Derek Smith is the Lead Pastor of Living Hope Baptist Church in Clarksville, Tennessee. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University in Alabama in Huntsville, and a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He has been happily married to the love of his life, Chrystal, since 2002 and they have five children, a daughter Reaghan, and four sons Dawson, Harrison, Anderson, and Cayson.
Pastor Derek has a heart to see the church in America revitalized through prayer, brokenness, gospel preaching, and a renewed missional emphasis. Pastor Derek loves coaching little league baseball, going to the beach with his family, fishing, and serving the local church.
The Scripture, all 66 books of the combined Old and New Testaments, is verbally inspired by God. The Bible is inerrant in the original writings, and it is the Christian’s final authority in faith and conduct.
(2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21)
There is only one true, living, sovereign, holy, and eternally existent God. God is infinitely perfect and He exists in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The triune God is the creator and sustainer of all things, the source of all truth, and is worthy of worship, confidence, and obedience.
(Deuteronomy 6:4-5; Genesis 1:31)
THE PERSON AND WORD OF CHRIST
The Lord Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God. He was active in creation, appeared on this earth at times throughout the Old Testament age, and was miraculously born of a virgin on to this earth for a period of 33 years. He became man without ceasing to be God, to reveal God and to redeem mankind from sin. Christ lived a sinless life, and died for the sins of all people as a substitutionary sacrifice. He arose bodily from the dead for our justification, presented Himself alive to over 500 people over a 40 day period, then ascended back to Heaven. He is now exalted at the right hand of God as Head of the Church. Christ is Lord of the individual believer, fulfilling His ministry as our Great High Priest and Advocate.
(John 1:1-3, 14; Matthew 1:18-25; Philippians 2:5-9; Colossians 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:1-8; Acts 1:11)
THE MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of sin and regenerates the believing sinner, baptizing him into the Church (which is the Body of Christ). He indwells, guides, instructs, and empowers believers for godly living and service. God gives all believers at least one spiritual gift so we can use this gift for the strength and mission of the Church.
(John 14:16-19; 16:7-15; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; Romans 8:9, 11; Titus 3:5)
Salvation is God’s free gift. Salvation is neither merited nor secured in part or in whole by any human virtue, work, ceremony, or effort. We receive God’s gift only through personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. In Christ, all true believers have—as a present possession—eternal life, perfect righteousness, and sonship in God’s family. Christians also enjoy every spiritual resource needed for life and godliness, and have the divine guarantee that they shall never die spiritually. God has delivered Christians from all condemnation, and we have eternal security in Christ.
(Ephesians 2:8-10; 2 Corinthians 5:21)
God created man in His image. However, man sinned, incurring not only physical death, but also spiritual death (separation from God, which all people inherit from Adam). Man is subject to Satan’s power; and man, within himself, has no means of recovery or salvation.
(Genesis 1:17, 31)
The true Church is composed of all who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit, through saving faith in Jesus Christ. Those who are thus members of the true Church are eligible for membership in the local Church.
(Matthew 16:18; 1 Corinthians 12:12-14; Hebrews 10:25)
THE SECONG COMING OF CHRIST
The Second Coming of Christ will be personal, is imminent, and will be before the thousand year reign of Christ (premillennialism). First, He will come to receive His own to Himself in the rapture; later, He will set up His earthly kingdom and reign over redeemed Israel. At that time Christ will also reign over all nations, bringing peace and blessing to the world.
THE CHRISTIAN’S WALK
God calls us with a holy calling, to walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. God wants us to live in the power of His indwelling Holy Spirit, so we will not fulfill the lusts of our physical bodies. The fallen nature of the flesh cannot be eradicated in this life. Therefore, keeping ourselves constantly in subjection to Christ, we must allow God’s Holy Spirit to live through us in a daily “walk” of faith. Otherwise, the flesh will certainly demonstrate its presence in our lives, to the Lord’s dishonor. It is the responsibility and privilege of every Christian to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ and make disciples.
(Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8)
THE ETERNAL STATE
The souls of those who have trusted the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation immediately pass into His presence at death. There they remain in conscious bliss until the resurrection of our bodies at Christ’s coming for His Church. Then, with our souls reunited with our glorified bodies, we will live with Him forever in glory in a place called Heaven. God will punish unbelievers with everlasting separation from His presence, His glory, and His power in a place of torment called Hell.
(John 3:16; 2:25; Romans 6:23; Revelation 20:15)
Satan is a person, a fallen angel, the author of the fall of man, and the god of this age. However, he is the Christian’s defeated enemy. His destiny is eternal punishment.
(Job 1:6-12; Mark 8:32)
Adam, the first man, sinned by disobedience. This act resulted in the fall of all mankind. Therefore, all people have sinned and lost their ability to live for the glory of God. Mankind’s fall has incurred both physical and spiritual death on all until there is forgiveness and salvation by the grace of God.
(Genesis 3:1-24; Romans 3:10-23; 5:12-21; 6:23)
BAPTISM AND LORD’S SUPPER
Jesus instructed His followers to remember His death and resurrection. He gave the Church two visible symbols (called “ordinances”) as reminders. These two ordinances are baptism and the Lord’s supper, or communion. Baptism by immersion is a one-time act of obedience to and identification with Jesus as Lord. It serves as an outward sign of conscious confession of repentance and faith. The Lord’s supper, or communion, is an ongoing symbol remembering our Lord’s death, burial, resurrection, and promised return. We should not regard anyone’s participation in these practices as a means of salvation.
(Matthew 28:18-20; Matthew 26: 26-29; 1 Corinthians 11:23-32)
Pastor Derek thanks God for the following men who serve as Advisors to this ministry:
- Tony Lambert
- Nick Sandefur
- Jim Parker