Port Austin Bible Campus; PO Box 474, Port Austin, Michigan 48467 989-738-7700 www.pabc.info
Port Austin Bible Campus, 8180 Port Drive, PO Box 474, Port Austin,
Michigan, USA, 48467.  •  989-738-7700  •  pabc@portaustin.net
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Statement of Beliefs

Why Doctrinal Statements?

  1. Most religious groups produce a "statement of beliefs"-a summary of their understanding of the most important teachings of the Bible. Such statements are often the group's reason for existence: the members of the group believe that their understanding is a little-or a lot-better than other religious groups. Unfortunately, when people personally "accept" a statement of beliefs, it usually hinders them from learning new things directly from the Bible and the Holy Spirit. If their study should lead them to understand something contrary to their church group's statement of beliefs, many groups might spurn them or even reject them as members. For this reason, we will not produce a detailed doctrinal statement.
  2. The Bible teaches that the spiritual Church should not be divided into different groups following different leaders (John 17:22, 1Cor 1:11-13; 3:1-15). There is obviously a need to reject flagrant false teachers (Titus 3:10; 2John 1:10-11; Rev 2:2, etc.), but other Scriptures show that mature brethren can tolerate mistaken beliefs of others (Rom 14). The "seven churches" in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 had some severe errors, but we can see His loving approach to them and we should take His very same approach to other church groups:
    1. He recognized their spiritual accomplishments,
    2. He told them to repent of what they were doing wrong,
    3. He regarded them all as His churches,
    4. He taught individuals within each church who overcome will be rewarded!

    It is also important to realize what our Messiah did not say:

    1. He did not tell the people to get out of their church if it had errors.
    2. He did not say unity would be achieved by every believer joining the "one best church group", either now or in the future.
    3. He did not tell the heads of those churches to meet together to form a joint doctrinal statement or produce an ecumenical merger.
    4. He did not say His forgivness of sin in one church was an excuse for the other churches to commit the same sins.

    There is no mention of multiple competing congregations in the same city. Nevertheless, the forming of denominations has occurred and much worthwhile work for our Father has been done through them. Even so, the sin of denominationalism is quite dangerous because it is the major roadblock that prevents people in denominations from studying the Scriptures on their own seeking understanding through the Holy Spirit-they know they should not learn anything any different from what their denomination already teaches. The solution to this problem is neither an ecumenical merger of all denominations nor is it the rejection of denominational believers by non-denominational ones. The solution is for all believers to recognize that there is one spiritual Church, and to work together to the greatest extent possible with any other believer who will work with them.

  3. The goal of PABC is for the Eternal to guide it in teaching Biblical truth, not for it to perpetuate the ideas of the founders or staff. Bible teaching will focus on reading the Bible, not on finding scriptures to prove an established doctrinal statement. PABC will allow for diversity in belief: not because doctrine does not matter, but because we are not all in the same place in our biblical understanding. Satan has deceived the whole world (Rev 12:9) and we do not come out of his deceptions all at the same time. Those who attend need to recognize that they have grown in understanding-what they believe and practice today is not exactly what they believed and practiced all their life. Nobody bekuevers that they have always had the correct understanding of truth. No religious group has always taught exactly the same doctrines. Throughout history, most people have had extremely limited access to the Bible, either in their own language or in its original languages. We find no consistent set of doctrines held byany religious group for the past 1900 years. Each person will be judged primarily by what they do with the knowledge they have (John 9:41; Luke 12:47-48; Rom 2:12-16; 14:23; Jms 4:17).
  4. Individuals should hold personal biblical convictions and live by them. PABC will not attempt to dissuade those attending from practicing their personal biblical beliefs as long as they do not conflict with the safety and beliefs of others.

Doctrines that Are Considered Essential

  1. The Holy Scriptures, all of the New and Old Testaments, are the Creator's literal instruction to mankind. While prophetic sections certainly deal with symbols and require inspired interpretation to understand, those sections that claim to be literal accounts are literal accounts and those words claiming to be the words of the Eternal are His words. For example, the miracles occurred as written, our Savior was born of a virgin, etc. On the other hand, there are unevaluated accounts of men's actions in the Bible for which we are left to apply other scriptures to determine their merit. There are also small parts that are labeled as someone's speculation or opinion which we should accept as such. All Bible translations have errors, so believers will sometimes need to consult the original language manuscripts in their search for truth. They may favor certain manuscripts over others in the rare cases where there are differences. However, PABC will not accept this line of reasoning: "I know what the truth is on a matter, therefore the original Scripture must have said such-and-such".
  2. No other writings may be considered equal in authority to the Scriptures described above. This does not mean that other ancient writings are not true or not useful. When questions arise as to what is the will of our Father in heaven or how to resolve differences at PABC, there must be a consensus as to which books constitute the Holy Scriptures, so that guidance can be sought.
  3. People living today who believe that they have personally received additional revelation, augmenting the Scriptures or of equal value to them, should have a like amount of miracles and signs as the people of the Scriptures.
  4. Only the Creator (YHVH, Yahweh, Yahveh, Jehovah, Yehuah or other pronunciation) of the Bible and His Son the Messiah (Jesus, Yashuah, Yeshua, Yehoshua or other pronunciation) may be worshipped. Worship of idols, angels, demons or the gods of other religions is not acceptable. Any contact with demons, except to cast them out, is forbidden.
  5. Salvation, eternal life, is only available through the sacrifice of the Messiah. Salvation will be available to those who died as unbelievers in a resurrection to physical life (Ezk 37:1-14; Rev 20:11-15; Matt 12:36-42).
  6. Salvation is available to all mankind. It is not acceptable for PABC members to proclaim that other people are "beasts of the field" or in some other way incapable or less capable of salvation (1Tim 2:3-4).
  7. You must believe you are responsible to "love your neighbor as yourself" (Lev 19:18; Matt 22:39), applying this to all aspects of life.

Important Practices of the Community

  1. Those using our Father's name vainly will be warned and dismissed for continual offences.
  2. Adulterers and fornicators are subject to immediate dismissal. Couples who claim to be married must either have state marriage or a written marriage agreement. Verbal marriage agreements will not be accepted.
  3. Anyone participating in a homosexual act is subject to immediate dismissal. Those who have homosexual feelings but who are seeking help toward a biblical life style will be given help.
  4. PABC does not require any supernatural events to confirm that a person is a believer, nor does it desire to quench the Holy Spirit. Believers will do greater works than our Messiah did (John 14:12) and should desire biblical spiritual gifts (Rom 12:6-8; 1Cor 12:7-11; 12:28-31; Eph 4:11-15; 1Pet 4:8-11). We acknowledge that the Spirit often works in unusual ways: visions and dreams (Acts 2:17), speaking in tongues and prophesying (Acts 19:6), prophesying while naked (1Sam 19:23-24), lying on one's side for 430 days (Ezk 4:1-6), going without food and water for forty days (Ex 34:28), being "transported" 70 miles away (Acts 8:39-40), etc. We do not seek to classify every unexplainable or uncertain event as "demonic", but seek to use the gift of discerning of spirits (1Cor 12:10) and the judging of prophets (1Cor 14:29) to determine what is from our Father. Any activity that the community determines to be demonic must cease.
  5. The Sabbath will be officially observed from Friday evening to Saturday evening. No non-church meetings or paid work assignments will be conducted during that time. Community members are expected to occasionally volunteer to help with necessary Sabbath duties such as food service, cleanup and physical plant emergencies.
  6. Unclean meats (Lev 11) will not be served in the campus dining hall. Individuals may eat what they like on their own. Everyone is responsible to warn others of the content of the food they serve to others, not serving anything biblically unclean or contrary to another's known dietary preferences.
  7. PABC will uphold the laws of our secular governments as long as they are not in conflict with Biblical commands. A person can be a believer under any governmental system, but should seek a better situation when possible (1Cor 7:20-23). We must realize that our nation has not agreed to the Old Testament law as ancient Israel did (Ex 19:8). We are not responsible for carrying out the punishments of that law unless they coincide with the laws and judicial decisions of our land (Deut 16:18-20; Luke 2:14). People who acknowledge believing it is their personal responsibility to carry out biblical death penalties will be immediately dismissed. If attacked, PABC recognizes the rights for individuals to defend themselves and help defenseless people (Deut 22:24-27). Serious disputes among PABC members which cannot be resolved internally by the process in Matthew 18:15-17 or by appointing a judge (1Cor 6:1-5). When crimes are committed that cannot be effectively dealt with by PABC, they may be turned over to the secular state for prosecution.