ARTICLES OF FAITH
The following statements of faith are not intended to deal with every teaching from the Bible. In fact, the Bible teaches many doctrines that there are not mentioned here at all. These statements simply summarize several areas of doctrine which we feel are important in defining who we are in distinction from other organizations. We wish we could simply say, “The Bible is what we believe.” However, we realize that due to many false teachings which have arisen since the first century church, we must clarify what we believe in the following areas. In addition, if an individual does not agree with an article of faith statement below (or if a person is not sure if he or she agrees), and yet desires to become a member, that person may still become a member of the church. We simply ask that members and attenders who hold to opposing views do not promote or teach those opposing views in the context of programs emanating from LVBC or in any way to disrupt another believer’s faith.

THE BIBLE
We believe that all of the Bible is God-breathed in its original manuscripts. We believe in the miraculous preservation of the text in its transmission to us today. Therefore, the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, and it is authoritative for all matters of faith and life (2 Tim.3:16-17; 2 Pet.1:3, 21; John 10:35).

GOD
We believe in the one true God existing in three co-equal, co-eternal persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Deut. 6:4; Matt.3:16-17; 28:18-19; John 1:1, 14; Acts 5:3-4; 2 Cor.13:14; Heb.1:2-3, 8).

1. God the Father: We believe in God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the heavenly Father of all who receive Jesus Christ by faith. We believe that the Father is head over all things, and we believe that His glory is the point of our existence. (Eph.1:3-14; 1 Cor.11:3)
2. The Person and Work of Jesus Christ: We believe that Jesus Christ was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the virgin Mary and is true God and true man (John 1:1-29; Luke 1:30-35; Isa.7:14). We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures, as a representative and substitutionary sacrifice, and that all who believe in Him are justified on the grounds of His death, burial and bodily resurrection (1 Tim.2:6; Rom.3:25-26; 4:1-5, 22-25; 5:8; 1 Cor.15:3-4; Heb.10:5-14; 1 Pet.2:24). We believe in the literal, physical bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ following his crucifixion. We believe Christ ascended into heaven and that He presently serves as our High Priest, advocate, and only mediator between God and man (Luke 24:36-43; Acts 1:9; 1 Tim.2:5; Heb.4:14-16; 1 John 2:1-2).
3. The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit: We believe the Holy Spirit is a divine person, equal with God the Father and God the Son (Matt.28:19). We believe that all who by faith receive the Lord Jesus Christ are born again of the Holy Spirit and are thereby the children of God. They are immediately baptized, indwelled, and sealed by the Holy Spirit and thereby secured unto the day of redemption (John 1:11-13; 3:5-16; Rom.3:24; Acts 1:4-8; 1 Cor.12:13; Eph.1:13-14; 2:8-9). We believe the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8-11). The Holy Spirit also comforts, fills, guides, teaches, gives gifts and sanctifies believers (John 16:7; 1 Cor.2:1-13; Gal.5:16-26; Eph.5:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 1 Cor.12; Rom. 12).

SALVATION AND ASSURANCE
We believe that the only way to be saved is by faith in the blood sacrifice, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. A person cannot be saved by doing any good works (Titus 3:5). We believe that salvation is when a person comes into an eternal relationship with God that begins in this life and endures forever. We believe in the eternal security of every genuine believer (John 3:16; 10:28; 17:3; Eph.2:8-9; Titus 1:1-2).

CREATION
We believe that God literally created the heavens and the earth and all it contains according to the historical account in Genesis 1-2. We believe that mankind is descended from Adam and Eve, the first parents of the entire human race (Gen.1-2).

MANKIND
We believe that men & women were created in the image of God. We believe that mankind sinned and thereby incurred not only physical death but also spiritual death, which is separation from God. We believe that all human beings are born with a sinful nature, and that they actually sin in thought, word, and deed (Gen.1:26-27; 3:1-13; Ps.51:5; Eph.2:1-10; Rom.3:9-26; 5:12-14).

THE CHURCH
We believe in the unity of all true believers in the Church which is the body and bride of Christ. We believe the church was established on the day of Pentecost, and it includes all believers from Pentecost to the Rapture (Acts 2:41-42; 1 Cor.11:2; 12:12-13; Eph.3:1-6; 5:31-32).

ORDINANCES
We believe Christ instituted the ordinances of the Lord’s Supper and believer’s baptism by immersion. We believe the Lord’s Supper is a memorial of the death of Christ in anticipation of His return. Believer’s baptism is symbolic of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. These ordinances are to be observed until Christ comes. Further, we believe that neither of these ordinances invoke any saving or special grace (Matt.28:19-20; Acts 2:41-42; Rom.6:1-6; 1 Cor.11:23-28; Col.2:12).

SATAN OR THE DEVIL
We believe that Satan is a person, the tempter at the fall, the unholy god of this age, the enemy of the true God and the church, and the ruler of the powers of darkness. Satan is destined to eternal punishment in the lake of fire (Gen.3:15; Matt.4:1-11; Eph.6:10-18; 1 Pet.5:8; Rev.20:2-10).

FUTURE THINGS
We believe in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ to judge the living and the dead, to establish His millennial reign, to defeat Satan and to inaugurate the eternal state in the new heavens and the new earth. (Acts 1:11; Matt.16:27; Rev.20-22)
1. The Rapture of the Church: We believe in the imminent return of Jesus Christ to rapture His saints. The Rapture will be followed by a seven year Tribulation (Daniel’s 70th Week), after which Christ will return to the earth to reign with His saints for 1,000 years (1 Thess.4:16-17; Acts 1:11; 1 Cor.15:51-54; Rev.20:4).
2. The Righteous and the Wicked: We believe that those who die in Christ are absent from the body and consciously present with the Lord in bliss. Those who die out of Christ are in conscious torment in hell (Hades) until the Great White Throne Judgment, when they will be cast into the lake of fire (2 Cor.5:8; Luke 16:19-31; 23:43; Rev.20:11-15).
3. The Resurrection and Eternal State: We believe in the bodily resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust. The unjust will suffer eternal conscious punishment in the lake of fire while the just will enjoy eternal bliss with God in the new heavens and the new earth (Rom.6:23; 1 John 5:13; Rev.20:11-15; 21:1-4).