the   New   Testament.   We   believe   that   all   Scripture   is   given   by   the   inspiration   of God,   that   men   moved   by   the   Holy   Spirit   spoke   from   God.   We   accept   the   Scriptures   as   the   authoritative   Word   of God,   and   through   the   Holy   Spirit   as   the   infallible   Guide   to   lead   men   to   faith   in   Christ   and   to   guide   them   in   the   life of Christian discipleship. We   believe   that   the   Old   Testament   and   the   New   Testament   together   constitute   the   Word   of   God,   that   the   Old Covenant   was   preparatory,   that   its   institutions   were   temporary   in   character,   and   that   the   New   Covenant   in   Christ   is the   fulfillment   of   the   Old.   We   believe   that   the   Old   Testament   writings   are   inspired   and   profitable,   and   as   the   divine word   of   promise   are   to   be   interpreted   in   conjunction   with   the   divine   act   of   fulfillment   recorded   in   the   New. Christian   doctrine   and   practice   are   based   upon   the   whole   Word   of   God,   the   word   of   promise   of   the   Old   Covenant as fulfilled in the New. The   message   of   the   Bible   points   to   the   Lord   Jesus   Christ.   It   is   to   Him   that   the   Scriptures   of   the   Old   Testament   bear witness,   and   He   is   the   One   whom   the   Scriptures   of   the   New   Testament   proclaim.   He   is   the   key   to   the   proper understanding of the entire Bible. Psalm   19;   Luke   24:27,   44;   John   1:1-16;   John   20:31;   Romans   1:19,   20;   2   Timothy   3:15,   16;   Hebrews   1:1,   2;   Hebrews 8:6, 7; 1 John 1:1-5. Article 3. God's Creation and Providence We   believe   that   in   the   beginning   God   created   all   things   by   His   Son,   and   that   all   existence   is   therefore   finite   and dependent   upon   God,   the   Source   and   End   of   all   things   visible   and   invisible.   He   created   man   in   His   own   image, which   set   man   apart   from   the   animal   creation.   In   free   will,   moral   character,   superior   intellect,   and   spiritual   nature, man bore the image of his Creator. In   His   providence   God   is   concerned   with   the   lives   of   His   children,   and   in   everything   works   for   their   eternal   good.   He hears   and   answers   their   prayers.   By   Jesus   Christ   He   upholds   the   entire   creation.   He   is   Sovereign   over   all   things,   but He   is   not   the   author   of   sin.   He   has   endowed   man   with   the   power   of   self-determination,   and   He   holds   him responsible for his moral choices. Genesis1:1, 26, 27; Psalm 139:7-12; Matthew 10:29; John 1:3; Romans 8:28; Colossians 1:16, 17; James 5:16. Article 4. Man and His Sin We   believe   that   God   created   man   sinless   and   holy,   and   subjected   man   to   a   moral   test   as   a   means   of   bringing   him to   full   spiritual   maturity.   Man   yielded,   however,   to   the   temptation   of   Satan   and   by   willful   disobedience   to   God failed   to   maintain   that   holy   condition   in   which   he   had   been   created.   This   sin   brought   depravity   and   death   to   the race,   Although   men   are   sinners   by   nature   because   of   Adam's   fall,   they   are   not   guilty   of   his   sin.   Those   who   perish eternally   do   so   only   because   of   their   own   sin.   The   most   grievous   sin   is   the   stubborn   refusal   to   acknowledge   Jesus Christ   as   Saviour   and   Lord.   As   a   fallen   creature   man   is   self-centered,   self-willed,   rebellious   toward   God,   unwilling   to yield to Christ, unable to break with sin, and under divine judgment. We   believe   that   children   are   born   with   a   nature   which   will   manifest   itself   as   sinful   as   they   mature.   When   they   come to   know   themselves   to   be   responsible   to   God,   they   must   repent   and   believe   in   Christ   in   order   to   be   saved.   Before the   age   when   children   are   accountable   to   God,   their   sins   are   atoned   for   through   the   sacrifice   of   Christ.   Jesus Himself assured us that children are in the kingdom of God. Genesis 1:27, 31; Genesis 3:1-19; Matthew 18:1-14; Luke 18:16; Romans 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:1-3; 1 Timothy 4:10. Article 5. Christ, the Saviour from Sin We   believe   that   there   is   one   Mediator   between   God   and   men,   the   Man   Christ   Jesus.   The   purpose   of   the   incarnation of   God's   eternal   Son   was   to   redeem   men   from   sin   and   death,   to   destroy   the   power   and   works   of   the   devil,   and   to reconcile   men   to   God.   As   a   prophet,   the   Lord   Jesus   not   only   proclaimed   God's   Word;   He   was   in   His   very   person   the Word   of   God.   As   a   priest,   He   Himself   was   the   sacrifice   for   sin,   and   now   makes   intercession   with   the   Father   for   the saints. As our risen Lord and King He is vested with all authority in heaven and on earth. In   His   life   the   Lord   Jesus   demonstrated   perfectly   the   will   of   God.   Although   tempted   in   all   points   as   we   are,   yet   He never   sinned.   Through   the   shedding   of   His   blood   He   inaugurated   the   New   Covenant,   broke   the   power   of   sin   for those    who    exercise    faith    in    Him,    and    triumphed    over    Satan.    By    His    resurrection    from    the    dead,    Christ accomplished   the   full   justification   of   those   who   believe   in   Him.   By   faith   each   believer   is   united   with   the   risen   and glorified Christ, the Lord of glory. Luke   19:10;   John   1:1;   Acts   2:33;   Romans   5:11;   2   Corinthians   5:21;   Colossians   2:15;   1   Timothy   2:5;   Hebrews   2:14,   15; Hebrews 4:15; 7:11. Article 6. Salvation by Grace through Faith We   believe   that   men   are   saved,   not   by   character,   law,   good   works,   or   ceremonies,   but   by   the   grace   of   God.   The merits   of   the   death   and   resurrection   of   Christ   are   adequate   for   the   salvation   of   all   men,   are   offered   to   all,   and   are intended   for   all.   Salvation   is   appropriated   by   faith   in   Christ.   From   all   eternity   God   knew   who   would   be   the   believers in   Christ,   and   these   persons   foreknown   as   believers   are   elect   according   to   the   foreknowledge   of   God.   Those   who repent   and   believe   in   Christ   as   Saviour   and   Lord   receive   the   gift   of   righteousness,   are   born   again,   and   are   adopted into   the   family   of   God.   Saving   faith   involves   the   giving   of   the   self   to   Christ,   a   full   surrender   of   the   will,   a   confident trust   in   Him,   a   joyful   obedience   to   His   Word   as   a   faithful   disciple,   and   an   attitude   of   love   to   all   men.   It   is   the privilege   of   every   believer   to   have   the   assurance   of   salvation.   The   God   who   saves   is   also   able   to   keep   each   believer unto   a   happy   end   in   Christ.   As   long   as   the   believer   lives,   he   stands   in   need   of   the   forgiveness,   cleansing,   and   grace of Christ. John 3:16; John 10:27-29; Romans 4; Ephesians 2:8-10; 1 Peter 1:2; 1 John 1:8-10; 1 John 5:13; Jude 24. Article 7. The Holy Spirit and the Christian Life We   believe   that   Christ   as   Lord   and   Saviour   does   His   work   through   the   Holy   Spirit.   The   Holy   Spirit   convicts   of   sin. Through   the   Holy   Spirit   those   who   believe   are   born   again.   The   supreme   ministry   of   the   Spirit   is   to   lead   men   to Christ   and   His   salvation.   As   Christians   yield   to   Christ   and   obey   His   Word,   the   Holy   Spirit   transforms   them   into   the spiritual   image   of   Jesus   Christ,   and   enables   perseverance   in   faith   and   holiness.   He   empowers   them   as   effective witnesses   to   Christ   and   His   salvation,   fills   their   hearts   with   love   for   all   men,   and   moves   them   to   practice   Christian discipleship.   The   Holy   Spirit   bestows   upon   each   believer   such   gifts   as   He   wills   for   the   building   up   of   the   body   of Christ.   The   indwelling   of   the   Holy   Spirit   is   God's   seal   of   ownership   of   the   Christian   believer.   He   is   God's   guarantee that He will also redeem the bodies of believers on the day of Christ. John   16:7-15;   Acts   1:8;   Acts   2:1-21;   1   Corinthians   3:16,   17;   1   Corinthians   6:19;   1   Corinthians   12:11-13;   1   Corinthians 12-14; Galatians 5:22-24; Ephesians 1:13, 14; Ephesians 5:30. Article 8. The Church of Christ Nature We   believe   that   God's   redemptive   work   in   history   has   led   to   the   establishment   of   the   Christian   church.   Christ established   His   church   when   He   poured   out   His   Spirit   on   the   day   of   Pentecost.   In   preparation   for   this   church   He entered   into   covenant   relationships   with   Abraham   and   his   seed.   Today   the   spiritual   "seed   of   Abraham"   are   those who   have   faith   in   Christ,   the   people   of   God,   the   body   of   Christ,   composed   of   believers   from   all   races   and   nations. The   church   is   the   fellowship   of   those   who   are   in   the   kingdom   of   Christ,   the   assembly   of   those   who   believe   in   Him, the   brotherhood   of   the   saints.   The   church   is   corporately   the   dwelling   place   of   God   in   the   Spirit,   His   holy   temple.   It is   the   visible   body   of   those   who   are   Christian   disciples.   Membership   in   the   church   is   dependent   upon   a   voluntary response to God's offer of salvation in Christ. The   primary   unit   of   the   church   is   the   local   assembly   of   believers.   It   is   in   the   congregation   that   the   work   of   teaching, witnessing,   and   disciplining   is   carried   on.   In   order   to   maintain   the   unity   of   the   church   it   is   Scriptural   and   profitable for   congregational   representatives   to   meet   together   in   conferences.   The   concern   for   the   welfare   of   the   whole church   calls   for   Spirit-led   conferences   to   assist   local   congregations   in   maintaining   Biblical   standards   of   faith, conduct,   stewardship,   and   missions.   The   decisions   of   such   conferences   should   be   respected   by   the   individual congregations and members. Function It   is   the   function   of   the   church   to   demonstrate   to   the   world   the   will   of   God,   to   witness   to   all   men   of   the   saving power   and   intention   of   God   in   Christ,   and   to   make   disciples   of   all   the   nations.   The   church   seeks   to   lead   all   men   to the   obedience   of   faith.   Believers   unite   in   the   church   for   instruction   and   nurture,   for   worship,   for   inclusion   in   the witnessing   and   evangelizing   body   of   Christ,   for   the   observance   of   the   ordinances,   for   Christian   fellowship,   and   for the   discipline   of   the   Word   and   the   Spirit   of   God.   The   Spirit   leads   the   church   to   discover   the   gifts   which   He   has bestowed    upon    the    members    for    the    building    up    of    the    body.    The    church    has    the    obligation    to    speak authoritatively   on   God's   will.   It   shall   listen   to   the   Word   of   God   and   obey   it   in   the   moral   and   spiritual   conflicts   of each era of history. The   church   is   called   to   be   a   brotherhood   under   the   lordship   of   Jesus   Christ,   a   loving   fellowship   of   brethren   and sisters   who   are   concerned   for   the   total   welfare,   both   spiritual   and   material,   of   one   another.   This   concern   results   in the   attempt   to   help   the   erring   brother   find   the   right   path;   it   includes   sharing   generously   both   financial   aid   and   the word of encouragement, and a willingness to give and receive counsel. Discipline We   believe   that   the   Lord   Jesus   has   given   authority   to   His   church   to   exercise   discipline.   The   purposes   of   discipline are   to   lead   each   member   to   full   stature   in   Christ,   to   restore   to   full   fellowship   the   members   who   fall   into   sin,   to clarify   for   all   members   the   meaning   of   Christian   discipleship,   to   promote   the   purity   of   the   church,   to   warn   the weak   and   immature   of   the   serious   character   of   sin   and   disobedience   to   God's   Word,   and   to   maintain   the   good name   and   witness   of   the   church   before   the   world.   In   this   work   the   church   employs   public   teaching,   private counseling,   intercessory   prayer,   earnest   warning   and   rebuke,   and   sympathetic   encouragement.   If   disobedience persists,   the   church   may   withhold   the   right   to   commune   until   the   individual   repents.   And   the   church   must,   with   a deep   sense   of   loss,   recognize   that   the   one   who   goes   on   to   full   apostasy   and   spiritual   ruin   has   severed   his   relation with   Christ   and   His   body.   The   standard   in   church   discipline   is   the   Word   of   God   as   interpreted   by   the   brotherhood. The entire congregation should share in the work of discipline and seek earnestly to win the fallen member. Ceremonies and Practices The   Lord   Jesus   and   His   apostles   instituted   ordinances   for   the   church   to   observe   permanently   as   symbols   of Christian    truths.    The    apostolic    church    literally    observed    them.    Among    these    are    baptism    with    water,    the communion   of   the   Lord's   Supper,   the   washing   of   the   saints'   feet,   the   holy   kiss,   the   laying-on   of   hands   in   ordination, the   veiling   of   Christian   women,   the   anointing   of   the   sick   with   oil,   and   the   institution   of   Christian   marriage.   When the   church   observes   ordinances   as   expressions   of   a   heart   of   faith,   divine   blessings   are   received,   and   a   Christian witness is given. Since   the   Lord   Jesus   arose   from   the   dead   on   the   first   day   of   the   week,   the   Christian   church,   following   apostolic precedent, observes the first day of each week in memory of the Lord's resurrection. The Church and Healing We   believe   that   the   church   should   exercise   a   ministry   of   prayer   for   those   who   are   in   need.   Prayer   for   the   sick   may be   accompanied   by   a   symbolic   anointing   with   oil   by   the   elders   of   the   church.   In   response   to   the   prayer   of   faith,   and in   accordance   with   His   will,   God   heals   in   various   ways,   through   the   use   of   the   healing   arts,   or   by   direct   intervention. When   healing   does   not   occur,   we   believe   that   God's   grace   is   sufficient.   The   full   redemption   of   the   body   will   come only at the return of Christ. Exodus   2:24;   24:8;   Matthew   5:13,   14,   23,   24;   Matthew   18:15-18;   Matthew   28:19,   20;   Acts   15;   1   Corinthians   3:16,   17; 1   Corinthians   5:11-13;   2   Corinthians   2:6-11;   2   Corinthians   3:2;   2   Corinthians   12:9;   Galatians   3:6-9;   Galatians   6:1; Ephesians 2:11-22;Ephesians 4:13; 1 Timothy 5:20; James 2:14-17; James 5:14-16; 1 Peter 2:9. Article 9. The Mission of the Church to Society We   believe   that   Christ   has   commissioned   the   church   to   go   into   all   the   world   and   make   disciples   of   all   the   nations, baptizing   them,   and   teaching   them   to   observe   His   commandments.   Jesus   entrusted   to   the   church   the   stewardship of   the   Gospel,   and   promised   the   power   of   the   Holy   Spirit   for   the   work   of   evangelism   and   missions.   This   ministry   of reconciliation   is   inherent   in   the   very   nature   of   the   church.   The   church   is   interested   not   only   in   the   spiritual   welfare of   men   but   in   their   total   wellbeing.   Jesus   Himself   fed   the   hungry,   healed   the   sick,   and   had   compassion   on   the   poor. The   church   should   likewise   minister   to   those   who   are   in   physical   or   social   need   and   to   those   who   are   physically   or emotionally   ill.   The   church   should   witness   against   racial   discrimination,   economic   injustice,   and   all   forms   of   human slavery and moral degradation. Amos 5:21-24; Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 6:56; Romans 1:16; Romans 8:23. Article 10. The Ministers of the Church We   believe   that   it   is   the   intention   of   Christ   that   there   should   be   shepherds   in   His   congregations   to   feed   the   flock,   to serve   as   leaders,   to   expound   the   Word   of   God,   to   administer   the   ordinances,   to   exercise,   in   co-operation   with   the congregation,   a   Scriptural   church   discipline,   and   in   general   to   function   as   servants   of   the   church.   Ordination   is accompanied   by   a   laying-on   of   hands,   symbolic   of   the   church   assigning   responsibility   and   of   God   imparting strength   for   the   assignment.   In   addition   to   the   primary   office   of   apostle,   in   the   New   Testament   church   there   were such    gifts    as    prophets,    evangelists,    pastors,    and    teachers.    The    early    church    had    regional    overseers    such    as Timothy,   and   bishops   (pastors)   and   deacons   in   the   local   congregations.   Upon   the   pastors   lay   the   responsibility   for the   leadership   and   pastoral   care   of   the   congregations,   and   the   deacons   served   as   their   helpers.   In   each   era   of   the life   of   the   church   ,   Christ   through   His   Spirit   seeks   to   lead   the   church   to   adapt   its   organization   to   the   needs   of   time and   place.   The   church   is   a   brotherhood,   and   its   organizational   structure   should   insure   the   full   participation   of   the members   with   their   spiritual   gifts   in   its   life   and   discipline.   It   is   the   duty   of   the   church   to   give   financial   support   to those whom it asks to serve as evangelists, pastors, and teachers. Matthew   23:8;   Matthew   28:19;   Acts   15:6;   Acts   20:28;   1   Corinthians   5:4,   5;   1   Corinthians   9:14;   Ephesians   4:11,   12; Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:1-13; 1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 4:12; Titus 1:5-9; Hebrews 13:17; 1 Peter 5:2, 3. Article 11. Christian Baptism We   believe   in   obeying   the   instruction   of   the   Lord   Jesus   to   baptize   believers   with   water   in   the   name   of   the   Father and   of   the   Son   and   of   the   Holy   Spirit.   In   order   to   qualify   for   baptism   one   must   repent,   turn   to   Christ   in   sincere faith,   and   accept   Him   as   Lord.   We   regard   water   baptism   as   an   ordinance   of   Christ   which   symbolizes   the   baptism   of the   Holy   Spirit,   divine   cleansing   from   sin   and   its   guilt,   identification   with   Christ   in   His   death   and   resurrection,   and the   commitment   to   follow   Him   in   a   life   of   faithful   discipleship.   Since   baptism   with   the   Holy   Spirit   is   a   pouring   out, we generally practice pouring as our mode of water baptism. Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 2:16-21; Acts 22:16; Romans 6:4-6; 1 Corinthians 12:13; 1 Peter 3:21. Article 12. The Lord's Supper We    believe    in    observing    the    communion    of    the    Lord's    Supper    as    an    ordinance    instituted    by    Jesus    Christ    to symbolize   the   New   Covenant.   We   recognize   the   bread   and   the   cup   as   symbols   commemorating   Christ's   broken body   and   shed   blood,   of   our   spiritual   life   in   Him,   and   of   the   spiritual   unity   and   fellowship   of   the   body   of   Christ. Each   believer   shall   examine   himself   so   as   not   to   partake   of   the   sacred   emblems   carelessly   or   while   living   in   sin.   The church   shall   invite   to   the   Lord's   table   only   those   who   have   peace   with   God   and   with   their   fellow   men,   and   who share the faith of the church. The Lord's Supper shall be observed faithfully until the Lord comes. Luke 22:19, 20; 1 Corinthians 5:13; 1 Corinthians 10:16, 17; 1 Corinthians 11:24, 26. Article 13. Symbols of Christian Brotherhood We   believe   in   the   observance   of   the   washing   of   the   saints'   feet   as   an   ordinance   instituted   by   the   Lord   Jesus.   By   His example   Christ   rebuked   the   pride   and   rivalry   of   the   apostles   and   showed   them   that   Christian   discipleship   involves obedience   to   His   lordship   and   loving   service.   This   ordinance   reminds   us   of   the   brotherhood   character   of   the church,   of   our   mutual   duty   to   serve   and   admonish   one   another,   and   of   our   need   for   continuous   cleansing   in   our daily   walk.   In   the   New   Testament   the   holy   kiss   and   the   right   hand   of   fellowship   are   also   symbols   of   Christian   love   in the church of Christ. Luke 22:24; John 13:1-17; Romans 16:16; Galatians 2:9; 1 Timothy 5:10. Article 14. Symbols of Christian Order We   believe   that   in   their   relation   to   the   Lord   men   and   women   are   equal,   for   in   Christ   there   is   neither   male   nor female.   But   in   the   order   of   creation   God   has   fitted   man   and   woman   for   differing   functions;   man   has   been   given   a primary   leadership   role,   while   the   woman   is   especially   fitted   for   nurture   and   service.   Being   in   Christ   does   not nullify   these   natural   endowments,   either   in   the   home   or   in   the   church.   The   New   Testament   symbols   of   man's headship   are   to   be   his   short   hair   and   uncovered   head   while   praying   or   prophesying,   and   the   symbols   of   woman's role   are   her   long   hair   and   her   veiled   head.   The   acceptance   by   both   men   and   women   of   the   order   of   creation   in   no way   limits   their   rightful   freedom,   but   rather   ensures   their   finding   the   respective   roles   in   which   they   can   most fruitfully and happily serve. Genesis 2:18-25; 1 Corinthians 11:2-16; Galatians 3:28. Article 15. Marriage and the Home We   believe   that   at   the   beginning   of   human   history   God   instituted   marriage.   He   ordained   that   a   man   shall   leave   his father   and   mother   and   cleave   to   his   wife,   and   that   the   two   shall   become   one   in   love   and   mutual   submission.   It   is God's   will   that   marriage   be   a   holy   state,   monogamous,   and   for   life.   It   is   also   fully   acceptable   to   God   to   serve   Christ unmarried.   Marriage   was   instituted   for   the   happiness   of   the   husband   and   wife   and   for   the   procreation   and Christian   nurture   of   children.   Christians   shall   marry   only   in   the   Lord,   and   for   the   sake   of   spiritual   unity   in   the   home they   should   become   members   of   the   same   congregation.   The   Christian   home   ought   regularly   to   have   family worship,   to   seek   faithfully   to   live   according   to   the   Word   of   God,   and   to   support   loyally   the   church   in   its   mission.   We believe it is appropriate for parents to pledge themselves to the faithful Christian nurture of their children. Genesis 1:27, 28; Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:3-9; Mark 10:2-12; Ephesians 6:1, 4. Article 16. Discipleship and Nonconformity We   believe   that   there   are   two   opposing   kingdoms   to   which   men   give   their   spiritual   allegiance,   that   of   Christ   and that   of   Satan.   Those   who   belong   to   Satan's   kingdom   live   for   sin   and   self,   and   refuse   the   obedience   of   faith.   The kingdom   of   Christ   is   composed   of   those   who   have   been   born   again   and   who   have   entered   into,   a   faith   union   with the   Lord   Jesus   Christ.   In   them   the   fruit   of   the   Spirit   is   in   evidence.   They   recognize   the   lordship   of   Christ,   and perform   all   manner   of   good   works.   They   seek   for   holiness   of   heart,   life,   and   speech,   and   refuse   any   unequal   yoke with   unbelievers.   They   manifest   only   love   toward   those   of.   other   races,   cultures,   and   economic   levels.   They   regard their   bodies   as   temples   of   the   Holy   Spirit   and   crucify   their   flesh   with   its   affections   and   lusts.   They   therefore   avoid such   things   as   harmful   drugs,   beverage   alcohol,   and   tobacco.   We   believe   that   their   adornment   should   be   a   beauty of   spirit,   expressed   in   attire   that   is   modest,   economical,   simple,   and   becoming   to   those   professing   Christian   faith. They   should   seek   to   be   Christian   in   their   stewardship   of   money   and   possessions.   Their   recreational   life   should   be consistent with the Christian walk. Through the Spirit they should put off the old man and put on the new. Matthew   7:13,   14;   Luke   9:23-26;   Romans   12:1,   2;   1   Corinthians   6:12,   19;   2   Corinthians   6:14-18;   Galatians   5:22-24; Ephesians 4:20-32; Colossians 1:13; 1 Timothy 2.9, 10; 1 Peter 3:3, 4. Article 17. Christian Integrity We   believe   that   it   is   a   major   Christian   obligation   to   be   strictly   truthful   and   transparent   in   life   and   doctrine,   with   no secrecy   or   hypocrisy.   The   Lord   Jesus   Christ   has   forbidden   to   His   followers   the   use   of   any   and   all   oaths,   because   of the   finite   limitations   of   human   beings,   and   the   obligation   always   to   speak   the   truth.   In   legal   matters   we   therefore simply   affirm   the   truth.   We   are   opposed   to   membership   in   secret   societies   or   lodges,   because   such   membership would   involve   an   unequal   yoke   with   unbelievers,   and   because   these   organizations   employ   hierarchical   titles, require   oaths,   stand   for   organized   secrecy,   and   may   offer   salvation   on   grounds   other   than   faith   in   the   Lord   Jesus Christ. We believe that it is in the church that we should find love, fellowship, and security. Matthew 5:33-37; Matthew 23:7-10, 16-22; John 18:20; Acts 4:12; 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1; James 5:12. Article 18. Love and Nonresistance We   believe   that   it   is   the   will   of   God   for   His   children   to   follow   Christian   love   in   all   human   relationships.   Such   a   life   of love   excludes   retaliation   and   revenge.   God   pours   His   love   into   the   hearts   of   Christians   so   that   they   desire   the welfare   of   all   men.   The   supreme   example   of   nonresistance   is   the   Lord   Jesus   Himself.   The   teaching   of   Jesus   not   to resist   him   who   is   evil   requires   the   renunciation   by   His   disciples   of   all   violence   in   human   relations.   Only   love   must be   shown   to   all   men.   We   believe   that   this   applies   to   every   area   of   life:   to   personal   injustice,   to   situations   in   which people   commonly   resort   to   litigation,   to   industrial   strife,   and   to   international   tensions   and   wars.   As   nonresistant Christians   we   cannot   serve   in   any   office   which   employs   the   use   of   force.   Nor   can   we   participate   in   military   service, or   in   military   training,   or   in   the   voluntary   financial   support   of   war.   But   we   must   aggressively,   at   the   risk   of   life   itself, do whatever we can for the alleviation of human distress and suffering. Matthew   5:38-48;   John   18:36;   Romans   5:5;   Romans   12:18-21;   1   Corinthians   6:1-8;   2   Corinthians   10:3,   4;   James   2:8;   1 Peter 2:23; 1 Peter 4:1. Article 19. The Christian and the State We   believe   that   the   state   is   ordained   of   God   to   maintain   law   and   order.   We   seek   to   obey   the   New   Testament commands   to   render   honor   to   the   authorities,   to   pay   our   taxes,   to   obey   all   laws   which   do   not   conflict   with   the higher    law    of    God,    and    to    pray    for    our    rulers.    The    church    should    also    witness    to,    the    authorities    of    God's redeeming   love   in   Christ,   and   of   His   sovereignty   over   all   men.   In   law   enforcement   the   state   does   not   and   cannot operate   on   the   nonresistant   principles   of   Christ's   kingdom.   Therefore,   nonresistant   Christians   cannot   undertake any   service   in   the   state   or   in   society   which   would   violate   the   principles   of   love   and   holiness   as   taught   by   Christ   and His inspired apostles. Acts 4:19; 5:29; Romans 13:1-7; Ephesians 1:20-22; Ephesians 5:23; 1 Timothy 2:1, 2. Article 20. The Final Consummation We   believe   that   in   addition   to   the   physical   order   with   which   our   senses   are   related,   there   also   exists   an   eternal spiritual   order,   the   realm   of   God,   of   Christ,   of   the   Holy   Spirit,   of   the   angels,   and   of   the   church   triumphant.   We believe   that   at   death   the   righteous   enter   at   once   into   conscious   joy   and   fellowship   with   Christ,   while   the   wicked   are in   a   state   of   conscious   suffering.   The   church   militant   lives   and   witnesses   in   this   present   evil   world,   a   world   in   which apostasy   from   God   is   to   become   even   more   pronounced.   The   church   also   looks   forward   with   hope   to   the   day   of the   Lord,   to   the   personal   return   of   Christ,   and   the   glorious   future   of   the   kingdom   of   God.   In   His   triumphant   Second Coming   Christ   will   judge   Satan,   and   usher   in   the   consummation   of   all   things.   His   coming   will   introduce   the resurrection,   the   transformation   of   the   living   saints,   the   judgment   of   the   just   and   the   unjust,   and   the   fulfillment   of His   glorious   reign.   He   will   deliver   the   kingdom   to   God   the   Father,   cleanse   the   world   by   fire,   create   new   heavens   and a   new   earth,   consign   unbelievers   to   eternal   punishment,   and   usher   His   children   into   the   eternal   bliss   of   the   world to come. Daniel   12:2;   Matthew   25:34,   41;   Mark   9:43-48;   Luke   16:22,   23;   John   5:22;   1   Corinthians   15:24,   35-58;   2   Corinthians 5:14;   Philippians   1:23;   1   Thessalonians   4:13-5:4;   1   Peter   1:4;   2   Peter   3:3-13;   Revelation   15:3;   Revelation   21:4; Revelation 22:3. May   God   enable   us   all   to   attain   His   eternal   kingdom   prepared   for   us   from   the   foundation   of   the   world,   that   with His blessed Son we may enjoy fullness of life for ever and ever.
We, the Elnora Bible Institute, subscribe to the “1963 Mennonite Confession of Faith” as our minimum doctrinal statement as listed below:
"Mennonite Confession of Faith, 1963." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1963. Web. 20 Oct 2016. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Mennonite_Confession_of_Faith,_1963&oldid=100737.