The Confession of Faith for the First Baptist Church in the City of New York, with key Scriptures, adopted November 10, 2013
This statement is adapted from The Gospel Coalition Confessional Statement.
Article 1: The Triune God
We believe that there is one and only one living and true God (Deuteronomy 6:4, 1 Corinthians 8:4), Who eternally exists in three equally divine Persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (1 Peter 1:2; John 1:1; Acts 5:3-4). He is the Creator and Sustainer of all things (Genesis 1:1; Hebrews 11:3; Colossians 1:16), and He rules all things in holiness, wisdom, and love (Colossians 1:17; Daniel 4:34-35; Psalm 103:13; 145:9,16; Isaiah 6:3; Romans 11:33) to bring about His eternal good purposes (Genesis 45:5-7; Ephesians 1:11-12) to redeem a people for Himself (Genesis 3:15; Matthew 1:21; Revelation 5:9) and restore His fallen creation (Genesis 3:18-19; Romans 8:18-25; Revelation 21:5), to the praise of His glorious grace (Ephesians 1:3-14).
Article 2: Revelation
We believe that this God has graciously disclosed His existence in the created order (Psalm 19:1; Romans 1:19-20), and has supremely revealed Himself in His Son, the incarnate Word (Hebrews 1:1-2; John 1:1,14). Moreover, He has revealed Himself in human words (Genesis 1:3; Psalm 33:9), the sixty-six books of the Old and New Testaments, which alone constitute the verbally inspired Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21). The Scripture is without error in the original writings (John 10:35; Proverbs 30:5; Titus 1:2), complete in its revelation of His will to us (2 Timothy 3:16-17), sufficient for all that God requires us to believe and do (Luke 16:29-31; John 17:17; 1 Peter 1:23), and final in its authority over every domain of knowledge to which it speaks (John 5:39; 17:17; James 1:22; 2 Corinthians 1:20). As we hear, believe, and do the Word, we are equipped as disciples of Christ and witnesses to the gospel (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8; 1 Timothy 1:5).
Article 3: Creation of Humanity
We believe that God created human beings, male and female, in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27; 9:6; James 3:9). Men and women equally bear the image of God, but are not simply interchangeable (1 Corinthians 11:7-12; Galatians 3:26-29). God designed marriage to be an exclusive, lifelong covenant relationship between one man and one woman in which the husband reflects the self-sacrificing love of Christ for His church and the wife reflects the loving submission of the church to Christ (Malachi 2:14; Ephesians 5:22-23). Any sexual activity outside of this relationship is forbidden by our Creator (Genesis 2:21-24; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10; 18-20). In the church, both men and women are encouraged to serve Christ and to be developed to their full potential in the manifold ministries of the people of God (Luke 10:38-42; 1 Corinthians 11:2-6; 1 Timothy 3:1-13).
Article 4: The Fall
We believe that Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden distorted the image of God in humanity and forfeited his original blessedness for himself and all his progeny (Genesis 3:16-19; 9:6; James 3:9; 1 Corinthians 15:21-22). As a result, all human beings are alienated from God (Ephesians 2:1-3; 12), corrupted in every aspect of their being (Romans 1:18-3:18), and condemned finally and irrevocably to death (John 3:18; 1 John 5:12; Revelation 20:15). The supreme need of all human beings is to be reconciled to God (Romans 3:19-20), under Whose just and holy wrath we stand (John 3:18, 36; Romans 1:18; 3:24; 1 John 2:2). The only hope of all human beings is the undeserved love of God (John 3:14-17; Ephesians 2:4-7; 1 John 4:8), Who alone can rescue us and restore us to Himself (Romans 1:16; 1 Peter 5:10-11).
Article 5: The Plan of God
We believe that from all eternity (Ephesians 1:3-6; Revelation 13:8) God determined to save a great multitude of guilty sinners from every tribe and language and people and nation to the praise of His glorious grace (Revelation 5:9-13; Ephesians 1:6, 12, 14). To this end He chose them before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before Him (Ephesians 1:4; Acts 13:48). In love God commands all people to repent and believe (Acts 16:31; 17:30-31), having set His saving love on those He has chosen (John 6:44, 65; 15:13-14; 17:20, 23) and having ordained Christ to be their Redeemer (Psalm 2; 2 Samuel 7:11-15; Acts 3:17-26).
Article 6: The Gospel
We believe that the gospel is the good news of Jesus Christ (Romans 1:16; 1 Corinthians 1:18-24), Who lived the life we failed to live (Romans 5:12-14, 18-19), died the death we deserved to die (1 Peter 2:24; 3:18; 2 Corinthians 5:21; John 1:29), and rose again to give us new life in Him (1 Corinthians 15:21-22; Ephesians 1:18-2:6). All who turn from their sin and believe Christ are saved (Acts 20:21; Mark 1:15; John 3:16).
Article 7: The Redemption of Christ
We believe that, moved by love and in obedience to His Father, the eternal Son became fully human without ceasing to be fully divine (John 1:1, 14; 17:24-26). For us and for our salvation, Jesus came down from heaven (Galatians 4:4-5), became incarnate of the virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:30-35), lived a sinless life (2 Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 4:15), was crucified under Pontius Pilate (Matthew 27:11-50), and was buried (Matthew 27:57, 61). On the cross He canceled sin (Colossians 2:13-15), satisfied God’s anger (Romans 3:25-26; 1 John 2:2), and reconciled to God all who believe in Him (Romans 5:10-11). He arose bodily from the dead on the third day according to the Scriptures (John 20:1-18), thus proving His innocence (Isaiah 53:7-9; Romans 1:1-6), breaking the power of death (Hebrews 2:14-15), and bringing everlasting life to all His people (John 3:16, 36). He ascended into heaven (Acts 1:6-11), where He sits on the right hand of the Father (Acts 2:33) to rule as King over all God’s creation (Acts 7:56; 15:12-21) and to serve God’s people as their High Priest and Advocate (Hebrews 7:25; 1 John 2:1-2). He shall come again to judge the living and the dead (2 Timothy 4:1; Titus 2:11-14), and His kingdom shall have no end (Isaiah 9:6-7; Luke 1:33).
Article 8: The Justification of Sinners
We believe that Christ, by His obedience and death, fully discharged the debt of all those who are justified (Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:7; Romans 3:22-24). By His perfect obedience He satisfied the just demands of God on our behalf (Matthew 3:16; Romans 5:18-19; 1 Corinthians 15:21-22; Hebrews 10:5-10). By His sacrificial death, He bore in our place the punishment due us for our sins, thus satisfying God’s justice on our behalf (Isaiah 53:4-6; 1 Peter 3:18; Hebrews 10:11-12; Romans 3:25-26; 5:1-10; 1 John 2:1-2). Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name given under heaven by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12). We believe that a zeal for personal and public obedience flows from this free justification (Ephesians 2:10; 5:1-7; Titus 2:11-3:8; James 2:14-26).
Article 9: The Power of the Holy Spirit
We believe that this salvation is applied to His people by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14), Who gives life to spiritually dead sinners (Ephesians 2:1-7; John 3:1-7), awakening them to repentance and faith (Acts 20:21; 2 Timothy 2:24-26; 1 John 5:1). In Him they are baptized into union with the Lord Jesus (1 Corinthians 12:13) and adopted into God’s family (Romans 8:14-16; Galatians 4:4-6). The Spirit gives believers gifts (1 Corinthians 12:4-11; Ephesians 4:7) to build up the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 14:1-5; Ephesians 4:11-16), to bring the gospel to the lost (1 Corinthians 14:22-25; Ephesians 4:11), and to magnify the glory of God (Ephesians 3:10, 20-21; 1 Peter 4:10-11). The Holy Spirit is Himself the down payment of the promised inheritance (Ephesians 1:14), and in this age indwells (1 Corinthians 6:18-20), seals (Ephesians 4:30), guides (John 16:13), instructs (John 14:26), equips (1 Corinthians 12:4-11), revives (Acts 4:7-31; 13:9; 49-52), and empowers (Acts 1:8) believers for Christ-like living and service (2 Corinthians 3:18).
Article 10: The Kingdom of God
We believe that God rules as King over His creation (Psalm 115:3). His kingdom is present since He rules everywhere at all times (Colossians 1:13-14), but it is not yet fully realized, since fallen humanity still rejects His authority (Ephesians 5:3-14; Hebrews 2:8). But at redemption believers enter the kingdom of God (John 3:3, 5; Colossians 1:13-14) and delight in the blessings of the new covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34; 1 Corinthians 11:23-24; Hebrews 8). Since Christ calls us to be salt and light in the world (Matthew 5:13-16), believers should neither withdraw into seclusion from the world, nor become indistinguishable from it. Rather, we are to do good to the city (Luke 10:25-37; Jeremiah 29:7) and to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:36-40; Galatians 6:10). Through our witness God plunders Satan’s dark kingdom (Matthew 11:12; Mark 3:27), and regenerates and renovates the lives of individuals rescued through repentance and faith (Ephesians 2:11-21; John 17:20-21).
Article 11: God’s New People
We believe that Jesus brings peace between alienated peoples through the gospel, creating in Himself one new humanity—the church (Ephesians 2:14-18). This universal church is manifest in local churches (Matthew 16:18; Galatians 1:2) where the gospel is put on display by the power of the Spirit (Ephesians 3:10, 14-21). A true church is marked by her gospel message (Romans 1:16-17; 2 Corinthians 4:1-6), her sacred ordinances (Matthew 28:18-20; 1 Corinthians 11:17-26), her discipline (Matthew 18:15-18), her great mission (Matthew 28:18-20), and, above all, by her love for God and by her members’ love for one another and for the world (Matthew 22:34-40; John 3:16).
Article 12: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper
We believe that the Lord Jesus ordained baptism and the Lord’s Supper for the assurance of His people (Matthew 28:18-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26). We believe that baptism is for believers (Acts 2:39; 16:31-34), serving as a visible sign of our participation with Jesus in His death and resurrection (Romans 6:2-3; Galatians 3:27), an entrance into the new covenant community (1 Corinthians 12:13; Colossians 2:11-12), and a pledge of future obedience to the Lordship of Christ (Matthew 28:19; Romans 6:4). We believe that the Lord’s Supper is an ongoing covenant renewal for the people of God (1 Corinthians 11:23-26) in which we affirm our unity as the redeemed (1 Corinthians 11:17-22; Ephesians 2:11-18), commemorate the covenant of redemption (1 Corinthians 11:23-26), and enjoy the presence of the Redeemer (1 Corinthians 10:14-17; 11:27-34).
Article 13: The Restoration of All Things
We believe in the personal, glorious, and bodily return of our Lord Jesus Christ with His holy angels (Titus 2:13; Matthew 24:29-31), when He will exercise His role as final Judge (2 Thessalonians 1:5-10; Matthew 25:41-46), and His kingdom will be consummated (1 Corinthians 15:20-28; Daniel 7:13-14). We believe in the bodily resurrection of both the just and the unjust (Daniel 12:2; Revelation 20)—the unjust to judgment and eternal, conscious punishment in hell (Luke 16:19-31; Revelation 14:9-11) and the just to eternal blessedness in the presence of God (Matthew 25:21, 23; Psalm 23:6). The church will be presented faultless before God by the redemptive work of Christ (Jude 24-25), all sin will be purged (Matthew 1:21; 1 John 3:2-3) and its wretched effects will forever be banished (Revelation 21:3-4). God will be all in all (1 Corinthians 15:28) and His people will be enthralled by the immediacy of His ineffable holiness (Isaiah 6; Revelation 4-5), and everything will be to the praise of His glorious grace.