A rich history, a promising future

Since its founding in 1852, the First Baptist Church of Monroe has existed to glorify God. We desire to be led by the Holy Spirit to reach into the world and share the glory and grace of God through Jesus Christ the Son.  As a Cooperative baptist church, we are an open fellowship of free and faithful Baptist Christians committed to a journey—a journey of serious study, intentional worship, loving and compassionate fellowship and hands-on ministry. 

At First Baptist we offer a variety of ministries and programs in an effort to reach, teach and minister to  whole persons.  We collaborate with the Union Baptist Association in a cooperative endeavor to do missions and ministry locally. We affiliate with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship of North Carolina for the same purposes.  We are aligned with and financially supportive of the national Cooperative Baptist Fellowship to do together what we could not do apart:  namely, to support ministry and missions both locally and globally.

We are autonomous.  This means that no individual, person, hierarchy or ecclesiastical board dictates what we should believe or  practice, who our leadership should be, how we budget our money or whom we support.  We are governed by our members and the  majority of the work done in the church is by our members.  We are democratic in governance, seeking always to be a community of faith governed and led by God.

What we believe

The Priesthood of All Believers

Baptists find identity in Soul Freedom, the freedom and responsibility of every person to relate  directly to God without imposition of creed or control by clergy or government.  This also carries with it the mandate to minister to  others, to be "priests to each other."

The Authority of the Bible

Baptists find identity in Bible Freedom -- the authority of Scripture.  We believe the Bible, under the  Lordship of Christ, is central in the life of the individual and the church.  We affirm the freedom and right of every Christian to  interpret and apply scripture under the leadership of the Holy Spirit.

Religious Liberty

Baptists find identity in Religious Freedom.  We believe in freedom of religion, freedom for religion, and freedom from religion. We support the separation of church and state, but not the separation of God from government.

The Autonomy of the Local Church

Baptists find identity in Church Freedom.  We believe in the autonomy of every local church.   We believe Baptist churches are free, under the Lordship of Christ, to determine their membership and leadership, to order  their worship and their work, to ordain whomever they perceive as gifted and called for ministry, and to participate as they deem appropriate in the larger Body of Christ.

Believers Baptism

Baptists find identity in Believers Baptism.  We believe that the decision for baptism rests with the individual. It cannot be made for him or her.  To Baptists the event of baptism is to be memorable and worshipful.  It follows conversion, coming when a person is mature enough to understand that baptism -- immersion in water -- symbolizes the forgiveness of sins and new life in Christ.  It is the mark of Christ,  an outward expression of the inward change of heart.  Though we practice baptism by immersion only, we respect the baptism of all Christian traditions and  practice an "open membership" policy which acknowledges and accepts any form of Christian Baptism.