What We Believe

We at South Baptist Church gather as a local congregation in order to gain a deep and continually growing knowledge of God, as He is revealed to us in our lifelong study of the Holy Scriptures. We desire above all else to offer our lives, as living sacrifices, to the worship of God in spirit and in truth. Please read the following sections below for details about our doctrinal beliefs. Please also see the materials available on the Pastor’s Teachings page for further information.

Our Beliefs

  • We believe the Bible, in the entirety of the Autographs of the Old and New Testaments, is the plenary, verbally inspired, inerrant and infallible Word of the One, True, Holy, and Living God.
  • We believe that a true and faithful understanding of what God, through the Holy Scriptures, teaches was and is expressed by those confessional doctrines (e.g. The Second London Baptist Confession of 1689) which the historic, orthodox, evangelical Christian Church has taught during the last two millennia. Commonly referred to as Reformed Theology/The Doctrines of Grace, this theology is a biblical theology. It is derived from a careful exposition of the Holy Scriptures, understood in their grammatical, historical, geographical and cultural contexts.
  • We must have the fundamental goal of coming to a faithful understanding of the true Authorial intent, of the God who is the ultimate biblical Writer, when reading the Holy Scriptures. We must carefully reason through the entirety of the Old and New Testaments, heeding the rules of language, logic and clear and plain literal understanding, whenever possible, to develop a coherent, consistent and unified understanding of the Bible.
  • Reformed Theology is first and foremost a profound and careful understanding and attitude of the heart toward God Himself and His Word. This attitude is one of humility, fear, submission and love, as expressed through obedience to the One, True, Living God who is Holy, Holy, Holy. It seeks, in its work of understanding and its application for living, God’s glory above all.
  • We hold to a very high view of God and of Scripture.
  • God’s Glory is foremost in all that He does. It is foundational to all His purposes and decrees.
  • Salvation is the work of God from first to last.
  • When the Bible speaks of God choosing and electing out a remnant, from among many, upon whom He will have mercy, His choice is because of His own good pleasure and not because of any individual’s merit, or God’s foreknowledge regarding the individual’s positive response to grace. In fact, the individual’s response is the direct result of the prior initiating work of God. It is a certain outcome and proof of God’s work, because of the radical change in one’s nature, as God causes the spiritually dead to become spiritually alive and free from their enslavement to sin.
  • When God told Adam and Eve that the day they ate of the forbidden fruit they would surely die, both spiritual and physical death were in view. Fallen man is not spiritually sick; he is spiritually dead. He cannot save himself, nor initiate any saving action on his own.
  • Regeneration precedes faith. We are saved by grace through faith – both being the gift of God and there can therefore be no human boasting.
  • Christ’s atonement on the cross was actual/efficacious and specific/particular. It is neither unlimited nor merely potential.
  • God is obligated to be just, He is not obligated to be merciful. All deserve hell; no one deserves mercy. The Bible teaches man is doomed to hell because of sin, for which he is responsible, not because of the election of God, or lack thereof. This judgment is just on God’s part. The Bible teaches that man goes to heaven because of God’s grace administered through the finished, complete and satisfying work of the Life and Cross of Christ.
  • Those who are truly saved will persevere, as it is God’s work which saves them and keeps (preserves) them. He is both faithful and able.
  • The Bible leads us to have a hermeneutic that is God centered (as opposed to man centered) in our thinking and perspective.
  • Evangelism/missions/discipleship, prayer, and scripturally based preaching are used by God to effect salvation. It is a great privilege to be allowed by God to participate in things that have such eternally significant positive purposes and consequences.
  • We have no desire to force others to believe in the Reformed perspective; however, we believe it to be true and need the liberty to both hold to this view and to teach what we believe is true, as the Bible discloses. We require, for the sake of the Glory of God and our own unity, that our spiritual leadership as well as our membership all hold to these beliefs without reservation.

What is a Reformed Baptist Church?

These attributes, when believed and practiced together, most generally distinguish Reformed Baptist Churches from other churches.
  • The Holy Scriptures (the entirety of the Old and New Testaments of the Bible) as God’s inspired, inerrant and infallible Word are sufficient for all matters of faith and life.
  • Doctrine and practice are essentially in agreement with The Second London Baptist Confession of 1689.
  • The sovereignty of the local assembly is established, and it is governed by a plurality of biblical Elders serving as the final court of appeals for the understanding and practice of biblical truth, by and in that local assembly.
  • The Bible alone defines and commands what God considers/regulates as acceptable worship of Him and the purpose and life of the Church. Included is a high value and priority on the Lord’s Day Sabbath.
  • The Bible and expository preaching are central in the life of the Church.
  • Baptism by immersion is for truly converted biblical believers in Jesus Christ. Believers whose faith and life are examined for evidence of the Lordship of Jesus Christ, confirming their salvation by God’s grace through faith in Christ, are included in church membership.
  • Continued reformation/sanctification of the Church toward being ever more faithful to God, as judged by the Holy Scriptures.
  • For a more detailed explanation of the history and beliefs of Reformed Baptist churches, please read Pastor Jim Savastio’s paper here.

Our Purpose:

  • To come to a Deep and Continually Growing Knowledge of God, as He is revealed to us in our lifelong study of the Holy Scriptures
  • To offer our lives, as living sacrifices, to the Worship of God in spirit and in truth
  • To be engaged in the Discipleship of Believers in Jesus Christ
  • To Fellowship with True and Like Minded Believers in Jesus Christ
  • To be Active in the Work of Evangelism and Missions to those Separated from God
  • To Minister to the Spiritual and Material Needs of the Brothers and Sisters in Christ and to those Separated from God

Additional Documents