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DOCTRINAL STATEMENT OF COVnet
(Creedal Affirmation)


INTRODUCTION

As members of the Church of Jesus Christ we praise God for his great salvation and rejoice in the fellowship he has given us with Himself and with each other. We rejoice in what God is doing in our day and are challenged by the unfinished task of evangelization.

COVnet is a family of ministries committed to the historic confessions of the Christian faith. The network is also committed to the Pentecostal/Charismatic dimension of Christianity and the contemporary movement of the Holy Spirit. The following affirmation reflects our points of common belief. It is not exhaustive, but rather summary what we believe, confess and teach on the essential elements of the Christian faith.

We have sought to express the truths of the Christian faith in a way that is faithful to Scripture and the historic confessions. We have tried to communicate in a clear and concise manner, consistent with contemporary English usage.

  1. The One The God
    There is but one living and true God, the eternal Spirit. The one true God is infinite in power, wisdom, justice, goodness and love; the maker of all things, both visible and invisible. With Christians throughout the ages, we affirm the eternal unity of God in three persons, of one substance, power and eternity -- Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

  2. The Lord Jesus Christ
    We affirm that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of God. In Him the divine and human natures are perfectly and inseparably united. He is fully God in every respect, possessing all the powers nd prerogatives of the sovereign God. He is also fully human, possessing all the capacities of human life. With Christians throughout history, we affirm that He is the eternal Word made flesh, the only begotten of the Father, born of the Virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit. As a ministering Servant, He lived a sinless life, and suffered and died for our sins on the Cross. He was buried, was raised from the dead by His Father, and ascended into heaven to be with His Father. He shall return to the earth to establish an eternal Kingdom. Jesus Christ is the only Savior and Mediator, who intercedes for us, who gives gifts to the church, and by Him all people will be judged.

  3. The Holy Spirit
    We affirm our belief in the Holy Spirit who proceeds from and is one with the Father and Son. He convinces the world of sin, righteousness and judgment. He leads people to respond to the Gospel and into the fellowship of the church. He regenerates, indwells, comforts, empowers and leads God's people into all truth.

  4. The Scripture
    We affirm that the Bible is the Word of God. We affirm the divine inspiration, truthfulness and authority of both Old and New Testament Scriptures in their century as the only written word of God, without error in all that it affirms, and the only infallible rule of faith and practice. We also affirm the power of God's Word to accomplish His purpose of salvation. The message of the Bible addressed to all for God's revelation in Christ and in Scripture is unchangeable. Through it the Holy Spirit still speaks today. He illumines the minds of God's people in every culture to perceive its truth freshly through their own eyes.

  5. Creation
    We affirm that the world was created by the Sovereign God through the Word and the Spirit. The created order is good and was created for the well-being of all creatures as the place of human dwelling in covenant with God.

  6. Humanity
    We affirm that human beings were created in the image of God. God placed man and woman on this planet to walk in fellowship with Him and to cultivate and manage the earth. As beings created in God's image, every human being has destiny and worth and is to be treated with dignity and respect.

    Our relationship with God was broken through the willful rebellion of the first humans, Adam and Eve. As sinful creatures we have broken covenant, become estranged from God, wounded ourselves and others, and wreaked havoc throughout the creation. As the result of sin, all human capacities have been affected. The mind has been darkened. The heart has been corrupted so that all human actions have been polluted by self-will and the desire for self-gratification. Only God can save them.

  7. Salvation
    Because God truly loves humanity, He judges our sin, calls us to repentance and faith, pardons us, receives us by grace, and restores us in His image.

    The only hope for humanity is through the work of Jesus Christ, who is the unique Savior of the human race and the sole Mediator between God and humanity. Through his suffering and death human beings receive forgiveness from sin and are restored in the image of God. Salvation includes release from the power as well as the penalty of sin. The goal of God's redemptive action is to restore what was lost in the Fall and includes the healing of human beings at every level of their being. God's salvation also includes the renewal of the created order. Salvation not only effects reconciliation between God and humanity but also between persons as well (Col 2:14-15).

  8. Ordinances of the Church
    We affirm that the ordinances of the church are signs and symbols of God's saving presence among us. They are not badges of Christian profession; but are signs of God's grace by which He works in us by His Spirit. There are two ordinances ordained by the Lord Jesus Christ in the Gospels, that is, Water Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

  9. Sanctification and Holiness
    We believe that sanctification is a work of God's grace through the Word and the Spirit, through which those who have been born again are cleansed from their sins in thought, word and actions, so that they become whole persons, able to live in accordance with God's will. Sanctification is both event and process.

  10. The Power of Holy Spirit
    We believe in the power of the Holy Spirit. The Father sent His Spirit to bear witness to His Son; without His witness ours is futile. Conviction of sin, faith in Christ, new birth and Christian growth are all his work. Further, the Holy Spirit is a missionary Spirit; thus evangelism should arise spontaneously from a Spirit-filled church. Believers receive power when they are baptized in the Holy Spirit. The ministry of the Holy Spirit occurs through prayer, the ministry of the Word, teaching and the manifestation of spiritual gifts.

  11. The Church
    We affirm our belief in one holy, apostolic and universal church established by Jesus Christ and built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, composed of believers from all ages. The church is the community of God's people rather than an institution, and must not be identified with any particular culture, social or political system, or human ideology. God has been calling out from the world a people for Himself, and sending His people back into the world to be His servants and His witnesses, for the extension of His Kingdom. The church is a community of committed relationships in which personal faith is nurtured by mutual responsiveness and accountability.

  12. Ministry
    We believe that the ascended Lord has given gifts of ministry to His church, including apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. These ministries exist to build up the body of Christ and to equip men and women for ministry. A person is set apart by the Holy Spirit through calling and gifting, and subsequently recognized by the leadership of the local congregation. Transcongregational relationship and accountability are vital and have deep biblical warrants.

  13. Mission and Service
    Personal faith always involves mission and service to the world. Christian faith entails more than personal piety; love of God always produces love for one's neighbor, a passion to see the salvation of others, the renewal of life and the establishment of justice. No local congregation, association of congregations or parachurch ministry can hope to complete the tasks of mission and service in isolation from other parts of the body of Christ. The Gospel is God's Good News for the whole world. We are determined by His grace to obey Christ's commission to proclaim to all people and to make disciples of every nation. Therefore we maintain that unity and partnership are essential for the fulfillment of the evangelistic and cultural mandates of God's people.

  14. The Return of Christ
    We believe that Jesus Christ will return personally and visibly, in power and glory, to consummate his salvation and his judgment.

  15. The Resurrection of the Dead
    We affirm our belief in the resurrection of the dead at the end of history. Jesus Christ will raise all men and women, the saints, to everlasting life and blessedness, and the unrighteous to judgment and eternal damnation.

  16. The Restoration of All Things
    We affirm our belief and confidence that Jesus Christ shall reign over all creation and restore the created order. We look forward with eager anticipation to that day, and to the new heaven and earth in which righteousness will dwell and God will reign forever.



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