Sebring Evangelical Friends on Quaker Hill in Sebring is a part of the Evangelical Friends Church Eastern Region or EFC-ER; a collection of approximately 100 Evangelical Friends churches. We are Evangelical because we hold to the centrality of God’s Word, the Bible, and to the responsibility of communicating the truth of His Word concerning the Christ to all people. We are called “Friends” deriving from the declaration by Jesus recorded in John 15: 14- 15. Jesus wants us to be in a relationship with Him!
The following excerpt is from the Evangelical Friends Faith and Practice Book: (Click the page image for the full PDF or Click Here )
The Evangelical Friends Church – Statement of Faith
We believe in one1 eternal,2 omnipresent,3 unchanging,4 personal5 God; perfect in holiness,6 wisdom,7 love,8 power,9 and justice10 without preceding cause or beginning;11 creator12 and preserver13 of all things, visible and invisible. 102 He exists as one divine being and yet as a trinity of three distinct persons, identical, inseparable, and equal in divinity, power and eternity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.14 103 God revealed Himself in the past in many and various ways, though supremely in the person of Jesus Christ.15 He continues to reveal Himself today through His creation,16 the Holy Scriptures,17 and the workings of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of people.18 104 He alone is worthy of our worship, honor, praise and thanksgiving, now and forevermore.19
We believe that Jesus Christ, the Word who was with God and was God,1 is the only begotten Son of God.2 He was conceived by the Holy Spirit3 and born of the Virgin Mary4 and is the express image of the invisible God.5 He combines within Himself both the divine nature of God and human nature in one perfect indivisible personality, the God-man.6 112 He lived and suffered in the world to show the Way of Life.7 He was crucified and died as the atonement for the sins of the whole world,8 making the only provision whereby people can find forgiveness of sins and cleansing from all unrighteousness.9 113 He died in our place10 and was raised the third day for our justification;11 He ascended into heaven12 and sits at the right hand of God, ever living as our only Mediator and High Priest making intercession 8 for us,13 and from there will return again to receive His church unto Himself14 and to judge the world in righteousness.15
THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe in the Holy Spirit, not as an impersonal principle or influence, but as a divine person,1 and though distinct from the Father and Son, proceeding from both,2 with whom He is equal in authority, power, glory, and titles.3 122 He is the divine agent in conviction of sin,4 regeneration,5 sanctification,6 and the believers’ assurance.7 123 He is given as an indwelling Presence to every believer to be a teacher,8 guide,9 and source of comfort.10 He purifies the heart of the believer11 and imparts at His own choosing spiritual gifts for service and the building up of the body of Christ.12 He produces in believers the fruit of the Spirit13 so that they may conform to the image of Christ.
As with early Friends, we believe that all Scripture,1 both of the Old and New Testaments, is given by inspiration of God, without error in all that it affirms,2 and is the only infallible rule of faith and practice.3 It is fully authoritative and trustworthy, fully sufficient for all believers now and always,4 and profitable for teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness.5 9 132 Thus, the declarations contained in it rest on the authority of God Himself,6 and there can be no appeal from them to any other authority whatever. They are the only divinely authorized record of the doctrines which we are bound as Christians to believe,7 and of the moral principles which are to regulate our behavior.8 Only such doctrines as are contained in the Scripture can be regarded as Articles of Faith.9 The Holy Spirit, who inspired the Scripture, must ever be its true interpreter.10 Whatever any person says or does which is contrary to the Scripture, though under profession of the guidance of the Spirit, must be reckoned and accounted a delusion.11 133 The Scripture demands of believers complete obedience12 and is made increasingly open to those who study and obey it.13
We affirm the truth of John 14:6 that salvation can only be found through faith in Jesus Christ. We believe that by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,1 through the direct and immediate agency of the Holy Spirit,2 persons may be reconciled to God and recovered from their fallen state through justification,3 regeneration,4 sanctification,5 and ultimately the resurrection of the body.6 172 Justification: In response to sinners’ repentance, surrender of themselves, and sincere faith in the power and sufficiency of Jesus’ atoning death and shed blood,7 God pardons them from past sins and declares them righteous, not for anything they have done but because of the obedience and atoning death of Christ.8 173 Regeneration: In response to sinners’ repentance, surrender of themselves, and sincere faith in the power and sufficiency of Jesus’ atoning death and shed blood, God also by His gracious power makes them new creatures.9 By the Holy Spirit they are born again into the family of God10 to a new life of love to God and to people.11 Their minds are enlightened to understand His truth,12 and their wills are renewed to do His will,13 as He begins to conform them to His image. The evidence of this regeneration of the believer is the fruit of the Spirit.14 11 174 Sanctification: We believe that children of God at the moment of their conversion do receive the Holy Spirit.15 As they trust in Him and obey His will, they manifest more and more of the fruit of the Spirit, conform more and more to the likeness of God, and thus are being continuously sanctified.16 175 It is also the will of God that believers receive the fullness of the Spirit,17 which He will graciously grant in response to their full consecration to His will and their faith in Christ’s promises and in His atoning death.18 Sanctification is thus a process in which the Holy Spirit continuously disciplines the believer into paths of holiness and an act in which He cleanses the heart from an imperfect relationship and state.19 176 We further believe that the fullness of the Holy Spirit does not make believers incapable of choosing to sin, nor even from completely falling away from God, yet it so cleanses and empowers them as to enable them to have victory over sin, to endeavor fully to love God and people, and to witness to the living Christ.20
We believe that the church is made up of all those from the apostles until now,1 both the triumphant dead and the living,2 who through response to God’s gracious offer of salvation3 by repentance of their sins4 and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior5 have been born again6 as new creatures in Christ.7 This church is spiritual in nature,8 universal in scope,9 holy in character,10 and redemptive in its life and purpose.11 182 Its purposes are to make disciples of all nations by its witness to the grace and love of God12 and to live as a loving fellowship who build up one another in the grace and knowledge of God.13 183 The church accomplishes these purposes by its existence as particular local congregations gathered out of the world14 and as associations of congregations in larger organizations15 under the leadership and service of those called and gifted to such service.16 It worships in prayer,17 thanksgiving,18 and song;19 diligently studies the Word of God;20 witnesses to and proclaims the gospel of God’s Son;21 exercises the gifts of the Spirit;22 administers discipline;23 and performs works of blessing and service both physical and spiritual to its members and to all in need.24
For the full Faith and Practice book