There are only a few Bible Churches in the Baton Rouge area, so it comes as no surprise the people are curious as to what makes a church a Bible Church.
Every Bible Church is both similar and unique. Usually Bible Churches are committed to expository preaching, that is, verse by verse teaching/preaching through books of the Bible. As opposed to topical or textual sermons, expository preaching guarantees that the teaching is authoritative to the extent that the teacher/preacher explains what the Bible says in each verse and helps the congregant apply Scripture's teaching in their lives.
Also, a "Bible Church" is usually committed to personal discipleship. This can manifest in a variety of ways, but there is always a commitment to people growing in the faith. Central Bible Church begins this process with a series of courses in everything from Bible Study Methods, to Church History, to Systematic Theology, to Community Missions (see ministry page for more info).
Bible Churches take seriously the teaching of Scripture that says, "to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ" (2 Peter 3:18) and "the knowledge of the faith leads to godliness" (Titus 1:1) and others.
Yes. That is latin, but more importantly it is the core of the protestant faith. Let me provide a brief history.
By the end of the Middle Ages the Church (there was no distinction between various denominations at the time) became so corrupt that they essentially lost the gospel of Jesus Christ and had replaced it with a works based salvation. Salvation was based on the will and works of man as prescribed by the church of that day, clearly contrary to the Word of God (cf. Rom. 9:16)
The Reformation began when Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of the church in Wittenberg, Germany. It was not Luther’s initial intention to break away from the Roman Church, but rather to reform it, and there was much that needed reforming. The Church based in Rome rejected their attempt to return to the teaching of Scripture, thus starting the Protestant Reformation -- Protestantism. Luther and the Reformers rightly focused on those matters which were of the greatest importance: The True Teaching of Scripture on Salvation. They are summarized by the five “sola’s”:
SOLA SCRIPTURA (Scripture Alone) - All authority in the life of the believer, especially in terms of how we can determine the means of salvation rests upon the teaching found in Scripture and Scripture alone, not in the traditions of men or the Church.
SOLA GRATIA (Grace Alone) - Salvation is not accomplished by any will or work of man (Rom. 9:16). Man is dead in sin and cannot contribute any part of his/her salvation (Eph 2:1). Salvation is a gift of God by His grace alone (not of works so that any man should boast (Eph 2:8-9)).
SOLA FIDE (Faith Alone) - Salvation is enacted in the life of a Christian by faith alone. Not in works (Rom 3:28). This does not mean that good works are not necessary in the life of a believer, but that the works are the expression of a salvation already had, not a precondition for salvation(James 2:26).
SOLUS CHRISTUS (Christ Alone) - The object of that faith through which salvation is enacted is found in Christ alone, not in institutions, traditions or works, but in Christ alone (Rom 10:13). His birth, life, death, burial, resurrection, ministry at the right hand of the Father, and His coming judgment.
SOLI DEO GLORIA (Glory of God Alone) - All of salvation, and all of history is for the glory of God alone. Everything is God focused not man focused. Every aspect of human history and creation is put in place for the glory of God, how much more so should the lives of Christians be lived to His glory (1 Cor 10:31).
These are the core of our faith and including them in our logo shows both our commitment to teaching the Word of God, but also shows that Central Bible Church is both connected to and teaches the history of our faith and theology.
Most Bible Churches are independent churches with no formal ties to any denomination. We have explored joining with the Southern Baptist Church, and also the Evangelical Free Church of America. Neither of which would require us to change who we are, but would provide a formal level of support. Both are great organizations with great things to offer, but at this point in the life of Central Bible Church, connection to either organization is unnecessary. With this said, we do connect with other local churches who are part of these and other denominations where we feel we are theologically "on the same page" as us. Central Bible Church recently has joined an association of churches in a network called Grace Advanced. It is based out of Grace Community Church, the pastoral home of Dr. John MacArthur. We happily stand side by side with like minded churches within this fellowship/association.
We'd love you to join us @ 8889B Sullivan Road, B.R., LA 70818 on Sunday mornings 10:00am for coffee and 10:30 for worship. Also, we offer courses throughout the year see DISCIPLESHIP for course descriptions and Contact us for times and locations for course offerings.
You will find a group of individuals who love the Lord, who are committed to His Word, and who genuinely love each other. The age range of our congregation spreads from the seasoned adult to teenagers, and even small children. We pray together, we read the Psalms together, we give together, and we study Scripture together each Sunday morning. You will not find shallow teaching or "seeker messages." You will find a group eager to learn as the pastor exposits each verse of the text while we slowly work our way through every book of the Bible.
Following a time of worship through song by our worship leader and worship team, the kids are allowed to leave for small group kids church, and we study the "meat" of the Word.