We are a biblical and confessional and Presbyterian church. We believe the Bible is our primary authority for doctrine (teaching) and living. All our teaching must submit itself to the scrutiny of and correction by the Word of God. Our doctrine is a summary of the teaching of the bible as understood and embraced by the early church and rediscovered during the Reformation. We hold to the Westminster Confession of Faith and Larger and Shorter Catechisms as faithful summaries of the doctrine of Scripture. As such, the Confessions are useful for uniting believers of like faith, preventing deviations from sound biblical doctrine, and for instructing ourselves and our children concerning the truths taught in Scripture. We are Presbyterian because we believe this is the best expression of the church of God as a body of believers and the form of church government established by the apostles in the early church. We believe the church of Christ is much broader than simply a local gathering of believers.
Our Church Officers
- The officers of our Church and our Orthodox Presbyterian Church are Presbyters or elders or overseers, and deacons.
- The presbyters or elders are divided between teaching elders (also called pastors or bishops) and ruling elders (1 Timothy 5.17).
- The teaching elder is called by Christ to preach the gospel, to explain and enforce the Scriptures, to dispense the sacraments of baptism and the Lord's Supper, to administer Church discipline along with the ruling elders, to oversee the spiritual condition of the members and families, and to rule in the Church according to the laws of Christ (2 Timothy 4.3, Acts 13.15 1 Corinthians 10.16 1 Timothy 5.20, Acts 20.28, and 1 Timothy 5.17).
- The ruling elder is appointed by Christ to, along with the teaching elder, govern the Church. The ruling elder has oversight of the flock by governing and watching over the flock, along with the teaching elder, in the admission or exclusion of members and in the application of Church discipline, by visiting and comforting the afflicted, by instructing the young, and praying as opportunity may be given (1 Peter 5.1-2 and James 5.14).
Our Church Government
(As more fully explained in the book The Apostolic Church, by Thomas Witherow)
- Our congregation elects (not appoints) the officers of the Church.
- The offices of bishop and elder and overseer are the same office-bearer.
- Our Church is ruled by a plurality of elders.
- The office of ruling elder is conferred by an act of ordination by the elders of the Church, and the office of teaching elder by an act of ordination by the Presbytery.
- Should any difference arise, which cannot be settled within the limits of our congregation where it occurs, there is the right of appeal to its Presbytery and if necessary to the General Assembly of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.
- Christ is the absolute head over all things for our Church and for the Orthodox Presbyterian Church and the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are our only authority.