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The Scriptures 

We believe that the Holy Scripture or the Bible is the Word of God. It is verbally and fully inspired by Him and is therefore inerrant; infallible and authoritative.

It is verbally inspired so that every word, and in fact every jot and tittle is inspired by God (Matthew 5:18). The Holy Spirit inspired the human authors in their writing, and while their style is not diminished, the result is the holy infallible Word of God.

It is fully inspired in that it is all inspired of God. One part of the Bible is not more inspired than another part, but all of it (cf. 2 Timothy 3:16). We believe that there are only 66 books in the Bible as spelt out in the Westminster Confession of Faith (WCF 1.II). The books commonly called Apocrypha are not divinely inspired, and therefore are not part of Holy Scripture.

The Bible is inerrant in that there is no error in it because God Himself is the Divine Author. Hence scripture is used to interpret other portions of scripture (WCF 1.IX). If the scriptures give an interpretation to a particular text, then we must not seek any other interpretation.

The Bible is infallible and is correct in all matters, not only of matters pertaining to salvation, but also of history, science and geography. 

The Bible, being the Word of God, is absolutely authoritative and so demands our absolute belief and obedience. Every believer can and must rest on its teachings, trust it, and depend on it fully and sufficiently for all that we need to know concerning how we may live our Christian lives (2 Tim 3:16-17; See WCF l.IV). 

 

The Christian Gospel

"For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures." 1 Corinthians 15:3-4

The Apostle Paul declared that according to God’s eternal plan, Christ died for our sins. The Bible clearly states that we are by nature and conduct sinners before God (Romans 3:10,23), unable to do anything spiritually good to please Him. Sin is an offence against God and unless our sins are forgiven, we will be judged and eternally separated from God.

However, God in His great love for us sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to be born on earth and to die on the cross. He died in the place of sinful men, paying the penalty for sin (2 Corinthians 5:21) and remained in the grave until the third day. The burial of Jesus shows that the death was real. The heart of the gospel is this—"I, the sinner, deserve to die; but I believe that Jesus the Son of God died in my place. He became my Substitute."

According to the Scriptures, Christ rose from the dead on the third day. This event proves His claim to be God’s Son (Romans 1:4) and His power to conquer sin (Romans 4:25). It also assures us as Christians that God will raise us after we die (1 Corinthians 15:20-23). Salvation is a gift of God to undeserving and unworthy sinners.

In summary, the gospel proclaims Jesus’ death for sinners. This gift of eternal life is available to all who place their faith and trust in Jesus Christ and acknowledge Him as Lord and Saviour. Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved!

 

The Holy Trinity 

The doctrine of the Holy Trinity is not easily understandable to our limited minds. Nevertheless, we must accept it by faith as an essential doctrine of Christianity. God is the one living and true God. He is one God, yet three persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

One can find this doctrine on the first pages of the Bible. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: …so God created man in his own image" (Genesis 1:26-27). This shows that God, who is one, speaks as more than one. Furthermore, "And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us" (Genesis 3:22). When Isaiah heard the call of God centuries later, he said: "Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?" (Isaiah 6:8).

In the New Testament, there are many references to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity. In the baptism of Jesus Christ we see the Three Persons of the Godhead: the Father in heaven, the Son on earth and the Spirit descending from heaven to earth (Matthew 3:13-4:1).

 

The Virgin Birth of Christ

The conception and birth of Jesus was a miracle performed by the power of God through His Holy Spirit, without a human father. Jesus Christ is both Divine and Human: Divine in that He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit; Human in that He was born of the Virgin Mary.

The doctrine of the Virgin Birth of Christ is one of Christianity’s essential doctrines. The Virgin Birth of Christ was told by both Matthew and Luke. "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 1:18). In Luke 1:26-35, we have God’s full explanation of the miraculous birth of Jesus Christ, Who is both God and Man.

 

Physical Resurrection of Jesus

The doctrine of the Resurrection of Christ is one of Christianity’s essential and central truths. The Apostle Paul said that if Christ had not risen physically, then our faith is vain, we are still in our sins, and we are of all men most miserable (1 Corinthians 15:16-19).

This doctrine is specifically and thoroughly taught in Q52 of the Westminster Confession Larger Catechism: "How was Christ exalted in His resurrection?"

Ans: "Christ was exalted in His resurrection, in that, not having seen corruption in death (of which it was not possible for Him to be held), and having the very same body in which He suffered, with the essential properties thereof (but without mortality, and other common infirmities belonging to this life), really united to His soul, He rose again from the dead the third day by His own power; whereby He declared Himself to be the Son of God, to have satisfied divine justice, to have vanquished death, and him that had the power of it, and to be Lord of quick and dead: all which He did as a public person, the head of His Church, for their justification, quickening in grace, support against enemies, and to assure them of their resurrection from the dead at the last day."

Much can be said from this statement, but there are 5 key points. Firstly, Christ did actually die physically. It was confirmed by the Roman soldiers (John 19:33-37) and the Jewish burial that was given him (John 19:39-40). Secondly, He also resurrected bodily; His grave clothes were left behind (John 20:5-7) and His nail prints could still be felt (John 20:27). Thirdly, Christ rose from the dead on the third day by His own power. He predicted this in John 10:18. This is significant because it proves that He is the Son of God (Romans 1:4). Fourthly, Christ’s resurrection secures salvation for all believers because it proves that His death was accepted as atonement for our sins. Fifthly, because He has conquered death, all believers will likewise be resurrected at the last day (1 Corinthians 15:24-26).

 

Presbyterian Form of Church Government

The church is governed by sound principles in order to carry out God’s eternal plan in the world and in His children. But since God alone is the Lord of the conscience, God "has left it free from the doctrine and commandments of men, which are in any thing contrary to His Word, or beside it in matters of faith or worship" (Article 5.1). Hence, all church power, of the congregation or of its officers, is only "ministerial and declarative". The only authority on faith and conduct is the Holy Scriptures and "all its decisions should be founded upon the revealed will of God" (Article 5.7). It is essential that those admitted as teachers and preachers in the church be sound in "the faith which was once delivered unto the saints."

The church is committed to the task of evangelism and missions, fellowship and discipleship, baptism, the Lord’s Supper and Worship, Christian education, weddings and funerals, and the stewardship of the manifold resources bestowed by God.

The management, administration and discipline of the church rest on the Session of the church which comprises the Pastor, Associate/Assistant Pastor and, if any, Advisory or Supervisory Pastor, Elders, Deacons and Deaconesses. The Pastor will also be the Chairman or Moderator of the Session.

The spiritual oversight of the church in matters of doctrine, principles of government, church elections, admission and discipline of members and the administrative oversight of the church shall be the specific responsibilities of the Pastor with the full co-operation and participation of the Board of Elders (Article 11.2 & 15.7). Deacons and deaconesses work under the instruction of the Elders.

All session members of the church are elected to hold office for a period of three years by the congregation at the Annual Congregational Meeting. All may be eligible for re-election in accordance with the terms of the Constitution.

The church is financially supported by the freewill offerings and tithes of its members and gifts donated from friends and other income derived by the church according to the Holy Scriptures.

 

Biblical Separation

The principle of biblical separation is very important to our church. This principle is taught throughout the Bible. This principle involves two aspects:

1. Personal separation from all worldliness and sinful activities. God commands that we be holy for He is holy. As believers, we are called to fellowship with God who "is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not the truth" 1 John 1:5-6.

2. Ecclesiastical separation from all churches or groups of churches who are doctrinally impure or compromised with unscriptural Ecumenism (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).

The Principle of Separation

A In the Old Testament

i. This principle of separation was a condition in God’s covenant with Israel. It is to ensure that God’s people separate themselves from the heathen nations around them.

Scripture Text: Exodus 19:5-6

ii. Israel’s separation from the other nations shows God’s holiness. After the Law was given, the Israelites broke the law of separation frequently, and God had to send His prophets to warn them of their disobedience and to call them to repent.

B In the New Testament

    • Scripture Texts: Romans 16:17; 1 Corinthians 6:17; Ephesians 5:17; 2 Thessalonians 3:6

      Scripture Texts: 1 Peter 1:14-16; 2 John 7-11; Revelation 18:4

i. In the Gospels, Christ indicated that He did not come to bring peace but division. He taught His disciples not to be of the world, even though they are in the world.

ii. The Apostle Paul in his epistles had emphasised the importance of Biblical Separation.

iii. The other Apostles emphasised the same.

It is necessary that we follow God’s Word closely and have no fellowship with anyone or anything disobedient to His Word, such as counterfeit and apostate Christianity. We also have to separate from disobedient brethren (2 Thessalonians 3:6) who compromise with apostate Christians as well. "To obey is better than sacrifice" were the words of the Prophet Samuel to King Saul before the latter was rejected as King of Israel (1 Samuel 15:22).

 

Five Points of Calvinism

The five points of Calvinism are widely known as

1. Total depravity of man,

2. Unconditional election,

3. Limited atonement,

4. Irresistible grace, and

5. Perseverance of the saints.

These five points briefly summarize the biblical teaching of God’s sovereignty and grace in the matter of man’s salvation.

 

Total Depravity

"As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one." Romans 3:10-12

Every child born into this world is a sinner because of Adam’s sin; "wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned" (Romans 5:12). Man is so totally depraved that he will not seek after God (Romans 3:11). The Westminster Confession, Chapter IX, has this to say, "Man, by his fall into a state of sin, hath wholly lost all ability of will to any spiritual good accompanying salvation; so as, a natural man, being altogether averse from that good, and dead in sin, is not able, by his own strength, to convert himself, or to prepare himself thereunto." There is no escape from the wrath of God. The penalty for man’s sin is death and man can do nothing of himself to save himself.

Unconditional Election

"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast." Ephesians 2:8-9

Since man is condemned and unable to save himself, only God can save him and God only saves those He wants to save. "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world" (Ephesians 1:4), and "having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will" (Ephesians 1:5). He elected certain people to believe in Christ because He loves them and not because of anything else. "Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee" (Jeremiah 31:3).

Limited Atonement

"For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which bath sent me, that of all which he bath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the fast day." John 6:38-39

The Bible teaches that Christ died only for the elect. Jesus "will save his people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21, John 8:38-39). He intended to die only for the elect and did actually only die for them. However, this does not contradict the fact that the gospel is to be offered to the whole world as God is merciful to all who repent (John 3:16, 2 Peter 3:9). So even though Christ’s death is sufficient for all, it is only efficient for the elect.

Irresistible Grace 

"No man can come to me, except the Father which bath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the fast day." John 6:44

"Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified." Romans 8:30

All sinners must heed the call and come to repentance. "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shall be saved" (Acts 16:31). But because they will not, God works supernaturally in the souls of the elect so that, as Christ said, "All that the Father gives me shall come to me" (John 6:37), "and no man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him" (John 6:44). And when the elect come and believe, it is God who enables them to do so through His grace (Ephesians 2:8). Grace is undeserved favour.

Perseverance of Saints 

"And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." John 10:28

The common saying, "Once saved, always saved", explains the meaning of this point. The believer will never be unsaved, "for whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified" (Romans 8:29-30). God saves the sinner, gives him the Holy Spirit and secures him unto the end!

 

Infant Baptism 

Besides adult baptism our church also practices infant baptism. We believe that God makes a covenant with the family, and parents are responsible to bring up their child in the saving grace of the Lord. This covenant is seen in the Old Testament with circumcision (Acts 7:8) and in the New Testament, where Luke recorded for us in Acts 2:38,39, "For the promise is unto you and to your children and to all that are afar off even as many as the Lord shall call". Hence, the New Testament practice of household baptism included children (Acts 16:15; 1 Corinthians 1:15). Children must be raised as believers in the fear and nurture of the Lord and be brought by their parents to affirm their faith when they reach their age of understanding. Infant baptism is a great blessing to Christian parents – to dedicate their children and to vow to fulfil their duties as Christian parents. Infant baptism does not lead to salvation but the child has the covenant blessings and Christian influence as they are brought up in the fear and nurture of the Lord.

 

Premillennial Return of Christ

The Christian’s blessed hope is the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13). And, when our Lord Jesus Christ will descend with all the saints and the angelic hosts and "His feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south" (Zechariah 14:4), it will mean the end of the present world system. A millennium (Latin, means 1000 years) of Christ’s glorious and righteous reign will begin on earth!

This actual millennial reign of our Lord, the Messiah of Israel, will take place when Christ Himself bodily and visibly returns to earth to judge the world of sin and rebellion.

"Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him." Jude 14-15

 

Christian Burial

Although there is no explicit statement from the Bible that declares that we must not cremate or that we must bury only, inferences from the Bible are sufficient to conclude that Christians should be buried after they die. Some biblical arguments in favour of burial rather than cremation are:

1. The Bible tells us in Genesis 3:19 that we are to return the body to the ground –

"In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return."

2. All the saints of God in both the Old and New Testaments were buried (cf. Genesis 25:10; 35:19; Judges 8:32; 1 Kings 2:10; Matthew 14:12; Luke 23:53; Acts 8:2).

3. In the Bible most of the references to the burning of the body are associated with punishments for acts such as certain sexual sins (cf. Leviticus 20:14; 21:9); disobedience to God (cf. Joshua 7:15, 25).

2. All the saints of God in both the Old and New Testaments were buried (cf. Genesis 25:10; 35:19; Judges 8:32; 1 Kings 2:10; Matthew 14:12; Luke 23:53; Acts 8:2).

3. In the Bible most of the references to the burning of the body are associated with punishments for acts such as certain sexual sins (cf. Leviticus 20:14; 21:9); disobedience to God (cf. Joshua 7:15, 25).

There are laws of the land that require cremation—for example, when death results from certain diseases; or when bodies are exhumed in the older cemeteries that have been designated for re-development. In obedience to these laws Christians may have no other choice but cremation. However, as long as the option to bury is still made available, even in land-scarce Singapore, we are constrained for the above reasons, to bury our dead who have died in Christ.

Vision & Mission

 

To build a united church family that is committed to making disciples through Salvation, Sanctification and Service, to the glory of God.

Verse for the Week

September 17 & 24 - Living for Christ

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20