We believe in the importance of serving the body of Christ by extending membership into the fellowship to start and develop healthy and growing relationships with others in the church body. We value an intentional plan to help every interested person enjoy godly relationships in the church. Church membership is a natural transition as one is born again they are born into the church. As a result new believers are people who are growing in Christ, who grasp the importance of serving the Lord by using their gifts to serve others in the local church.
Baptism & The Lord's Supper
Baptism and The Lord's Supper are the two ordinances required in the church. We believe that Christian baptism by immersion in water is a public expression and identification with Jesus Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection.
Although baptism is not required for salvation, it is commanded of all believers and is for believers only (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:38,41; Acts 18:8). Scripture shows that a person was baptized after personally receiving forgiveness of sin through accepting Jesus Christ. The waters of baptism are a symbol of our death, burial, and resurrection to newness of life that happens when we become a new creation in Christ (Colossians 2:12; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Romans 6:1-6).
The Lord's supper is the ordinance of Jesus Christ, to administered with the elements of bread and wine to be observed by the church in remembrance by believers of Christ’s death – of the Savior's broken body and shed blood. It is no sacrifice but to confirm the faith and other graces of Christians. It is to be a time of confession of sin and should be preceded by careful self-examination (1 Corinthians 11:20-29; Matthew 26:26-29).
Issues for Clarification
We are Faithful Stones Church and are currently updating all things formerly known as Word of Faith Church. For over 20 years we have kept the name even though we firmly reject all things associated with it. By God's grace and clear commands we have not only renounced all unbiblical doctrines with humble repentance. The name change is bearing fruit in keeping with that repentance. Faithful Stones Church formerly Word of Faith is not in any way related to or associated with the Word-Faith movement (emphasis added). FSC is a non-charismatic, Bible-centered and Christ-exalting, evangelical fellowship. We agree to, and align with Reformed Baptist convictions. A Reformed Baptist church is concerned with a recovery of the gospel by returning to the scriptures as reflected in the Protestant Reformation. We affirm the Five Solas, the centrality of Scripture, and the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith. While we affirm Sola Scriptura, we recognize our Confessions and Creeds to be a trustworthy summary of Scripture's teaching.
We welcome all who know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Those who claim to possess the gift of tongues and other sign gifts are welcome to worship and fellowship with us if they are willing to be a source of unity, keeping the unity rather than division within our church body. We believe that the Christian life is supernatural and that the Lord continues to perform miracles. We also believe that current displays of the gift of tongues are not the biblical gifts and distract from the main task of the local church, which is to glorify God through the fulfillment of the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20).
Current displays of the gift of tongues are not true manifestations of the true gift of languages (Acts 2:4-11):
We believe the emphasis on speaking in tongues as the primary manifestation of the Spirit’s work in a person’s life are unbiblical. The Spirit’s work in producing a holy life is the greater more necessary God-glorifying work (2 Corinthians 3:17-18; 2 Timothy 1:9), displaying the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).
Many suggest that speaking in tongues is a required proof of being Spirit-filled or of possessing salvation in Christ, even though the Scriptures clearly do not teach this.
FSC believes that specific spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues (Acts 2:4-11), prophecy in the sense of receiving new revelations from God to proclaim to others have ceased with the completion of the Bible (2 Peter 2:1) and healing ceased with the Apostolic age. Therefore, members of FSC are not encouraged to promote the teachings and emphasis of the charismatic movement. We will seek to emphasize the more excellent way of love as well as zeal for the more edifying gifts (John 16:8; John 13:15; Titus 3:5; Ephesians 4:11-12; Romans 8:9-17; Romans 12:4-8; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 1 Corinthians 12:4-5; 1 Corinthians 12:11-13; 1 Corinthians 12:19; 1 Corinthians 13:13; Galatians 5:25).
Women in Ministry
Although women have traditionally fulfilled supportive roles in serving the church and gained their greatest joy and sense of accomplishment from being wives and mothers, the feminist movement has successfully influenced many women to abandon these divinely ordained roles. Unfortunately, this movement has made headway even in the church, creating chaos and confusion regarding the role of women both in ministry and in the home. Only in Scripture can God’s intended design for women be found.
Faithful Stones Church affirms the God-ordained and significant role that women should play in the local church. The Scriptures clearly state that men are to serve in the office of elder and that women are not to serve in church positions in which they exercise authority over men or in which they teach doctrine to men (1 Timothy 2:12; 1 Timothy 3:1-2; Titus 1:6-9). We do not see this as an issue of equality, for men and women are equal under God. The Bible is clear that men and women do not have the same roles. We encourage women to fulfill their distinct roles as God has purposed and designed for the building of His kingdom serving the Lord, their home, church and community for the spread of the gospel.
The Sovereignty of God
This is probably the greatest, most humbling, most misunderstood, most despised (of course by the natural mind) doctrine of scripture. The truth that God is absolutely sovereign. Human pride loathes the suggestion that God orders everything, controls everything, and rules over everything. The carnal mind, burning with enmity against God, abhors the biblical teaching that nothing comes to pass except according to His eternal decrees. Most of all, human nature hates the notion that salvation is entirely God’s work. Salvation is a work of God and if His choice was settled before the foundation of the world, then believers deserve no credit for any aspect of their salvation.
But that is, after all, precisely what Scripture teaches. Even faith is God’s gracious gift to His elect. Jesus said, “No one can come to Me, unless it has been granted him from the Father” (John 6:65). “Nor does anyone know the Father, except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him” (Matt. 11:27). Therefore no one who is saved has anything to boast about (Eph. 2:8-9). “Salvation is from the Lord” (Jonah 2:9).
Everything that exists in the universe exists because God allowed it, decreed it, and called it into existence. “Our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases” (Ps. 115:3). “Whatever the Lord pleases, He does, in heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deeps” (Ps. 135:6). He “works all things after the counsel of His will” (Eph. 1:11). “From Him and through Him and to Him are all things” (Rom. 11:36). “For us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things, and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him” (1 Cor. 8:6).
What about sin? God is not the author of sin, but He certainly allowed it; it is integral to His eternal decree. God has a purpose for allowing it. He cannot be blamed for evil or tainted by its existence (1 Sam. 2:2: “There is no one holy like the Lord.”). But He certainly wasn’t caught off-guard or standing helpless to stop it when sin entered the universe. We do not know His purpose for allowing sin. Clearly, in the general sense, He allowed sin in order to display His glory—attributes that would not be revealed apart from evil—mercy, grace, compassion, forgiveness, and salvation. And God sometimes uses evil to accomplish good (Gen. 45:7–8; 50:20; Rom. 8:28). How can these things be? Scripture does not answer all the questions, but it does teach that God is utterly sovereign, perfectly holy, and absolutely just.
The Lord changes lives and accomplishes His purposes directly through reading and applying the Scriptures, meditating on the truths of the Scriptures, and prayer. The Lord also uses those who minister His Word as they encourage, exhort, admonish, edify, implore, reprove, rebuke, and console others toward godliness. God needs no new or unique insight into the human condition in order to change lives, regardless of whether that insight is gained through psychology or some other tool of human origin.
Problems that are approached by integrating the Scriptures with psychological theories tend to deceive individuals into diminishing the God of the Scriptures and into believing that He has not provided and cannot provide sufficient truth, insight, and wisdom that will change their lives (Colossians 2:8-10).
When psychology and other social sciences step beyond observing human behavior and seek to explain the causes of human behavior, they enter spiritual territory. Only the God of the Scriptures can explain causes and offer solutions that lead to godliness and a fruitful, joyful life. God has given us everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). He changes us as we discipline ourselves through obedience to the Word of God in the power of the Holy Spirit (1 Timothy 4:7; 2 Peter 1:5-11).
Each Christian’s passion should be to become more like Christ and fulfill the Great Commandment to love the Lord with the entire heart, soul, mind, and strength (Romans 8:29; 1 John 3:2, Deuteronomy 6:5; Mark 12:30; Matthew 22:37-38).
The Christian who learns and applies the Word becomes mature and in turn, can help others mature (2 Timothy 2:2).
This is not to denigrate the importance of Christians counseling each other. There certainly is a crucial need for biblical sound counseling ministries within the Church, and this need is met by those who are spiritually gifted to offer encouragement, discernment, comfort, advice, compassion, and help to others. In fact, one of the very problems that has led to the current plague of bad counsel is that churches have not done as well as they could in equipping people with those kinds of gifts to minister effectively. In addition, the complexities of this modern age have made it more difficult to take the time necessary to listen well, serve others through compassionate personal involvement, and otherwise provide the close fellowship necessary for the church body to enjoy health and vitality.
Churches have looked to psychology to fill the gap, but it isn’t going to work. Professional psychologists are no substitute for spiritually gifted people, and the counsel that psychology offers cannot replace biblical wisdom and divine power. Moreover, psychology tends to make people dependent on a therapist, whereas those exercising true spiritual gifts always turn people back to an all-sufficient Savior and His all-sufficient Word.
Sanctification and Maturity
Mature disciples delight in Christ, devote themselves to Christ, and display Christ. A person committed to a relationship with Christ focuses on personally adoring and corporately worshiping Him, abiding with Him in fruitful fellowship in a spiritual community; loving freely, serving sacrificially, giving generously, and proclaiming openly the good news of Jesus. That person will experience significant growth in personal sanctification and, therefore, will experience a closer personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and will become “complete in Christ” (Colossians 1:28). We are committed to multiplying the godly characteristics of leaders’ lives into others (2 Timothy 2:2). This multiplication of ministry is key to the healthy growth of the church. We believe the disciples of Jesus Christ should minister to one another in the local church, rather than one or a small number of professional pastors bearing total responsibility to care for the entire congregation. God has given spiritual gifts to all of His people to provide mutual ministry in the context of the healthy and strong local church (Ephesians 4:11-12).