Foundations of Our Church
Updated: Jul 14, 2020
There are four ideas that are foundational to what we believe at Eastgate Assembly of God. These doctrines are: Salvation, Divine Healing, The Baptism in the Holy Spirit, and the Second Coming of Jesus. These beliefs, or doctrines, of the church are the foundation upon which everything we do and all that we teach and preach is based. We consider these to be non-negotiable aspects of the Christian faith. The Assemblies of God was founded in 1913 on these four biblical doctrines, and we continue to hold true to them today.
Salvation: The doctrine of Salvation forms the core of our Christian faith by proclaiming God’s victory over sin in our lives. This truth results in deliverance, healing and restored lives. Whether a new member or a mature Christian, every believer should have a clear understanding of salvation and the difference this truth makes in our lives and churches. If you are wondering, “How can I be saved?” go to the highest possible authority-the Bible-and get the answer that God has written in its sacred pages. Romans chapter 10, verse 13, says: “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” The Book of Joel, chapter two, verse 32, says: “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered.” In Acts chapter 2, the Apostle Peter said, (verse 21): “Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” There are four things about this inspired statement that you should notice. First of all, salvation is necessary. “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). In the second place, it’s our Lord Jesus Christ who saves people. He bore our sins in His own body on the cross, the Bible says (1 Peter 2:24). “Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3). The third thing to notice in the text is the simplicity of salvation. Even a child can understand it. All you need to do is “call on the name of the Lord.” You must believe these things that you have been reading; that you need to be saved, and that only Christ can save you. Furthermore, you must believe that He will save you. Jesus said, “Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37). You must take action. You must call upon Him. Finally you need to notice that wonderful word "whosoever." That means everyone. It means you. No matter where you are, or what you have done, or how weak you feel, you can be saved by calling upon the name of the Lord. He knows all about you. He loves you and desires to save you. He can transform your life if you will let, Him do it. Call upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ this moment and you will be saved instantly. You will have the joy of salvation in this life, and an eternal home in heaven.
If you want more information or salvation or on the other doctrines of the church, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 614-864-7099.
2. Divine Healing - Divine healing, healing by the miraculous power of God, is a wonderful provision the Lord Jesus has given us. In Mark 2, Jesus healed a man who was lowered through the roof. Jesus said to the man: “Thy sins be forgiven thee” (verse 5). The scribes and Pharisees murmured in their hearts. Jesus exposed their murmuring and their faultfinding: “Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?” (verse 9). The point is: There are not two kinds of faith; there is one faith. The faith a person needs to be saved is the same faith a person needs to be healed.
In the Book of James, James wrote, “Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray” (5:13). We can pray when we are afflicted. But then James continued, “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up” (verses 14,15). We are instructed to lay hands on the sick, anoint them with oil, and pray the prayer of faith. I do not heal; you do not heal. Only God heals. As believers, we pray for the sick, anoint them with oil, and leave the results in the hands of the Lord.
The power of prayer and of divine healing is marvelous. Divine healing was provided for in the Atonement. When Jesus died on Calvary, the provision for healing was made.
Scripture says, “With his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). Our responsibility is to come in faith and pray, believing that the Lord will raise them up, and that He will perform the miraculous. As a result, He gets the glory.
When we act on the Word, and the Lord will confirm His Word with signs following as Mark’s gospel confirms. God expects us to obey His Word. Christians are to pray the prayer of faith, give opportunity for people to be prayed for, and allow the Lord the opportunity to heal.
3. The Baptism in the Holy Spirit
The doctrine of the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is our distinctive doctrine. This doctrine explains the passion and power of our witness. Jesus promised His followers they would receive power from on high so that they would be His witnesses. We believe this truth is just as relevant today as our church continues to take the gospel message around the globe.
The word Spirit, referring to the Spirit of God, or the Holy Spirit, is found repeatedly in the Bible. The Spirit is seen often as coming upon a person to energize him or her for God’s service. Jesus said in Luke 24:49, “Behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” Perhaps the most dynamic illustration of the Spirit’s activity is found in an analysis of the events accompanying the outpouring of the Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. Acts 2 sketches the story: “And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. … And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost.” The Book of Acts has been appropriately entitled, “The Acts of the Holy Spirit.” It is a book of action. It records history in the making. It is full of life, vigor, and vitality. Its pages tell of miracles of divine guidance and the supernatural intervention of God’s Spirit in the lives of men. The men of this book move in a new dimension. They are motivated by a special power. Pentecost marks and makes the difference. An impetuous Peter steps out of a life of mediocrity into a life of victory and power. Saul of Tarsus arises from the dust of the Damascus road challenged and empowered to evangelize the world. The members of the Early Church, motivated by something much greater than themselves, evangelize one city after another. What accounts for this? The answer lies in the nature and work of the Holy Spirit. The men of Acts were empowered by the Holy Spirit. They moved and spoke by divine inspiration. John the Baptist said: “I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I … he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire” (Matthew 3:11) . The companion verse to this is found in Acts 2:4 : “And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” In Acts chapters 10 and 19, a similar phenomenon took place. As the Spirit touched people, their entire beings were made to respond to the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus anticipated this experience when He spoke of the Spirit as soon to be uniquely within the disciples (John 14:16,17). The experience of Pentecost was dynamic. It marked the flow of a new surge of divine power. People now did for God what they could not have done before. They now possessed a key that unlocked for them the secret to the abundant, Spirit-filled life Jesus had promised in John 10:10.
The Pentecostal experience is for today. When people, with hungry hearts, yield themselves to the Holy Spirit, they can expect the same inflow of energizing power from God. The Spirit that hovered over the chaotic waters in Genesis 2, the Spirit that quickened the dry bones in Ezekiel’s valley, the Spirit that inspired the Bible writers, the Spirit that filled the early believers still imparts life today.
4. The fourth core doctrine of this church is the Rapture of the Church. We believe that Jesus can come at any moment. The founding fathers of the Assemblies of God included this doctrine in our Statement of Fundamental Truths as non-negotiable. This is the viewpoint of the imminent return of Christ held by the Early Church. The disciples believed “the Judge is standing right at the door” (James 5:9, NASB). The Early Church that turned the whole world upside down with their preaching did so while at the same time believing Jesus could come at any moment. Jesus taught this to the Early Church himself. The desire to know the exact date of the Lord’s return is as old as the New Testament (Acts 1:6,7), and the impetus toward date setting has continued unabated to the current time. To date, however, every attempt to specify the time of Jesus’ return has met with failure. The teaching of Scripture is clear: “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone” (Matthew 24:36 and parallels). Although some claim it is possible to know the general time period or season, the Scriptures are equally clear: “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority” (Acts 1:7). If we are able to accurately calculate the time of His return, we will be true and the Scriptures will be in error. He will not really be able to come “like a thief in the night” (1 Thessalonians 5:2, NASB).
If accurately predicting the return of Jesus is not the task of His disciples, what is our responsibility in light of the imminent return of Christ?
1) We are to be constantly engaged in witness (John 4:35; 9:4; 1 Corinthians 15:58; Galatians 6:9; Ephesians 5:16) that emphasizes the time of His return is near (Matthew 4:17; 2 Corinthians 6:2).
2) We are to be on guard against the increasing number of deceivers and deceptions characteristic of the end-time (Matthew 24:4,5,11,24; 1 Timothy 4:1; 2 Peter 3:17).
3) We are to be awake, sober, and alert (Matthew 24:42,43; 25:13; 1 Thessalonians 5:6; 1 Peter 4:7; Revelation 16:15).
4) We are to be ready, prepared (Matthew 24:44; 25:10; Luke 12:35–37; Revelation 19:7).
5) We are to be wise (Matthew 25:2; 1 Peter 4:7; 2 Peter 3:18).
6) We are to be holy in conduct and thought (Luke 21:34; 2 Peter 3:11; Revelation 16:15).
7) We are to be living servant lives filled with the fruit of good deeds (Hebrews 10:24,25; 1 Peter 4:8–10).
8) We are to be earnestly and expectantly desiring His appearing (Luke 12:36; 2 Timothy 4:8; 2 Peter 3:12; Revelation 22:17,20).
Scripture emphasizes that Jesus can come at any moment. The consistent emphasis of the New Testament is on living in obedient service and effective witness in light of His imminent return. The timetable of Jesus’ return is within the purview of God alone. Until that day, let the Bride of the 21st century say the same thing the Bride of the first century said, “Come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20, NASB).