Below are a variety of issues arranged under topical headings that visitors often ask about when searching for a church. The statements below are not meant to be biblical defenses, but merely summary statements of what people can expect to be taught by the Pastors of Broadview Church. People who desire to become members do not need to hold to all the teaching positions below, but for the purpose of the unity of the church, we request that they not to teach contrary to them.
Topics about Scripture
Authority, Inerrancy, Infallibility, Inspiration and Sufficiency of Scripture
We teach the Bible is literally the Word of God, inspired by the Holy Spirit, who moved men to write down God’s Word to mankind without error (in the original autographs). Though there are minor copyist differences in ancient manuscripts of the Bible, we teach that the Bible has been preserved through God’s providence, so that no doctrines have been corrupted. We teach that the best literal translations of the Bible are, for all intents and purposes, the very Word of God. Scripture alone is sufficient for all matters of faith, practice, and living the Christian life for the glory of God. For a more comprehensive statement on our view of the inerrancy of Scripture, download The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy below.
Christ-Centered Preaching versus Christo-Exclusive Preaching
We teach Jesus Christ, the gospel, and God’s historical redemptive plan of salvation are major themes in the Bible. We also affirm that many churches fail to preach the gospel clearly and regularly. We do not teach that the solution for churches failing to preach the gospel is to read Jesus into every text, contrary to the original author’s intent. To do so is to commit "Christological eisegesis," i.e., reading or inserting into the text—adding to the Word of God—content foreign to the original author’s intent. Though Christ might be preached in every sermon, he cannot be preached from every text, for he does not appear in every text. We are committed to preaching the gospel regularly and faithfully. We desire to preach the entire counsel of God’s Word—all doctrines and all texts—proclaiming whatever the original author meant by what he wrote to his original audience, as well as how Christ and the New Testament authors may have exposed a deeper meaning of the text. We reject “Christo-exclusivism,” which is the overriding of the authorial intent of a text to insert Jesus Christ. This is a twisting of the Scriptures, and sets a bad example by mishandling the Word of God.
We teach the sixty-six books of the Bible are God’s special written revelation of himself to man. We teach that the Bible is sufficient for everything pertaining to life and godliness, and that the biblical canon is closed. We do not believe God is giving inspired special revelation to people today, in which new doctrines are "discovered." Christians are called to live by the Word of God alone, not by feelings, emotions, intuition, what we sense, or our interpretations of God’s providential acts or events around us. Often, those who claim to have new revelation from God teach "prophecies" that do not come true. We do not teach that fallible special revelation can exist. The Holy Spirit, being God, cannot err, therefore what he communicates to man cannot err. There is no such thing as divine-yet-fallible prophecy, visions, dreams, or inspired special revelation. People who make fallible predictions “from the Lord” are either deceived or are false teachers and charlatans.
Expository preaching uses objective Bible study principles to extract from biblical texts what the original author meant for his original audience to understand by what he wrote; i.e., the interpretation of a text. The expository preacher seeks to package truth that is objectively taken from a text of Scripture and then proclaim the truth to his listeners clearly and accurately, so God can speak to his people. We teach that there is great value in sequential expository preaching through books of the Bible. Even when it is necessary to address issues topically, we seek to properly expose God's Word to his people in a way that is consistent with the contextual setting of the passage.
Interpreting the Scriptures
We teach the literal, historical, grammatical, and contextual method of interpreting the Bible. We also teach that every truly born-again believer is indwelt by the divine interpreter, the Holy Spirit. All things being equal, any believer should be able to understand any biblical text. Spiritual maturity, training in how to study the Bible, our understanding of systematic theology, spiritual giftedness, time spent in study, prayer, and meditation on the Word all make a huge difference when trying to understand the meaning of the biblical text. There are, however, no “elite” interpreters of the Bible who alone possess secret knowledge of the meaning of certain texts which other believers cannot discover. For a more comprehensive statement on our view of interpreting the Scriptures, download The Chicaco Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics below.
Topics about God
Divine Creation verses Materialistic Evolution
We teach God created the heavens and earth and all they contain supernaturally—out of nothing—according to the account given to us in the Book of Genesis. Macro-evolution is a false philosophy or religion based on unscientific assumptions and a materialistic, man-centered world view. Adherance to it diminishes trust in biblical authority, the truthfulness of Scripture, and even Jesus himself. The theory of evolution is a result of man’s fallen need to eliminate a Creator from man's conscience. Materialistic evolution is a lie that produces tragic consequences and is incompatible with truth in general and biblical Christianity in particular. To study biblical creationism further, go to the Institute for Creation Research or Answers in Genesis websites.
Topics about Humanity
Biblical Counseling and Discipleship
We believe that humans are both physical and spiritual. A holistic approach is needed to address problems in one's life, which are either physical, spiritual, or a combination of both. We teach biblical counseling is focused discipleship that takes into consideration the entire constitution of the person. Our pastors/elders should set the example in giving wise biblical counsel to those in need, but all Christians are called upon to help and encourage each other in obeying God’s Word through accurate interpretation and application of the Scriptures.
Immorality and Sexual Sins
Any sexual thoughts and activity contrary to the Scriptures and outside of biblically defined marriage comprised of a single biological male and female is sin (e.g., fornication, adultery, polygamy, polyandry, homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality, pornography). The Bible says repeatedly that those who practice sexual sin will not inherit the kingdom of God, which means they cannot be Christians though they may profess otherwise. A life of unrepentant immorality reveals a person has never repented of their sin and been born again by God’s grace. Though Christians commit sexual sins, they do not continue to live in unrepentant immorality. True believers keep confessing and repenting (turning from) sexual sin to pursue holiness. Sexual intimacy is designed by God to be enjoyed in the context of marriage only. Christians are required by God to submit all their sexual passions to the Word of God and are able to do so by his all-sufficient grace.
Manhood and Womanhood
We believe in a complementarian view of men and women in both the home and church; namely, that men and women are different by design and perfect complements of one another. Scripture teaches that men and women are equal in the eyes of God, and that God wonderfully made men and women distinct physically and spiritually. The complementary roles that God assigns to men and women in the home and in the church means that they serve one another uniquely. In the home, men are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church, submitting to God’s instructions to them as husbands. Wives are to submit to and support their husband’s leadership in the home as the Word of God instructs them. In the church, biblically qualified men, who are appointed to the office of pastor/elder/overseer are called to lead the church in humility. In accordance with Scripture, women are not to teach, lead, or exercise authority over men in the gathered church. While this is controversial in our current culture, it is not controversial in Scripture. The commands concerning this—most notably from the Apostle Paul—are not based on ancient culture, but rather the timeless, created order that God ordained. For a more comprehensive statement on our view of manhood and womanhood, download The Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood below.
Marriage and Human Sexuality
God created and defines marriage in his Word. Genesis 2:24 teaches us that marriage requires: 1) one biological man and one biological woman; 2) the formation of a new family unit that takes priority over all other relationships; 3) the public declaration and willingness on the part of both the man and the woman to be married and 4) physical consummation of the marriage in sexual intimacy. People or governments do not have the authority to change the biblical definition of marriage. God does not acknowledge "same sex marriage," "homosexual marriage," "lesbian marriage," etc., as marriage, but as sexual sin and perversion. For a more comprehensive statement on our view of marriage and human sexuality, download The Nashville Statement on Human Sexuality below.
Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage
God has designed marriage to last a lifetime. Believers are especially suited to have successful marriages. Husbands, having received the sacrificial love of Jesus Christ, are called to have that kind of love toward their wives. Wives, having submitted to the Lord Jesus Christ, are called to have that kind of submission to their husbands. If both spouses in a marriage are actively fellowship with Christ, the marriage will be a beautiful picture of God's love for us, and the marriage will provide both spouses with their needs (cf. Exodus 21:10-11).
Divorce is not an unforgivable sin, and the church should not treat it as such. It is a tragedy, and there are always consequences when a divorce occurs, but the church should not make those who have experienced the pain of divorce feel like outcasts who are beyond the reach of God. Instead, the church should instruct those who are married to remain attached to the Vine, and it should instruct those whose marriage is irrevocably broken what the biblical grounds for divorce are.
Both Jesus and Paul based their teachings on marriage, divorce, and remarriage on the clear teachings of the Hebrew Scriptures (the Old Testament). To study in greater detail what the Bible says about these issues, see Dr. David Rhoades' article, "Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage: What Does God Say?"
The Bible teaches there is only one race—the human race—and that all people are blood relatives descended from Adam and Eve. Biblically speaking, racism is the sin of hating your fellow man because they look, act, speak, or have different cultural or personal preferences than you do. People hate other people for many reasons, but the core sin is failing to obey the second great commandment "to love your neighbor as yourself." All humans bear the imago Dei (the image of God) regardless of physical features, demographic background, age, wealth or any other factor. To show partiality toward anyone because of these factors is sin.
God alone determines whether a person is male or female at conception, and this never changes. One's sex is more than his or her outer physical characteristics; it includes the person's very DNA as well as spiritual characteristics. We do not recognize a distinction, as it is commonly made today, between a person's "gender identity" and biological sexuality. Neither surgeries, hormone therapy, or seeking to change one’s behavior or apparel can change a person’s God-given sexual identity. Those who try to change their gender are confused, deceived, and often hurting. Such an individual is actively sinning by rebelling against the very God who has told them who they are as they try in vain to change God’s creative design. Transgenderism is a lie with devastating consequences for all who engage in it.
Topics about Salvation
Calvinism versus Arminianism
We teach that theological labels are often not helpful because there are no standard definitions. In many instances, self-proclaimed followers of John Calvin or Jacobus Arminius don’t believe what Calvin or Arminius taught. Calvin and Arminius, though theologians used by God, were fallible interpreters of the Word of God. Broadview Baptist Church might generally be described as having a "traditional Baptist soteriology;" however, we desire to be known as Christians who place all of the fallible writings of men in subjection to the infallible Word of God (including this doctrinal statement).
Gospel Ministry and the Social Gospel
We teach all ministry must fall under at least one of three distinct areas: 1) worshiping God in spirit and truth, 2) equipping the saints for the work of the ministry, or 3) evangelizing the lost. If at least one of these areas of ministry is not present, then the activity isn’t a ministry, but an attempt to simply do good deeds, give money, support charitable causes, feed the poor, etc. The social gospel cannot be biblical ministry if it leaves out preaching the gospel and calling sinners to repentance. The church does not exist to make sinners comfortable on their way to hell, but to love them by preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ to them as well as meeting physical needs. We teach that the Bible makes a clear distinction between, and gives different instructions to, Christians about how they are to treat "the poor," those who want to work, but are prevented because of sickness or circumstances, and those who are lazy, indolent, idle, and sluggardly.
Legalism and Lawlessness (Antinomianism)
We strive to avoid the extremes of legalism and antinomianism. Legalism appears in the Bible in several forms: 1) elevating man-made tradition to the same authority as Scripture and condemning others as sinning for not adhering to human traditions; 2) trying to be saved, justified, or earn God’s favor by our works instead of by grace through faith in Jesus Christ; and 3) practicing a cold, dead, orthodoxy—i.e., doing all the right things, yet mechanically and not from a heart that loves God. We desire to avoid all forms of legalism. We also reject lawlessness or antinomianism, which is the false idea that says, "Because we are saved and sanctified by grace, we don’t need to obey God; and that if we try to obey God, we are sinning, living in the flesh, or legalists." We teach that Christians must obey all of God’s Word either directly or in principle. We must walk in the Spirit, trusting in God’s grace to obey. We teach that obeying the Bible by God’s grace, for his glory, out of love for Christ, is not merely acceptable, but mandatory for all who call themselves Christians.
Social Justice, Intersectionality, and Critical Race Theory
The Bible teaches that there is one human race, that we are all blood relatives of Adam and Eve, and that all of mankind is corrupt, depraved, and in need of salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. God created mankind to give him glory. We glorify God by loving God and obeying his Word. Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality are unbiblical and worldly theoretical frameworks that can only exist where false doctrine, pride, bitterness, greed, and lack of forgiveness exist. Christians are commanded to love their neighbor, seek true righteousness and justice for all, and forgive those who sin against them. Scripture teaches that all humans are sacred because they are all created in God’s image. Scripture makes it clear that men and women are responsible for their own sin, not for the sins of others in the past. The practice of categorizing people based upon perceived or actual victimhood, physical attributes, or sinful lifestyles is contrary to Scripture. The gospel message of reconciliation, and the finished work of Christ on the cross makes the teachings surrounding Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality incompatible with a life redeemed by grace.
Topics about the Church
Church Discipline and Restoration
When needed, we practice church discipline for members because we desire: 1) to obey and show love to Christ, 2) to show love to those in unrepentant sin, 3) restore people living in unrepentant sin to obedience to God’s Word, 4) to encourage a holy fear of sinning in the entire congregation, 5) to maintain purity in the church, and 6) be a God-glorifying testimony to unbelievers in the world.
Church Leadership and Structure
We teach the terms pastors, elders and overseers are used interchangeably in the New Testament to describe those who lead the church. Pastors are men who are godly, mature, gifted, trained, and meet all the biblical criteria for pastors. They are called to lead, feed, protect, manage, and oversee the church as undershepherds of Jesus Christ. God's people must submit to the church's pastors as the pastors humbly lead the church to follow the will of Christ, who is the head of the church. Those appointed to the office of pastor must already demonstrate a high level of commitment to the local church, be gifted teachers, be discipling, be practicing hospitality, and leading the church in prayer. Pastors/elders/overseers are not merely decision makers that sit on an executive board, but active shepherds and teachers of God’s Word. Not all ministerial staff members of a church are necessarily pastors, but only those whose calling as a pastor is recognized by the church as they engage in the biblical ministry of pastors. Also, there exists the possibility that some pastors of the church are unpaid "tentmakers" who nevertheless serve the church in all pastoral ministry. The ministry of being a pastor/elder/overseer is limited to males, as Scripture teaches in 1 Timothy 2:11-3:7 and Titus 1:6-9.
Deacons are those faithful, godly believers that are chosen by the congregation to assist the elders in ministering to needs the local church, but, unlike pastors, deacons are not required to be gifted teachers. Deacons are especially helpful in ministering to the physical needs of God's people so that the pastors can focus on the ministry of the Word and of prayer.
Like the Sabbath, the principle of the tithe is derived from the Old Testament. Under the Mosaic Law, ten percent of one’s crops was to be given to the Temple, in addition to other sacrifices. There were a total of three mandatory tithes (including a tithe for the poor and the Levitical tithe) which were take up at various intervals. On average, ancient Israelite farmers gave close to twenty-five percent of their crops as tithes, which were often considered to be a form of taxation to pay for the intensive needs of the Temple and the Priests.
We teach that Jesus did not come to abolish the Law, but to fulfill the Law. When Jesus became the perfect sacrifice, fulfilling all the righteous requirements of the Law, we see no further mention of the tithing system in the New Testament. Relatedly, Christians are never commanded to tithe anywhere in the New Testament. What the New Testament does talk about extensively, is giving—giving generously with joy and cheerfulness. Christians are to give proportionally as the Lord has blessed them and as the Spirit of God leads them. If that means ten percent, that is wonderful. If different seasons of life allow you to give more, and even sometimes less, be prayerful and obedient. As with so many of these questions, the heart of the matter, is a matter of the heart. The wallet is often called the "last frontier" of your walk with Christ. It is the hardest to let go. We should be faithful givers.
The Local Church and Its Relation to Parachurch Ministries
Parachurch ministries have arisen for two primary reasons: (1) because local churches have failed to do what God has commanded; and (2) because local churches often don’t have the resources to do what parachurch ministries can do with collective resources (e.g., mission agencies, Christian colleges, seminaries, etc.). We teach that the local church must take priority over parachurch ministries. Involvement in parachurch ministry is optional, while involvement in a local church is necessary. We also teach that parachurch ministries must be led by people who are accountable to the leadership of a local church and must operate according to God’s Word.
The Sabbath and the Lord's Day
We teach that the Sabbath as an observance was given as a special occasion between God, and the nation of Israel. It was based on the day of rest that followed the week of creation. Moses records in Exodus, "The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he abstained from work and rested" (Exodus 31:16-17). Moses goes on in Deuteronomy to tell the nation of Israel why they are to observe the Sabbath: "Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day" (Deuteronomy 5:15). Although Israel's Sabbath was patterned after the day of rest following the six days of creation, its purpose was not simply to remember creation. It was instituted to remind Israel about God’s deliverance from Egypt.
We teach that the Sabbath as an official observance was given to Israel, not to the New Testament church. The Jewish Sabbath observance was abolished at the cross for New Testament believers, and the command was never again restated or given. The Sabbath is still observed by various Jewish sects today, and it remains on a Saturday, as it has always been. This was certainly a topic of discussion during the time Paul wrote his letters to the various churches. Paul told the Romans "One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind" (Romans 14:5) Paul also tells the church at Colossae, "Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ" (Colossians 2:16-17)
We do not teach any concept of a "Christian Sabbath" or "Sabbatarianism." Very simply, Sunday is the Christian day of worship because Jesus rose from the dead on the first day of the week, and it was the day of the week in which he repeatedly appeared after his resurrection. The early Christians called Sunday "the Lord's Day." While this time is precious and revered, the meaning does not extend beyond that.
Although the gathering with other believers to worship God and receive instruction from him is not based on a concept of the Sabbath, it is nevertheless important that we gather together each week. To be clear, if one does not desire to be in fellowship with other believers, Scripture would encourage that person to examine the state of their soul, and whether or not they are born again. One very important and required sign of a true believer is a desire to be with other believers for the purpose of mutual edification.
We teach that spiritual gifts, understood biblically, should be understood primarily as ministries. The idea that spiritual gifts are supernatural abilities began in the early 20th century, as certain churches mistakenly sought to copy the first-century church at Corinth, which was filled with people seeking to build themselves up. In the 1970's, this view began to spread rapidly to evangelical churches. This view, however is flawed:
- It teaches that spiritual gifts are given at salvation, but Timothy received his gift when he began a ministry, long after his spiritual birth.
- It teaches that spiritual gifts are given solely at God's discretion and never change, but Scripture tells us to "earnestly desire the greater gifts" (1 Cor. 12:31), which indicates that we have some choice in the matter and that it might change over time.
- It makes a strong distinction between natural talents and spiritual gifts, but the Bible makes no such distinction.
- It teaches that people have a "primary gift" and multiple "secondary gifts." But 1 Peter 4:10 says that each person has a special gift (singular), not gifts (plural).
- Its proponents create "spiritual gift inventories" so Christians can discover their spiritual gift. But there is no such inventory in the Bible, nor are there any commands in the New Testament to discover your spiritual gift, much less any examples of people in the New Testament embarking on such a quest.
- It causes Christians not to obey God because they believe they do not possess a particular spiritual gift. Believers say things like, "I don't need to share my faith. I don't have the gift of evangelism," or, "I can't be a Bible study teacher. A spiritual gift inventory told me I don't have the gift of teaching."
The Greek word for spiritual gifts is "charisma," which does not mean "supernatural abilities," but rather "grace." In other words, spiritual gifts are how God works out his grace among his people in tangible ways. He uses everything about us—our character, our heart, our abilities, our resources, our insights, and our spiritual endowments—to edify and bless others as we engage in ministry. To determine what kind of ministry we should engage in, we should seek God's wisdom (Prov. 2:1-5; James 1:5-8), live by the Spirit (Eph. 5:18), and listen to godly counsel (Prov. 14:22).
Sign Gifts - Miracles, Healings, Tongues, and Interpretation of Tongues
We teach that God still performs miracles—the greatest of which is the salvation of a sinner dead in his or her sin. Sometimes God performs miracles in answer to prayer. Sign gifts that we read about in the Bible had a very specific purpose: as Scripture was still being written, sign gifts were given to a select few to identify and authenticate a messenger of God and his message. The miracles and healings of Scripture included giving sight to the blind, making the deaf hear and the lame walk, and even raising people from the dead. Now that we have the full and sufficient revelation of God, Scripture itself—as the Word of God—carries the authority of God.
We teach that the biblical gifts of tongues, as given during the time of the Apostles while the New Testament was being written, is the supernatural ability to speak in a known language—previously unknown to the speaker—so that others who speak that known language can understand the gospel being preached. Both the preacher who has the biblical gift of tongues and the listeners who hear someone preach with the gift of tongues understand what is being said. Those who do not speak the known language that is being spoken through the gift of tongues need an interpreter. A careful reading of I Corinthians 14 shows that Paul distinguishes between the biblical gift of tongues and the ecstatic speech practiced by some believers. Ecstatic speech is unintelligible, not a known language, not edifying to others (which is a biblical requirement of spiritual gifts), cannot be interpreted, and incomprehensible to the speaker. The biblical gift of tongues, on the other hand, was used to edify others, was practiced out of love for others, was used to evangelize the lost, was never to be practiced by women as the church gathered, and was to be used in an orderly manner according to the strict guidelines set forth in 1 Corinthians 14.
Traditions are extra-biblical religious practices Christians are free to engage in as long as they are not forbidden by God’s Word. Traditions must not be elevated to the same authority as Scripture, nor are we to judge others because they do not observe our traditions. We do not sin if we violate man-made traditions.
Transparency and Accountability
Transparency and accountability are biblical principles that an increasing number of churches, parachurch ministries, and denominations fail to apply. When the apostle Paul had taken a financial gift from a number of Gentile churches to the church in Jerusalem, he was accompanied by seven men (cf. Acts 20:4). Transparency requires humility, and it is the fruit of godliness. Unfortunately, many churches today are organized in an unbiblical manner in which the pastors or a board of directors easily hide financial and other important matters from God's people. At Broadview, we strive to be as transparent and accountable as possible, especially with regard to financial matters. We have found that putting these principles into practice builds trust and gives honor to our Heavenly Father, who sees all.
Women Pastors or Elders
As stated in the "Church Leadership and Structure" section, we teach the Bible forbids women teaching or exercising authority over men in the church gathered. Women are gifted by God to serve the church in many ways, including serving children, women, and men, as long as they do not seek to exercise the authority that God has given pastors. Women are not to hold or be appointed to the office of pastor/elder/overseer.
Worship and Music
The entire life of a Christian is to be an act of worship. Music is not worship, but one of the many ways God has given that facilitates worship. Music doesn’t worship, people do. All acts of worship must be in accordance with the Word of God. God seeks true worshipers who worship Him in spirit, from the heart, and in truth, according to the Scriptures. The Old Testament has much to say about worship in the Psalms, 1 Chronicles, and 2 Chronicles. A significant New Testament text that addresses singing in the church is Colossians 3:16, which teaches us the purpose of music and singing is to "teach and admonish one another with songs, hymns, and spiritual songs."Though there are different music styles, it is the goal of our church to have music and singing that encourages the greatest number of people in the congregation to focus on what the Bible says about the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, God’s works, God’s will for our lives, God’s plan for the future, and sound doctrine. Worship is to be conducted with the audience of God alone in mind. True worship cannot be man-centered but must be conducted with high reverence for who he is, and the attributes he possesses. Listening to the Word of God preached with a heart to obey is the highest and most frequently mentioned form of corporate worship in the New Testament. When the Word of God is faithfully and accurately preached, God speaks to his church.
Topics about the Future
End Times Events
We teach the study, preaching, and teaching of biblical prophecy as important for the health of the church. Though a person’s views of end time events are not a matter of salvation, how we interpret prophetic portions of the Bible has massive implications on what we believe about God, the Bible, how to interpret the Bible, and how we should presently live in light of what the Bible says will happen in the future. We hold to a literal, historical, grammatical, contextual interpretation of the Bible. We teach if the literal interpretation of a text makes sense, we should not seek another sense by adopting a figurative, metaphorical, or spiritualized meaning foreign to the original author’s intent.