About Sheffield Baptist Church
The Roots of Sheffield run deep
In 1848 (English) Baptist meetings in the city lead to the establishment of a new Baptist Church on Cornwallis St. By 1866 the congregation had grown and the new North Baptist Church on Gottingen at Falkland St. in the city's North end was built; then in 1874, under North Baptist's Pastor the Rev. James Avery, a second work, Tabernacle Baptist Church was planted on Brunswick St, Both churches grew and prospered but were seriously damaged in the 1917 Halifax Explosion, and worshiped together as the shattered city recovered. With the building of a new church on Robie Street in the 1920's, these two families reunited as Central Baptist Church.
For more than 30 years, under Pastor Dr. A. R. Wilson Murray and later Rev. Dr. Ralph Hobson Central's witness including regular radio sermons and newspaper features, saw the church grow into the foremost independent voice for the Gospel in the city and for many years Central's vestry hosted the Halifax Chinese Christian Church, which now thrives in Halifax's South End.
Under the leadership of Rev. Lawrence Meade, the aging Robie Street property was sold in 1983 and a lot purchased on Lincoln Cross Dr. in the new Sheffield neighbourhood of Clayton Park and Mrs. Rita Mitchell turned the first sod on September 8, 1985. While land was being cleared and a new building constructed, services continued Sunday mornings at Duc D'Anville School and evenings at Fairview United Church.
Chaplestone Construction worked over the winter and a special week of services, featuring London, Ontario Evangelist Dr. Barry Moore began May 10, 1986 to open the new church building. Sheffield Baptist was dedicated to the Glory of God the following Sunday.
Pastor Meade served the Lord, at Sheffield until May 2001, assisted by Assoc. Pastors Scott Boger, Richard Walton and Preston Mowry. Pastor Brent Carter was called to lead the Sheffield family, serving until 2005. In September of 2007 Rev. Henry Grift and his wife Debbie came to shepherd the flock and remained with us until 2012 when our dear friends Pastor Ches and Darlene McKenzie returned, and in November of 2013 Sheffield welcomed the Rev. Dr. John and Patti Donkin. Early in 2017 Pastor Donkin retired from the ministry and the MacKenzies returned again as our Interim Pastor. In mid-September 2017 we welcomed Rev. Matthew Porter and family to Sheffield. In late 2021 the Porters returned to New Brunswick and SBC welcomes Rev. Dr. Shant Manuel and his wife Ginny to SBC as our Interim Pastor as we seek God's man. In October of 2023 SBC welcomed, longtime missionary, Rev. Nego Pierre-Louis and his family to Halifax.
Whether in good times or dark days Sheffield and it's forbearers have always stood as a beacon for the Gospel and light of God’s Holy Word in our neighbourhood, our city and our world and we trust He, and you, still finds us faithful to that Great Commission. Praise be to God!
What We Believe
At Sheffield Baptist Church, we take the Bible seriously making it, not human tradition, our rule of faith and practice. Knowing that other churches have the same goal, but yet not all have the same understanding of God’s Word, we offer this summary of our defining doctrines.
(A)We believe in THE HOLY SCRIPTURES: accepting fully the writing of the Old and New Testaments as the very Word of God, verbally inspired in all parts and therefore wholly without error as originally given of God, altogether sufficient in themselves as our "only infallible and authoritative rule of faith and practice.
(B) We believe in the ONE TRUE GOD: who is an intelligent, sovereign, spiritual and personal Being; perfect, infinite, and eternal in His Being, holiness and love, wisdom and power; absolutely separate from and above the world as its Creator, yet everywhere present in the world as the Upholder of all things. He is revealed to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, three distinct persons but without division of nature, essence or being, and each having a distinct ministry in God's relation to His creation and people.
(C) We believe in THE LORD JESUS CHRIST: Who is the Second Person of the Triune God, the eternal Word and Only Begotten Son that without any change in His divine Person, He became man by miracle of the Virgin Birth, thus to continue forever as both true God and true Man, one Person with two natures; that as Man He Was tempted in all points as we are, yet without sin; that as the perfect Lamb of God He gave Himself in death upon the cross, bearing there the sin of the World, and suffering its full penalty of divine wrath in our stead; that He arose from the grave in a glorified body, that as our great High Priest He ascended into Heaven, there to appear before the face of God as our Advocate and Intercessor.
(D) We believe in THE HOLY SPIRIT who is the third person of the Trinity, and the divine Agent in nature, revelation and redemption; that He convicts the world concerning sin, righteousness and judgement; that He regenerates, indwells, baptizes, seals and anoints all who become children of God through Christ; that He further empowers, guides, teaches, sanctifies and fills believers who daily surrender to Him.
(E) We believe ALL MANKIND IS: BY NATURE AND CHOICE SINFUL AND LOST, that man was the direct creation of God, made in His image and likeness; that by personal disobedience to the revealed will of God, mankind became a sinful creature, the father of a fallen race which is universally sinful in both nature and practice, thus alienated from the life and family of God, under the righteous judgment and wrath of God, and has within himself no possible means of salvation.
(F) We believe in SALVATION BY GRACE THROUGH FAITH that salvation is the free gift of God, neither merited nor secured in part or in whole by and virtue or work of man, but received only by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, in whom all true believers have as a present possession the gift of eternal life, a perfect righteousness, in the family of God, deliverance and security from all condemnation, every spiritual resource needed for life and godliness, and the divine guarantee that they shall never perish; that this salvation affects the whole man; that apart from Christ there is no possible Salvation.
(G) We believe in RIGHTEOUS LIVING AND GODLY WORKS: not as a means of salvation in any sense, but as its proper evidence and fruit; and therefore as Christians we should obey the Word of our Lord, seek the things which are above, walk as He walked, accept as our solemn responsibility the duty and privileges of bearing the gospel to a lost world; remembering that a victorious and fruitful Christian life is possible only for those who in gratitude for the infinite and undeserved mercies of God have presented themselves wholly to Christ.
(H) We believe in THE EXISTENCE OF SATAN: who originally was created a holy and perfect being, but through pride and wicked ambition rebelled against God, thus becoming utterly depraved in character, the great adversary of God and His people, leader of all other evil angels and wicked spirits, the deceiver and god of this present world; that his powers are vast, but strictly limited by the permissive will of God who overrules all his wicked devices for good; that he was defeated and judged at the cross, and therefore his final doom is certain; that we are able to resist and overcome him only in the armor of God, by the blood of the Lamb and through the power of the Holy Spirit.
(I) We believe in THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST: that His coming in the air to rapture His Church, which is our blessed Hope, is always imminent; that when He has first by resurrection of the dead and translation of the living removed from the earth His waiting Church, He will then pour out the righteous judgments of God upon the unbelieving world and afterwards descend with His Church and establish His glorious and literal kingdom over all the nations for a thousand years.
(J) We believe in FUTURE LIFE, BODILY RESURRECTION AND ETERNAL JUDGMENT: that the spirits of the saved at death go immediately to be with Christ in Heaven, that their works shall be brought before the Judgment Seat of Christ for the determination of rewards which will take place at the time when Christ comes for His own; that the spirits of the unsaved at death descend immediately into Hades where they are kept under punishment until the final day of judgment, at which time their bodies shall be raised from the grave, that they shall be judged and cast into Hell, the place of final and everlasting punishment.
(K) We believe in THE SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: with each having definite and distinct spheres of responsibility.
(L) We believe in THE PRIESTHOOD OF ALL BELIEVERS: that Christ is our Great High Priest and through Him every born-again person has direct access into God's presence without the need of a human priest; that the believer has the right and responsibility to personally study and interpret the Scriptures guided by the Holy Spirit.
(M) We believe in THE LORDSHIP OF JESUS CHRIST: that He alone is Head of the Body of Christ, into which all true believers are immediately baptized by the Holy Spirit; that all members of this one spiritual body should assemble and identify themselves in local churches.
(N) We believe in THE IMPORTANCE OF THE LOCAL CHURCH: that a New Testament church is a local assembly of born-again, baptized believers united in organization to practice New Testament ordinances, to meet together for worship prayer, fellowship, teaching and a united testimony, and to actively engage in carrying out the Great Commission.
(O) We believe in THE INDEPENDENCE AND AUTONOMY OF THE LOCAL CHURCH BODY: that each New Testament church is free to govern itself without ecclesiastical interference , and should co-operate with other New Testament churches as the Holy Spirit leads; that it is responsible to follow the pattern of the New Testament church and is directly accountable to God.
(P). We believe THE ORDINANCES GIVEN TO THE LOCAL CHURCH ARE TWO, BAPTISM AND THE LORD'S SUPPER: that Baptism is by immersion of believers, thus portraying the death, burial, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ; that the Lord's Supper is the partaking of the bread and cup by the believer as a continuing memorial of the broken body and shed blood of Christ.
Having been led, as we believe, by the Spirit of God to receive the Lord Jesus Christ as our Saviour, and on the profession of our faith, having been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, we do now in the presence of God and this assembly, most solemnly enter into covenant with one another, as one body in Christ.
We engage therefore, by the aid of the Holy Spirit, to walk together in Christian love; strive for the advancement of our Church, in knowledge, holiness, and to promote its prosperity and spirituality; to be zealous in our effort to advance the Kingdom of our Saviour; to support by our presence the Sunday services and midweek prayer meeting as much as is humanly possible; to sustain its ordinances, discipline and doctrines; to contribute regularly to the support of the ministry, the expenses of the Church, the relief of the poor and the spread of the Gospel in other countries.
We will endeavour to conduct both family and private devotions; to see that our children receive spiritual training in the home, Church and Sunday School. We further engage to watch over one another in brotherly love; to remember each other in prayer; to aid each other in sickness and distress; to cultivate Christian sympathy in feeling and courtesy in speech; as circumstances permit, to extend the hospitality of our home to visitors and newcomers to our Church; to be slow to take offence, but always ready for reconciliation, and that as soon as possible. We moreover engage that, when we remove from this Church, we will as soon as possible unite with some other church where we can carry out the spirit of this Covenant and the principles of God’s Word.