WHAT WE BELIEVE
First Baptist Church of Douglasville is an autonomous church that is aligned with the Southern Baptist Convention. Our beliefs and our governing by-laws reflect the doctrinal positions and intent of the Baptist Faith and Message 2000. A complete copy of the Baptist Faith and Message can be found here. Also, we have summarized our essential doctrinal beliefs and covenant membership in the following sections for quick reference. This summary is also provided at First Connection–our monthly new-member class where we share more about how we are seeking to glorify God by making disciples and proclaiming the gospel throughout the world. The First Connection Booklet is available for download at the bottom of the page, as well as our church by-laws.
We believe there is one true God, who exists as three persons – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. We affirm that He is the Creator, Preserver, and Ruler of all things. He is perfect and infinite in all His attributes and is worthy of the highest love, reverence, and obedience.
We believe God created man in His own image and free from sin in order to reflect His glory; but, through the temptation of Satan, man sinned (rebelled against God) and incurred both a physical death and a spiritual death (eternal separation from God). We believe that all human beings are born with a sin nature and are thus incapable of rendering to God the highest love, reverence, and obedience, which He is due.
We believe that God the Son is Jesus Christ, who is the divinely appointed Mediator between God and man. Having taken upon Himself human nature, He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born, without sin, of the virgin Mary to redeem man from sin. He perfectly fulfilled the Law, and He suffered and died upon the cross for the salvation of sinners. He was buried; He was raised on the third day; and He ascended to His Father in heaven. He is able to save those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.
We believe salvation involves the redemption of the whole man (intellect, desires, and will), and is offered freely to all who would repent of their sins and believe upon Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His own perfect life, substitutionary death on the cross, and resurrection from the dead obtained eternal redemption for the believer. We believe that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, and is not based on any works man may do.
We believe the Scriptures of the Old Testament and New Testament were given by inspiration of God, and therefore are inerrant and infallible. We believe the Scriptures are the only sufficient, certain, and authoritative rule of all saving knowledge, faith, and Christian obedience. The Scriptures are therefore to be believed, as God’s instruction, in all that it teaches; obeyed, as God’s command, in all that it requires; and trusted, as God’s pledge, in all that it promises (Isaiah 40:6-8). As God’s people hear, believe, and obey the Word, they are equipped as disciples of Christ and witnesses to the gospel (Romans 10:14-17).
We believe the Lord Jesus is the Head of the Church, which is composed of all His true disciples, and He possesses all power for its government. While FBC is a part of the Southern Baptist Convention, we practice self-government and independence from any denominational control, and we team up with other networks for greater impact. FBC determines its own strategy, structure, and style.
We believe the body of Christ (the Church) has been put here to display the glory of God through making disciples, worship, and proclaiming the gospel here in West Atlanta and throughout the world.
The Church has been commanded to observe two ordinances: baptism and the Lord’s Supper.
We practice baptism by complete immersion – the way Jesus was baptized and the way the Bible commands. Baptism is a visible picture of a person’s commitment to Christ and a sign of his fellowship with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection, of the remission of his sins, and of his giving himself up to live unto God in newness of life. Baptism is also a prerequisite to enjoying the privileges of church membership and to participating in the Lord’s Supper.
“…buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God…”
We practice the Lord’s Supper on a regular basis. It is a symbolic act of obedience through which we remember the death of Jesus and anticipate His second coming. All who have become genuine followers of Christ and have been baptized by immersion can participate.
“For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. 1 Corinthians 11:26