Article 4 of the Constitution of Goodwood Baptist Church read as follows:


The Declaration of Faith of the Church shall be the 1689 (London) Confession of Faith1, hereinafter referred to as “the Declaration.” While regarded as a summary and true interpretation of the teaching of the Scriptures for the faith and conduct of the Church, the Declaration shall not be deemed to be complete or infallible, but shall be subordinate to the Word of God as stated in Article 2.1.

Recognising that not all believers have the same convictions, it shall not be required that a member accepts the Declaration in its entirety. Nevertheless, no member in any teaching capacity shall teach contrary to the Declaration, and every member shall accept the following statements of belief:

4.1. We believe the Bible to be the complete Word of God; that the sixty-six books, as originally written, comprising the Old and New Testaments are verbally inspired by the Spirit of God and entirely free from error; that the Bible is the final authority in all matters of faith and practice and the true basis of Christian Union.

4.2. We believe in one God, Creator of all, holy, sovereign, eternal, existing in three equal Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

4.3. We believe in the absolute and essential deity of Jesus Christ, in His eternal existence with the Father in pre-incarnate glory, in the Virgin birth and His true humanity, sinless life, substitutionary death, bodily resurrection, triumphant ascension, mediatorial ministry and personal return.

4.4. We believe in the absolute and essential deity and personality of the Holy Spirit who convinces of sin, of righteousness and of judgement, who regenerates, sanctifies, illuminates, comforts and indwells all who believe in Jesus Christ.

4.5. We believe that Satan exists as an evil personality, the originator of sin, the arch-enemy of God and man.

4.6. We believe that man was divinely created in the image of God; that he sinned, becoming guilty before God, resulting in total depravity, thereby incurring spiritual and physical death.

4.7. We believe that none but those who repent of sin and exercise faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and accept His Lordship shall be saved, and that salvation is by the sovereign grace of God; that by the appointment of the Father, Christ voluntarily suffered a vicarious, expiatory and propitiatory death; that justification is by faith alone in the all-sufficient sacrifice and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ and that those whom God has effectually called shall be divinely preserved and perfected in the image of the Lord.

4.8. We believe in the personal, bodily and glorious return of the Lord Jesus Christ; in the resurrection of the just and the unjust; in the eternal blessedness of the redeemed, and in the judgement and conscious eternal punishment of the wicked.

4.9. We believe that the one holy catholic and apostolic church consists of all those who have been redeemed by Jesus Christ and regenerated by the Holy Spirit. We believe that this Church finds expression on earth in local companies of believers.

4.10. We believe that a local Church is a company of believers who have been baptised, called out from the world, separated unto the Lord Jesus, voluntarily associated for the ministry of the Word of God, the mutual edification of its members, the propagation of the faith and the observance of the ordinances. We believe that it is an autonomous, independent body exercising its own divinely awarded gifts, precepts and privileges under the Lordship of Christ, the Head of the Church. We believe that its officers are Elders and Deacons.

4.11. We believe that there are only two ordinances for the Church observed in the New Testament in the following order:

4.11.1. Baptism

Which is by immersion of the believer in water, whereby he obeys Christ’s command and sets forth the washing away of sins and his identification with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection.

4.11.2. The Lord’s Supper

Which is the memorial wherein the believer partakes of the two elements, bread and wine, which symbolise the Lord’s body and shed blood, proclaiming His death until He comes again.

4.12. Marriage.

4.12.1. We believe that the only form of marriage sanctioned by God is the marriage of a natural man and a natural woman.

4.12.2. We believe, also, that the only sexual relations permitted by God are heterosexual relations between a natural man and a natural woman who are lawfully married to each other.

1 Republished in modern English in 1975 by Carey Publications under the title, The 1689 – A Faith to Confess.