What we believe:
Our Statement of Trust
Todd and Renée Ellison of Homeschool How-Tos
- We believe that the Holy Scriptures are comprised of the 66 books of the Hebrew and Greek writings [the Old and New Testaments]. We believe the Holy Scriptures to be the inspired Word of God, without error in their original manuscripts, the complete revelation of God's will for salvation, "valuable for teaching the truth, convicting of sin, correction of faults, and training in right living" (2 Timothy 3:16). The Holy Scriptures are the final authority for all matters, spiritual, and personal. We "find its cardinal doctrine to be, atonement by the blood, and sanctification by the Spirit of a divine Savior." (William Buell Sprague, Letters on Practical Subjects, to a Daughter (Harrisonburg, VA: Sprinkle Publications, 11th American ed., rev. and enl., 1987, page 171). On this topic, we heartily recommend reading (and studying) the "Ten Reasons Why I Believe the Bible is the Word of God" (by early 20th Century evangelist Reuben Archer Torrey).
- We believe in one God, Creator and Sustainer of all things; infinite, perfect, eternal, sovereign, provident, unchanging and without equal. We believe God to be all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-present---existent in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (one Person, in three expressions; analogous to the three forms of the water He created: liquid, vapor and solid). We believe that God is Holy and requires His people to be Holy and to separate themselves to God.
- We believe that the LORD is the Savior of all mankind. We believe in the total deity and humanity of the LORD Jesus Christ (Yeshua the Messiah). We believe in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, and in His miracles. We believe that the LORD came to earth to submit Himself perfectly to the will of His Father in heaven and to shed His blood to become "the Lamb of God to take away the sin of the world" (John 1:29). We believe that the LORD died, went to the place of torment, and bodily rose in victory on the third day; ascended into heaven, sits on the right hand of God as our priest and advocate, and will return to establish His Kingdom with its headquarters in Jerusalem.
- We believe in the Holy Spirit, that He is at work in our present day. We believe that it is the ministry of the Spirit to glorify the LORD, to convict of sin, to show judgment, and to show righteousness (John 16:8-13). We believe that the Spirit indwells all believers and gives instruction and enabling for godly living and service. We believe in the work and presence of the Holy Spirit in the life of every believer and we believe that God manifests the gifts, power, and authority of His Holy Spirit in the life of each believer in a diverse way. We believe that the Spirit has gifts for the edification of all believers and uses them as He wills (1 Corinthians 12:4).
- We believe that man was created in the image of God; but because of Adam's disobedience fell into sin and likewise all mankind. We believe in the total depravity of man, that unless man is redeemed by the LORD as his Savior, he is condemned to eternal damnation. We believe that following salvation, by grace alone through faith and not of works, we should then uphold and obey the commandments of God as we strive to love the LORD with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength (Mark 12:30, John 14:15, Romans 3:31, 7:22, Galatians 3:21-22, 1 John 5:1-3) and teach others to do so (Matthew 5:17-19, Revelation 22:13-14).
- We believe that the seventh-day Sabbath and the Biblical Feasts are God's holy days for us to observe, and that they are a shadow (picture) of things to come, revealing the redemptive plan of God through Yeshua as Messiah (Leviticus 23:2-4, Colossians 2:16-17).
- We believe in water immersion in the presence of witnesses, as performed by John and continued into the second century, as a personal witness of one's rebirth in Yeshua our Messiah. However, we do not believe that immersion/ baptism itself is a prerequisite of salvation--as exemplified by the case of the thief on the cross, who was saved without having had opportunity to be be immersed before he died.
- We believe in the resurrection of the saved and their eternal life with God. We believe in the resurrection of the lost and their eternal separation from God. We believe in the personal second coming of the LORD for His body of believers, past and present (Isaiah 26:20, 21).
- We believe that there is a universal body of believers, consisting of all people, past, present, and future, who believe in the LORD as Savior. We believe that the LORD is the head of the body and that the members of the body find places of service and worship within local congregations. We believe that the "middle wall of partition" has been broken down and now Jew and Gentile worship the God of Israel together (1 Corinthians 12:13, Ephesians 2:13-14).
- We believe that the Good News about the LORD must be shared with all who have not yet believed on Him alone for their salvation (Matthew 28:19-20). We believe that both Jews and Gentiles need the LORD's work of redemption to be delivered from death to eternal life.
- We believe that God's desired pattern for corporate worship includes the plurality of elders, that there is a difference in the roles of men and women that is expressed in corporate worship, and that men are to carry the spiritual leadership role (1 Corinthians 14:26-36, 1 Timothy 2:8-15, 1 Peter 3:1-7).
Not sure where your soul will go when you die? Are you good enough?
People sometimes ask what Bible translation we recommend. Two versions that we think are among the most accurate translations are the English Standard Version and the New American Standard Bible. Both seem to have avoided the (mostly minor) errors that we and others have observed in other English translations including both the New International Version and the King James Version.