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We Believe…

Emmanuel Baptist Church is a member of the Old Baptist Union (OBU), a mainstream Baptist denomination founded in 1880. It’s not exactly the same as the better-known Baptist Union of Great Britain, but we are good friends with them. The OBU was founded amid an outpouring of the Holy Spirit through the ministry of Henry Augustus Squire. He preached at a series of meetings in Stoke Newington, north London which resulted in the first OBU church being established there. He described himself as an Old Baptist as his beliefs were based upon those of the English General Baptists of the 17th century. While much has changed in the Union and wider Christian landscape since 1880, the Old Baptist identity remains distinctive because of the well defined, biblically strong doctrines that we subscribe to. Our Articles of Faith may be long, but they are good:

The Old Baptist Union is a small group of evangelical Baptist churches dedicated to the proclamation of the Gospel.

Whilst not prepared to compromise any one of the tenets set out in the Articles of Faith, the Union is in no way sectarian. Fellowship with all who love our Lord Jesus Christ is encouraged and the Union itself is in membership with the Evangelical Alliance and the Free Churches Group of Churches Together in England.

The system of government is neither strictly Congregational nor wholly Presbyterian, but a sensible combination of the two. In practice it has served to preserve a wholly evangelical witness since 1880 and for this we are deeply grateful to God.

The executive body of the Union is the Council of Management, which is composed of the Pastor or an ordained officer of each member church. Elders and deacons are nominated by local churches and ordained by the Union to their office. Pastors may be invited to serve by the local church, but will be appointed and ordained to their office only after satisfying the Union’s doctrinal and pastoral standards.

The following are the Articles of Faith of the Old Baptist Union, organised after the scriptural principles of the General Baptists of 1611 and 1660; from which we, being their true representatives, justly claim to be known as “Old Baptists”.

We believe with all our hearts in the only true and living God, the Creator and preserver of all things, visible and invisible; and that in the unity of this Godhead there are three Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Matthew 28:19, 2 Corinthians 13:14

We believe in the full inspiration of the Bible, accepting it as the Word of God, and regarding its teaching as of supreme and final authority in all matters of faith and practice.
2 Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:21, John 17:17

We believe in the Bible doctrine of the Fall of Man, and in his consequent need of redemption through the atoning sacrifice of Christ, and regeneration through the Holy Spirit. We believe also that God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), for which cause Christ commanded that the Gospel should be preached to every person.
Romans 5:12, Romans 5:8, John 3:6-7

We believe that by His grace and through the merits of Jesus Christ, God made full provision for the salvation of all men and women, but that those only will be saved who repent of their sins and accept Christ, by faith, as their Saviour.
John 3:16, 1 John 2:2, John 3:18,1 John 2:2

We believe that all who truly repent and believe the Gospel should be baptised by immersion.
Matthew 28:19, Acts 2:38, Romans 6:4

We believe that those who are baptised should receive thelaying on of the hands of the presbytery” (1 Timothy 4:14, King James’ Version) in accordance with New Testament teaching and practice.
Acts 8:17, Hebrews 6:1-2, 1 Timothy 4:14

We believe in the Virgin Birth of the Lord Jesus; and in His Deity and absolute Sinlessness.
Luke 1:35, Hebrews 1:1-3, Hebrews 1:8, 1 Peter 2:22

We believe in Christ’s death upon the cross as an atoning sacrifice for sin; we believe in His bodily resurrection; in His Ascension into Heaven, there to “appear in the presence of God for us” (Hebrews 9:24, King James’ Version) and in His personal Coming Again to receive His people to Himself, and to establish His Millennial Kingdom.
1 Peter 1:18-19, 1 Corinthians 15:3-4, Hebrews 1:3, Hebrews 9:28, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17

We believe in the infallibility of Christ as a Teacher.
Matthew 7:29, John 12:48, John 17:14

We believe in the Personality and Deity of the Holy Spirit and in His continued presence in the Church; and that His gifts may still be claimed and exercised, subject to His will.
John 15:26, 2 Corinthians 13:14, Acts 5:3-4, 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, Romans 11:29

We believe in the existence of a personal Devil, the arch enemy of God and man, who “deceives the whole world” (Revelation 12:9, KJV); and that, although his power is still great on earth, he is a defeated foe, doomed to final destruction.
Matthew 4:1, 1 Peter 5:8-9, Revelation 20:10

We believe that man is a being consisting of body, soul and spirit. We believe that the spirit can live independently of the body and that it continues in a state of consciousness between death and the resurrection.
1 Thessalonians 5:23, Ecclesiastes 12:7, Revelation 6:9-10, Acts 7:59

We believe, without being extremists, in the present day possibility and privilege of divine healing.
1 Corinthians 12:9, James 5:14-15

We believe that we should observe the ordinance of the Lord’s Supper in accordance with our Saviour’s injunction.
1 Corinthians 11:23-26

We believe in the resurrection of the body, in the glorification of the redeemed and in the “everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord” (2 The 1:9, KJV) of the finally impenitent.
John 5:28, 1 Corinthians 15:49-53, Matthew 13:41-43, Revelation 20:15

We believe in the need of obedience to “all things whatsoever” (Matthew 28:20, KJV) Christ has commanded; and that the way of obedience is the way of sanctification, power and blessing.
Matthew 4:4, 1 Thessalonians 4:3, 1 Peter 1:22, Romans 6:16, John 14:21

We believe that marriage is the union between one man and one woman, ordained by God, acknowledged by Jesus Christ and attested to in the Scriptures. It is a building block for sound community and a safe place to bring up children.
Genesis 2:21-25, Matthew 19:3-6, Ephesians 5:21-33, Ephesians 6:1-4