In the areas of doctrine and dogma, the Watchman ministry will present information that is biblically balanced and centrist. Watchman materials will be conservative (not necessarily fundamentalist), and consistent with the teachings of the historic Christian Church. At times, our writings will reference various schools of thought on issues, but Watchman material will not focus on “disputable matters.” Rather than focusing on when the Lord will return, the Watchman ministry will focus on the need to be ready for His imminent return. Watchman ministry material, much like the teaching and material of the Billy Graham ministry, is not denominationally or regionally specific, but rather, is designed to edify, encourage and exhort the entire body of Christ.
The I Am A Watchman ministry has been established to help individuals know the love of Jesus, enter into relationship with Jesus, live for Jesus, tell others about Jesus, and to prepare for the imminent return of Jesus. In informal language, the I Am A Watchman ministry strives to help individuals finish well (which is to live a life of meaning and purpose, and at the coming judgment hear the Lord say, “Well done my good and faithful servant”). In more theological terms, I Am A Watchman ministry’s focus is to help prepare the bride of Christ to meet the coming Bridegroom. This language comes from Matt. 25:1-46; Rev. 19:7-9; Rev. 21:2; John 14:1-3; Rev. 21:9-11. The phrase is a word picture that imagines believers in Christ as the bride, who stand in readiness and purity, waiting for the Groom, who has promised to return, reward, and take his bride away.
The wise will strive to live well so they can finish well. The astute will strive to be aware of what God has done and what prophecy notes He will do in the days to come. In support of these goals, the Watchman ministry is happy to make available at no cost a wealth of discipleship, prophecy, and spiritual growth resources for those who desire to learn, and those who are called to lead.
- God and Trinity: We believe there is one God (Deut. 6:4), and that this one God has revealed Himself in three persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:16-17, 28:19; II Cor. 13:14; John 14:16). The triune nature of God is known as the Trinity. Each component of the triune nature of God is separate but equal, distinct in description but one in nature.
- Jesus Christ: We believe Jesus Christ is the Son of God, the Messiah and the Savior of the world, He was born of a virgin (Matt. 1:18,20) in Bethlehem about 2000 years ago. The ‘fullness of deity dwelt in him’ (Col. 2:9), and so He was both fully divine (John 1:1; Phil. 2:6), and fully human (John 1:14; Rom. 8:3; I Tim. 2:5). His dual nature allowed him to experience temptation as a man—but He lived a sinless life and was, therefore, able to offer Himself as a perfect sacrifice on the cross, making salvation possible for all who believe in Him (John 3:16). Believers are called to anticipate and prepare for His imminent return.
- Holy Spirit: We believe the Holy Spirit is part of the triune Godhead, equal in glory and power with God the Father, yet having a different role and purpose to fulfill. In our world, the Spirit lives in the heart of every believer. The presence of the Spirit brings peace (Philippians 4:6-7), power (Acts 1:8), and gifting (I Corinthians 12:11). The Spirit enables the believer to serve with effectiveness and leads individuals to do that which honors Him (I Corinthians 14:3-5, 12-26). We do not hold that ‘speaking in tongues’ is a necessary evidence of the Spirit in a Christian’s life. We believe the working of the Spirit is both profound and orderly.
- Demons and Angels: We believe angels are real, supernatural beings created by God. We believe the company of angels were created for the express purpose of serving God, to carry His messages, and in some cases defend humanity (Neh. 9:6; Heb. 1:14; Psalm 148:2; Daniel 10:12-20). We believe Satan is a fallen angel and leader of a massive rebellion against God for which he was eternally banished from Heaven (Ezekiel 28:12-15). We hold that both Satan and his demon servants are enemies of God, man, and all God’s creation. We believe the devil and his servants will spend eternity in the lake of fire (Rev. 25:41).
- The Bible: We believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. It is without error and useful for addressing the struggles and challenges of today (II Timothy 3:16; John 17:17; II Peter 1:21). We believe that God has and will continue to preserve the integrity of His Word. We believe the 66-book canon of Scripture is closed and that it does not include extra-biblical works such as the book of Enoch, or the gospels of Judas or Phillip.
- Salvation: We believe Jesus Christ died for all (Romans 5:18; II Corinthians 5:19; I John 2:2), but only those who commit to receiving Jesus as their Lord and accept the forgiveness offered by Christ will be saved (Romans 5:1, 15, 18). We believe that individuals are saved by grace (not by works) through faith (Eph. 2:8-10) and that a life of good works evidences a genuine salvation experience (John 8:31,14:15; James 1:21-23, 2:26).
- Baptism: Baptism comes from the Greek verb baptidzo, which means to immerse. It is a symbolic act which identifies the believer with a new life in Christ. Baptism emphasizes unity. According to Scripture, baptism is ‘by one Spirit’ and ‘into one body’ (1 Cor. 12:13). Baptism unites believers who share one faith, have one hope and live to serve one Lord. In Peter’s sermon (Acts 2:38-42), baptism signified repentance and reception of the Gospel message of Jesus. The outcome of those baptized was that they were, “added to the church; they devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and Christian fellowship” (Rom. 6:4,7; Acts 8:12-17; Col. 2:12). Baptism is a significant decision and witness to one’s faith in Jesus Christ. Accordingly, we believe baptism is an act (Ordinance) restricted to individuals old enough to understand its meaning.
- Communion: Communion (The Lord’s Supper) is an object lesson that represents a great spiritual truth for believers. It is a symbolic ceremony which reminds believers of the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Through communion we remember the sacrifice of our Lord (1 Cor. 11:24), we acknowledge the New Covenant made possible by Jesus’ work on Calvary (1 Cor. 11:25), and we proclaim our faith (1 Cor. 11:26). We believe that all who receive communion should first enter a time of prayerful reflection and ensure that they are right before man and God before sharing in this ordinance (1 Cor. 11:29).
- Womens’ Role in the Church: We see that the Old and New Testaments note that women have played a vital role in spiritual work throughout the ages. In the Old Testament God worked in profound ways through women such as Miriam, the leader, Esther the brave Queen, Huldah the prophetess, Deborah the Judge, and Abagail, the wise intercessor. In the New Testament, God’s work was supported brilliantly by women such as Mary, Lydia, Dorcas, Martha and many others. We believe Scripture esteems, not demeans women, and that though God calls men to lead in some spiritual matters—in the home and the church, He calls both men and women to be Watchmen (Ezek. 33:1-9). The work of the Great Commission is a shared responsibility that all in the faith must support.
- Eschatology: is the study of the last things. There are more than 100 prophecies about the last days. As it is clear this topic is important to God, it should, therefore, be a priority study topic for followers of Christ. Though there are points of disagreement among leaders in the Church today regarding the what and when of last days events, there is much common ground. Most evangelicals hold that:
- The Bible is true and that Jesus Christ will return as promised.
- A time of Tribulation is coming (7 years).
- A series of judgments (21) will befall the earth through which God will attempt to draw a stubborn humanity to Himself.
- An Antichrist will rise to power.
- A false prophet will lead a one world religion that will oppress Jews and Christians.
- The Antichrist will control the world economy—and use it as a weapon to force the world to honor him.
- Enemy armies will surround Israel and attack in a battle known as Armageddon.
- At the end of the Tribulation period, Christ will return in glory—he will destroy the armies surrounding Israel, see that the Antichrist and false prophet will be thrown into the lake of fire and will then usher-in the Millennial Kingdom.
- There will be a final judgment.
- The call for believers today is twofold: 1) watch for the signs of the Lord’s return for His return is promised, and imminent. 2) Actively serve the Lord. (Be active in “Great Commission” Watchman work – be “ALL IN” for Jesus).
- The Rapture: The word “rapture” indicates a sudden taking away of believers from this world by the Lord Jesus Christ. Implied is that this taking away is an act of mercy—a rescue from the tribulation that is to come. Though the word “rapture” is not in the Bible, many believe that the foundation for the rapture teaching is reflected in Scripture (Note: the same can be said of the terms, Trinity and Missions). When the notable Church Father Jerome (347-420 A.D.) translated the Greek New Testament into Latin, he translated the Greek word harpazio ἁρπάζω into the Latin “rapiemur.” The Latin verb form is “radio” and means to be “caught up” or “taken away.” The English word “rapture’ comes from these Latin words. The Apostle Paul used the word ἁρπάζω in 1 Thessalonians 4.17 in reference to the sudden return of the Lord and believers joining Him in the air. The Greek word harpazio means to “seize” or “snatch away;” it serves as a foundational word for the rapture doctrine. The word is found 13 times in the New Testament: Matthew 11:12, 13:19; John 6:15, 10:12, 28-29; Acts 8:39, 23:10; 2 Corinthians 12:2, 12:4; 1 Thessalonians 4:17; Jude 23; Revelation 12:5.
- The Nation of Israel: The rebirth of Israel, in May of 1948, is likely the greatest miracle since the resurrection of Christ and the advent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost! Just as Ezekiel’s valley of dry bones came together, so too did God’s Chosen People. We believe that Israel is Israel, not the Church today. We see Israel once again the center of the world’s attention and the epicenter of God’s intentions. We owe our salvation to a Jewish Savior; “salvation is of the Jews.” (John 4:22). The nations who bless Israel will be blessed, and those who curse Israel will be cursed (Gen. 12:1-3). We bless the God of Israel and the nation of Israel.
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