With all of the changes that are affecting the brotherhood it has become necessary for us to qualify where we stand in relation to the faith. As much as we dislike saying it, there are certain brethren who seem “bent” on leading the church away from the “old paths” (Jeremiah 6:16) and down the path of liberalism. Some would have us bury our heads in the sand, believing the problems will soon disappear. Brethren, we can assure you they will not! This practice has never resulted in good coming from it.
At the Brown Trail School of Preaching we have very strong convictions regarding the truth. They are firmly rooted in the inspired and eternal word of God. While the Bible itself is the only complete “statement of belief” to which anyone should cling, the following statements will highlight some of the fundamental principles that we at Brown Trail are committed to teach, uphold, and defend.
- We believe that the Bible is the complete, inerrant and inspired word of God, and that it is all-sufficient for the purpose God intended – 2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:3.
- We believe that Jesus built only one church, and that His church is not denominational in nature. Christian fellowship, therefore, is limited to those in Christ’s church who are walking in the light – Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 1:22, 23; 4:4; Acts 2:47; 1 John 1:7.
- We believe that baptism is a burial in water unto the remission of sins, and is therefore necessary for salvation – Romans 6:4; Acts 2:38; 1 Peter 3:21.
- We believe that the Lord’s Supper is to be observed by Christians on the first day of every week and only on the first day – Acts 20:7; 1 Corinthians 11:20, 24-29.
- We believe that singing in worship to God is to be done without addition of mechanical instruments of music – Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16.
- We believe that marriage is between one man and one woman until they are separated by death. We believe that the only exception to this arrangement is outlined in Matthew 19:9 – namely, that a fornicator may be put away by the innocent spouse, thus allowing that innocent one the freedom to contract another marriage. All other divorce and remarriage situations constitute adulterous unions – Romans 7:1-3. We do not believe that marriage may be a matter of convenience or in the “doctrine” of “mental reservation” relative to marriage. It is our belief that when a man and woman marry, regardless of why they do so, they are married and are held to the high standards seen in the verses above, and others like them.
- We believe that God has directed men to occupy the positions of leadership in both the home and the church – Genesis 3:16; Ephesians 5:22-31; 1 Peter 3:1, 2.
- We believe that elders in the local congregation have authority over that congregation in matters of expedience, and that the congregation should have input regarding those who serve as elders – Acts 14:23; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-11; 1 Peter 5:1-3. We do not believe it Scriptural to practice elder “reaffirmation” in view of the dismissal of elders. Elders who sin should be rebuked “before all, that others also may fear” – 1 Timothy 5:20.
- We believe that we are bound by the Scriptures to “contend for the faith,” but while we do so we should exercise love in these activities – Jude 3; Ephesians 4:15; John 13:34, 35.
- We believe that there is no place in the church for the doctrines or practices of men – Psalm 127:1; Matthew 15:9; 1 Timothy 1:4; 4:7.
- We believe that man can know the truth, and by adhering to that truth, be saved – John 8:32; 17:17; James 1:21.
- We believe that the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit indwells the Christian in some fashion (Romans 8:11; 1 Corinthians 6:19) as He guides and directs the child of God through the word - 2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:3. We stand in opposition to the direct operation and baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Our commitment is to continue to teach, uphold and defend these and all other biblical truths. If you would like to attend Brown Trail to prepare yourself for preaching the gospel, please contact us. Or, if you would like to become a partner with us through a one-time donation or monthly financial support, please let us know. Above all, pray that Brown Trail will continue to be a place “where the old paths are still new.”
The Elders of the Brown Trail church of Christ
The Administration & Faculty
Brown Trail School of Preaching
Revised November 2012 - Signed Copy on File