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What I Believe - Michael Coley

On this page, I've attempted to give my doctrinal beliefs on a variety of subjects. These are not the official beliefs of any particular religious organization, but are my own. I think they roughly correspond to the beliefs of most fundamental Christians, although I'm sure there are areas in which some people would disagree. If you have questions or comments about any of these beliefs (or one not listed, even), please contact me me and I'll do what I can to answer your questions.

Check back here often. This list is nowhere near exhaustive, and I'll be adding to it as time permits.

The Bible
The Inspiration of the Bible The Bible is the inspired word of God. It is completely without error. Each and every word is inspired by God. It is entirely true, and can be trusted.
Relevance of the Bible The Bible is completely relevant today and can be applied to our lives today.
Canonicity of the Bible The sixty-six books that we recognize today as the Bible are the inspired word of God. All other books are less than perfect, and while they may be helpful in understanding God, should never be placed above (or equal to) the scriptures.
Translations The original Hebrew and Greek autographs (the original manuscripts) are the inspired word of God. I don't believe that any copies or translations are inspired by God, although they were often done by very godly people. The English translation that I feel is most true to the original language is the King James Version.
Literal Interpretation The Bible should be interpreted literally unless the context or writing style provides clear indication that a literal interpretation is not to be used.
God the Father
The Trinity of God God is one, manifested in three persons of the Godhead. Each of those persons is completely God in himself.
Eternality of God God has always existed and always will, from eternity past to eternity future. Nothing created God. God is not restricted by anything except His own nature. He is present in all space and all time.
Immutability of God God never changes His nature, His purposes, His essence, or His character. Although His work with mankind may change, this is a result of change in man, not change in God.
Perfection of God God is, always has been, and always will be perfect in every way. God can do no evil.
Omniscience of God God has complete knowledge of all things past, present, and future. There are no surprises to God.
Sovereignty of God This goes a step beyond his Omniscience. Not only does God know all things, but He is in divine control of all things. He orders our very steps, and is in control of even heathen rulers. This does not in any way conflict with the doctrine of Free Will.
God the Son
Only Begotten Jesus Christ is the one and only Son of God.
Deity of Christ Jesus Christ is 100% God. He has all of the attributes of God, including Eternality, Immutability, Perfection, Omniscience, and Sovereignty.
Completely Man Yet Completely God During the time that Christ dwelt on the earth as a man, he was completely man _and_ completely God.
Christ Without Sin Christ was born without sin, and never sinned during His life on earth. Christ is incapable of sin, and did not sin even when tempted by Satan. He was the spotless lamb, sacrificed for our sins.
The Virgin Birth God was born of a virgin, as was prophecied by Isaiah. Mary was supernaturally impregnated by the Holy Spirit without having "known" a man.
The Ressurection On the third day after He was crucified, Christ conquered death and arose from the grave. We serve a living God!
God the Holy Spirit
Personality of the Holy Spirit The Holy Spirit is not a force or power, but the third person of the Godhead. He is equal with God the Father and Jesus.
Indwelling of the Holy Spirit The Holy Spirit was sent by Jesus to indwell in believers.
Baptism in the Holy Spirit Baptism in the Spirit occurs at the time of salvation, and is a sign of identification with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Contrast this with water baptism, which is an act of obedience showing (this time from our side) identification with Jesus Christ.
Gifts of the Holy Spirit There are a number of gifts of the Holy Spirit. Some are permanent, such as faith, ministry and teaching. Others were temporary manifestations during the apostolic period, such as speaking in tongues, healing, and prophecy.
Angels and Devils
Creation of Angels Angels are created spiritual beings. They were created by God to glorify Himself. They neither procreate or die.
Distinction Between Angels and Man Angels and Man are both distinct beings created by God. People do not become angels when they die.
Distinction Between Angels and God God is infinitely higher than angels. Jesus is God, not an angel. We are not to worship angels, but God only.
The Fall of Satan Satan was one of the highest of God's angels. Satan wanted to place himself equal with God, however. For this, he was banished from heaven and will eventually be thrown into the pit of fire. He took with him a number of other angels.
The Power of Satan and his Demons Demons are real, spiritual creatures who seek to do evil. They do this in a number of ways: Hiding their existence; destroying Christian's witnesses; and keeping unsaved people from the Savior. Satan is the ultimate liar. He attempts to cast doubt on God's Word.
Creation and Man
Literal Six Day Creation In six days, God created the heavens, the earth, all living creatures, and man. This was recent (within 10,000 years). The world was perfect as created, but has been in a continual state of decline since the first sin.
Created in God's Image Man was created in God's image. Many of the characteristics of God were given to man (although without the perfection and completeness that can be seen in God), and man was given dominion over the creatures of the earth.
General Revelation God can be seen in His creations: the skys, the earth, man, and many other things.
Purpose of Man God created man to glorify Himself.
The Fall of Man In the garden of Eden, God told man not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. The punishment would be death. Satan told Eve that she "shall not surely die". She and Adam ate of the fruit, disobeying God. Adam blamed Eve. Eve blamed the serpent. God cursed the serpent, Eve, Adam, and the ground. Then He kicked Adam and Even out of the garden. :(
Depravity of Man Man has continually demonstrated his sin nature. This sin nature is passed on from generation to generation. No one is righteous. The only cure for sin is the imputed righteousness of Jesus Christ.
The Need for Salvation Sin.
God's Institutions: Family, Government, and Church
The End Times
Moral Issues

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