- 1. First Baptist Church adheres to the Word of God as life's "guidebook."
- 2. First Baptist Church is aligned with the Southern Baptist Convention, an evangelical Christian denomination of more than sixteen-million people, and over forty-seven thousand churches. Southern Baptists are uniquely devoted to cooperation with other churches for areas of ministry such as mission-work and church-planting, while remaining autonomous as a local congregation.
- 3. Each state within the United States also has a convention of Southern Baptist churches. First Baptist Church is affiliated with both state-level conventions in Texas. Until 2000, Texas had one Southern Baptist state convention, The Baptist General Convention of Texas. In 2000, the BGCT voted to be removed from fellowship with over half of those in attendance at an annual gathering and a second, new state convention was formed, the Southern Baptists of Texas. First Baptist Church, is "dualy aligned," meaning cooperation exists with both state conventions.
- 4. Each region of Texas has an autonomous association of churches, a voluntary membership that provides strategy, training, assistance, and support for Southern Baptist churches. First Baptist Church proudly supports the San Felipe Baptist Association.
First Baptist Church has been "in fellowship" with the Southern Baptist Convention since 1876. The Southern Baptist Convention began in 1845 and has a rich heritage of cooperation between its 15,000+ churches to work towards church planting, missions, etc. Although congregations carrying affiliation with the SBC are autonomous, many have stated their agreement with a document that states the doctrinal beliefs generally found in Southern Baptist churches. This document is called the "Baptist Faith & Message." The most recent version, the "BF&M 2000" has been accepted by First Baptist Church, Sealy as a document that states our basic, fundamental doctrinal stances.
The Southern Baptists of Texas Convention is a state-level convention of Southern Baptists. Over 2,500 congregations are aligned with the convention, many of which are attracted to the conservative roots that existed when it was founded. Church planting remains a priority for the SBTC, as does revitalization of congregations struggling to adapt to ever-changing cultures.
The Cooperative Program brings together more than 15,000 like-hearted Southern Baptist Churches, comprised of more than 15 million members, to give a portion of their church budgets to common causes. This includes five Southern Baptist seminaries, missions giving in North America and abroad, the Ethics and Religious Liberties Commission (lobbying for biblical views towards right to life, poverty eradication, freedom of religion, and marriage). Without the Cooperative Program, most congregations totaling less than 350 members would struggle to feel as though they are making a difference in the world. The CP changes this paradigm!
The IMB or International Mission Board is comprised of thousands of missionaries, called and sent throughout the world to spread the Story of Jesus Christ. The opportunities for ministry are endless, from water well drilling to church planting, and medical missions to Bible translation work. Unreached people groups continue to be a priority, as each year the IMB grows nearer to a day when every person on our planet has had the opportunity to lay eyes on the Bible. However, as each day passes, we grow closer to the imminent return of Jesus as well. The need is real and the laborers are few. First Baptist Church is actively engaged with partnering with those on the field and the IMB's purpose.