An understanding of biblical truth is absolutely essential for a healthy church. When God's people know doctrine, they know who God is and what He expects of them. They realize the need for holy living and for a pure testimony. When God's people are ignorant of doctrine, they are susceptible to false teachings and teachers. They are confused about life and have no clear testimony for God. Because of the need for sound doctrine, the Church has produced many statements of faith. Notable among these is the London Confession of Faith of 1689, drawn up by thirty-seven leading Baptist ministers. It became the definitive confession of the Particular or Calvinistic churches in England and Wales and remained so for the next two centuries. In 1744 it was adopted by the Calvinistic Baptists of North America under the title The Philadelphia Confession of Faith. The London Confession remains an important and revered historical document of the Protestant Church. The Statement of Faith that we present is based on this outstanding document of three centuries ago.
Three important considerations guided our revision efforts. The first and overriding factor is simplicity. We want this document to be understood and its concepts woven into the everyday life of God's people. Therefore the wording includes fewer theological terms and more common words than many other confessions. It was written with the average person in mind. The Scripture references were chosen because of their ease of understanding and directness in establishing certain truths. The second consideration was our desire to make the statement contemporary. Some issues faced in the 17th century are no longer relevant, and many new issues which must be addressed have arisen. Some of the statements of the 1689 Confession have been dropped while new articles appear here because of this need to be current. The third factor was our desire to deal with major issues and leave the minor ones alone. We do not want this statement of faith to divide believers needlessly. Because of this, some doctrines are discussed in a general rather than in a particular way. While this will not be satisfactory to some, we hope it will prove helpful to the church in general. The elders of First Baptist Church of Carmel, Indiana, pray that this document will strengthen and unify our people while preparing them for the challenges of the cults and false teachers that abound. Should the Lord choose to give it a wider distribution, we will be most thankful. Our only hope is that our great God will be glorified and His people built up in the most holy faith.
Download FBC's Full statment of Faith HERE.