What We Believe

"Hope" is commonly used to mean a wish: it's strength is the strength of the person's desire.
But in the Bible "hope" is the confident expectation of what God has promised and it's strength is in His faithfulness.

Core Beliefs

The following are the core beliefs of Hope Christian Community based on the foundational truths taught in the bible. All of our teaching and ministry is rooted in and flows out of these biblical doctrines.

God

God is the Creator and Ruler of the universe. He has eternally existed in three persons: The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are coequal and are one God.
Genesis 1:1,26-27, 3:22; Psalm 90:2; Matthew 28:19; 1 Peter 1:2; 2 Cor. 13:14

Jesus

Jesus Christ is the Son of God in the flesh. He is coequal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. “He is the radiance of God’s glory, the exact representation of His nature, and He upholds all things by the word of His power” (Heb 1:3). Jesus lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of all people by dying on a cross. He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He ascended to Heaven’s glory and will return again someday to judge the world and be united with His Bride (the Church).
Matthew 1:22-23; Isaiah 9:6; John 1:1-5, 14:10-30; Hebrews 1:3, 4:14,15; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Romans 1:3-4; Acts 1:9-11; 1 Timothy 6:14-15; Titus 2:13

Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is coequal with the Father and the Son of God. He is present in the world to make men aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. He then baptizes us with the power to be effective ministers of Jesus Christ. He gives every believer spiritual gifts. He also provides us with supernatural help, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. As Christians, we seek to live under His control daily.
2 Corinthians 3:17; John 16:7-13, 14:16-17; Acts 1:8; 1 Corinthians 2:12, 3:16; Ephesians 1:13; Galatians 5:25; Ephesians 5:18; Acts 2:1-4

The Bible

The Bible is God’s Word to us. It was written by human authors, under the supernatural guidance of the Holy Spirit. It is the supreme source of truth for Christian beliefs and living. Because it is inspired by God, it is the truth without any mixture of error in it’s message.
2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21; 2 Timothy 1:13; Psalm 119:105,160, 12:6; Proverbs 30:5

Mankind

Human beings are made in the spiritual image of God, to be like Him in character. People are the supreme object of God’s creation and were given authority to rule the world. Although every person has tremendous potential for good, all of us were marred by an attitude of disobedience toward God called “sin”. Starting with Adam and Eve, this attitude separated people from a right relationship with God and is the root of all the world’s problems. All humans being are born broken and corrupt in some way as a direct consequence of Adam and Eve’s original sin and there is no way to fix this apart from God’s grace. Every human that has physically died will someday be resurrected to be held accountable and judged for their actions here on earth.
Genesis 1:27; Psalm 8:3-6; Isaiah 53:6a; Romans 3:23; Isaiah 59:1-2

Salvation

Salvation is God’s free gift to us but we must accept it. We can never make up for our sin by self-improvement or good works. Only by trusting in Jesus Christ who shed His blood on the cross as God’s offer of forgiveness can anyone be saved from sin’s penalty. When we turn from our self-ruled life and turn to Jesus in faith we are saved. Not only does salvation affect our eternal identity and destination but it also includes healing and deliverance right now!
Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8-9; John 14:6, 1:12; Titus 3:5; James 5:15

Eternity

People were created to exist forever. We will eventually either exist eternally in the Kingdom of Heaven through salvation or outside the Kingdom of Heaven in a place called “Gehenna” (a.k.a. Hell). Heaven and Hell are real places of eternal existence. Heaven is also referred to as “Paradise” and is the incomprehensible place of perfection filled with God’s love and beauty. In contrast, Hell is a horrible place of judgment initially designed for the devil and his demons. To be eternally in union with God is the very essence of eternal life and can only be attained through genuine faith in Jesus Christ.
John 3:16, 14:17; Romans 6:23, 8:17-18; Rev. 20:15; 1 Cor. 2:7-9 

Seven Practices

Autonomy

“Christ is the head of His Body, the church. He is the source of the Body’s life…” (Col 1:18 ).
Christ is the recognized head of our church, not any person, group, or religious organization. While recognizing the value of associating and cooperating with other groups of Christians, we believe every local church should be self-governing and independent from any denominational control. In relating to our “daughter churches” that we sponsor, we encourage each congregation to determine its own strategy, structure, and style.

Priesthood

“Christ loves us, and by His death He has freed us from our sins and made us a kingdom of priests…” (Rev. 1:6).
“You are…the King’s priests…God’s own people, chosen to proclaim the wonderful acts of God” (1 Pet 2:9).
The Bible teaches that every Christian is called to “full time” Christian service, regardless of his or her vocation. We practice the truth that every believer is a minister by encouraging every member to find a place of service and ministry. Every believer has direct access to God through prayer and Bible reading.

Tithing

“A tithe of everything you produce belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord” (Lev 26:30).
At Hope Christian Community, we encourage tithing for the support of Christ’s body, the church. We recognize that giving the first 10% of our income is the Biblical standard of giving although we are free to give a greater amount as the Spirit leads us (Mal 3:8-12; 1 Cor 16:2; Heb 7:2).

Spirit Led Living

(Jesus said), “I am the Vine, you are the branches. If you abide in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; but apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
We believe the only way possible to live the Christian life is by God’s power within us. So we seek to practice a daily dependence on God’s Spirit to enable us to do what is right (Phil 2:13; Eph 5:18).

Baptism by Immersion

“For when you were baptized, you were buried with Christ, and in baptism you were also raised with Christ…” (Col 2:12).
We practice baptism by immersion under water — the way Jesus was baptized.

Representing Christ

“Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (1 Peter 3:15).
It is the responsibility of every Christian to share the Good News with those with whom God brings us into contact. We practice personal sharing about Christ and inviting friends to church.

Sexual Identity

From the beginning God made us male and female, and said, “‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate” (Matt 19:5-6).
Our sexual identity is not fluid and neither is marriage. As previously mentioned, because of sin, human beings are born broken and corrupt and we must resist our sinful desires and allow God to set us free. To be perfectly clear, we believe that marriage is to be between a biological male and a biological female. Sexual identity and activity outside God’s protective boundary will ultimately destroy the family unit that He originally designed. With that said however, we also believe that we are to love and respect even those who disagree with our beliefs. We do not tolerate hate. Jesus tells us to love everyone, even our enemies!