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Fresh Church

Reaching Up, Reaching In, Reaching Out

What do we believe?

Statement of Doctrine

  • The full inspiration of the Holy Scriptures; their authority and sufficiency as not only containing, but being in themselves, the Word of God; the reliability of the New Testament in its testimony to the character and authorship of the Old Testament; and the need of the teaching of the Holy Spirit to a true and spiritual understanding of the whole.
  • The unity of the Godhead and the divine co-equality of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit; the sovereignty of God in creation, providence and redemption.
  • The utter depravity of the human race in consequence of the fall, and the necessity for regeneration.
  • The true and proper Deity of our Lord Jesus Christ; His virgin birth; His real and perfect manhood; the authority of His teaching and the infallibility of all His utterances; His work of atonement for sinners of mankind by his substitutive sufferings and death; His bodily resurrection and His ascension into Heaven; and His present priestly intercession for His people.
  • The justification of the sinner solely by faith, through the atoning merits of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
  • The necessity of the work of the Holy Spirit in regeneration, conversion and sanctification; also in ministry and worship.
  • The ordinances of Believer's Baptism by immersion and the Lord's Supper as being instituted by our Lord Jesus Christ, but not in Baptism as conveying regenerating grace, nor in the Lord's Supper as being a sacrifice for sin or involving any change in the bread or wine.
  • The personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ in glory.
  • The resurrection of the body and the judgement of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ, with the eternal blessedness of the righteous and the eternal punishment of the wicked.

(Section 9 of MHCC Constitution, this remains the governing document for FRESH Church)

Historic Convictions of Moorside Harvest Community Church about Marriage

MHCC holds to the traditional Christian ethic:

1. Sexual intimacy is a gift from God and is to be enjoyed exclusively within the context of marriage;

2. Marriage is, by definition, heterosexual.

These convictions are derived from the clear teaching of Scripture: in both the Old and the New Testament, marriage is painted in a positive light, and homosexual activity, along with all other sexual intimacy outside of (heterosexual) marriage, is declared by God to be sinful. Nowhere in the Bible is there an expectation that marriage can exist between two or more people of the same sex.

Old Testament Background

In the beginning God created Adam and Eve – one man united to one woman (Genesis 2:18-25). It is to be noted that sexual intimacy was part of the pre-Fall relationship between the man and the woman and is a gift to humankind.

Reading through the rest of the Old Testament, it is apparent that the model set forth in Genesis 2 is the God-given pattern for marriage (e.g. Genesis 24; Song of Songs; Proverbs 31:10-12).

Wherever sexual activity occurs outside of marriage it is presented in a negative light, and the Mosaic Law expressly forbids adultery (Exodus 20:14) and fornication (Exodus 22:16), as well as homosexual sex (Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13).

New Testament Confirmation

It has been pointed out that not all the commands of the Mosaic Law are carried over into the New Covenant; for example, the food laws are rescinded (Mark 7:19), and the New Testament commands loving church discipline, as opposed to the death penalty, for those who wilfully and persistently break God’s laws.

The New Testament, however, upholds the teaching of Genesis on marriage; Jesus, when asked about divorce, refers to Genesis 1-2 (Matthew 19:5-6), showing that he understands marriage to be a one-flesh relationship between a man and a woman.

Further, the presupposition in Paul’s teaching is that marriage entails a husband-wife relationship (Ephesians 5:22-33).  Again, all the references to homosexual sex are negative and indicate that it is sinful (Romans 1:18-32: 1 Corinthians 6:9-11: 1 Timothy 1:8-10).

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