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1.0 STATEMENT OF FAITH:
ABSTRACT OF PRINCIPLES
When the original charter of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary was adopted in 1858, it contained the following statement which continues as a part of the “fundamental laws.”
Every professor of the institution shall be a member of a regular Baptist church; and all persons accepting professorships in this seminary shall be considered, by such acceptance, as engaging to teach in accordance with, and not contrary to, the Abstract of Principles hereinafter laid down, a departure from which principles on his part shall be considered grounds for his resignation or removal by the Trustees, to wit:
The Scripture References were added by Effects of Grace Ministries.
I. The Scriptures. The Scriptures of the Old and New Testament were given by inspiration of God, and are the only sufficient, certain and authoritative rule of all saving knowledge, faith and obedience. (Rom. 15:4; 2 Tim. 3:15-16; 2 Pet 1:20)
II. God. There is but one God, the Maker, Preserver and Ruler of all things, having in and of himself, all perfections, and being infinite in them all; and to Him all creatures owe the highest love, reverence and obedience. (Deut. 6:4; Jas. 2:19)
III. The Trinity. God is revealed to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit each with distinct personal attributes, but without division of nature, essence or being.
IV. Providence. God from eternity, decrees or permits all things that come to pass,and perpetually upholds, directs and governs all creatures and all events; yet so as not to destroy the free will and responsibility of intelligent creatures.
*Though free will is not a biblical term, this phrase and free agency was used from the Reformation (approx. 1517) until the early 1900’s to teach that God does not coerce anyone’s will. Man’s will is free to choose what it wants; however, the unsaved man will always choose sin, rather than submit to God as Sovereign (John 6:44; Romans 3:10-11). In this explanation, James Boyce seems to deviate from the Calvinistic position, but he goes on to make it clear that he is addressing Providence, rather than Salvation. In that case, God’s providence operates on both the saved and the unsaved. We do believe that saved people have a will that is free to choose to do things that are spiritually pleasing to God (Ephesians 2:10; Philippians 2:13; Hebrews 13:21). We do not believe that unsaved people have that ability (Isaiah 64:5; Romans 10:3; Ephesians 2:1-3).
In this statement on God’s providence, Boyce goes on to write:
“God may, however, originate action in man, by producing some such change as is the result of the exercise of direct power…. In other ways, also, God may directly introduce controlling influences which forcibly originate new purposes in man, and so direct his will, that it finds that which is pleasing to itself far different from the past. But this action of God is the nature of creative acts, and not of providential.” 
James Pettigru Boyce, Abstract of Systematic Theology / a Brief Catechism of Bible Doctrine. Pompano Beach, FL: 1887, 224-225.
V. Election. Election is God’s eternal choice of some persons unto everlasting life — not because of foreseen merit in them, but of his mere mercy in Christ — in consequence of which choice they are called, justified and glorified.
VI. The Fall of Man. God originally created man in His own image, and free from sin; but, through the temptation of Satan, he transgressed the command of God, and fell from his original holiness and righteousness; whereby his posterity inherit a nature corrupt and wholly opposed to God and His law, are under condemnation, and as soon as they are capable of moral action, become actual transgressors.
VII. The Mediator. Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, is the divinely appointed mediator between God and man. Having taken upon Himself human nature, yet without sin, He perfectly fulfilled the Law, suffered and died upon the cross for the salvation of sinners. He was buried, and rose again the third day, and ascended to His Father, at whose hand He ever liveth to make intercession for His people. He is the only Mediator, the Prophet, Priest and King of the Church, and Sovereign of the Universe.
VIII. Regeneration. Regeneration is a change of heart, wrought by the Holy Spirit, who quickeneth the dead in trespasses and sins enlightening their minds spiritually and savingly to understand the Word of God, and renewing their whole nature, so that they love and practice holiness. It is a work of God’s free and special grace alone.
IX. Repentance. Repentance is an evangelical grace, wherein a person being, by the Holy Spirit, made sensible of the manifold evil of his sin, humbleth himself for it, with godly sorrow, detestation of it, and self-abhorrence, with a purpose and endeavor to walk before God so as to please Him in all things.
X. Faith. Saving faith is the belief, on God’s authority, of whatsoever is revealed in His Word concerning Christ; accepting and resting upon Him alone for justification and eternal life. It is wrought in the heart by the Holy Spirit, and is accompanied by all other saving graces, and leads to a life of holiness.
XI. Justification. Justification is God’s gracious and full acquittal of sinners, who believe in Christ, from all sin, through the satisfaction that Christ has made; not for anything wrought in them or done by them; but on account of the obedience and satisfaction of Christ, they receiving and resting on Him and His righteousness by faith.
XII. Sanctification. Those who have been regenerated are also sanctified, by God’s word and Spirit dwelling in them. This sanctification is progressive through the supply of Divine strength, which all saints seek to obtain, pressing after a heavenly life in cordial obedience to all Christ’s commands.
XIII. Perseverance of the Saints. Those whom God hath accepted in the Beloved, and sanctified by His Spirit, will never totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace, but shall certainly persevere to the end; and though they may fall, through neglect and temptation, into sin, whereby they grieve the Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, bring reproach on the Church, and temporal judgments on themselves, yet they shall be renewed again unto repentance, and be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
XIV. The Church. The Lord Jesus is the Head of the Church, which is composed of all his true disciples, and in Him is invested supremely all power for its government. According to his commandment, Christians are to associate themselves into particular societies or churches; and to each of these churches he hath given needful authority for administering that order, discipline and worship which he hath appointed. The regular officers of a Church are Bishops, or Elders, and Deacons.
XV. Baptism. Baptism is an ordinance of the Lord Jesus, obligatory upon every believer, wherein he is immersed in water in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, as a sign of his fellowship with the death and resurrection of Christ, of remission of sins, and of his giving himself up to God, to live and walk in newness of life. It is prerequisite to church fellowship, and to participation in the Lord’s Supper.
XVI. The Lord’s Supper. The Lord’s Supper is an ordinance of Jesus Christ, to be administered with the elements of bread and wine, and to be observed by his churches till the end of the world. It is in no sense a sacrifice, but is designed to commemorate his death, to confirm the faith and other graces of Christians, and to be a bond, pledge and renewal of their communion with him, and of their church fellowship.
XVII. The Lord’s Day. The Lord’s Day is a Christian institution for regular observance, and should be employed in exercises of worship and spiritual devotion, both public and private, resting from worldly employments and amusements, works of necessity and mercy only excepted.
XVIII. Liberty of Conscience. God alone is Lord of the conscience; and He hath left it free from the doctrines and commandments of men, which are in anything contrary to His word, or not contained in it. Civil magistrates being ordained of God, subjection in all lawful thing commanded by them ought to be yielded by us in the Lord, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
XIX. The Resurrection. The bodies of men after death return to dust, but their spirits return immediately to God — the righteous to rest with Him; the wicked to be reserved under darkness to the judgment. At the last day, the bodies of all the dead, both just and unjust, will be raised.
XX. The Judgment. God hath appointed a day, wherein he will judge the world by Jesus Christ, when every one shall receive according to his deeds; the wicked shall go into everlasting punishment; the righteous, into everlasting life.
1.1 Statement on Marriage, Gender and Sexuality
We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God. (Gen. 1:26-27.) Rejection of one’s biological sex is a rejection of the image of God within that person.
We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture. (Gen. 2:18-25.) We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other. (1 Cor. 6:18; 7:2-5; Heb. 13:4.) We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God. (Matt 15:18-20; 1 Cor. 6:9-10.)
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Effects of Grace Ministries as members of the Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the Effects of Grace Ministries members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by Effects of Grace Ministries in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender, and Sexuality. (Matt 5:16; Phil. 2:14-16; 1 Thess. 5:22.)
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ. (Acts 3:19-21; Rom. 10:9-10; 1 Cor. 6:9-11.)
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31.) Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture nor the doctrines of Effects of Grace Ministries.
1.2 Final Authority for Matters of Belief and Conduct
The statement of faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. For purposes of Effects of Grace Ministries‘ faith, doctrine, practice, policy, and discipline, our board of directors is Effects of Grace Ministries‘ final interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application.
1.3 Statement on the Sanctity of Human Life
We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life. (Ps 139.)
1.4 Statement on the Gospel
We believe that the gospel in Scripture refers to the mighty work of God in redeeming people from all nations to Himself (Gen. 18:18; 22:18; Matt. 28:19; Gal. 3:8). The good news of the gospel is that God has done all that is necessary to redeem a people to Himself through the Person and work of Jesus Christ (Heb. 9:11-12). We do not believe people can be saved outside of hearing the gospel and responding in repentance and faith (Rom. 10:14). All who work with Effects of Grace Ministries agree with this statement as well as the explanation of the gospel at the following link.
1.5 Statement on Evangelism
Biblical evangelism is the faithful communication of the gospel. Effects of Grace Ministries is committed to faithful communication of the gospel and commits to share the gospel and demonstrate faith in God to save whom He will (Acts 13:48; Eph. 1:4-5). The only response called for after a faithful gospel presentation is that the hearers repent and believe (Mark 1:15; Acts 20:21). All who believe are instructed to demonstrate their public confession by way of baptism (Acts 2:38).
We will not use manipulative phrases, tactics or events to solicit superficial responses to the gospel, thereby creating false converts. We will not employ the sinner’s prayer and ask people to raise their hands to make a decision, since this tactic cannot be found in Scripture.
2.0 Religious Employment Criteria
Effects of Grace Ministries does not discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin or age; however, we do claim the ministerial exception for jobs that are tasked with performing teaching duties designed to convey our beliefs.
2.1 Signed Statement of Faith
All employees of Effects of Grace Ministries are required to sign a statement affirming they agree with the Statement of Faith and prescribed above and that they are willing to comply with the standards of conduct. A violation of the Statement of Faith constitutes good cause to terminate employment.
2.2 Religious Job Descriptions
All employees of Effects of Grace Ministries will have a job description that furthers our religious mission.