What We Believe

We believe that our heritage at Providence Church is a continuation of what was ...

once for all handed down to the saints
– Jude 3

Our church professes to be in line with historic Christianity which embodies orthodoxy that has been preserved through time and tested by the scriptures. There are four distinctives that describe who we are at Providence and what our theological commitments are:

This Confession was drawn up by the Rev. John Newton Brown, D. D., of New Hampshire about 1833, and was adopted by the New Hampshire Convention, and widely accepted by Baptists, especially in the Northern and Western States, as a clear and concise statement of their faith, in harmony with the doctrines of older confessions, but expressed in milder form. The text is taken from the Baptist Church Manual, published by the American Baptist Publication Society, Philadelphia.


We believe that the Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired, and is a perfect treasure of heavenly instruction;1 that it has God for its author, salvation for its end2 and truth without any mixture of error for its matter;3 that it reveals the principles by which God will judge us;4 and therefore is, and shall remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union,5 and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and opinions should be tried.6

We believe that there is one, and only one, living and true God, an infinite, intelligent Spirit, whose name is JEHOVAH, the Maker and Supreme Ruler of Heaven and earth;7 inexpressibly glorious in holiness,8 and worthy of all possible honor, confidence, and love;9 that in the unity of the Godhead there are three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost;10 equal in every divine perfection,11 and executing distinct and harmonious offices in the great work of redemption.12

We believe that man was created in holiness, under the law of his Maker;13 but by voluntary transgression fell from that holy and happy state;14 in consequence of which all mankind are now sinners,15 not by constraint, but choice;16 being by nature utterly void of that holiness required by the law of God, positively inclined to evil; and therefore under just condemnation to eternal ruin,17 without defense or excuse.18

We believe that the salvation of sinners is wholly of grace,19 through the mediatorial offices of the Son of God;20 who by the appointment of the Father, freely took upon him our nature, yet without sin;21 honored the divine law by his personal obedience,22 and by his death made a full atonement for our sins;23 that having risen from the death, he is now enthroned in heaven;24 and uniting in his wonderful person the tenderest sympathies with divine perfections, he is every way qualified to be a suitable, a compassionate, and an all-sufficient Saviour.25

We believe that the great gospel blessing which Christ26 secures to such as believe in him is Justification;27 that Justification includes the pardon of sin,28 and the promise of eternal life on principles of righteousness;29 that it is bestowed, not in consideration of any works of righteousness which we have done, but solely through faith in the Redeemer's blood;30 by virtue of which faith his perfect righteousness is freely imputed to us of God;31 that it brings us into a state of most blessed peace and favor with God, and secures every other blessing needful for time and eternity.32

We believe that the blessings of salvation are made free to all by the gospel;33 that it is the immediate duty of all to accept them by a cordial, penitent, and obedient faith;34 and that nothing prevents the salvation of the greatest sinner on earth but his own inherent depravity and voluntary rejection of the gospel;35 which rejection involves him in an aggravated condemnation.36

We believe that, in order to be saved, sinners must be regenerated, or born again;37 that regeneration consists in giving a holy disposition to the mind;38 that it is effected in a manner above our comprehension by the power of the Holy Spirit, in connection with divine truth,39 so as to secure our voluntary obedience to the gospel;40 and that its proper evidence appears in the holy fruits of repentance, and faith, and newness of life.41

We believe that Repentance and Faith are sacred duties, and also inseparable graces, wrought in our souls by the regenerating Spirit of God;42 whereby being deeply convinced of our guilt, danger, and helplessness, and of the way of salvation by Christ,43 we turn to God with unfeigned contrition, confession, and supplication for mercy;44 at the same time heartily receiving the Lord Jesus Christ as our Prophet, Priest, and King, and relying on him alone as the only and all-sufficient Saviour.45

We believe that Election is the eternal purpose of God, according to which he graciously regenerates, sanctifies, and saves sinners;46 that being perfectly consistent with the free agency of man, it comprehends all the means in connection with the end;47 that it is a most glorious display of God's sovereign goodness, being infinitely free, wise, holy, and unchangeable;48 that it utterly excludes boasting, and promotes humility, love, prayer, praise, trust in God, and active imitation of his free mercy;49 that it encourages the use of means in the highest degree;50 that it may be ascertained by its effects in all who truly believe the gospel;51 that it is the foundation of Christian assurance;52 and that to ascertain it with regard to ourselves demands and deserves the utmost diligence.53

We believe that Election is the eternal purpose of God, according to which he graciously regenerates, sanctifies, and saves sinners;46 that being perfectly consistent with the free agency of man, it comprehends all the means in connection with the end;47 that it is a most glorious display of God's sovereign goodness, being infinitely free, wise, holy, and unchangeable;48 that it utterly excludes boasting, and promotes humility, love, prayer, praise, trust in God, and active imitation of his free mercy;49 that it encourages the use of means in the highest degree;50 that it may be ascertained by its effects in all who truly believe the gospel;51 that it is the foundation of Christian assurance;52 and that to ascertain it with regard to ourselves demands and deserves the utmost diligence.53

We believe that such only are real believers as endure unto the end;58 that their persevering attachment to Christ is the grand mark which distinguishes them from superficial professors;59 that a special Providence watches over their welfare;60 and they are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.61

We believe that the Law of God is the eternal and unchangeable rule of his moral government;62 that it is holy, just, and good;63 and that the inability which the Scriptures ascribe to fallen men to fulfill its precepts arises entirely from their love of sin;64 to deliver them from which, and to restore them through a Mediator to unfeigned obedience to the holy Law, is one great end of the Gospel, and of the means of grace connected with the establishment of the visible Church.65

We believe that a visible Church of Christ is a congregation of baptized believers,66 associated by covenant in the faith and fellowship of the gospel;67 observing the ordinances of Christ;68 governed by his laws,69 and exercising the gifts, rights, and privileges invested in them by his Word;70 that its only scriptural officers are Bishops, or Pastors, and Deacons,71 whose qualifications, claims, and duties are defined in the Epistles to Timothy and Titus.

We believe that Christian Baptism is the immersion in water of a believer,72 into the name of the Father, and Son, and Holy Ghost;73 to show forth, in a solemn and beautiful emblem, our faith in the crucified, buried, and risen Saviour, with its effect in our death to sin and resurrection to a new life;74 that it is prerequisite to the privileges of a Church relation; and to the Lord's Supper,75 in which the members of the Church, by the sacred use of bread and wine, are to commemorate together the dying love of Christ;76 preceded always by solemn selfexamination.77

(in process of revision by Providence Church) We believe that the first day of the week is the Lord's Day, or Christian Sabbath;78 and is to be kept sacred to religious purposes,79 by abstaining from all secular labor and sinful recreations;80 by the devout observance of all the means of grace, both private81 and public;82 and by preparation for that rest that remaineth for the people of God.83

We believe that civil government is of divine appointment, for the interests and good order of human society;84 and that magistrates are to be prayed for, conscientiously honored and obeyed;85 except only in things opposed to the will of our Lord Jesus Christ86 who is the only Lord of the conscience, and the Prince of the kings of the earth.87

We believe that there is a radical and essential difference between the righteous and the wicked;88 that such only as through faith are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and sanctified by the Spirit of our God, are truly righteous in his esteem;89 while all such as continue in impenitence and unbelief are in his sight wicked, and under the curse;90 and this distinction holds among men both in and after death.91

We believe that the end of the world is approaching;92 that at the last day Christ will descend from heaven,93 and raise the dead from the grave to final retribution;94 that a solemn separation will then take place;95 that the wicked will be adjudged to endless punishment, and the righteous to endless joy;96 and that this judgment will fix forever the final state of men in heaven or hell, on principles of righteousness.97

Of The Scriptures
[1] 2 Tim 3:16-17; 2 Pet 1:21; 1 Sam 23:2; Acts 1:16; 3:21; John 10:35; Luke 16:29-31; Ps 119:11; Rom 3:1-2
[2] 2 Tim 3:15; 1 Pet 1:10-12; Acts 11:14; Rom 1:16; Mark 16:16; John 5:38-39
[3] Prov 30:5-6; John 17:17; Rev 22:18-19; Rom 3:4
[4] Rom 2:12; John 12:47-48; 1 Cor 4:3-4; Luke 10:10-16; 12:47-48
[5] Phil 3:16; Eph 4:3-6; Phil 2:1-2; 1 Cor 1:10; 1 Pet 4:11
[6] 1 John 4:1; Isa 8:20; 1 Thess 5:21; 2 Cor 8:5; Acts 17:11; 1 John 4:6; Jude 3:5; Eph 6:17; Ps 119:59-60; Phil 1:9-11
Of the True God
[7] John 4:24; Ps 147:5; 83:18; Heb 3:4; Rom 1:20; Jer 10:10
[8] Ex 15:11; Isa 6:3; 1 Pet 1:15-16; Rev 4:6-8
[9] Mark 12:30; Rev 4:11; Matt 10:37; Jer 2:12-13
[10] Matt 28:19; John 15:26; 1 Cor 12:4-6; 1 John 5:7
[11] John 10:30; 5:17; 14:23; 17:5, 10; Acts 5:3-4; 1 Cor 2:10-11; Phil 2:5-6
[12] Eph 2:18; 2 Cor 13:14; Rev 1:4-5; comp 2, 7
Of the Fall of Man
[13] Gen 1:27, 31; Eccl 7:29; Acts 16:26; Gen 2:16
[14] Gen 3:6-24; Rom 5:12
[15] Rom 5:19; John 3:6; Psa 51:5; Rom 5:15-19; 8:7
[16] Isa 53:6; Gen 6:12; Rom 3:9-18
[17] Eph 2:1-3; Rom 1:18, 32; 2:1-16; Gal 3:10; Matt 20:15
[18] Ezek 18:19-20; Rom 1:20; 3:19; Gal 3:22
Of the Way of Salvation
[19] Eph 2:5; Matt 18:11; 1 John 4:10; 1 Cor 3:5-7; Acts 15:11
[20] John 3:16; 1:1-14; Heb 4:14; 12:24
[21] Phil 2:6-7; Heb 2:9, 14; 2 Cor 5:21
[22] Isa 42:21; Phil 2:8; Gal 4:4-5; Rom 3:21
[23] Isa 53:4-5; Matt 20:28; Rom 4:25; 3:21-26; 1 John 4:10; 2:2; 1 Cor 15:1-3; Heb 9:13-15
[24] Heb 1:8, 3; 8:1; Col 3:1-4
[25] Heb 7:25; Col 2:9; Heb 2:18; 7:26; Ps 89:19; Ps 14
Of Justification
[26] John 1:16; Eph 3:8
[27] Acts 13:39; Isa 3:11-12; Rom 8:1
[28] Rom 5:9; Zech 13:1; Matt 9:6; Acts 10:43
[29] Rom 5:17; Titus 3:5-6; 1 Pet 3:7; 1 John 2:25; Rom 5:21
[30] Rom 4:4-5; 5:21; 6:28; Phil 3:7-9
[31] Rom 5:19; 3:24-26; 4:23-25; 1 John 2:12
[32] Rom 5:1-3, 11; 1 Cor 1:30-31; Matt 6:33; 1 Tim 4:8
Of the Freeness of Salvation
[33] Isa 55:1; Rev 22:17; Luke 14:17
[34] Rom 16:26; Mark 1:15; Rom 1:15-17
[35] John 5:40; Matt 23:37; Rom 9:32; Prov 1:24; Acts 13:46
[36] John 3:19; Matt 11:20; Luke 19:27; 2 Thess 1:84:8
Of Grace in Regeneration
[37] John 3:3, 6-7; 1 Cor 1:14; Rev 8:7-9; 21:27
[38] 2 Cor 5:17; Ezek 36:26; Deut 30:6; Rom 2:28-29; 5:5; 1 John 4:7
[39] John 3:8; 1:13; James 1:16-18; 1 Cor 1:30; Phil 2:13
[40] 1 Pet 1:22-25; 1 John 5:1; Eph 4:20-24; Col 3:9-11
[41] Eph 5:9; Rom 8:9; Gal 5:16-23; Eph 3:14-21; Matt 3:8-10; 7:20; 1 John 5:4, 18
Of Repentance and Faith
[42] Mark 1:15; Acts 11:18; Eph 2:8; 1 John 5:1
[43] John 16:8; Acts 2:37-38; 16:30-31
[44] Luke 18:13; 15:18-21; James 4:7-10; 2 Cor 7:11; Rom 10:12-13; Ps 51
[45] Rom 10:9-11; Acts 3:22-23: Heb 4:14; Ps 2:6; Heb 1:8; 8:25; 2 Tim 1:12
Of God's Purpose of Grace
[46] 2 Tim 1:8-9; Eph 1:3-14; 1 Pet 1:1-2; Rom 11:5-6; John 15:15; 1 John 4:19; Hos 12:9
[47] 2 Thess 2:13-14; Acts 13:48; John 10:16; Matt 20:16; Acts 15:14
[48] Ex 33:18-19; Matt 20:15; Eph 1:11; Rom 9:23-24: Jer 31:3; Rom 11:28-29; James 1:17-18; 2 Tim 1:9; Rom 11:32-36
[49] 1 Cor 4:7; 1:26-31; Rom 3:27; 4:16; Col 3:12; 1 Cor 3:5-7; 15:10; 1 Pet 5:10; Acts 1:24; 1 Thess 2:13; 1 Pet 2:9; Luke 18:7; John 15:16; Eph 1:16; 1 Thess 2:12
[50] 2 Tim 2:10; 1 Cor 9:22; Rom 8:28-30; John 6:37-40; 2 Pet 1:10
[51] 1 Thess 1:4-10
[52] Rom 8:28-30; Isa 42:16; Rom 11:29
[53] 2 Pet 1:10-11; Phil 3:12; Heb 6:11
Of Sanctification
[54] 1 Thess 4:3; 5:23; 2 Cor 7:1; 13:9; Eph 1:4
[55] Prov 4:18; 2 Cor 3:18; Heb 6:1; 2 Pet 1:5-8; Phil 3:12-16
[56] John 2:29; Rom 8:5; John 3:6; Phil 1:9-11; Eph 1:13-14
[57] Phil 2:12-13; Eph 4:11-12; 1 Pet 2:2; 2 Pet 3:18; 2 Cor 13:5; Luke 11:35; 9:23; Matt 26:41; Eph 6:18; 4:30
Of the Perseverance of Saints
[58] John 8:31; 1 John 2:27-28; 3:9; 5:18
[59] 1 John 2:19; John 13:18; Matt 13:20-21; John 6:66-69; Job 17:9
[60] Rom 8:28; Matt 6:30-33; Jer 32:40; Ps 121:3; 91:11-12
[61] Phil 1:6; 2:12-13; Jude 24-25; Heb 1:14; 2 Kings 6:16; Heb 13:5; 1 John 4:4
Of the Harmony of the Law and the Gospel
[62] Rom 3:31; Matt 5:17; Luke 16:17; Rom 3:20; 4:15
[63] Rom 7:12, 7, 14, 22; Gal 3:21; Ps 119
[64] Rom 8:7-8; Josh 24:19; Jer 13:23; John 6:44; 5:44
[65] Rom 8:2, 4; 10:4; 1 Tim 1:5; Heb 8:10; Jude 20-21; Heb 12:14; Matt 16:17-18; 1 Cor 12:28
Of a Gospel Church
[66] Acts 2:41-42; 2 Cor 8:5; Acts 2:47; 1 Cor 5:12-13
[67] 1 Cor 11:2; 2 Thess 3:6; Rom 16:17-20; 1 Cor 11:23; Matt 18:15-20; 1 Cor 5:6; 2 Cor 2:7; 1 Cor 4:17
[68] Matt 28:20; John 14:15; 15:12; 1 John 4:21; John 14:21; 1 Thess 4.2; 2 John 6; Gal 6:2; all the Epistles
[69] Eph 4:7; 1 Cor 14:12; Phil 1:27; 1 Cor 12:14
[70] Phil 1:1; Acts 14:23; 15:22; 1 Tim 3; Titus 1
Of Baptism and the Lord's Supper
[71] Acts 8:36-39; Matt 3:5-6; John 3:22-23; 4:1-2; Matt 28:19; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 8:12; 16:32-34; 18:8
[72] Matt 28:19; Acts 10:47-48; Gal 3:27-28
[73] Rom 6:4; Col 2:12; 1 Pet 3:20-21; Acts 22:16
[74] Acts 2:41-42; Matt 28:19-20; Acts and Epistles
[75] 1 Cor 11:26; Matt 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:14-20
[76] 1 Cor 11:28; 5:1, 8; 10:3-32; 11:17-32; John 6:26-71
Of the Christian Sabbath
[77] Acts 20:7; Gen 2:3; Col 2:16-17; Mark 2:27; John 20:19; 1 Cor 16:1- 2
[78] Ex 20:8; Rev 1:10; Ps 118:24
[79] Isa 58:13-14; 56:2-8
[80] Ps 119:15
[81] Heb 10:24-25; Acts 11:26; 13:44; Lev 19:30; Ex 46:3; Luke 4:16; Acts 17:2,3; Ps 26:8; 87:3
[82] Heb 4:3-11
Of Civil Government
[83] Rom 13:1-7; Deut 16:18; 1 Sam 23:3; Ex 18:23; Jer 30:21
[84] Matt 22:21; Titus 3:1; 1 Pet 2:13; 1 Tim 2:1-8
[85] Acts 5:29; Matt 10:28; Dan 3:15-18; 6:7-10; Acts 4:18-20
[86] Matt 23:10; Rom 14:4; Rev 19:16; Psa. 72:11; Ps 2; Rom 14:9-13
Of the Righteous and the Wicked
[87] Mal 3:18; Prov 12:26; Isa 5:20; Gen 18:23; Jer 15:19; Acts 10:34- 35; Rom 6:16
[88] Rom 1:17; 7:6; 1 John 2:29; 3:7; Rom 6:18, 22; 1 Cor 11:32; Prov 11:31; 1 Pet 4:17-18
[89] 1 John 5:19; Gal 3:10; John 3:36; Isa 57:21; Ps 10:4; Isa 55:6-7
[90] Prov 14:32; Luke 16:25; John 8:21-24; Prov 10:24; Luke 12:4-5; 9:23-26; John 12:25-26; Eccl 3:17; Matt 7:13-14
Of the World to Come
[91] 1 Pet 4:7; 1 Cor 7:29-31; Heb 1:10-12; Matt 24:35; 1 John 2:17; Matt 28:20; 13:39-40; 2 Pet 3:3-13
[92] Acts 1:11; Rev 1:7; Heb 9:28; Acts 3:21; 1 Thess 4:13-18; 5:1-11
[93] Acts 24:15; 1 Cor 15:12-59; Luke 14:14; Dan 12:2; John 5:28-29; 6:40; 11:25-26; 2 Tim 1:10; Acts 10:42
[94] Matt 13:49, 37-43; 24:30-31; 25:31-33
[95] Matt 25:35-41; Rev 22:11; 1 Cor 6:9-10; Mark 9:43-48; 2 Pet 2:9; Jude 7; Phil 3:19; Rom 6:32; 2 Cor 5:10-11; John 4:36; 2 Cor 4:18
[96] Rom 3:5-6; 2 Thess 1:6-12; Heb 6:1-2; 1 Cor 4:5; Acts 17:31; Rom 2:2-16; Rev 20:11-12; 1 John 2:28; 4:17